With comic book superheroes all the rage on both television and in the movies, it’s probably no surprise that Doctor Who finally found a way to tap into it.
This year’s Christmas special, The Return of Doctor Mysterio, starts the mystery right in its name – when did we see Doctor Mysterio before to justify this “return”? Yet we need to forget that for now, because the most important thing is that the Christmas special will introduce a more interesting oddity – a superhero.
Grant, complete with the letter “G” on his chest, with a cape and mask, is played by Justin Chatwin. He’s not flying around Gotham or Metropolis or even National City. Heck, considering this is Doctor Who, he’s not even near London or Cardiff. Instead, this year’s story takes place in New York City, and outgoing showrunner Steven Moffat told Cinema Blend he was inspired by the biggest comic superhero of them all.
Er, Clark Kent?
“I’ve always been fascinated by superheroes, but where I think superheroes are at their best is in the secret identity. The most exciting superhero of all time is Clark Kent. He has to be a god and pretend he isn’t. It’s the best story ever.”
There will be a journalist in Doctor Mysterio, except she will be played by Charity Wakefield (Wolf Hall). Wakefield’s character joins Grant and Peter Capaldi’s The Doctor to save New York from an alien attack.
But what is this whole “Doctor Mysterio” thing? If you try and look through the more than 50 years of Doctor Who history, you won’t find a character with that name. Is that the true identity of Grant? Or is that simply a play on The Doctor himself.
Earlier this month, Radio Times shared the fact that in Mexico (and a few other countries), Doctor Who is not called Doctor Who. In fact, it’s called Doctor Mysterio, something reporter Huw Fullerton himself said has been a favorite tidbit of knowledge from Whovian himself, Peter Capaldi.
“Who could this villain be, we hear you ask? Well, the answer’s obvious – Peter Capaldi’s Doctor who is, lest we forget, actually called ‘Doctor Mysterio’ in a lot of places.
“Now, of course, we don’t think The Doctor has actually turned evil – we don’t think the series is quite that desperate yet – but it could be that for some reason, he later ends up playing an oppositional role to Chatwin’s hero in the episode, meaning he slides by default into the part of a supervillain.
“Perhaps The Doctor even plays up to the idea, inventing his ‘supervillain name’ in the same way that he briefly christened himself ‘Doctor Disco’ in last year’s (Season 9).”
In any event, the Doctor Who Christmas special, The Return of Doctor Mysterio, airs on Christmas day in both the United Kingdom and in North America.
The long-awaited 10th season of Doctor Who, the last to be helmed by Steven Moffat, premieres in April.
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