Hall H at San Diego Comic Con must be one of the most holy sites in the geek geography book. And today it’s added to its long history with the first panel for the Thirteenth Doctor and (most) of her friends. Jodie Whittaker is joined by showrunner Chris Chibnall and executive producer Matt Strevens, as well as Mandip Gill (Yasmin) and Tosin Cole (Ryan).  Moderation duties fall to IGN’s Terri Schwartz, who’s hosting the by now traditional Doctor Who panel for the first time this year.

-TARDISes are “not for personal use,” as Jodie learns when she tries to sneak a use of her Police Box to get a free flight to San Diego in a fun little skit to introduce her.

-We also learned that Whittaker really loves a cute hood. Between her announcement video, her Thirteenth Doctor costume, and her outfit at the panel, it’s all about the cute hood.

-The new season will be ten standalone stories, with no two parters and certainly not the ten part serial some had speculated about in months gone by.

-There will be a Christmas Special

-Plus it’s been written in a collaborative style, more similar to the US writer’s room than most British shows.

-“All of this is new.” The Doctor’s words in the brand new trailer (BRAND! NEW! TRAILER!) is almost like a mission statement. Chibnall has described the new era as being like the transition from The War Games to Spearhead from Space. With lots of new writers and lots of new monsters. Certainly the trailer doesn’t depend on any hints of appearances by old favourites.

– “Yaz is a 19 year old girl from Sheffield,” says the actor that plays her, Mandip Gill, “She enjoys her job but she thinks she can do a little bit more, so she asks for a little bit more, and she GETS a little bit more. So she gets whisked away on this adventure. And she idolizes the Doctor.”

-We appear to get a tiny first official glimpse at the new sonic screwdriver in the trailer. And after blue, green and red in recent years, this time it’s orange’s turn to be the colour the sonic lights up when in action. There’s also a ‘story’ as to how the Doctor comes by her new sonic screwdriver (so presumably it’s not just launched out of the TARDIS console at her this time)

-Speaking of the sonic screwdriver…

-Different members of the team have different attitudes to the secrecy of the show. Jodie Whittaker talked about how difficult it was to keep the secret from friends and family, while Tosin Cole (Ryan), admits he immediately told everyone as soon as he was cast.

-Whittaker describes her Doctor as having “a lot of energy. A lot of childish wonder. Quite fidgety!” While Chibnall says his vision of the Doctor is as “a pillar of hope in these times. And that’s Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor.

-The love is real. They showed a video of fans expressing how much Whittaker’s casting means to them, while everyone agrees the entire crew fell in love with her version of the Doctor almost as soon as she arrived on set. “Oh wow. Yep, she’s the Doctor!”





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