Doctor Who’s Chris Chibnall teases “big, big surprises” and “very different” regeneration

Excitement is being notched up to eleven ahead of The Power of the Doctor, the feature-length Doctor Who special airing in the UK and the US on October 23rd. Not only have we seen a trailer that seems to show the beginning of regeneration for Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor, but also the BBC has released a swathe of new images from the episode which show numerous friends and foes doing battle as the tenure of Whittaker in the TARDIS comes to an end.

But outgoing showrunner Chris Chibnall has added even more fuel to the excitement fire with comments about this episode, which will coincide with the 100th birthday celebrations of the BBC.

“It is different. It’s visually very different,” said Chibnall of the regeneration while speaking to

Added Chibnall: “And where it takes place is different. I think I can say that without it being too much of a spoiler. It definitely feels different. It’s not going to take place in the same place as the previous regenerations.”

In the modern era, all of the Doctors including Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi have undergone their regenerations in the TARDIS, so it appears we may be seeing a new location for the regeneration of Jodie Whittaker into Ncuti Gatwa, the Sex Education star who will take over in 2023 when Russell T Davies is back at the helm of the show.

But is there a twist in the regeneration that we’re not expecting? With the 60th anniversary of the show coming up in 2023 and a series of special episodes coming up, could the regeneration not be straight forward swap to Gatwa?

Asked about the fan theory that Whittaker could turn into a version of David Tennant’s Tenth Doctor in preparation for the 60th anniversary, Chibnall seemed to dismiss the idea.

“I haven’t seen that but it’s made me laugh!” he said.

Adding: “There’s fan theories on everything, I seem to remember there was a fan theory that Graham would turn out to be the Doctor, that Bradley Walsh was a secret Doctor in disguise.”

The Power of the Doctor will air on BBC One in the UK at 7.30pm on Sunday 23rd October.