The popular British sci-fi/fantasy series Doctor Who is about to go through some major changes. Following 2017’s annual Christmas special, longtime showrunner Steven Moffat will be leaving the show along with most of the cast and crew, including the beloved 12th Doctor.
It’s been nearly three years since Scottish actor Peter Capaldi first emerged from the TARDIS, and since then his unique portrayal has been delighting stalwart fans and first-time viewers alike. But like any performer bold enough to take on the iconic character, his tenure was always meant to be a limited engagement.
Knowing that time was fleeting, Capaldi—who’d dreamed of being The Doctor since boyhood—made the most of his days filming in Cardiff, Wales. Despite a few questionable scripts and the exhaustion factor of having the same showrunner for almost a decade, it was clear from his performance that Capaldi enjoyed every second of it.
Looking back at the surliest Doctor in recent memory, there were hundreds of moments that could be classified as Capaldi’s finest. But when contemplating the astronomical scope of the series in its entirety, it’s not always about great moments that hold up - it’s the legendary ones.
10. Cameo In "The Day Of The Doctor"
Back in August 2013, when Capaldi was announced as the next Doctor, opinions were mixed. Since the 2005 revival, Whovians had come accustomed to The Doctor being portrayed by younger actors. And on top of that, Capaldi wasn’t well known for light-hearted, family-oriented, “silly” comedy. In fact, he was best known for The Thick of It, a British political satire that used more curses than a trucker with Tourette’s. Not very Doctor Who-like at all.
A way to endear him to the fan base became a priority. And what better way to do so than with a cameo in the 50th Anniversary special alongside favorites such as David Tennant, Matt Smith, John Hurt, and Tom Baker?
It amounted to a brief, silent cameo, showing 12 in his element, at the reins of the TARDIS. It was enough to whet fans’ appetites as they waited the many months between the 11th Doctor’s death and a new era.