What would Christmas be without Doctor Who? Weird is one answer that comes to mind and boring is another. For the past fifty-two years Doctor Who has been a loyal companion for long-time fans of the sci-fi show. Despite this long run there are only ten Christmas specials (well, technically eleven because one has two parts) and they are all found in this one collection. The first five specials were written by Russell T. Davis and the last five by Steven Moffatt.
Here are short resumes of each Christmas special:
1. “The Christmas Invasion” (Aired December 2005, David Tennant as Doctor Who): The Doctor has just regenerated and is very sick. Rose and her mom, Jackie, take him home and put him to bed while he recovers. But he still bests a bunch of murderous Santa Clauses and again is called upon to save Earth.
2. “The Runaway Bride” (December 2006, David Tennant) Donna Noble is going to marry the man of her dreams, Lance. But halfway down the walk to the church altar, she is enveloped by a glowing mass and transported to the TARDIS. The Doctor is at a loss, but he is forced into action when the Santas from last year return. Donna doesn’t know about the lethal Santas because she slept through the Christmas Invasion. But who or what is running the Santas now?
3. “Voyage of the Damned” (December 2007, David Tennant) The Doctor is shipwrecked on the Titanic. Not the original, but a luxury tourist spaceship orbiting Earth. His psychic paper is the only thing that keeps him from being thrown into the brig as a stowaway. He plans to have a good old time. He meets Astrid, a waitress who wants to visit the galaxies, and you think that she is going to become his new companion. But it all goes very wrong when the ship is deliberately sabotaged. Those on board are in a position of peril due to the explosions and the killer robot angels.
4. “The Next Doctor” (December 2008, David Tennant) The Doctor responds to a cry for help in London on Christmas Eve 1851 and he ends up meeting another Doctor! The other Doctor even has a TARDIS – a Tethered Aerial Release Developed In Style. They join forces to battle yet another Cybermen invasion.
5. “The End of Time: Part 1 & 2” (December/January 2009/2010, David Tennant) Lucy Saxon has been in jail since murdering her husband the Master in the series three episode entitled “Last of the Time Lords”. She’s set free by the Master’s disciples and is used to bring him back to life on Christmas Eve. The regeneration is interrupted, though, leaving the Master with amazing powers, seemingly unquenchable hunger and is an even greater megalomania than before.
6. “A Christmas Carol” (December 2010, Matt Smith) Kazran Sardick has inherited his father’s loan shark business and owns most of the planet. Including holding relatives of debtors as hostages, held in cryogenic chambers. His father was a cold ruthless man, and Kazran won’t admit that he could be any different. Can the Doctor rescue this man from himself?
7. “The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe” (December 2011, Matt Smith) Madge Arwell does a good deed for a stranded spaceman on Christmas Eve 1938. As payback, he reappears at Christmas 1941 to spend Christmas with Madge and her two kids. She is determined it will be a perfect Christmas, even though she’s just been notified that her husband, a WWII pilot, has disappeared with his plane over the English Channel. The Doctor, posing as a stranded spaceman, gives the family a big gift which is the entrance to another world. And unexpected danger.
8. “The Snowmen” (December 2012, Matt Smith) The Doctor wanders around Victorian England, depressed over the loss Amy and Rory. Then he meets the brave and persistent Clara Oswald and starts taking notice of the world around him again. Which is a good thing because snowmen are appearing all over London. Snowmen that eat people.
9. “The Time of the Doctor” (December 2013, Matt Smith) An odd message is being broadcast across the universe from an inconsequential planet with an immaterial village named Christmas. Thousands of ships from many races have surrounded the planet, when the Doctor and Clara are beamed down to check things out. Christmas is surrounded by a truth field, which is way above the pay scale of the village inhabitants. So who is broadcasting the message and field, why, and to what wicked purpose? This is the 800th episode of Dr. Who, and Matt Smith’s last.
10. “Last Christmas” (December 2014, Peter Capaldi) At the North Pole, a group of scientists are plagued by telepathic face grabbers. It’s a good thing the Doctor and Clara arrive to help. Another good thing is that Santa Claus arrives to help.
-Replica of the Twelfth Doctor’s Sonic Screwdriver
-Ten Christmases: In an exclusive bonus feature, British comedian and upcoming season nine guest star Rufus Hound embarks on a assignment to determine what makes a Doctor Who Christmas Special so exceptional. From juggling tangerines to meeting a guest star from The Time of the Doctor, Hound voyages through Christmases past to showcase many of the best moments and monsters of the holiday season. This bonus feature also includes personal reflections from current Doctor Peter Capaldi and writer and executive producer Steven Moffat.