‘Doctor Who’ 50th Anniversary Special Trailer Description

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doctor who season 6 finale Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special Trailer Description

It’s a big year for fans of the Doctor, seeing how the beloved BBC television series Doctor Who – which details the (mis)adventures of a wayward time-traveler (i.e. Time Lord) with self-regeneration capabilities and a propensity for bringing young attractive ladies along for the ride – will celebrate it 50th year of existence this November; that is, before the bids farewell to the eleventh iteration of the Doctor (played by Matt Smith), in the next Christmas special.

However, despite all the excitement on the horizon, the Doctor Who cast and show-runners kept quite tight-lipped about the future of the show, during the panel at the 2013 International Comic-Con in San Diego. Late Late Show host Craig Ferguson – a longtime self-proclaimed Doctor Who fanatic – moderated the event, with a lineup that included producer Marcus Wilson, actor/writer Mark Gatiss, and head show-runner Steven Moffat, along with Smith, his current costar Jenna Louise-Coleman and David Bradely (who’s starring in the TV docudrama about the creation of Doctor Who, titled An Adventure in Time and Space).

The panel opened with a remix video showing the different versions of the Doctor – as well as the actors who played them – over the past five decades, in addition to a recap video for the second half of series 7 (ending with the conclusion to “The Name of the Doctor”). We then got to see a trailer for An Adventure in Time and Space, before the time came for the big treat: the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special trailer.

doctor who 50 anniversary trailer Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special Trailer Description

The trailer started off with a closeup of feet walking, followed by glimpses at Smith as Doctor #11 and Clara (Coleman). Smith (via voice-over) says that he’s had many faces, but there’s one face that he’s tried to keep buried. This was followed by a shot of a shadowy man, standing in the background of what appears to be a dimly-lit cavernous room (the interior of the TARDIS?), along with a shot of Daleks shrieking “Exterminate!”

This was followed shortly thereafter by a closeup of John Hurt as “The Doctor.” We then got a couple more clips of Hurt while he pilots the TARDIS, in addition to saying (via voice-over) “Great men are forged in fire.”

Thereafter, the trailer shifted into a pure montage of brief shots, which included a ragged-haired Rose (Billie Piper), Smith yelling “Geronimo!” and David Tennant as (Doctor #10? The half-human Doctor clone?) in the TARDIS yelling “Allons-y!”, in addition to Tennant and Smith’s Doctors meeting for the first time (they show one another their sonic screwdrivers and pull on their respective glasses).

We also saw Tennant in Smith’s TARDIS, saying “You’ve redecorated… I don’t like it!”, multiple shots of Tennant, Smith and Hurt walking together, a brief glimpse at a hellish-red rough-skinned monster, an exploding wall that sends Dalek toppling over, and Rose warning (Doctor #11? Clara?) that they are in danger.

The final shot had Hurt saying “I’m looking for the Doctor,” then we cut to Tennant and Smith exchanging significant glances in response. That was followed by the 50th anniversary logo and the official air date.

doctor who matt smith david tennant Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special Trailer Description

Overall, the 50th anniversary special felt like just about every other preview released during Moffat’s tenure as head show-runner on Doctor Who: intriguing bits of plot, but nothing that paints a clear-cut picture of what to expect. The concern at this point is that the episode will suffer from excess back-patting and fan service (given the number of callbacks to past gags in the trailer), and that the Doctor-meeting-Doctor angle could feel too much like a gimmick.

Here’s to hoping that the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special manages to avoid stepping into those potholes and, instead, proves to be a fun and exhilarating reminder of everything that makes Doctor Who great. That way, we can start off the next 50 years of the show’s existence – beginning with series 8 in Summer 2014 – off on the right foot (knock on wood).


Look for the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special to air on the BBC on November 23rd, 2013.

Follow Sandy Schaefer on Twitter @feynmanguy
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  1. Did Bradley get booed for his role in The Red Wedding?

    • Nah, he joked about not being very popular after that, and the audience laughed it off.

      • Nice. I think he’ll be brilliant as William Hartnell too, I have no idea how he’s gone under the radar for as long as he has. Really great actor.

        I’m probably looking forward to that more than the 50th special because I just haven’t liked the show since Moffatt and Smith got on board but I’ll still give it a shot just to see what they do with it.

  2. Just to clarify, 10th signature cry is spelled ALLONS-Y (french for Let’s Go). Other info, cool as beans…

    • To be fair though, if you barely hear something once in a crowded room then you write it how it sounds.

