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Daleks for the 50th! Highlights From Doctor Who at San Diego Comic Con

It’s a big year for Doctor Who. Its seventh season just concluded, its 50th anniversary is coming up, and it’s about to lose its eleventh Doctor come Christmas.

Anticipation was high for the San Diego Comic Con Doctor Who panel, which featured show producer Marcus Wilson, show writer Mark Gatiss, “new” First Doctor David Bradley, show runner Steven Moffat, and stars Jenna Coleman and Matt Smith. Would we see a trailer for the 50th anniversary? Or even bigger…would the actor playing the next Doctor be revealed? Read on for highlights from the panel.

A very short, Comic Con-only, trailer for the 50th anniversary episode was screened, showing the following:

  • Ten and Eleven comparing sonic screwdrivers. (Eleven wins.)
  • Ten, Eleven, and John Hurt’s character inside Matt Smith’s TARDIS. Tennant says, “You’ve redecorated. I don’t like it.”
  • John Hurt strolling up to Ten and Eleven saying that he’s “looking for the Doctor.” Ten responds that he’s certainly in the right place.
  • Daleks! Getting quite a thrashing.
  • Zygons! Doing quite some thrashing.

The footage heavily implies that John Hurt is the Doctor who actually fought in the Time War and that version of Ten and Rose we see is from season two. Although the footage will not be seen outside of Comic Con, the BBC has released some stills of the Daleks in action in the 50th anniversary. Looks like we’re definitely getting glimpses of the Time War.

The panel, hosted by Craig Ferguson, also touched on a few other quirky bits from the actors, showrunners, and the show itself.

  • Steven Moffat is still unbelievably excited that he gets to work on Doctor Who, “even though it ruins every day of my life.”
  • William Hartnell was David Bradley’s “Doctor.” He watched the show almost religiously on Saturday nights. “The pub had to wait!”
  •  A trailer for the Adventures in Time & Space was shown, with Mark Gatiss remarking that it was spooky how alike the current-day actors were to the original 1963 cast.
  • Moffat is only 22 pages into writing the Christmas episode, Matt Smith’s final adventure.
  • Matt Smith admitted that while his Doctor is more flummoxed by women (in comparison to David Tennant’s) he bets that Eleven would get a snog from Clara before Ten could.
  • Moffat says that the Twelfth Doctor hasn’t been cast yet. (Not an entirely unbelievable statement considering that Moffat hasn’t even written Eleven out yet.) Of course, Moffat later said, “I’ve been lying my ass off for months!” in regards to questions about whether Captain Jack Harkness might appear in the 50th anniversary episode.
  • He added that if he can think of a good story idea for Captain Jack, he’ll bring him back.
  • Matt Smith wants the Christmas special to be shot in America. (Probably because he’s moving here anyway after he’s done filming Doctor Who, as he stated in an earlier SDCC Q&A.)
  • If Jenna Coleman wasn’t already Clara, she said she’d love to play Strax. Matt Smith would be the Master. Mark Gatiss would be Jo Grant.
  • Moffat thinks that if the Doctor were real he would be very surprised to find out there was a TV show about him.
  • If Matt Smith could create his own Doctor Who monster to fight he’d make something really big but also psychological. Jenna imagines her monster would have lots of arms.
  • Steven Moffat has a very Weeping Angel-like statue in his home garden!

Matt Smith also revealed that he’d been walking around Comic Con earlier in a mask. Watch a video he made detailing his journey around the floor:


Chris Lough is the production manager of Tor.com and can’t wait for the Doctor to visit a bunch of other shows during the 50th anniversary, as well as every single audience member in their homes. It’s going to be a hell of an episode!

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