Exiting 'Doctor Who' Star Peter Capaldi Comforts A Sad 9-Year-Old Fan

Nothing can keep this Doctor away from comforting his fans.

Peter Capaldi had an emotional exit from Doctor Who in this year's Christmas special "Twice Upon a Time," which saw the Twelfth Doctor regenerating into the Thirteenth Doctor played by Jodie Whittaker. It's all a part of the history of Doctor Who, which has been replacing its stars since the long-running BBC science-fiction show first started airing in the 1960s. But for many young fans who began watching the series with Capaldi at its helm, it's a fresh new loss.

Everyone has their favorite Doctor (mine is Matt Smith's Eleventh Doctor, a perfect blend of childish and conniving) but 9-year-old David McGilloway's favorite was Peter Capaldi's Twelfth Doctor. According to David's father Brian, he knew the end for the Twelfth Doctor was coming — Capaldi had announced his exit back in January 2017 — but was "dreading" it, unused to the cycle of loss that comes with this brilliant, stupid, tragic show.

But like one Doctor said, "The universe is big. It's vast and complicated and... ridiculous and sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles." (You can probably tell that my bias is towards Eleven.) David McGilloway received a miracle in the form of a letter penned by none other than Capaldi himself, reassuring the young fan over the Doctor's regeneration.

Dated for November 23, 1963 — the day after President John F. Kennedy's assassination — Capaldi wrote a letter from the shared perspective of himself and the Doctor that he plays. The letter in full is below:

Dear David,

I hope you are having a very Merry Xmas. Xmas is always good fun. Well not always. Not every single second. Regenerating is not completely good fun. And it usually happens about Xmas-time. But you know what? Even though it can be a little bit icky (like really bad flu) it always, always turned out to be good for Dr. Who. The new Doctor always becomes your favorite and the one that goes...well, he never really goes, he is always there, somewhere in time and space, and if you think about him hard enough, you'll see him, and he'll see you.

It's like the Doctor says, "Everything ends, and it's always sad. But everything begins again, and that's always happy. Be happy."

So, have a brilliant Xmas, a happy New Year and a wonderful life — I'm sure you will.

All the best,

Peter Capaldi.

Doctor ?

It's the sweetest way that Capaldi can send off his character and reassure his young fans, who are probably dealing with a pop culture loss for the first time in their lives. Doctor Who has long been a family staple for British families, and those young fans are at the heart of its worldwide impact. Sometimes the legions of older fans can forget that, but it's wonderful that Capaldi hasn't.