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Doctor Who Series 2 - Christmas Invasion Clip 2

The newly-regenerated Tenth Doctor shares his first Christmas with his new family. (TV: The Christmas Invasion)

You may be looking for the town.

Christmas was a traditional holiday celebrated by humans around the Earth in the month of December. (TV: The End of Time) Immediately preceded by Christmas Eve on 24 December, (TV: The Unquiet Dead) came Christmas Day on 25 December. (TV: Voyage of the Damned) Christmas was associated with the Winter solstice (AUDIO: Mighty and Despair) and beyond Earth, became the "Crystal Feast". (TV: A Christmas Carol) A "Christmas spirit" was associated with Christmas. (TV: The Runaway Bride)

In the early 21st century, the Earth usually endured an alien incursion around Christmas time. (PROSE: The Forgotten Son original opening) Christmas Day was immediately followed by Boxing Day on 26 December. (AUDIO: Castle of Fear) Soon after, as noted in the Christmas carol "We Wish You a Merry Christmas", came the New Year. (TV: A Girl's Best Friend) People often got together at Christmas, which Danny (in Clara's crab-induced dream) said was because every time they did, it might be the last time. (TV: Last Christmas)

According to Lord President Rassilon of Gallifrey, Christmas during the early 21st century was a pagan rite to banish the cold and the dark. (TV: The End of Time) Christmas came to spread throughout the universe, though the exact way cultures celebrated the holiday varied greatly. As the Eleventh Doctor noted to Davros, the word "Christmas", like the word "father", could mean many different things, whereas words like "Dalek" only had one meaning. (PROSE: Father of the Daleks)


Christmas commemorated the birth of Earth religious leader Jesus Christ. (TV: Voyage of the Damned) The Eighth Doctor claimed to be present at the event, labelled as the "first Christmas". Since the actual date was not 25 December, he worked the date out from census records in Rome; it was "round about zero BC, AD", in Bethlehem, Judea. He checked all the inns of the town; all of them were packed out, but one at the far end of the town, with a stable attached. He travelled there with Leonardo da Vinci, who didn't dare to go further. (AUDIO: Relative Dimensions) Nonetheless, the Tenth Doctor once claimed it was he who got the last room at the inn. (TV: Voyage of the Damned)


Santa Claus[]

Main article: Santa Claus

The figure of Father Christmas (also known as Santa Claus, Pere Noel, Jeff, etc), a man who delivered Christmas presents to young children, became a key part of Christmas. He met the Doctor on multiple occasions. (COMIC: A Christmas Story, PROSE: The Man Who (Nearly) Killed Christmas, TV: A Christmas Carol, Last Christmas)


On Earth, Christmas activities included parties, (TV: The Girl Who Died) parades (TV: Rosa) and pantomimes. (PROSE: Timewyrm: Revelation, No Future) Christmas decorations included Christmas lights, (COMIC: The Heralds of Destruction, PROSE: Frontier Worlds) Christmas stars, (TV: Turn Left) and baubles (GAME: The Christmas Trap) and were planted on objects such as Christmas trees. (TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe)

Christmas lists were written lists of gifts that one would like to receive for Christmas, usually written by children. (PROSE: Loose Wire, TV: Dinosaurs on a Spaceship) As well as Christmas presents, people received Christmas cards. (TV: Last Christmas)

In workplaces, colleagues known as "Secret Santas" gave each other gifts. (TV: Kill the Moon)

Christmas carols were songs sung by carol singers. They included "Deck the Halls", "O Come, All Ye Faithful", "God Rest You Merry, Gentlemen", "Silent Night", (PROSE: The Gift) "The Coventry Carol", "The Boar's Head Carol", (PROSE: Mirth, or Walking Spirits) "Ding Dong Merrily on High", (TV: A Christmas Carol) "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" (TV: The Unquiet Dead) and "The Twelve Days of Christmas". (PROSE: The Sommerton Fetch)

Christmas dinner, which traditionally featured a turkey, was eaten on Christmas Day. During this dinner, Christmas crackers were pulled, containing Christmas hats and jokes, while "classy" crackers contained poems. (TV: Children in Need Special, The Christmas Invasion, The Time of the Doctor)

During her reign, Queen Elizabeth II made annual Christmas speeches on Christmas Day. (TV: The Christmas Invasion) The Snowman was a television special that was repeated on Earth around Christmas. It featured a snowman that flew around and danced with Father Christmas. (PROSE: The Doctor on My Shoulder)


