The Giggle is the third of three Doctor Who 60th anniversary specials to appear in November. Here is what we know about the one-hour special so far.
The sequence of events depicted here may not be accurate because it is difficult to discern from a few trailer scenes. This is our best guess.
The TARDIS lands in an alleyway near the Toymaker’s (Neil Patrick Harris) toy and game shop in modern day. The Fourteenth Doctor (David Tennant) and Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) step out and onto the adjoining street where there is an old time toy shop.
The scene on the street becomes chaotic as people go violently berserk and attack each other. An aeroplane drops dangerously toward the ground.
Out from the midst of the chaos steps the Toymaker (Neil Patrick Harris), a powerful being whom the Doctor has encountered before. The Toymaker waltzes joyfully and waves and beckons to the Doctor. When the Doctor approaches, the Toymaker engages him in a brief waltz.
The TARDIS is towed on a helicopter toward a tower in London run by UNIT. The Tower has a huge helipad on a cantilever near its top.
Mel Bush (Bonnie Langford) will appear on this same helipad, wearing the same technology on her arm as Kate, at some point either in The Giggle and/or later in the 2024 Doctor Who series.
The Doctor warmly greets UNIT chief Kate Lethbridge-Stewart (Jemma Redgrave).
The fourteenth Doctor walks toward UNIT headquarters with Shirley Anne Bingham (Ruth Madeley) Donna Noble, Colonel Ibrahim (Alexander Devrient playing a recurring character who will also show up in the 2024 Series), and Kate Lethbridge-Stewart. Kate asks “What do we do this time, Doctor? How do we fight the human race?”
The Doctor converses with Kate. “And I’ve got a memory. After a very long time, something’s coming back.” “Something is entering this world.”
The Doctor and the staff in the UNIT tower watch the events on an array of monitors before they all show a vision resembling Stooky Bill, the head of a ventriloquist’s dummy that Scottish television pioneer John Logie Baird used in his 1924 experiments to transmit a televised image. The Toymaker voice is heard laughing “Ha ha HA ha ha ha!” The Doctor decries “He’s here… driving you mad… laughing at the human race.”
The TARDIS travels back to the 1920s and the Doctor and Donna head toward the Toymaker’s shop, Mr Emporium, on a rainy day. The posters in the alleyway have changed.
It’s also possible that the modern-day/1920s time change happens for the Doctor and Donna while they are inside Mr Emporium. The powerful Toymaker can easily make this happen.
Charles Banerjee (Charlie De Melo) enters Mr Emporium, the Toymaker’s shop, on a rainy day.
John Logie Baird’s workshop and live television prototype can be seen in publicity stills for The Giggle.
The Doctor and Donna enter Mr Emporium to find the Toymaker who says “Oh, but he is recognizing me.” “Who is he?,” Donna asks. “The one who waits,” is the reply.
The Toymaker boasts “The show is just beginning! Worldwide premiere!”
UNIT has a confrontation with the Toymaker. Kate Stewart, who has confiscated a wood panel from Mr Emporium, gives the order to “Open fire!”
Mounted on the far side of the UNIT helipad is a Galvanic Beam.
The Toymaker takes control of the Galvanic Beam and aims it back toward the UNIT control room. The Shard can be seen in the background smouldering from a hit. The Doctor yells “Your fight is with me!”
The Doctor says to Donna “I don’t know who I am any more.” and “I don’t know if I can save your life this time.” Donna says “Why did this face come back? To say ‘Goodbye’?”
The Toymaker is a powerful being who ensnares people in seemingly childish games — with their lives and freedom at stake. The games are always rigged in the Toymaker’s favour. There are a few glimpses of the Toymaker’s antics in the 60th anniversary trailers.
If the Doctor is to prevail, perhaps he will require the help of a future incarnation. The Fifteenth Doctor (Ncuti Gatwa) demands “Now, someone tell me what the hell is going on here!”
Doctor Who will return in November 2023 with three 60th anniversary specials starring David Tennant as the Fourteenth Doctor and Catherine Tate as companion Donna Noble titled The Star Beast, Wild Blue Yonder and The Giggle.