Tonight will be a bittersweet Christmas celebration for Doctor Who fans as they say goodbye Peter Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor who has led the show for the past three seasons.
What better way to see a Doctor off than to look back at his adventures and choose our favorites?
Peter Capaldi was chosen to replace Matt Smith as the new Doctor and made his first appearance - in eyebrow cameo form - in the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special and made his first full appearance in the Doctor in the Doctor Who Season Eight
The choice of Capaldi, who was nearly 25 years older than Smith, was a matter of some debate at first. Could a distinguished actor like Capaldi win over the hearts of young fans who had become accustomed to baby-faced Doctors like Smith and his predecessor, David Tennant?
While season eight was met with a mixed reception, fans seemed to agree that
As the Twelfth Doctor, Capaldi dealt with some heavy themes, matters of life and death and the existential crisis of wondering what its all for. But he came out on the other side, especially in his final season alongside new companion Bill Potts, and rediscovered the optimism and determination that never really left him but had developed just a bit of an edge.
Tonight's Doctor Who Christmas Special 2017, "Twice Upon a Time," sees the Twelfth Doctor looking back not only on his own
Prepare yourself to say goodbye by reading on to see our favorite Peter Capaldi episodes of Doctor Who.
"Face the Raven" is famously the episode in which Clara Oswald dies, which means the fact that she's saved from her fate a few episodes later will undercut the episode's power a bit.
Still, taken as it was watched, without the benefit of knowing Clara's ultimate fate, the episode seems like the tragic conclusion to Clara's continuing time with the Doctor. Clara had become more and more bold and confident as she spent more and time with the Doctor. It's her belief that she was as untouchable as the Doctor himself appears to be that eventually dooms her.
Of course, some fans took exception to this being the theme of the episode, seeing it as Doctor Who telling its companions ot "know their place." Therein lies the benefit of knowing that Clara will ultimately take on her own TARDIS with her own companion for her own adventures.
But as it is, "Face the Raven" remains one of the most emotional episodes of Capaldi's Doctor Who tenure.
The Christmas Special episode "The Husbands of River Song" is the only time that Capaldi's Doctor got to share the screen with Alex Kingston's River Song and the episode proved to be the perfect send of for her character.
"The Husbands of River Song" inverts the relatioship between the Doctor and River as it was presented in her first appearance in "Silence in the Library." That was also the only episode where she interacted with David Tennant's Tenth Doctor, who had no idea who River was despite her knowing him very well.
In "The Husbands of River Song," its River who doesn't recognize the Twelfth Doctor, and the Twelfth Doctor who gets to reveal the truth with the simple line "Hello, Sweetie."
"The Husbands of River Song" gives the Doctor and his wife the happily ever after they deserve.
Peter Capaldi struggle to give his Doctor and firm identity in his first season, instead either paying homage to past Doctors or simply aging his Doctor's behaviors and mannersims to differentiate him from the young Doctors who preceded.
In "The Magician's Apprentice," Capaldi's Twelfth Doctor truly arrives, riding a tank into a medieval arena for a duel while playing the electric guitar. Here is where the we finally got the Twelfth Doctor's distinct distilliation of punk rock style, optimism, and the experience and determination to back both of them up.
This two-parter also forced the Doctor to face to the classic trime travel quandy, "If you had a time machine, would you kill Hitler?" In this case, Davros is standing in for Hitler, but the same idea applies.
"The Magician's Apprentice" ends with the Doctor seeming to take the approach fans might expect based on his characterization from season eight, but "The Witch's Familiar" shows the true heart (or hearts) inside the Doctor.
One thing every actor who plays the Doctor has to be capable of is giving a good speech, and "The Zygon Inversion" features one of Capaldi's best.
"The Zygon Inversion" is the second episode in a two-part Season Nine story that began in "The Zygon Invasion.
The Zygons and the humans are on the brink of war and the only thing keeping them at a stalemate is a pair of boxes the Doctor has prepared as a failsafe. However, its his impassioned speech on the horrors he saw during the time war that eventually convinces the leader of the Zygon rebellion to back down and work for peace.
Its also revealed that both boxes are empty and that the Doctor has pulled this trick 15 times, erasing the memories of everyone involved, showing the lengths he's willing to go to to make sure no one lives through the kind of war he did ever again.
The title "The Pilot" is meant to have a double meaning since the first episode of the tenth season of Doctor Who was meant to be a great jump-on point for new viewers and it achieves that goal admirably.
