Doctor Who
2022 specials
Doctor Who 2022 specials.jpg
DVD cover art for the first two specials
Starring
Country of originUnited Kingdom
No. of stories3
No. of episodes3
Release
Original networkBBC One
Original release1 January (2022-01-01) –
23 October 2022 (2022-10-23)
Season chronology
← Previous
Series 13
Next →
2023 specials
List of episodes

The 2022 specials of the British science fiction television programme Doctor Who are three additional episodes that follow the programme's thirteenth series, and were first announced in July 2021. The first special aired on 1 January 2022, with the additional specials airing on 17 April and 23 October. They are the final episodes to feature Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor and Chris Chibnall as showrunner. The specials also star Mandip Gill and John Bishop as the Doctor's travelling companions, Yasmin Khan and Dan Lewis, respectively.

The three specials were directed by Annetta Laufer, Haolu Wang and Jamie Magnus Stone respectively. Chibnall wrote all three specials, co-writing the second with Ella Road, a new contributor to the programme. The first two specials were filmed alongside the thirteenth series, and were completed by August 2021, with the third special having completed filming by that October.

Episodes

See also: List of Doctor Who episodes (2005–present)

No.
story
No. in
specials
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateUK viewers
(millions) [1]
AI[1]
2981"Eve of the Daleks"Annetta LauferChris Chibnall1 January 2022 (2022-01-01)4.4077
On New Year's Eve, Nick arrives at ELF Storage to drop off a Monopoly board to the irritation of Sarah, the owner. The Doctor, Yaz and Dan attempt to reset the TARDIS to remove damage and anomalies caused by the Flux, intending to spend time at a beach. Instead, it lands in ELF Storage and causes a time loop. Nick finishes in his storage unit, but as he exits he gets exterminated by a Dalek which then proceeds to kill Sarah and the TARDIS crew. The loop then resets as the crew start to suspect something strange. Together, they have to figure out how to escape the complex before the time loop closes as the Daleks hunt the Doctor; a Dalek execution squad assembles and advances their tactics with each loop. They encounter many of the strange things that Jeff, Sarah's employee, keeps in the complex, including boxes of fireworks and high explosives. As the loop closes, the group move unpredictably to outsmart the Daleks until they trick them into shooting the boxes of fireworks, destroying the ELF facility and the Daleks whilst facilitating the Doctor's escape. They watch the ensuing firework display having survived the time loop.
2992"Legend of the Sea Devils"Haolu WangElla Road and Chris Chibnall17 April 2022 (2022-04-17)3.4776
Geomagnetic anomalies cause the TARDIS to land in 1807 China, whereupon the Doctor, Yaz and Dan encounter the pirate queen Madame Ching and young villager Ying Ki, after Ching accidentally frees the rampaging Sea Devil Marsissus from imprisonment. Ching reveals to Dan and Ying she is searching for the legendary sailor Ji-Hun's lost treasure. The Doctor and Yaz discover Ji-Hun apparently made a pact with the Sea Devils but was betrayed. They infiltrate the Sea Devils' undersea lair, bluffing them into inspecting Ji-Hun's rebuilt ship, and find and free Ji-Hun from stasis aboard. The Doctor learns the key to Marsissus' imprisonment, Ying's gem that he inherited from Ji-Hun's trusted crewmate's descendants, is necessary for the Sea Devils to flood and colonize Earth. The TARDIS crew, Ching, Ying and Ji-Hun engage the Sea Devils in a swordfight. The Doctor uses the gem to disrupt the Sea Devils' plans, but Ji-Hun sacrifices himself to ensure the sabotage succeeds. Ching recovers the treasure, while Dan attempts to bond with Diane; and the Doctor and Yaz start to discuss their feelings for each other.
3003"The Power of the Doctor"Jamie Magnus StoneChris Chibnall23 October 2022 (2022-10-23)5.3082
The Doctor and her companions rescue a space bullet train from a Cyberman attack, but Dan is nearly killed, so he parts ways to return to his life. A renegade Dalek contacts the Doctor, claiming that the Daleks need to be destroyed. Kate Stewart informs her famous artworks have been defaced by the Master and seismologists have been abducted. Reuniting with Tegan Jovanka and Ace, the Doctor learns the Master, his CyberMasters and the Daleks plan to end humanity by setting off lava from volcanoes worldwide. The Doctor is lured by the renegade Dalek, leaving the Daleks to capture her. The Master sends a miniaturised Ashad to Tegan, which acts as a portal to bring the Cybermen to UNIT. The Daleks take the Doctor to the Master in 1916, who forces her to regenerate into him. An AI program leads Ace to meet with Graham O'Brien to destroy the volcano machine, Tegan to destroy the Cyberman converter, and Yaz and Vinder to force the Master to undo the Doctor's transformation. The Master mortally wounds the Doctor, causing her to regenerate into the Fourteenth Doctor, who discovers that he has regained the form of his tenth incarnation.

