Live: 'Doctor Who' panel at Comic-Con

Doctor Who
© BBC
Read our live coverage of the Doctor Who panel, direct from Comic-Con in San Diego.

Right guys, the finish line is in sight. We have one panel left at this year's Comic-Con, and it's a biggie: Doctor Who!

It feels like forever since we've last seen The Doctor, but perhaps it's for the best: after the many revelations in the season six finale we probably all needed a little time - Christmas japes aside - to calm down and process everything.

The good news is that season seven begins next month for a new run of 14 episodes, although we'll only be getting six of them this side of 2013. As we all know, Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill are bowing out at mid-season, so today's panel marks their last as members of the Who cast (for now, at least).

Note that all times in this blog are Pacific, which is eight hours behind the UK and three hours behind East Coast.


1.42pmAnd that's a wrap not only on this panel but also my coverage of this year's Comic-Con. Thanks to everyone for joining me the last four days - it's been an absolute pleasure to be back for this week. See you again soon!

1.40pmSuddenly the lift doors open and then - dinosaurs! "Run!"

1.39pmRory explains to his dad what the TARDIS is, while The Doctor reacquaints himself with Amy. "Ten months, time flies," he says.

1.39pmThe gang land on a spaceship, where there are spider webs. "You don't normally get spiders on a spaceship," The Doctor observes.

1.39pmThen to the present day, where Rory and Amy are watching Rory's dad Brian change a lightbulb up a stepladder. The TARDIS materialises around them.

1.39pmHe then zips to 2367 AD, then on to the American plains in 1902 AD. He's picking up a "gang".

1.39pmIndeed it was. The clip started in Egypt 1334 BBC, where Queen Nefertiti pinned The Doctor up the door in sexual advances.

1.33pmAnother clip. Dinosaurs on a spaceship apparently.

1.31pmSmith: "If you ever work in airport and see me, don't say 'you didn't bring your TARDIS then?' No I didn't. Because then why the hell would I be queueing up?"

1.30pmNew series gossip. Moff: "More Daleks than you've ever seen in one place. Just lots and lots and lots of Daleks. We've got the weeping angels, tragedy, comedy, westerns, absolutely everything. I don't think we've ever had a bigger variety of episodes than the ones we're about to show you."

1.29pmSmith: "Arthur's wonderful when he's grumpy." Gillan: "He turns into dad!"

1.27pmDo they have any weird or interesting habits? Smith: "This is one of Karen's. When she's a bit nervous, she picks her lips. All day every day." Gillan: "It's my thinking face." Darvill: "She rips the skin off."

1.26pmAny theatre roles they'd like to play? Darvill: "I'd like to do The crucible." Gillan: "I'd like to play Lady Macbeth." Smith: "I'll play Macbeth then. I actually wanna play a really bad villain."

1.24pmHave there ever been any objects on set they were tempted to steal? Gillan: "I've done it. I took some binoculars." Smith: "We've robbed various bits of TARDIS."

1.23pmModerator suggests an episode where The Doctor shows up in Groundhog Day and figures out the time loop. Moff: "I'm on it."

1.21pmGillan: "I love pianos, so maybe we could get shrinked and trapped in a piano, and attacked by the hammers." Darvill: "I think the Doctor should join a band and become a rock star."

1.20pmWhat plots would you like to have in Who? Some mention of flying monkeys in there too. Don't ask. Smith: "The trouble is, we always give the same answers. But we could never afford it, but I'm really intrigued by Atlantis. I know there has been an episode..." Moff: "There's been three. But to hell with continuity, we could do it again."

1.19pmAny scenes they loved but had to cut from the writers? Moffat: "We mostly get the really amazing ones on screen, we do. If it's really extraordinary we'll find a way to do it. Those are smart guys, they know the limits of the show, and unlike me how to keep it restrained. We manage to do it mostly."

1.18pmWhat's your craziest fan encounter? Darvill: "That Tumblr party we turned up to yesterday." Smith: "Can you remember we were shooting that episode? We got in the car and an old lady told me I was an exact replica of her pet hedgehog." Gillan: "Once a woman grabbed me and said 'are you matt's girlfriend?' and I was like 'Absolutely not!'"

1.17pmApparently the four of them went on Celebrity Bowling and Karen was surprisingly good. She says she never knew she had the talent.

1.16pmSmith: "I can guess yours. Stripogram police uniform?" Gillan says yes.

1.15pmFave costume/bow tie? Darvill: "My favourite costume is the Roman centurion." Cheers!

1.14pmIn talks to appear on Inspector Space Time? Gillan: "I have not, but I love it. It's really funny to see our show in spoof form. I would love to, is the answer."

1.13pmIn The Pandorica Opens, all the heavyhitters joined up. Any other evil alliances? Moff: "Can you imagine how long the meeting must have been to get the Pandorica Alliance together? The Weeping Angels refusing to come in because the lights were on? I don't think that could happen again."

1.13pmSmith: "At the moment we've got Dame Diana Rigg in, and she's totally wonderful in it."

1.11pmFave person or creature to have met? Smith: "We had dinner with one of our favourite actors the other night." Gillan: "Vincent van Gogh." Smith: "Tony Curran is a diamond of a man. I get on really well with James Corden as well."

1.11pmDoes he know the Doctor's real name? Moff: "Yes." Gillan: "What is it?"

1.10pmThe question: "Doctor Who?" When and how did you come up with this? Moff: "Well, William Hartnell said to me, what is my name? I said no Bill, we're keeping this secret. He never gives his name and the show is called Doctor Who. Clearly the question is tremendously important. And I know why. We actually find out the truth."

