Matt Lucas's Nardole is now more devious in Doctor Who

Justin Harp
Photo credit: Simon Ridgway / BBC Pictures

From Digital Spy

In all of the excitement surrounding the arrival of new Doctor Who companion Pearl Mackie, let's not forget that Matt Lucas will be back as the bumbling Nardole too.

Nardole is making history as the first-ever full-time alien companion of the revived series (Captain Jack never travelled in the TARDIS full-time, remember), and also marks the return of A-List co-stars in the vein of Catherine Tate and Billie Piper.

Ahead of the series' return next week, Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat is dropping a few hints about the ways Nardole has evolved since his last two Christmas special appearances.

Photo credit: BBC

"I've been thinking for a while with Peter's Doctor that he should have a butler, a valet, an assistant," the writer explained. "He would want somebody to fetch and carry and do complicated tasks for him – he'd want a little expert on hand and I was already thinking about that and had quite a different idea of who that was going to be.

"And then absolutely coincidentally Matt Lucas who had been in 'The Husbands of River Song' in a tiny little role said he had really enjoyed it and would like to come back if we ever wanted him. So I pondered this for a few days and said to (executive producer Brian Minchin) that it would be mad to not make something out of this he's such a popular actor.

"He's so brilliant and charming and he's already in place albeit decapitated …so we brought him back. He is The Doctor's go-to guy. He's not quite, as we have seen in 'The Return of Doctor Mysterio' the bumbling oaf he likes people to think he is – he's slyer, more devious, more useful and he has a very shady past.'

A devious butler? How very Tom Baker era of you, Steven Moffat.

Expect more answers in the upcoming series about how exactly Nardole even has a body at this point, seeing as his head was lopped off back in 'The Husbands of River Song'.

Photo credit: BBC

"I lost my head very carelessly," he joked back in December. "There's stuff I can tell you and there's stuff I can't tell you. Partly because I'm sworn to secrecy and also because I can't always understand it. It's very complicated!

"[The missing head] is explained. You do discover a little bit in the Christmas episode and across the course of the series how Nardole was put together again and why he's back. He's not just there on a whim. He has a job to do. All becomes apparent throughout the series."

Over the course of the series, The Doctor, Nardole and new friend Bill will face off some of the universe's nastiest baddies… including the Daleks, the Cybermen, the Ice Warriors and both the John Simm incarnation of The Master and Michelle Gomez's female version Missy.

We have some theories about how this multi-Master story will unfold. Click here for our attempt to piece together a wibbly wobbly timey wimey mystery.

Doctor Who returns to BBC One on Saturday, April 15 at 7.20pm and will air on BBC America in the US. Watch a previous trailer below:

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