Doctor Who fans left mystified by unexpected TARDIS revelation in Christmas special

Doctor Who fans have been left mystified by an unexpected mid-credits scene featured in the latest Christmas special.

The BBC series returned on Monday (25 December) for a brand new instalment, titled “The Church on Ruby Road”,. The episode marked the first full adventure for Ncuti Gatwa, who “knocked it out of the park” after arriving earlier this month in a scene that broke from tradition.

The latest episode also introduced new companion Ruby Sunday (Millie Gibson) – but it’s another character that has generated frenzied intrigue among the show’s fandom.

Mrs Flood, played by Anita Dobson, is introduced as Ruby’s nosy next door neighbour, who gets particularly frustrated by the arrival of the TARDIS due to the fact it’s obstructing the street. By the end of the episode, though, the TARDIS departs, leaving Mrs Flood’s fellow neighbour, Abdul (Hemi Yeroham), in shock.

In a mid-credits scene, Dobson’s character, unfazed, tells Abdul to “stop making such a fuss”. She then turns to the camera and says with a wink: “Never seen a TARDIS before?”

Fans immediately rushed to social media to share their reactions to the moment, with fan account @BadWolfArchives posting: “Now gonna spend the next few months obsessing over who SHE is.”

So who could Mrs Flood actually be? The main theory is that she has something to do with the Master. Backing this up is the fact that the doctor did not recognise Ms Flood – the Radio Times theorised that the TARDIS she previously saw could be one belonging to the Master? Meanwhile, others believe the name Flood could be a nod to the name River Song.


There’s a contingent of viewers who think a younger version of Mrs Flood will be shown to meet Gatwa’s Doctor in a future episode, with one person theorising that perhaps the character is no one special at all.

Anita Dobson as the mysterious Mrs Flood in ‘Doctor Who’ (BBC)
Anita Dobson as the mysterious Mrs Flood in ‘Doctor Who’ (BBC)

“I wonder if Mrs Flood is actually anyone at all. Perhaps they just realised at the end that they hadn’t used the word TARDIS yet, and needed to slip it in somewhere for the new viewers,” they shared on X/Twitter.

The BBC has revealed more details about the forthcoming series, which will start in May 2024. New episodeswill see the return of Yasmin Finney and Bonnie Langford, who will reprise their roles as Rose Noble and Mel Bush, alongside Jinkx Monsoon as a character described as “the Doctor’s most powerful enemy yet”.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Groff will appear in a mysterious key role, with Indira Varma playing the Duchess and Lenny Rush playing Morris. Doctor Who airs on the BBC in the UK and Disney+ globally.