1.09pmA Dalek has a question. Will there be a multiple Doctor episode? Huge cheers. Moff: "I'm not going to tell you. Sorry."

1.07pmIt was pointed out that The Doc flies the TARDIS wrong. Moffat: "I think it's possible that River was winding him up, because when River flies the TARDIS in future episodes, it still makes that noise."

1.06pmAudience Q&As. Fave gadget, button or screen in the TARDIS? Smith: "In the TARDIS, each area has a particular job, so when you get there, you get a handbook of what it all does. There's a navigational area, there's a lab, but my favourite beat is the gear and lever that flies it, because of the rhythm of it. You can just whizz off."

1.05pmIt was titled 'A Town Called Mercy', the ep was written by Toby Whithouse. The clip was of the Doc, Amy and Rory entering a bar and promptly the Doctor being set upon for introducing himself as The Doctor.

1.03pmClip of the western episode of Doctor Who. Moffat: "For extra authenticity, we went to Spain."

1.01pmGillan, in Darvill's voice: "Sorry, I'm a bit bumbling, because that's just me. I'm doing a play in London with my best friend and then I am going to do a new series called Broadchurch with - get this - David Tennant, written by Chris Chibnall, and Olivia Colman, who was Prisoner Zero."

1.00pmWhat next? Darvill, in Gillan's voice: "I'm going to Scotland to film a little film which is about a writer, then I'm doing a film in America about a mirror."

12.59pmThe moderator mentions Matt and Billie Piper appearing in something together. Everyone laughs.

12.59pmSmith: "The heartbeat of the show is the quality of the writing, and the quality of the writers attached to it as well."

12.58pmSmith: "What's been interesting over the last year, is if there's something happening in a scene, us three would just look at each other. You become symbiotic. You spend every hour of the day with each other."

12.56pmWhat will they miss the most? Gillan: "I'm gonna miss getting to run down corridors away from imaginary monsters. Instead of doing a show where you're just standing in a room talking. I'm going to miss all these guys, they are my best friends."

12.55pmSmith: "The show is the star and the show will continue without us, dare I say Steven. It's about regeneration and welcoming in jenna and a new era and a new time, that's what's exciting. Each week it can be anything and you're not bound by genre. You can tell a horror story one week and a romcom the next. I like going back in time, forward in time, I like everything."

12.55pmFave storylines? Skinner: "I love them all. I think probably the historical ones, because there's something so magical about time travel back in the past. I love the episodes we've just made because they're all so different from each other."

12.54pmMoffat sort of concedes there's a way they could come back.

12.52pmMoff: "That episode was a tough one to write. It was very, very difficult, because it's not just fiction. You're actually ending a real-life relationship."

12.51pmSkinner: "It's been incredible. Huge episodes, we've had Daleks, weeping angels. Saying goodbye to these two was the big one. It's amazing. There's nothing like Doctor Who."

12.51pmNo, it was actually the scene where old Amy pleaded with Rory not to let her in the TARDIS.

12.49pmClip of Amy and Rory's best bits.

12.48pmApparently in the lift Matt turned to them and said 'didn't you guys used to be in Doctor Who?'

12.46pmAmy and Rory's departure comes up. What was it like? Gillan: "I didn't stop crying for two weeks. In between takes. I didn't hold it together, I've got to be honest." Darvill: "It was so exciting to film those final moments." Smith: "And film them with the Weeping Angels too. I think it's a brilliant end to what has become my two favourite companions."

12.45pmPraise for Darvill for making Rory a bona fide second companion. "The response... it's all down to Steven making it up and making it brilliant. We've loved it the way the dynamic between the three of us has evolved."

12.45pmArthur says they had to have throat sweets earlier to soothe their voices because of all the screaming.

12.44pmWhy do gingers get stick in England? "I think it's because we're rare and unique, and people are just intimidated."

12.43pmGillan: "I've had the best time seeing everyone dressed up in capes and stuff. I was coming down a lift in the hotel this morning next to a Dalek girl."

12.42pmSmith: "The great thing about comic-con is it's 100mph as you all know. I met Peter Jackson last night. That's one of the truly things about this." He adds that he got really starstruck by Bryan Cranston.

12.41pmThe moderator brings up a picture he took last night, where he was dressed as Ten and posing with Matt. Awkward!

12.40pmSmith: "I can say, unequivocally, it's transformed my life. Working with these guys who've become my firm, firm friends. Every day is a joy. I think if the world was a bit more like Comic-Con it would be a better place, right? It's been overwhelming. Who fans shout the loudest."

12.39pmHe adds: "I've got loads of ideas because it's Doctor Who. I don't find that bit difficult."

12.38pmMoff has apparently been in his hotel room the whole time, writing scripts. Moff: "Yeah, that's more or less my entire life actually. Well it's very nice to meet 6000 new people."

12.37pmThree minutes of cheering and whooping.

12.35pmQuick replay of the final scene from series six, before everyone comes out: Caroline Skinner, Arthur Darvill, Karen Gillan, Matt Smith and The Moff.

12.32pmThe moderator for this panel is Chris Hardwick of The Talking Dead, who has easily been the best moderator this year.

12.30pmAmy and Rory's last appearance will be in episode five, then the new companion Clara, played by Jenna-Louise Coleman, will show up in the next episode, which will be the Christmas special.

12.29pmFor background, the first episode of the new season is called 'Asylum of the Daleks'.

12.26pmSo as I mentioned, in attendance today we have Karen and Arthur, as well as exec The Moff, Mr Eleven himself and new exec producer Caroline Skinner.

12.25pmIf you missed my coverage from earlier today, you can find the Fringe panel here and the Supernatural panel here.

12.24pmThe Master's clap has broken out from the waiting audience.


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