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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 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)

In the early 21st century, the Earth usually endured an alien incursion around Christmas time. (PROSE: The Forgotten Son original opening) 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) 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[[edit]]

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: Born Again, 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[[edit]]

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[[edit]]

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

Although they were an alien, the Doctor developed a fondness and appreciation for Christmas, celebrating it since they were 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) The Thirteenth Doctor also admitted to not being too keen on Christmas for similar reasons, saying that she preferred New Year instead. (PROSE: Scary Christmas and Unhappy New Year)

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[[edit]]

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

19th century[[edit]]

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 the 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[[edit]]

This section's awfully stubby.

Information from The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe needs to be added.

The Christmas truce. (TV: Twice Upon a Time)

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)

Sometime in the 1970s, Ace and her nan saw the Christmas lights in Oxford Street. (PROSE: Chemistry)

On Christmas Eve in 1979, a fourteen-year-old Clive Finch met the Twelfth Doctor, who took him on a trip to Loch Ness. Clive's memory of the event was mostly erased by the Doctor, leaving the boy with only a vague sense that something incredible had just happened to him, sparking Clive's lifelong obsession with solving the mystery of the Doctor and "the blue box". (PROSE: The Persistence of Memory)

The Ninth Doctor leaving a red bicycle for Rose Tyler in 1998. (PROSE: The Red Bicycle)

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[[edit]]

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)

Just prior to Christmas 2004, Thomas Vaughan met the Ninth Doctor in a souk in Marrakech. (PROSE: Have You Seen This Man?)

On Christmas Eve 2004, a newborn Ruby Sunday was left on the doorstep of the church on Ruby Road in Manchester, by her mother. (TV: The Church on Ruby Road [+]Loading...["The Church on Ruby Road (TV story)"])

During the time Rose Tyler seemingly went missing, (TV: Aliens of London, etc.) Mickey Smith and Jackie Tyler spent Christmas without Rose, and afterwards, wished not to again. (PROSE: Mars)

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)

In the 2000s,[nb 1] 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 approximately the 2000s,[nb 2] 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, the Tenth Doctor accidentally released the Wire from its imprisonment, and had to hunt it down again with the help of Alice Wu. (PROSE: Loose Wire)

In 2011, a Stromini hid itself inside a Christmas present intended for Gabriel where, in the early hours of Christmas morning, it stretched time and fed off the boy's anticipation over finally being able to open his present. The Eleventh Doctor, Amy Pond, and Rory Williams found and apprehended the creature with Gabriel's help. (COMIC: Wait Until Morning)

Amy and Rory celebrated various Christmasses throughout their married life in the 2010s. For at least two Christmasses after he dropped them off in 2012, they set a place at the Christmas dinner table for the Eleventh Doctor in the hopes that he would turn up. He eventually did, after being convinced by Madge Arwell that he couldn't have his loved ones thinking he was dead, "not at Christmas". (TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe) He later spent another Christmas at the Ponds, where his attempts to take it easy that year were thwarted by various oncoming threats. (COMIC: Who Who Who, Merry Christmas) Rory also worked a Christmas shift at a hospital during The Year of the Slow Invasion. (TV: The Power of Three)

In 2012, the Eleventh Doctor and Decky Flamboon landed in an empty dining room on Christmas Eve where they discovered that the home's Christmas cards were inhabited by an Edger, which had brought the cards to life and trapped its residents - Kirsty, Shane, and their children, and various party guests - inside them. The Doctor and Decky managed to save the family and the guests and bring them back to the real world. (COMIC: On the Cards)

Around 2013, the Eleventh Doctor took Clara Oswald Christmas shopping (COMIC: The Holly and the Ivy) and dropped in to her flat on Christmas day, shortly before heading off to his assumed final death on Trenzalore. (TV: The Time of the Doctor)

Around the mid 2010s, Clara Oswald attended an end-of-term Christmas party during her employment as a teacher at Coal Hill School. (PROSE: The Persistence of Memory)

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)

In 2016, some time after becoming her personal tutor, Bill Potts visited the Twelfth Doctor at St Luke's University, and gave him a rug as a Christmas present. (TV: The Pilot)

After escaping some temporal turbulence caused by the Temporal Powers during the Last Great Time War, the Eighth Doctor's TARDIS became trapped in a time loop above Earth one minute before midnight on Christmas Eve. (PROSE: Ghost of Christmas Past)

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)

By 2034, in England, Christmas had been banned by the Arch-Mayoress due to it involving surprises and fun, which the Mayoress did not like, with any found Christmas presents or decorations being seized and sent to Town Hall to be destroyed. This embargo ended when the Eleventh Doctor and Decky Flamboon confronted the Mayoress and frightened her by having Decky turn off his shape-shifting belt, revealing his lizard form in front of her. (COMIC: Decky the Halls)

Later history and beyond Earth[[edit]]

Christmas celebrations existed as far away in time and space 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)

The Brancheerians on Sirus, who loved Earth traditions, were said to replicate Christmas three times a year. (COMIC: Decky the Halls)

The formerly-solitary species of Lengos Four adopted their own Christmas-like festival, in which gifts were exchanged, after being inspired by the kindness of Maisie Thompson, who took pity on the creatures and allowed one of them to keep a Christmas present they had stolen from her home. (PROSE: The Gift)

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[[edit]]

In a parallel world, the Tenth Doctor died during the incident with the Webstar at Christmas 2007. The Titanic replica crashed into London,[nb 1] 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 realities[[edit]]

The Daft Dimension[[edit]]

Christmas was celebrated by numerous individuals in the Daft Dimension, in particular the Doctor, their companions, and even the Daleks.

