**Warning Spoilers Ahead**
The Thirteenth Doctor’s time in the Tardis has come to an end. During her final episode as The Doctor, Jodie Whittaker bid a final farewell to her companion and literally rode off into the sunset. It’s during this sunset that her regeneration cycle kicks into full gear, forcing her to leave her old form behind, and transform into a brand new version of The Doctor. Or at least that’s what we thought.
Shockingly, as the regeneration completed, rather than seeing the face we all thought would be the NEW Doctor, a VERY familiar face made a triumphant return. Tenth Doctor David Tennant appeared instead, shocking fans as this marks the first time (on-screen) a regeneration has resulted in the return of a previous Doctor.
David Tennant was marked to return to the role as part of the franchise’s 60th-anniversary celebration. As a result, his companion Donna Noble (played by Catherine Tate) will also be returning. There’s no word on how long Tennant will reprise his role as The Doctor though, as Sex Education alum Ncuti Gatwa was announced as the lead for the 14th series. Gatwa will be playing the 14th (technically the 15th?) Doctor, but Tennants return definitely complicates how that transition will work.
All this change comes on the heels of Russel T. Davies’s return to the series as showrunner. It’s unknown whether or not Tennant’s second run as The Doctor will extend beyond the 60th anniversary special, or if we’ll be introduced to the new-new Doctor at its conclusion. One thing is for sure though: Doctor Who is headed in a new and exciting direction.