BBC has released details about the upcoming holiday episode of Doctor Who.
Each year, between seasons, the new incarnation of the series features a side-canon story which ties some way into the themes of typical holiday tales. It’s a chance for The Doctor to leave his current companions behind, and do something on his own for an episode, which doesn’t tie in at all to the current mytharc.
This winter, the Doctor Who special will star - besides Matt Smith - Claire Skinner, Bill Bailey, Arabella Weir and Alexander Armstrong. Production began earlier this week.
Skinner is playing a young widow, Madge Arwell, who befriends the doctor, along with her two children, Lily and Cyril, on Christmas Eve in WWII England.
The family has been evacuated from London, and are living in a creepy old house in Dorset "where the caretaker is a mysterious young man in bow tie, and a big blue parcel is waiting for them under the tree. They are about to enter a magical new world and learn that a Time Lord never forgets his debts."
Regarding her part in the episode Skinner said, "I am thrilled to be in Doctor Who playing Madge who is a bit of super-mum. It's a magical part."
"The Doctor at Christmas - nothing is more fun to write," says Steven Moffat, Lead Writer and Executive Producer of Doctor Who.
"Maybe because it's so his kind of day - everything's bright and shiny, everybody's having a laugh, and nobody minds if you wear a really stupid hat. Of all the Doctors, Matt Smith's is the one that was born for this time of year - so it's the best news possible that he's heading back down the chimney."
Doctor Who is currently in the midst of its sixth season back after a decades long hiatus, and is more popular around the world than it ever has been, with this season marking the first time the show has been broadcast outside Britain on the same schedule as the BBC One showing.