The greetings and farewells traditionally used during the Christmas season were "merry Christmas" (TV: A Girl's Best Friend, The Unquiet Dead, The Christmas Invasion, The Runaway Bride, Voyage of the Damned, Turn Left, The Next Doctor, The End of Time, A Christmas Carol, The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe, The Power of Three, The Great Detective, The Snowmen, The Time of the Doctor, Last Christmas, The Husbands of River Song, The Return of Doctor Mysterio, Twice Upon a Time) and "happy Christmas". (TV: "The Feast of Steven", Voyage of the Damned, The End of Time, The Time of the Doctor, The Husbands of River Song, AUDIO: The Demon of Paris)

Another greeting was "season's greetings". (TV: The End of Time)

Earthonomics myths[]

In the 2000s, the Sto guide and supposed "Earthonomics" expert Copper knew a distorted version of the festivity, according to which human beings worshipped "the great god Santa, a creature with fearsome claws, and his wife Mary, and every Christmas Eve, the people of UK [went] to war with the country of Turkey. They then [ate] the Turkey people for Christmas dinner like savages". (TV: Voyage of the Damned)

The Doctor and Christmas[]


Naked Christmas - Doctor Who - The Time of the Doctor - BBC

The Eleventh Doctor spends Christmas at Clara Oswald's flat. (TV: The Time of the Doctor)

Although he was an alien, the Doctor developed a fondness and appreciation for Christmas, celebrating it since he was a boy on Gallifrey. (PROSE: The Celestial Toyshop) The Doctor attempted to enjoy the holiday on several occasions, though they were commonly forced to deal with a threat of some kind. (TV: The Christmas Invasion, The Runaway Bride, Voyage of the Damned, The Next Doctor, A Christmas Carol, The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe, The Snowmen, Last Christmas) The Tenth Doctor once admitted "All my Christmases are like this." (TV: Voyage of the Damned) By his twelfth incarnation, the Doctor admitted to Clara Oswald that all these occasions had soured his opinion of the holiday. (COMIC: Relative Dimensions)

Indeed, Earth — and, specifically the vicinity of London — experienced major events involving aliens at or around Christmas Day, mostly during the early 21st century. (TV: The Christmas Invasion, The Runaway Bride, Voyage of the Damned, The End of Time, The Next Doctor, The Snowmen, The Unquiet Dead, The Return of Doctor Mysterio)


Early history[]

Oliver Cromwell banned Christmas in Britain in the mid-17th century. It was later brought back. (PROSE: The Roundheads, The Feast)

19th century[]

On Christmas in 1851, the Cybermen attempted to cyber-convert humanity in London but were thwarted by the Tenth Doctor. (TV: The Next Doctor)

On Christmas Eve in 1869, the Gelth attempted to come through the Cardiff Rift and occupy the body of every human but were stopped by Gwyneth. This encounter was witnessed by Charles Dickens as well as the Ninth Doctor and Rose Tyler. (TV: The Unquiet Dead)

In 1892, the Eleventh Doctor and the Paternoster Gang faced Great Intelligence as it made its first attempt to conquer the Earth, which was stopped by the tears of an entire family crying on Christmas Eve over Clara's death. (TV: The Snowmen)

20th century[]

In 1914, the Christmas truce, also known as the Christmas Armistice, was a temporary cessation of hostilities which took place at Ypres in Belgium (TV: Twice Upon a Time) on 25 December. (PROSE: This Town Will Never Let Us Go) For Christmas, British and German soldiers temporarily ceased fighting to sing Christmas carols, (TV: Twice Upon a Time) play football, share cigarettes, and pass around photographs of loved ones in No Man's Land. (COMIC: The Weeping Angels of Mons) The festivities were witnessed by several incarnations of the Doctor and their companions. (PROSE: The Little Drummer Boy, Never Seen Cairo, COMIC: The Forgotten, TV: Twice Upon a Time) The next day, soldiers resumed fighting. (PROSE: The Little Drummer Boy)

On Christmas Day in 1915, some soldiers tried to organise another truce with their enemies but their superiors quelled the idea. Some men were even executed. (PROSE: Twice Upon a Time)

At a UNIT Christmas party, the Third Doctor, Jo Grant and others put on a production of Aladdin. (PROSE: Timewyrm: Revelation, No Future)

