Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) and the 14th Doctor (David Tennant) in a promotional image for "Wild Blue Yonder"

It’s Almost Time for ‘Doctor Who’s 60th Anniversary! Here’s How To Watch It

Doctor Who is celebrating its 60th anniversary this month with three brand-new special episodes. David Tennant is set to return to the franchise as the 14th Doctor, along with his former companion, Donna Noble (Catherine Tate), in what is sure to be a spectacular celebration of this iconic sci-fi series.

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But how exactly can Doctor Who fans access these episodes?

For viewers in the U.K., the new Doctor Who anniversary specials, as well as the upcoming Christmas special and the new season, will be available on BBC One and BBC iPlayer at the same time—as is tradition. BBC iPlayer is free for anyone residing in the U.K. who pays for a TV license. Soon after all three episodes have been released, the BBC will be producing physical copies of the 60th-anniversary specials as well, just in case anyone was worried about completing their Doctor Who collection.

As for viewers outside the U.K., including those in the United States and across the rest of the world, the Doctor Who anniversary specials will be easier to access than ever before. In a surprising turn of events, the BBC has agreed to a distribution partnership with none other than Disney+ for the foreseeable future. That means that the three anniversary episodes, as well as every episode after that, will be available to watch with every Disney+ subscription. Doctor Who will not be available via Disney+ in the U.K., however.

While this new deal has allowed the BBC to increase Doctor Who’s budget, it will still very much be a British production, though the opportunities for the franchise to expand are now seemingly endless. Are more Doctor Who spinoffs on the way? Will we see more specials, more elaborate character designs, and even bigger sets? We’ll just have to wait and see. Returning showrunner Russell T. Davies has previously expressed his excitement for the possibilities this new partnership provides. It’s truly a new era for Doctor Who. Ncuti Gatwa’s first season as the 15th Doctor, which will air in 2024, has even been dubbed “season 1” by Davies himself.

Thankfully, we won’t have to wait too much longer to watch the magic of Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary specials unfold. The first, “The Star Beast,” is slated for release on November 25. The second, “Wild Blue Yonder,” will be released on December 2, and the third and final anniversary special, “The Giggle,” will premiere on December 9. It’s currently unclear at what time, exactly, the episodes will drop on Disney+. Some speculate it might be simultaneous with the U.K., so keep an eye on the time difference. In the U.K., the first episode is slated to drop at 6.30PM GMT.

In any case, if you’re deathly afraid of spoilers, and honestly, who wouldn’t be under these circumstances—it might be best to mute every word related to Doctor Who on social media until you’ve had a chance to see the episodes. We’ve got a feeling this will be an anniversary to remember.

(featured image: BBC)


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El Kuiper
El (she/her) is The Mary Sue's U.K. editor and has been working as a freelance entertainment journalist for over two years, ever since she completed her Ph.D. in Creative Writing. El's primary focus is television and movie coverage for The Mary Sue, including British TV (she's seen every episode of Midsomer Murders ever made) and franchises like Marvel and Pokémon. As much as she enjoys analyzing other people's stories, her biggest dream is to one day publish an original fantasy novel of her own.