Earlier today (well, yesterday) the official Doctor Who Twitter account teased a big midnight announcement. That time has come and passed, not only with the announcement that Series 7 Part 2’s first episode will be named “The Bells of St John” but a poster for the episode to get us all good and teased. See it below in all its glory.
There’s also a few confirmed details about The Bells of St John given away in the announcement besides the name and poster. We now know that this episode will be the, and I quote, “official introduction” of Clara adventuring alongside the Doctor, and that it will introduce a new enemy known as the “Spoonheads”, that there will be something sinister lurking in the Wi-Fi and that it will be set in London. I’m sure Tumblr users everywhere will find the idea more terrifying than the love child of the Weeping Angels or the Silence could ever hope to be.
Now, let’s take a moment to examine that poster, shall we? The Doctor seems to have changed his outfit again, something he’s done a lot more frequently as the Eleventh Doctor and for Eleven it’s always a clue towards the current state of his psyche (or used to indicate whether stories take place in the past or future, when it involves his bowtie). And Clara doesn’t exactly look as terrified as I would to be riding on the back of a motorbike driven by a madman miles above the streets of London with gigantic shards of glass all around.
Those shards interest me more than anything else in the image. I’m sure you’ve noticed they bear images of various monsters, including what looks to be a Dalek. Possibly this is related to the Wi-Fi angle of the episode, with the digital and physical worlds crossing over in some form. Maybe that’s the Doctor riding out of the internet and into London itself. Or maybe it doesn’t accurately represent anything in the episode and just looks cool.
Oh, and that title? The Bells of St John? If that sounds familiar to you, that may be because it’s part of a nursery rhyme of the same name, and was used as a recurring motif in George Orwell’s 1984, which was also set in London and had technology being used for nefarious purposes.. It lists off the names of churches with bells in London, and the line that talks about St John’s reads ” ‘Pokers and Tongs’ say the Bells of St John’s”. No idea if that’s relevant, though. Perhaps its the entire rhyme or some other specific line that holds the significance. One of the lines does refer to the “Bells of Bow”, which sounds like…
Yeah, I don’t buy that idea either, but wouldn’t it be so cool?