Doctor Who is officially back for all the fans who have been eager to watch "The Star Beast" online with a Disney+ subscription, and there are no doubt many of us wondering what future surprises are in store. David Tennant hinted unexpected moments are coming, but it seems we can rule out any happy-go-lucky appearances from former Doctor actor Peter Capaldi. The Thick of It star was previously vocal about not returning for the 60th anniversary, and more recently solidified his lack of interest now that the show is back.
Capaldi played the Twelfth Doctor on Doctor Who, and while his debut coincided with the 50th anniversary, it doesn't seem like he's going to pop up for the latest celebrations. In a recent interview with STV, the former star of the series explained once again why he's not willing to make another appearance to follow his initial departure:
I like the idea of ‘I’ve gone.’ All the Doctors I knew were there, and then they were gone, which is part of the whole thing. They didn’t exist on the telly. They weren’t actors; they were doctors who were off in time and space, like me.
Peter Capaldi has long been a Doctor Who fan, and it appears he's a fan of the old-school way of doing things. Granted, the series handled its first multi-Doctor story in 1972, so it's not like scenarios where his Doctor would appear, which are an entirely fresh concept for the franchise.
Doctor Who's Russell T. Davies Just Made An Important Clarification About Jodie Whittaker's Doctor, And I'm So Relieved
Doctor Who fans might've hoped Peter Capaldi was involved in the 60th anniversary specials in some way, especially after some of the surprises we've already seen thus far. The series snuck incoming Doctor Ncuti Gatwa next to First Doctor William Hartnell in an updated version of the episode "An Adventure in Space and Time," so we're already seeing some unexpected appearances happen during this celebration.
In Peter Capaldi's defense, he hasn't been away from Doctor Who as long as others. His final episode aired in 2017, whereas someone like David Tennant hadn't come back since an appearance in the 50th anniversary in 2013. Perhaps by the 70th anniversary, Capaldi will feel more game for showing up.
While I think it's safe to assume at this point we won't be seeing Peter Capaldi, there are plenty of other 60th-anniversary cast members to look forward to. This includes the late Bernard Cribbins, who passed away after filming his scenes and was honored by showrunner Russell T. Davies and others.
I'm also looking forward to seeing Neil Patrick Harris as Toymaker and hoping he'll live up to the hype of one of Doctor Who's most memorable classic villains. I also am thrilled by what I've seen from David Tennant and Catherine Tate thus far and think they're every bit as good now as Doctor and Donna they were fifteen years prior.
Doctor Who premieres a new episode, "Wild Blue Yonder," on Saturday, December 2nd. As mentioned, I wouldn't hold my hopes up for an appearance by Peter Capaldi, but there will likely be lots of other great moments to look forward to.