The rumor mill has been spinning vigorously in anticipation of the upcoming ninth series of BBC sci-fi Doctor Who – but The Daily Fandom is here to help you tell fact from fiction! Here’s the latest speculation making the rounds:
RUMOR: Reported by the Mirror, the season premiere, which will bring back the Doctor’s nemesis and creator of the Daleks, Davros, will draw from a quote from Tom Baker’s Fourth Doctor for one of the show’s “darkest ever plots”. The quote, from “Genesis of the Daleks,” broaches the question:
“If someone who knew the future pointed out a child to you and told you that child would grow up totally evil, to be a ruthless dictator who would destroy millions of lives, could you then kill that child?”
TRUTH: The only hint confirmed about the two-part opener, “The Magician’s Apprentice” and “The Witch’s Familiar,” has been last season enemy Missy/The Master’s return, which was announced via video in February. Along with the announcement, showrunner Steven Moffat added this nugget: “Everybody hide – Michelle Gomez as Missy was an instant hit last year, so she’s straight back to plague the Doctor and Clara in the series opener. But what brings her back into their lives is the last thing they’d expect.” Though it is possible a plot based on the aforementioned quote could intertwine into Missy’s return, there has been no confirmation that Davros’ portrayer, Julian Bleach, last seen in the Tenth Doctor’s era in episodes “The Stolen Earth” and “Journey’s End,” has been cast in either or both of the premiere episodes. The only solid casting currently known for those episodes, confirmed via a BBC press release in January, are Arsher Ali, Morven Christie, Neil Fingleton, Zaqi Ismail, Colin McFarlane, and Sophie Stone. IMDB also lists actor Aaron Neil as character “Dunlop”; Daniel Hoffmann-Gill as “Bor”; and actresses Clare Higgins and Kelly Hunter in currently unlisted roles. This rumor stands as a MAYBE, though there is one interesting thing to note: aforementioned actress Kelly Hunter has appeared on Doctor Who before, as a Shadow Architect in Davros episode “The Stolen Earth”. However, Doctor Who is known for using the same actors for multiple roles throughout the series – Eleventh Doctor companion Amy Pond (actress Karen Gillan) previously appeared on the show in the Tenth Doctor’s run in “The Fires of Pompeii” as a Soothsayer, as did current Twelfth Doctor Peter Capaldi as Caecilius in the same episode. Hunter’s casting could be an example of this frequent practice.
RUMOR: The character actress Maisie Williams will play a younger version of Clara Oswald in episodes “The Girl Who Died” and “The Woman Who Lived”.
TRUTH: Though it has been confirmed by multiple sources, including the BBC, that the Game of Thrones actress will guest-star in the ninth series, official sources of Doctor Who, including the actress herself, have been intentionally vague about the character she will play. Moffat has said, “It’s not possible to say too much about who or what she’s playing, but she is going to challenge the Doctor in very unexpected ways. This time he might just be out of his depth, and we know Maisie is going to give him exactly the right sort of hell,” while Williams teased on Alan Carr: Chatty Man, “There’s been a lot of speculation about whether she’s like a younger Clara or whether she is a new character completely…I’m not going to tell you which one. Whether she is good or bad is up for discussion, I think. She does put the Doctor to the test and it’s sort of a dynamic that we haven’t seen before.” So for now, this adds to the MAYBE pile.
RUMOR: Series 9’s episode list has been released in full, along with a synopsis of the premiere episode(s).
TRUTH: No official sources have yet confirmed a full episode list or official synopsis for the premiere episodes. The only confirmed episode titles are: “The Magician’s Apprentice,” “The Witch’s Familiar,” “The Girl Who Died,” and “The Woman Who Lived”. MoviePilot.com, the website that originally reported the information, has since removed the article.