“Doctor Who” enthusiasts were thrilled today (11 Dec) as Ncuti Gatwa’s innovative Sonic Screwdriver was revealed for the first time. The iconic device, known for its multifunctionality including repairing electronics, operating the TARDIS, and even healing wounds, now includes a GPS tracker. Unique to each Doctor, Ncuti’s Sonic Screwdriver stands out with its bulkier, more bulbous design compared to predecessors like David Tennant and Jodie Whittaker. A distinctive feature is the Gallifreyan symbols etched on its golden plate, depicting a renowned Rwandan proverb which means ‘The sharpness of the tongue defeats the sharpness of the warrior.’
The revelation took place on London’s South Bank, following a surprising regeneration twist in Saturday night’s Special. BBC Studios and Back Market, an online marketplace for refurbished tech, collaborated to create a striking 180-degree sculpture showcasing David Tennant’s transformation into Ncuti, the 15th actor to embody the character. This “Art of Regeneration” sculpture, comprising e-waste and Doctor Who hidden gems, stands as a 7ft by 9ft anamorphic creation, symbolizing the immense e-waste generated globally every minute.
The weekend festivities also included an unexpected appearance of the TARDIS and a cosplay photo call, drawing scores of Whovians to celebrate the new Doctor. The installation, a tribute to the regeneration process, was available for public viewing from Friday 8th to Monday 11th December.
Post-event, the sculpture will be relocated to BBC Studios’ Television Centre, where it will remain until its eventual recycling, aligning with Back Market’s commitment to sustainable technology practices.
Katy Medlock, UK General Manager for Back Market, emphasized the importance of regeneration in both Doctor Who’s narrative and Back Market’s mission to rejuvenate technology for environmental benefit. The installation aims to raise awareness about e-waste’s growing impact and promote device repair, recycling, and prolonged usage.
Sarah Bold, BBC Studios’ Head of Marketing for Scripted Programs, hailed the sculpture as a remarkable homage to a pivotal moment in television history, celebrating the iconic transition from David to Ncuti.
In line with the sustainable theme, Back Market is encouraging the public to utilize its Trade-in service to recycle unwanted electronics before Christmas.
The “Art of Regeneration” sculpture, a unique collaboration between Back Market and BBC Studios, was accessible for no charge at the Queen’s Stone on the South Bank’s Riverside Walkway, adjacent to the OXO Tower, until Monday 11th December.
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