Casting

See also: List of Doctor Who cast members

Jodie Whittaker returned as the Thirteenth Doctor for the three episodes,[2] with the final special being the last episode to feature Whittaker in the role.[3][4] Mandip Gill and John Bishop also return as Yasmin Khan and Dan Lewis, respectively.[5][6] Aisling Bea and Adjani Salmon guest star in the New Year's special, "Eve of the Daleks", which also features Pauline McLynn.[7] The second special, "Legend of the Sea Devils", features Crystal Yu as pirate queen Madame Ching, as well as Arthur Lee and Marlowe Chan-Reeves.[8]

The final special, "The Power of the Doctor",[9] features Jacob Anderson as Vinder and Jemma Redgrave as Kate Stewart, both of whom last appeared in the thirteenth series, as well as the Master, played by Sacha Dhawan, and Ashad, played by Patrick O'Kane, who were both last seen in the twelfth series. Former companions Tegan Jovanka and Ace, portrayed by Janet Fielding and Sophie Aldred, respectively, headline the special with Whittaker, Gill and Bishop.[10] Mandip Gill confirmed her departure from the show in the final special on 3 May 2022.[11]

Production

Development

On 29 July 2021, the BBC announced Jodie Whittaker and Chris Chibnall, who serves as executive producer and showrunner of the series, would both depart the series after a run of specials in 2022.[12][13] Chibnall stated their departures were part of a "three series and out deal" he made with Whittaker prior to the eleventh series.[14] The first two episodes were produced as part of the eight episodes ordered for the thirteenth series, and were already set to be held for 2022.[15] A third feature-length special was later ordered to coincide with the centenary of the BBC and serve as Whittaker's regeneration episode.[16] The BBC describes the final episode as an "epic blockbuster special".[17] Executive producer Matt Strevens, who joined the series alongside Chibnall, is also departed once production was complete.[18] Chibnall later stated that post-production on the final special would continue into 2022 under the working title "the Centenary Special".[19] Emily Lawrence, the visual effects editor, confirmed digital effects work was still ongoing in January 2022.[20] Co-executive producer Nikki Wilson is also left leave after the BBC Centenary special, after being part of the show since "The Sontaran Stratagem" (2008), and its spin-off show, The Sarah Jane Adventures.[21]

Writing

Chibnall continues as the head writer for the New Year's special episode "Eve of the Daleks", which features the Daleks in a loose trilogy that connects their appearances in the past New Year's specials, "Resolution" (2019) and "Revolution of the Daleks" (2021).[22] Chibnall also wrote the following specials, co-writing the second, "Legend of the Sea Devils", with Ella Road.[23] The second special features the return of the Sea Devils in their first appearance since Warriors of the Deep (1984).[8] The Daleks and the Cybermen appear in the third and final special, "The Power of the Doctor".[10][9]

Filming

The first two episodes were filmed in the same production run as the thirteenth series.[24] Annetta Laufer directed the first special, and Haolu Wang directed the second.[25][26] Filming for those specials concluded in August 2021.[26] "The Power of the Doctor" was filmed throughout September 2021, directed by Jamie Magnus Stone,[27] concluding on 13 October 2021.[6][28]

Production blocks were arranged as follows:[22][23][failed verification]

Block Episode Director Writer(s) Producer
1 "Eve of the Daleks" Annetta Laufer Chris Chibnall Sheena Bucktowonsing
2 "Legend of the Sea Devils" Haolu Wang Ella Road and Chris Chibnall Nikki Wilson[29][30]
3 "The Power of the Doctor" Jamie Magnus Stone Chris Chibnall

Music

On 20 July 2022, composer Segun Akinola announced that he would not return after the final special, and that that episode would be his last.[31]

Release

Promotion

Details of the New Year's Day special, "Eve of the Daleks", were revealed following the conclusion of "The Vanquishers", the finale of the thirteenth series.[22] Details of "Legend of the Sea Devils" were likewise released after "Eve of the Daleks" concluded.[8] Casting and details of the centenary special, without yet revealing the title or airdate, were again likewise released after "Legend of the Sea Devils" concluded.[10] The title of the special, "The Power of the Doctor", was announced in Doctor Who Magazine on 14 September 2022.[9]

As part of the promotion for "Legend of the Sea Devils", Scottish musician Nathan Evans was featured on the official Doctor Who YouTube channel, singing an adaptation of the sea ballad "Wellerman".[32]