In 1998, the time-active children's toy Parablox was released during the Christmas shopping season. The Great Houses excised it from the timeline shortly after Christmas. (PROSE: The Book of the War) Also in this year, the Ninth Doctor left Rose Tyler a red bicycle as a Christmas present many years before they first met in her personal timeline. (TV: The Doctor Dances, PROSE: The Red Bicycle)

21st century[]

The Eighth Doctor told Chang Lee to "take a vacation" and warned him to stay away from San Francisco over Christmas 2000. (TV: Doctor Who)

In 2006, Christmas coincided with the arrival of the Guinevere One space probe at Mars. This celebration was disrupted by the Sycorax invasion. This event was later cited by the Tenth Doctor as the moment the people of Earth were irrevocably introduced to the idea of alien life after years of isolated and covered-up incidents. (TV: The Christmas Invasion)

In 2007, the arrival of the Webstar over London panicked the populace. (TV: The Runaway Bride)

For Christmas 2008, the populace of London (except a few holdouts such as Queen Elizabeth II and Wilfred Mott) voluntarily evacuated the city in anticipation of another alien invasion. No invasion occurred, but a spaceship replica of the Titanic nearly crashed into Buckingham Palace. (TV: Voyage of the Damned)

In 2009, The Saxon Master's attempt to create the Master Race as well as the Time Lords' return from the Last Great Time War coincided with Christmas. (TV: The End of Time)

One Christmas in the late 2010s, Colin Colchester-Price stole St John Colchester's itinerary for the day and unwrapped at least one of his presents. (AUDIO: Another Man's Shoes)

On Christmas Eve, 2017, a TV episode called Iris Wildthyme & the Mars Conundrum was aired. It was written by Paul Magrs. (PROSE: The Magrs Conundrum!)

When the Firmament broke the Christmas Needle Agreement, Chris Cwej's mysterious superiors sent him to retaliate. (PROSE: A Bright White Crack)

Later history[]

Christmas celebrations existed as far away in time and place as the planet Puxatornee in the year 3090. (AUDIO: Flip-Flop) Even the usually serious Sara Kingdom from the year 4000 celebrated the holiday briefly with the First Doctor when they visited 1965 trying to evade the Daleks. (TV: The Daleks' Master Plan)

When the human race colonised other worlds, Christmas came with them. On one planet in the 44th century, the first settlers there referred to it as "The Crystal Feast". (TV: A Christmas Carol) Colonists of the planet Mendorax Dellora still celebrated Christmas in the year 5343. (TV: The Husbands of River Song) The Eleventh Doctor suspected that this eventually resulted in other species adopting the rituals of the holiday noting to Davros that the word "Christmas" had taken on a variety of meanings across the cosmos. Unable to grasp the deeper meaning, Davros compared Christmas to a pathogen, one carried in the hearts and minds of those infected. (PROSE: Father of the Daleks)

A town inhabited by humanoids on the planet Trenzalore was called Christmas. When Clara Oswald asked how a town could be called Christmas, the Eleventh Doctor asked how an island could be called Easter. (TV: The Time of the Doctor)

Parallel world[]

In a parallel world, the Tenth Doctor died during the incident with the Webstar at Christmas 2007. The Titanic replica crashed into London at Christmas 2008, destroying the city and flooding most of southern England with radiation, sparking a chain of events leading to the country becoming a police state. (TV: Turn Left)

Other references[]

Annoyed with Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart's prevarication, the Third Doctor sarcastically asked him if he would be "getting to the point this side of Christmas". (AUDIO: The Ghosts of N-Space)

The Tenth Doctor considered "this is going to be best Christmas Walford's ever had", along with "what could possibly go wrong?" and "no turning back", to be "bad" phrases. (TV The Impossible Planet)

The Eleventh Doctor, speaking to the Parliament of the Daleks, observed that it was their Christmas to have him at their mercy. (TV: Asylum of the Daleks)

In the Unbound Universe, hours before the Quatch invaded Skaro, the Doctor mentioned Christmas to Gillen, later explaining the holiday in detail to her. (AUDIO: Masters of War)

Behind the scenes[]

Actors Edward Burnham, Madalena Nicol, and Georgia Moffett were all born on Christmas Day (in 1916, 1919, and 1984, respectively).


Doctor Who: Legacy[]

In the story of Doctor Who: Legacy, the Doctors and their companions encounter a time storm focusing on 25 December, leading them to face foes who struck at Christmastime.