The episode was the first for Pearl Mackie as new companion Bill Potts, who comes to know the Doctor as a professor at the college where she works in the lunch room.
Bill is a breath of fresh air on the series, serving as a perfect audience cypher and asking a lot of questions that Doctor Who writers and fans had take for granted over the years.
This is one of the most fun episodes of Doctor Who that Capaldi got to star in, and that feeling would continue through much of his final season on the s how.
Peter Capaldi's final regular season episode of Doctor Who is also the final regular season episode written by Steven Moffat, who has served as showrunner since season five and written for the series even before that, and both star and writer leave it all on the field so to speak.
Where the episode directly ahead of this finale, "World Enough and Time," was full of twists and references to Doctor Who's larger mythology, "The Doctor Falls" is comparatively straightforward. The Doctor is faced with fighting an impossible war to protect the innocent and makes the only choice he can and, as he says in an impassioned speech delivered by Capaldi that seems to sum up Moffat's entire thesis on who the Doctor is, he does it not because it is easy but because it is hard.
There's also the conclusion of the Missy story arc, in which we get to see Michele Gomez interact with John Simm's Master, which is a delight in and of itself.
The season nine finale of Doctor Who gave companion Clara Oswald a powerful sendoff while also showing how, despite his at times brusk and cold demeanor, Capaldi's Twelfth Doctor was personally, emotionally, and intimately connected to his friends.
After the events of "Heaven Sent," the Doctor is more focused than ever and decides to actually attempt to cheat death for Clara, who perished in "Face the Raven." The Doctor literally stops time to pull Clara out of the moment of her death.
What follows is a daring escape from Gallifrey, the hijacking of a TARDIS that is also an homage to the First Doctor, and a final showdown with Me.
The ending perfectly subverts expectations of how this story would end, with the Doctor being the one whose memories are gone and Clara being in possession of her mind, as well as a brand new TARDIS. With Me by her side, Clara is ready for new adventures.
There aren't many episodes from Doctor Who Season 8 on this list. Peter Capaldi was still feeling out exactly who his Doctor was throughout most of that season. However, "Listen" is an exceptional episode that cuts to the very roots of the entire Doctor Who mythology.
The episode finds the Doctor investigating his idea that sentient beings are never truly alone, that there's some other creature who evolved to be perfectly hidden who is constantly with us even during our most private moments. After all, how would we know?
The episode takes the Doctor and Clara to the childhood of Danny Pink first and then to the childhood of the Doctor himself. Clara ends up hiding under the Doctor's bed in a barn, the same barn the Doctor will return to as the War Doctor. She tells him that she's just a dream and then delivers a speech that would seem to inspire the Doctor to become the hero we know.
"Listen" ends up being something nearly like an origin story for the Doctor, and a moment that will resonate throughout the entirety of his time as an adventurer, by cleverly inverting the usual Doctor-human relationship.
Steven Moffat was in top form when he wrote the penultimate episode of Doctor Who Season 10, which is full of the kind of twists and references to Doctor Who mythology that fans have come to expect and anticipate from his work.
Throughout the tenth season of Doctor Who, the Doctor was desperately trying to rehabilitate Missy. He had her trapped in a vault but let her out for her first adventure on a colony ship in space.
Things go terribly wrong when companion Bill Pots is captured and brought ot the lower levels of the ship, where an entire city has sprung up in an are where time is moving at an accelerated pace.
She spends years there with only one friend...and its that friend who betrays her and forces her to become a Mondasian Cyberman. That so-called friend eventually reveals himself to be the Master in one of the most tragic turns in Doctor Who history.
"Heaven Sent," the penultimate episode of Doctor Who Season Nine, may be the closest thing to perfect episode of Doctor Who that Peter Capaldi appeared in.
In the episode, the Doctor finds himself trapped in a mysterious island castle prison. The first portion of the episode sees the Doctor exploring the island to try to piece together what has happened.
It is a slow burn that pays off when the pieces ultimately fall into place. The Doctor is actually caught in some kind of time trap. His only way out is behind a thick diamond wall.
This is where the Doctor shows what he's made of. He chips away at the diamond wall, punching with all of his might until he dies only to be resurrected and start the process all over again.
The Doctor spends approximately 4.5 billion years repeating this cycle until he finally frees himself. The beautifully directed episode is one of the greatest testaments to the Doctor's strength of will that's ever appeared in the series.