Broadcast

The first of the three specials aired on 1 January 2022 in the series' traditional New Year's Day time slot.[33] The second special aired on 17 April 2022 as an Easter special,[34] with the third and final special aired on 23 October 2022 as part of the BBC's Centenary celebrations.[35][36][37][38]

Home media

See also: List of Doctor Who home video releases

Series Episode name Number and duration
of episodes
R2/B release date R4/B release date R1/A release date
2022
specials
Doctor Who : "Eve of the Daleks" & "Legend of the Sea Devils" 1 x 50 min.
1 x 60 min.
23 May 2022
(D,B) [39]
13 July 2022
(D,B) [40]
28 June 2022
(D,B) [41]
Doctor Who : "The Power of the Doctor" 1 x 90 min. 7 November 2022
(D,B) [42]
7 December 2022
(D,B) [43]
13 December 2022
(D,B) [44]
Doctor Who : The Series 13 Specials 1 x 50 min.
1 x 60 min.
1 x 90 min.
7 November 2022
(B) [45]
TBA TBA

Reception

Ratings

No. Title Air date Overnight ratings Consolidated ratings Total
viewers
(millions)
AI Ref(s)
Viewers
(millions)
Rank Viewers
(millions)
Rank
1 "Eve of the Daleks" 1 January 2022 3.21 6 1.19 25 4.401 77 [1][46][47]
2 "Legend of the Sea Devils" 17 April 2022 2.20 11 1.27 24 3.465 76 [1][48]
3 "The Power of the Doctor" 23 October 2022 3.71 4 1.59 5 5.295 82 [1][48][49]

Critical reception

On Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator website, 82% of 11 critics gave "Eve of the Daleks" a positive review, with an average rating of 7.20 out of 10. The site's consensus reads "Doctor Who scales back and is all the better for it with a New Year's special that finds fresh notes within a self-contained yarn."[50] On Rotten Tomatoes, 57% of 7 critics gave "Legend of the Sea Devils" a positive review, with an average rating of 4.90 out of 10.[51] On Rotten Tomatoes, 100% of 10 critics gave "The Power of the Doctor" a positive review, with an average rating of 7.20 out of 10.[52]

Soundtrack

On 18 November 2022, composer Segun Akinola announced that three individual soundtracks featuring selected pieces of score from each special would be digitally released on 2, 9, and 16 December 2022 respectively. A physical CD release containing all three soundtracks was released on 13 January 2023.[53][54]

Doctor Who: Series 13 — The Specials
Soundtrack album by
Released2–16 December 2022 (2022-12-02 – 2022-12-16) (digital release)
13 January 2023 (2023-01-13) (CD release)
Recorded2021–22
GenreSoundtrack
Length179:01
LabelSilva Screen Records
ProducerSegun Akinola
Doctor Who soundtrack chronology
Doctor Who: Series 13 – Flux
(2022)
Doctor Who: Series 13 — The Specials
(2022)
Disc 1
No.TitleEpisodeLength
1."Here We Are Again""Eve of the Daleks"2:16
2."Out of Service" 3:26
3."I Am Not Nick" 2:33
4."Déjà Vu" 3:39
5."The Correction" 3:06
6."Sorry Sorry Sorry" 1:09
7."Not a Great Plan" 6:57
8."Took You Long Enough" 8:43
9."We Will Not Stop" 3:50
10."We Go Again and We Win" 4:01
11."The Doctor Cannot Save You" 3:28
12."A Brilliant Plan" 3:56
13."Important Stuff to Do" 4:11
14."Fireworks" 3:06
Total length:54:21
Disc 2
No.TitleEpisodeLength
1."You Have No Idea What You’re Doing""Legend of the Sea Devils"2:47
2."Catching a Whopper" 3:55
3."Pirate Queen" 7:33
4."Who Wants to Be Next?" 5:06
5."Celestial Navigation" 3:59
6."Going up" 7:26
7."Say Hello to My Crew" 5:18
8."This Is Gonna Be Tricky" 4:48
9."A Good Legend" 6:06
Total length:46:58
Disc 3
No.TitleEpisodeLength
1."You Shall Not Disrupt Our Mission""The Power of the Doctor"6:54
2."We Should Go in" 2:52
3."Why Would I Ever Trust You?" 7:00
4."Dealing with Multiple Somethings" 6:38
5."Magnificent Attention to Detail" 3:20
6."A Calculated Risk" 5:40
7."Say Hello to My Friends" 4:34
8."I Am the Doctor" 2:37
9."We Are Not Finished" 6:02
10."What's the Plan?" 7:47
11."Reunite" 7:17
12."All Hands on Deck" 3:30
13."Activate Everything" 6:11
14."She's the Doctor" 7:20
Total length:77:42

References

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