Doctor Who: A Christmas Carol, Children in Need trailer annotations


A Christmas Carol, Children in Need trailerDimensions in Time, 17 years after it

The Doctor: I’m a ghost of Christmas Past…

Annotations and BBC YouTube of the trailer after the jump…

The Children in Need Doctor Who tradition continues (after Time Crash, last year’s Christmas Special preview, and other things including The Five Doctors.)

What we know already before the trailer – it’s a Doctor Who version of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, starring Michael Gambon and Katherine Jenkins. Apparently Doctor Who Magazine which was published yesterday has some sort of preview of the the story with more details, though this is written without having read it.

(That picture to illustrate this article is from another Children in Need Doctor Who event, Dimensions in Time, by the way.)

A commentary on this trailer, (with interpretation and speculation in brackets), no spoilers just speculation…

00:00 Opening image is of a stormy sky over what seems to be some sort of steampunk version of St Paul’s, some sort of futuristic building with “retro” stylings.

The camera then shows a Christmassy Victorians-in-Space street-level scene, various people including a rickshaw man, again quite steampunk, in the mould of The Beast Below.

“What’s so special about Christmas? I despise Christmas” asks Gambon-Scrooge.

Gambon is in scowl mode.

00:05 A boy skulks through what looks like a room full of upright cryogenic “coffins” with Katherine Jenkins’s character “frozen” in one of these, the vibe is again quite steampunk with big nuts and bolts, also reminiscent of an ocean liner.

“It’s Christmas Eve, we’re asking for one moment of kindness” says someone off-camera.

00:10 “Then ask Father Christmas” replies Gambon-Scrooge.

Gambon-Scrooge in an ornate room.

00:15 The Doctor tumbling from the chimney into the room (like, er, Father Christmas.)

00:20 “Time can be rewritten” says Amy as she is spookily uplit – in her Kissogram “Policewoman” outfit (?!)

“People can’t”, Gambon-Scrooge grumps in reply. This conversing is in the cryogenic room / “ocean liner” (?), with indistinct figures in the background. (Scrooge changes in the Dickens story though.)

The Doctor brushes himself off after the chimney.

00:25 The boy is in cryogenic room / “ocean liner” still, as a sharkfin (!) passes by closer to the camera.

00:30 The Doctor and Gambon-Scrooge wordlessly meet.

Kissogram “Policewoman” Amy and Roman Rory (!), in Centurion garb, on what seems to be the bridge of this ship.

(Now what’s that all about? It seems the “ocean liner” is actually some sort of steampunk spaceship, possibly Amy and Rory are on a honeymoon cruise and have these outfits on for “old times sake” or something.)

Katherine Jenkins’s character unfrozen, and a young man with a big collar.

(This is a flashback to “Youthful Gambon-Scrooge”, and Katherine Jenkins’s character was “frozen” by him?)

00:35 Onscreen text – CHRISTMASTIME CAN BE REWRITTEN with “Christmastime” alternating, flashing TARDIS-light-style with the word “time”. (This line repeated from Flesh and Stone, the version without “Christmastime” obviously.)

00:40 The Doctor saying hello to the young man with a big collar through a window of what seems to be the room that we saw was Gambon-Scrooge’s earlier, (which also seems to be in the steampunk St Paul’s.)

Voiceover from the Doctor, “Whatever happens tonight, remember – you brought it on yourself”.

00:45 More Katherine Jenkins’s character.

(Katherine Jenkins’s character would seem to be an analogue to Belle, Scrooge’s former fiancée in the Dickens story.)

“Who are you?” says Gambon-Scrooge. “I’m a ghost of Christmas Past” replies the Doctor.

(Okay that line suggests that what happens is the Doctor speaks to “Youthful Gambon-Scrooge” – young man with a big collar – and returns to speak to Gambon-Scrooge in the “future”.)

(So it seems the Past / Present / Future elements of Dickens’s story – used by The Trial of a Time Lord too – will be provided by the Doctor and his TARDIS.)


00:55 CHRISTMAS 2010

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