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You may wanna pour yourself a double whiskey on the rocks before watching the two-part Season 12 finale of Doctor Who. Part I — “Ascension of the Cybermen" — finds Jodie Whittaker's Doctor facing off against the eponymous (and iconic) franchise baddies for the very first time.
"We have both old and new designs of the Cybermen, there’s more than one Cyber-variant in the story," showrunner Chris Chibnall recently told Entertainment Weekly. "And it’s a big, space-spanning, spaceship-lasery, Cyberman-y sci-fi story. Properly epic. It’s set in the aftermath of a Cyber War, and a large band of human refugees are on the run from a very determined, zealous Cyberman, who’s determined to hunt down and eliminate the very last of humanity and finally win the war. Enter the Doctor and her friends."
Chibnall was a bit more cagey when it came to the plot elements of "The Timeless Children," but promised that it will knock down a bunch of dominoes propped up not just in Season 12, but in Season 11 as well.
"[The episode] will pay off a lot of the strands that we’ve set running both last year and this year," he admitted. "I’m going to do classic British understatement here: It’s a relatively seismic episode for the Doctor, and for the show. You will get some answers, but you will also be left with a whole load of new questions in true Doctor Who style."
Oh, and make sure an alcoholic beverage of your choice is ready.
"It is an emotional and narrative roller coaster — for the characters, for the audience,” he concluded. “I think you’re going to need a very strong drink ... It’s big, it’s action-packed, it’s very, very epic and very, very emotional, and there is a blistering performance from Jodie Whittaker in that final episode. People, I think, are going to feel wrung-out and possibly a little bit open-mouthed."
“Ascension of the Cybermen" premieres on BBC America this Sunday, Feb. 23. “The Timeless Children" (running 65 minutes) airs the following Sunday, March 1. Chibnall wrote both episodes, which were directed by Jamie Magnus Stone.
Ian McElhinney (Game of Thrones), Steve Toussaint (Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time), and Julie Graham (Shetland) will guest star in the two-parter.