Chock-full of inside jokes and obscure references to the many characters, creatures and times that The Doctor has encountered over the years, the discussion would prove to be a whacky and strange trip down memory lane, punctuated by die-hard fan excitement that could be seen in the droves of cosplaying Doctors in attendance.
Kicking things off was a video that celebrated the history of “Doctor Who,” featuring all 11 incarnations of the titular character, along with the various companions he has had and the colorful characters he has encountered.
Craig Ferguson of “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” served as moderator, and he eased any confusion over his presence by explaining to the audience that he had loved “Doctor Who” as a “young girl.”
Appearing at Comic-Con to celebrate the good Doctor’s 50th anniversary were actors Matt Smith (pictured), Jenna Coleman and David Bradley, joined by producers Stephen Moffat, Marcus Wilson and Mark Gatiss.
The second video shown was a recap trailer which showed the developments of the previous season, starring Matt Smith and Jenna Coleman.
Ferguson began by asking if Moffat felt a sense of responsibility when he took on the decades-old franchise.
“You feel a sense a responsibility, but you feel unbelievably excited,” Moffat said. “I’m still a fan of it even though it wrecks every day of my year.”
When actor David Bradley was asked if he was a fan of the show growing up, he said of watching the show, “It was like every Saturday evening that’s what you did.”
Bradley will be starring as the first Doctor, William Hartnell, in the upcoming dramatic retelling of the show’s origins called “An Adventure in Space in Time.”
The trailer for the 50th anniversary special was also shown to the palpable excitement of the crowd, especially since it will represent the team-up of both Matt Smith as the 11th Doctor, with fan favorite David Tennant as the 10th regeneration of The Doctor.
When an audience member asked what characteristics all of the different versions of The Doctor share, Moffat explained, “There is only one doctor…He’s a creature of the moment right now… He’s every age at once, as well.”
By contrast, Smith said that he enjoyed the fact that he’s always on different sets with new actors, referencing the time-travel aspect to the show.
After a series of expert, insider, “Who”-centric questions from the audience, the panel thanked all of the fans for their support.
The discussion closed with yet another video, this one of Ferguson engaging in a funny yet bizarre song and dance tribute involving retro-clothed back-up singers, as well as a singing stuffed crocodiles and bunnies.
The “Doctor Who” 50th anniversary special will air on November 23, 2013, on BBC America.