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Digital Subscriptions > Doctor Who Magazine > The Essential Doctor Who: Adventures in Space > FiGHTiNG THE SUiTS


Oxygen presents a bleak future vision of capitalism in space. Hayley Nebauer, costume designer on the 2017 series of Doctor Who, explains how she dressed to kill…

Opposite page: Justin Salinger as Tasker, wearing one of the Smartsuits Hayley Nebauer designed for Oxygen (2017). Above: “Everything we build for Doctor Who is a prototype.” Costume designer Hayley Nebauer. Inset: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) and Nardole (Matt Lucas) are fitted with Ganymede Systems Series 12 Smartsuits. Below: Bill (Pearl Mackie) is trapped in her Smartsuit as her central nervous system is ‘disabled’ by the Ganymede Systems computer.

On 16 May, Doctor Who costume designer Hayley Nebauer tweeted her thoughts on the episode broadcast three days earlier.

“Really so pleased with OXYGEN (ep 5) of #DoctorWho – this was the most difficult ep of series 10 for costume, making a dozen spacesuits.” “Yes, they weren’t easy”, says Hayley when we speak to her.

“But that episode was good fun.”

We’ve already spoken to Hayley’s predecessor Louise Page about the orange spacesuits made for The Impossible Planet (2006) and reused many times since (see page 86). Would it not have been easier – and cheaper – to reuse those in this story? “No, it wasn’t an option at all”, says Hayley. “The suits in this story – Ganymede Systems Series 12 Smartsuits – are designed so they can take control of your body, so it wouldn’t have made sense to use other spacesuits that we didn’t already know could perform that function or come from that sort of narrative background.”

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About Doctor Who Magazine

“Space: the final frontier. Final, because it wants to kill us...” The TARDIS doesn’t just travel through time – stories set in space have been an essential part of Doctor Who for six decades. The inhospitable void between the stars has served as the backdrop to epic space operas and nerve-racking thrillers, while harbouring some of the most dangerous adversaries the Doctor has ever encountered. This lavish publication navigates a revealing course through the space lanes of Doctor Who, with exclusive interviews, rare images, and guides to some of the most memorable episodes.