      I once had a friend who thought the chorus of Metallica’s song “I Disappear” went “Do you BEND me when I’m gone” rather than “bury”.

    • My bad, it’s been corrected.

      Thanks for catching that.

  3. is it November 23rd yet? Because in needs to be!

  4. Hopefully Moffat doesn’t Moffat this up too badly.

  5. Cant wait! hope they release the trailer online soon, because that is just unfair for the rest of us fans, especially the fans across the pond in the UK. Why should we americans get to see footage before they do?

    • Don’t worry, the BBC will probably have it on TV pretty prominently or point to where we can see it on their website.

    • Only a few of us Americans got to see it at Comic-con. Unfortunately, I wasn’t one of them, so I feel your pain. That is really unfair though, because it’s ya’lls show after all. :/

      • *their show (UK)

  6. I was at the panel. I can say for me the sneak previews looked great. I can’t wait for both the 50th special and An Adventure in time and Space.

  7. It will be about everything great about Who (Mainly Tennant and Piper :)

  8. why isnt the trailer up yet for the anniversay

  9. if the daleks do show up again i honestly hope this is their last time. great villains but they’re starting to get a bit annoying. Looking forward to the 50th anniversary though. cant wait :D

    • The Daleks, believe it or not, are not BBC owned even though they are primarily associated with Doctor Who; they are still managed by the Terry Nation estate and I think they have to be used periodically or else BBC looses the ability to use them at all.

      While this may make some people happy, I think the BBC wants to keep hold of the right to use them without going through a whole licensing fiasco after 50 years and cough up money for it.

  10. Really can’t wait for the return of David and Billie!

  11. He shouldn’t have joked about that. I’m really quiet disappointed with this guy. Yeah I get it, “influence the influencers” but it’s that fans that helped get you to where you are today. Piss poor repayment if you ask me.

    Or is this just another “any press is good press” tactic where he’s trying to make the forums explode by being a little bit controversial?

  12. So annoyed! Doctor Who is a British TV show. Why do the Americans get the trailer and us british get the description? America should have learned by now not to meddle with British TV. *Torchwood Miracle Day* just not fair >#<

  13. DAM! Wish i never read the description, Now i want to see the Trailer More!!!

  14. Bull s***

  15. Urg that all sounds like the 50th show will be put together by a marketing dept rather than a creative writer.

    At this point I’m waiting for SM to leave the show.

  16. Just curious… because this question on whether it is the metacrisis Doctor (“human” doctor) or the “real” 10th Doctor is just driving me crazy. I don’t mind having either one, though personally I hope it is the metacrisis Doctor.

    There are all these theories floating around, but since you saw the trailer, what was Rose wearing? If 10 and Rose are plucked out of series two, maybe you can tell by what she is wearing? Or by her hair (and when you say “ragged-hair”, does it look like something from a specific season? Or something new)? Is she wearing jeans? If she is, are they flairs (reminiscent of mid to late 2000′s)? Even in Journey’s End, she was wearing bell bottom/flair black pants. So in the trailer, it’s possible that it is Rose and the Doctor from the parallel universe if Rose is wearing “skinny jeans”. I know it sounds bizarre that I was thinking about it, LOL!

    The other reason why I think that it might be the meta-crisis doctor and Rose from the parallel universe (Pete’s World) is because it would explain why River Song recognized the 10th Doctor in Silence of the Library, and also why she knew about Donna Noble. Perhaps she meets the the meta-crisis Doctor in the 50th, and he explains to her his existence (which means he has to explain about Donna).

    If River is in the 50th, and it’s the “real” 10th Doctor that was taken from season 2 with Rose, then why wouldn’t the 10th Doctor recognize her in Silence the Library?

    And if the “real” 10th Doctor and Rose are taken from around the time of Journey’s End, then why isn’t the meta-crisis Doctor and all the other companions (Jack, Jackie, Martha, Donna) with him? And they wouldn’t just take the Doctor and Rose in the middle of the Stolen Earth or something.

    Arggg… please tell me what Rose is wearing… perhaps it would give a clue!!!

  17. BBC are taking a long time to release that trailer, it’s only next month!
    I hope that River isn’t in the 50th. I haven’t heard anything but I wouldn’t put it past Moffat to plug his pet creation again.
    I’m also hoping that it is the Meta-Crisis Doctor and Rose. Such a shame that Christopher Ecclestone isn’t in it, he’s my favourite out of the new ones.

  18. The new trailer pretty much fits that description perfectly: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7z6FMCqYrBo