The Doctor[[edit]]

The Doctors at Christmas dinner. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 559 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 559 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 559"])

The Doctor's Christmas celebrations typically took place inside their TARDIS. They typically decorated the ship's interior for the occasion, usually with a Christmas tree and tinsel, a practice that dated as far back as the First Doctor. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 481 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 481 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 481"], The Daft Dimension 494 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 494 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 494"], The Daft Dimension 507 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 507 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 507"], The Daft Dimension 559 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 559 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 559"], Christmas Times... [+]Loading...["Christmas Times... (comic story)","Christmas Times..."])

Once during his travels with Clara Oswald, the Twelfth Doctor used Rusty as a Christmas tree, whom he and Clara adorned in Christmas lights and tinsel. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 481 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 481 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 481"])

The Twelfth Doctor and Clara Oswald use Rusty as a Christmas tree. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 481 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 481 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 481"])

The Twelfth Doctor also once hosted a TARDIS Christmas gathering of his closest friends, including Clara, River Song, the two Osgoods, and the Paternoster Gang, and was slightly dismayed that they had all accidentally gotten him the same Christmas present; pairs of question mark pattern underpants. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 494 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 494 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 494"])

On at least two occasions, several of the Doctor's incarnations gathered to celebrate the holiday; on one occasion, the Doctors spent Christmas in their "own company" aboard the TARDIS, a gathering that involved their first twelve numbered incarnations, as well as the War Doctor. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 507 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 507 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 507"]) On another occasion, the Thirteenth Doctor invited all of her then-known predecessors, including the Fugitive Doctor, to Christmas dinner. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 559 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 559 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 559"])

The Thirteenth Doctor treated her companions, Yaz, Ryan, and Graham, to a Victorian - "practically Medieval" - Christmas dinner by candlelight, inspired largely by the fact that she also invited a Pting, whom had taken out the electricity. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 533 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 533 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 533"])

Taking advantage of her access to time travel, the Thirteenth Doctor bought and left Christmas presents for several of her past companions who she had forgotten to buy for at the time, causing mild confusion for her predecessors when their respective companions showed their gratitude. (COMIC: Christmas Times... [+]Loading...["Christmas Times... (comic story)","Christmas Times..."])

The Daleks[[edit]]

Departing drastically from their more serious counterparts, Christmas was also celebrated by the Daleks on Skaro. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 546 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 546 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 546"])

Two Daleks accidentally exterminate a man whilst carol singing. (COMIC: Christmas with the Daleks! [+]Loading...["Christmas with the Daleks! (comic story)"])

Dalek Christmas traditions were not too far removed from those observed by humans, adopting such customs as putting up Christmas trees and other decorations, singing Christmas carols, family gatherings, the exchanging of gifts, playing games, and the partaking of Christmas dinner. (COMIC: Christmas with the Daleks! [+]Loading...["Christmas with the Daleks! (comic story)","Christmas with the Daleks!"], The Daft Dimension 585 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 585 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 585"])

They had their own version of Santa Claus, called Santa Dalek. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 585 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 585 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 585"])

Television programming on a Skaro Christmas included the Emperor's speech, (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 546 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 546 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 546"]) and the Christmas episode of Doctor Who, although it was not a particular favourite. (COMIC: Christmas with the Daleks! [+]Loading...["Christmas with the Daleks! (comic story)"])

Ebeneezer Davros was initially not a fan of the season, disallowing his workers from taking Christmas Day off from work. This all changed one Christmas Eve when he was visited by the Ghost of Christmas Future, whose sudden presence instantly prompted Davros to change his ways. (COMIC: The Daft Dimension 546 [+]Loading...["The Daft Dimension (DWM 546 comic story)","''The Daft Dimension'' 546"])

Other references[[edit]]

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[[edit]]

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


Doctor Who: Legacy[[edit]]

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.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Although Voyage of the Damned is supposedly set the Christmas after the 2007 setting of The Runaway Bride, the Doctor Who series which aired immediately before and after Voyage give contradicting dates for when their present day is set. PROSE: The Paradox Moon places Martha Jones' present day in series 3 in June 2007. AUDIO: Recruits dates it to March 2008. A newspaper clipping in PROSE: The Secret Lives of Monsters places Smith and Jones on a Sunday 4 June, which in the real world does not fall on a Sunday in either 2007 or 2008. Donna Noble's present day in series 4 is set in 2008 according to TV: The Fires of Pompeii, TV: The Waters of Mars, and AUDIO: SOS (and is heavily implied by TV: The Star Beast and TV: The Giggle), or in approximately April to June 2009, according to PROSE: Beautiful Chaos.
  2. Both Planet of the Dead and The End of Time are referred to in dialogue as taking place after the end of Journey's End, which is set in either 2008, according to TV: The Fires of Pompeii, TV: The Waters of Mars, and AUDIO: SOS (and heavily implied by TV: The Star Beast and TV: The Giggle), or six weeks after the middle of May 2009, circa June, according to PROSE: Beautiful Chaos. However, the year of The End of Time is unspecified, as is whether or not it is intended to be the Christmas immediately after Journey's End.