Since the show's revival in 2005, the Doctor Who Christmas Day Special has become something of a yearly tradition. Featuring all the whimsy and adventure of the regular series, but with a holiday-themed twist, each Christmas Special has also guest-starred actors such as Michael Gambon (the Harry Potter series), Kylie Minogue, and (this time around) Sir Ian McKellen (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey).
New Doctor Who episodes will be released in April of 2013, and this year's Christmas episode, "The Snowmen," will bridge the gap between eras in the overall Doctor Who series. As such, it looks like BBC is pulling out the stops when it comes to promoting the episode – including the web-exclusive prequel video posted above.
Since the beginning of the month, BBC has posted one special Doctor Who-related feature per day as part of a celebratory "Adventure Calendar." The prequel video posted above is only one of the latest of a series of clips, image galleries, interviews with cast and crew, and other sundry bits of promotional tinsel.
Not all of the Adventure Calendar Features are geared exclusively toward the upcoming Christmas Special. For long-time fans of Doctor Who, Stephen Moffat hosts a trio of featurettes discussing the pop-cultural history of the Daleks. Those interested in the Doctor's adventures in prose (something that actually has a long and respected history), there is the three-part story, "Houdini and the Space Cuckoos."
Check out a pair of preview clips below:
Other than a desire for healthy ratings, BBC's heavy emphasis on publicity for this year's special makes a good amount of sense. "The Snowmen" marks a major point of departure for Doctor Who as a whole. The special will feature viewers' first look at a newly designed interior for the TARDIS, a new title theme song, and a new companion in Jenna-Louise Coleman (Captain America: The First Avenger).
For all the exciting new stuff on display, the episode will feature a Doctor once more in mourning. Despite being a Christmas episode featuring carnivorous snowmen as villains, this year's special should prove to have quite the melancholy undercurrent – even as it kicks off a new set of adventures that will begin in April of next year.
Doctor Who's 2012 Christmas Special, "The Snowmen," will premiere tomorrow on BBC. The regular series will return to our space-time in April of 2013.