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Time Out!

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2022-10-22 TV Times p8-9.jpg

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JODIE WHITTAKER on her swansong celebrating the past, present and future of the sci-fi hit

Her four-year stint in the TARDIS has seen her battle alien forces, meet historical figures and visit the furthest reaches of the galaxy, but now Jodie Whittaker's time traveller is heading back to Earth as she embarks on her final adventure in BBC1's Doctor Who.

In The Power of the Doctor, a feature-length special airing as part of the BBC's centenary celebrations, the 13th Time Lord finds herself fighting for her life against her arch-nemesis the Master (Sacha Dhawan), travelling on an intergalactic bullet train and reuniting with a couple of companions from yesteryear, Tegan Jovanka (Janet Fielding) and Ace (Sophie Aldred).

Here, Jodie, 40, tells us how she feels about hanging up her trench coat...


What can we expect from the 13th Doctor's last outing?

Whovians are in for an absolute treat! We celebrate the old, the present and the new.

It's a wonderful homage to the legacy that Doctor Who has had. It encapsulates all the things that the fans love about the show, whether it be old monsters, returning characters, new elements - everything that unites Whovians is in this episode!


This will be the first time that classic adversaries the Master, the Daleks and the Cybermen have all featured in a single storyline since the show returned in 2005. How was working with Sacha, who plays the Master, again?

I love Sacha. He's amazing, an incredible actor and a phenomenal force of nature on set. If you know him in real life, he's such a nice guy and a lovely man. So to be so convincing as the Master, hats off!

A lot of my favourite scenes throughout my tenure have been with Sacha, so being told he would be part of my final episode was an absolute joy for me. I don't feel it would have served my Doctor to not have the moment of final resolution and heartbreak with him.


How was the atmosphere on set when you were filming your final scenes?

Everyone was wonderful. On my last day, there were scenes with Yaz [the Time Lord's current companion, played by Mandip Gill] and the Doctor on the TARDIS, but I got in a bit before Mandip to start filming. I was wondering where everyone was, but they got me on set and the cast and crew had lined up and were clapping me, and I obviously lost it there. Then we did it for Mandip, and I was crying more than her!


What will you miss about being the Doctor?

I'm not a method actor, I don't stay in character between scenes, but I spent a lot of time before I played the Doctor doing quite emotionally-traumatised roles. So a lot of the time at work, you are on the edge of devastation.

With Doctor Who, there was heartbreak, fear and loss, but I felt like the overriding thing the Doctor brought was curiosity and excitement. That really fed into my evening, my weekend and my year - it wasn't just happiness on set, it fed into everything. I feel like it's knocked 15 years off me, because I've been so energised!


Were you able to take any keepsakes from the set?

I've got my costume, my sonic [screwdriver, the Doctor's multipurpose tool] and a Cyberman! When I fly the TARDIS, I flick a switch and what spins inside is a mini-TARDIS that lights up and spins - I've got that, too!


Are you looking forward to enjoying future episodes as a regular viewer again? I'm really excited to not know any spoilers! I cannot wait to see it in real time and go, 'You are kidding me!' and not have the stress of keeping secrets!

DOCTOR WHO is previewed on pages 44-45


SPECTACULAR STUNTS!

The 13th Time Lord's current companions Yaz (Mandip Gill) and Dan (John Bishop) will also be saying their goodbyes in this episode - and they're set to go out in a blaze of action!

'I do all my own stunts - please remember that when you see me flying in the air, holding on for dear life!' laughs Mandip, 34, who joined the show at the start of Jodie Whittaker's tenure in 2018. 'Climbing up a ladder was also so difficult - it was wobbling everywhere - so the look of sheer panic and distress on my face is real!'

'When we're wearing spacesuits in this episode, there's a bit where my nose gets stuck in the helmet,' says John, 55, who became a member of the Doctor's team last year. 'My actual nose wasn't big enough, so they made a prosthetic copy, and I put my prosthetic nose over my real one to get stuck. It's a weird experience to have your nose in your pocket!'


RETURN OF OLD FRIENDS...

Last seen onscreen in 1984 and 1989 respectively, classic-era companions Tegan (Janet Fielding) and Ace (Sophie Aldred) find themselves at the heart of the action in this BBC centenary special.

'I just assumed it would be a tiny cameo-and it wasn't!' says Janet, 69, who previously accompanied Tom Baker's Fourth Doctor and Peter Davison's Fifth Time Lord.

'The former companions on Earth have managed to get in contact with each other. Tegan and Ace know something is happening, that the activity is likely to be alien and they're investigating...'

'When [showrunner] Chris Chibnall asked me what I'd like to do, I wanted to show that middle-aged women have still got it,' adds Sophie, 60, who originally teamed up with the Seventh Doctor, played by Sylvester McCoy. 'I said I'd love to do what I used to do, and Janet said several expletives because she had to chase me up the stairs, run around and all that. I think she was secretly pleased!'


...AND OLD FOES!

As well as the return of popular villains the Daleks and the Cybermen, the Master - the Doctor's dangerous nemesis and fellow Time Lord - is also back and determined to have his ultimate revenge at any cost...

'The Master says to the Doctor, "This is the day you die," reveals Sacha Dhawan, 38, who has played the current incarnation of the character since 2020. 'In fact, it's the day that puts both their lives on the line, because the Master has no real control over its outcome, which makes it all the more terrifying.

'The Master will set out his master plan with plenty of room for spontaneity and chaos. He really pushes the dial to its limits, because the truth is that he has nothing left to lose.'


Captions:

Evil: Sacha Dhawan as the Doctor's nemesis, the Master

Old adversaries: The Doctor encounters the Daleks

Reunited: The Doctor with Tegan (left) and Ace

Disclaimer: These citations are created on-the-fly using primitive parsing techniques. You should double-check all citations. Send feedback to whovian@cuttingsarchive.org

  • APA 6th ed.: Perkins, Steven (2022-10-22). Time Out!. TV Times p. 8.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Perkins, Steven. "Time Out!." TV Times [add city] 2022-10-22, 8. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Perkins, Steven. "Time Out!." TV Times, edition, sec., 2022-10-22
  • Turabian: Perkins, Steven. "Time Out!." TV Times, 2022-10-22, section, 8 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Time Out! | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Time_Out! | work=TV Times | pages=8 | date=2022-10-22 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=23 February 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Time Out! | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Time_Out! | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=23 February 2024}}</ref>