However, over a year after it was made public that Whittaker had the role of the 13th Doctor, the actor warned fans not to expect any big reveals for the upcoming season, set to debut on BBC America this fall. “You can’t say anything about the show ever,” Whittaker declared only half joking. “Lucky for you guys, good panel. No spoilers.”
Well, besides a glimpse of the Doctor’s new sonic screwdriver, there were a few teases with a short video of the new season. Starting with an exploding Tardis and a Doctor falling, the “Universe Is Calling” tease shows Whittaker and her trio of companions on a bleak landscape and at one point in what looks like a town out of the old West – see above:
Coming onstage to chants and huge applause from a pack Hall H, the Broadchurch vet was joined by new showrunner Chris Chibnall, EP Matt Strevens and two of the three new companions Tosin Cole and Mandip Gill. Circumspect like the new Doctor, the new companions were pretty tight lipped. “The relationship between the three is beautiful,” Gill did say and added it will evolve over the 10 episodes of the new season.
“Secrecy is not an end to itself, Chibnall told the crowd. “We have things you are not going to want to spoiled for,” the EP added, with a grin.
— Doctor Who Official (@bbcdoctorwho) July 19, 2018
Before the panelists came out to the more than 6,000 fans, a brief video was shown of Whittaker traveling from the series’ studio in Wales to San Diego and walking into the venue incognito. There was also another video of fans around the world learning that a woman would finally play the Doctor after 12 men had occupied the Time Lord role.
Playing to cheers in Hall H, the footage had some SDCC royalty as well.
“We need a pillar of hope in these times, “Chibnall added later to a roar from the fans about Whittaker being handed the keys to the Tardis. “That pillar of hope is Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor Who,” he added. “This Doctor treats everything with a sense of awe, wonder and respect.”
“I felt if I was very much in someone else’s shoes,” Whittaker herself said of her first days playing the character, “which is an amazing way to start this journey.”
The new season of Doctor Who is set to premiere on BBC America this fall.