Looks aren’t everything (or so our mums tell us) but when there’s a brand new Doctor in the TARDIS, they become pretty important. Tradition tells us that each Doctor has their own signature style – from Tom Baker’s iconic stripey scarf to Peter Davison’s cricket-and-celery combo, and Matt Smith’s “cool” bowtie – giving us clues about what kind of Doctor they’ll be.
So what will Ncuti Gatwa’s fifteenth Doctor be like? Details are scarce so far, but his fashion-forward costumes give us plenty of interesting hints…
No More Unchanging Doctor Costume
Finally, it looks like the Doctor is going to take the occasional shower.
Past Doctors have either stuck rigidly to a single costume – like William Hartnell’s suave, Victorian-era get-up or Colin Baker’s coat of many colours – or gone for a consistent look, like David Tennant wearing the same geek-chic suit in different colours, Jodie Whittaker’s iconic coat worn over different colourful t-shirts and jumpers, or Peter Capaldi basically cosplaying Jon Pertwee throughout.
Ncuti Gatwa is already known for bold, effortlessly cool fashion (from a Valentino suit with latex gloves to bright shades of Ozwald Boateng silk), so it’s refreshing to discover his Doctor is going to buck the one-look trend and instead serve multiple looks:
60th Anniversary Teaser Trailer: Post-Regeneration
While this action-packed trailer mainly got us all excited about the return of David Tennant and Catherine Tate, it also gives us the first line of Ncuti Gatwa dialogue: “Can someone tell me what the hell is going on here?”
It’s a blink-and-you’ll miss it appearance, but he seems to be wearing the same costume – a white shirt and grey knitted tie – as David Tennant’s Fourteenth Doctor in the anniversary specials, suggesting this line will occur shortly after the regeneration.
This savvy Whovian seems to have ID’d the tie from Hawes and Curtis, if you’re interested in recreating the look:
New Doctor, New Designer
Downe’s three decades of experience has included Neil Gaiman’s 1996 BBC fantasy series Neverwhere, as well as distinctive 1960s looks including The Trial of Christine Keeler and Gemma Arterton’s recent series Funny Girl.
First Costume Reveal – and The First Doctor with a Moustache?
Our first official glimpse of The Fifteenth Doctor gave us this bold brown-check-and-orange look. Like many Doctors before him, he’s wearing a long coat, but it’s uniquely Gatwa when paired with the fluffy orange jumper. Frankly, this would look ridiculous on most of us, but Ncuti carries it off easily.
He’s also officially the first Doctor who sports a moustache! It’s official: moustaches are cool.
This video also confirms Ncuti Gatwa’s Doctor will wear an array of silver rings and some “Gallifreyan nail tattoos”.
Fans were thrilled to discover Ncuti’s entire look had been sourced by eagle-eyed Whovians – the jumper is from H&M, the boots are Grenson, and the suit is Nanushka:
Our First Look at Ruby Sunday
Millie Gibson’s first Ruby Sunday costume also features stylish check in her jumper, overlaid with a denim jacket with sheepskin collar, and blue shorts. It’s not much to go on, but it is an indication that Ruby looks like a modern-day character from Earth, and not, say, another descendant of the Sevateem tribe.
The jacket, as identified here, is a Levi’s Trucker style in light indigo, the jumper appears to be from Top Shop, and the belted shorts look like they’re from Tommy Hilfiger. That all makes Ruby an accessible high street dresser, which feels in line with Russell T Davies’ aim of bringing Doctor Who to a wider and younger, audience for Series 14. From Ace’s trademark bomber jacket to Rose Tyler’s bootcut jeans and hoodies, and Bill Potts’ denim shirt with pop culture patches, Ruby’s continuing a long tradition of companions wearing casual contemporary style.
Another Long Coat Alert! And This Time It’s Leather
The more impatient among us follow the #dwsr (Doctor Who Set Report) hashtag on Twitter for glimpses at filming, and we were wholeheartedly rewarded back in February with a slew of new photos of Ncuti Gatwa wearing a dramatic long leather trench coat, brightly striped salmon-red-and-blue shirt and white trainers:
Action shots showed it flowing behind him, channelling some serious 1970s Starsky and Hutch detective vibes. The jacket also bears more than a passing resemblance to the coat worn by Donna Noble:
It seems from the copious amounts of fake snow in the photos that this look may well be from the 2023 festive episode, as does this recent video showing Gatwa walking over to the TARDIS from a house decorated with a Christmas wreath:
The Swinging Sixties
Back in April, the BBC treated us to another brand-new look for Ncuti Gatwa and Millie Gibson – a suave, blue high-collar pinstripe suit and afro for Gatwa and a bold black-and-white mini-dress with large cuffs and white lace-up gogo boots for Gibson.
It’s likely this ultra-specific look will feature in just one episode (maybe even going back to 1963, the year Doctor Who first aired?) but the sheer variety of costumes we’ve seen so far – including the lush Regency velvet suit featured in the Jonathan Groff episode – suggest the Fifteenth Doctor will be serving non-stop lewks, so if there’s one thing we know about Fifteen it’s that he has good taste.
Doctor Who returns to BBC One in November 2023