When the Thirteenth Doctor returns to our screens on New Year’s Day, she’ll have a new accessory in the form of her rainbow scarf. Understandably, Doctor Who fans went crazy when the Time Lord’s enhanced look was revealed in a promo photo for the episode, titled “Resolution,” as it recalled the multi-colored scarf famously worn by Tom Baker’s Fourth Doctor throughout the 1970s. But was the scarf chosen as a deliberate homage to him?
Not quite, as the addition of the accessory to the ensemble was a total fluke and is actually something that was owned by one of the crew. Showrunner Chris Chibnall revealed to Doctor Who Magazine that production designer Arwel Wyn Jones wore it on set, as it was bought for him by his wife, Claire Pritchard, who also works on the show as the series’ make-up designer.
“[Arwel] wore it around the production. Ray Holman [the costume designer] saw it and thought it would be perfect for Jodie’s Doctor. Ray showed it to Jodie, who loved it, and he saved it for the Special.”
In case you weren’t aware, Whittaker’s full costume came together sort of by accident as well. The actress was looking for outfit ideas when she found a monochrome image on Google of a woman in androgynous clothes. Whittaker showed Holman the picture and asked for something similar to the woman’s look, except with lots of color added. Holman dutifully followed the leading lady’s wishes and the result was the Thirteenth Doctor’s outfit, which has already become a favorite of cosplayers.
As for where and when the Doctor picked up her new scarf, Chibnall revealed to DWM that “Resolution” begins some time after we last caught up with the TARDIS team in the season 11 finale – even though it was only a few weeks for us here on Earth – so he assumes she got it at some point in time and space during those additional, unseen adventures.
“When we meet the gang at the beginning of the special, they’ve been off on their travels. The Doctor’s obviously picked up a scarf on the way.”
Doctor Who returns for an hour-long special – possibly with the Daleks in tow, if you believe the rumors – on January 1st, 2019.