Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Countdown - The Christmas Invasion

To celebrate the fact that 2013 is the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who, we'll be taking a look back at all of the episodes of the show which featured David Tennant as the Doctor. At the end of our look back we'll be asking you, the fans, to vote for what you think is the ultimate David Tennant episode of Doctor Who....
We start with David Tennant's first full episode as the Doctor, The Christmas Invasion.

1. The Christmas Invasion

First Broadcast on 25th December 2005. Running Time: 60 Minutes. Viewing Figures: 9.84 million.
Written By Russell T Davies.
Directed By James Hawes.
Executive Producers Russell T Davies and Julie Gardner. Rating: 10/10

Rose and the newly-regenerated Doctor continue their adventures together in this Christmas Special episode. Christmas becomes a time of terror for Planet Earth, as the whole of mankind falls under the shadow of the alien Sycorax. Rose needs the Doctor's help, but can she trust a man with a new face

Promotional Photos | Screen Caps | On Set Photos | Videos

Production Notes:
This episode was mostly filmed in Cardiff. The scenes that take place on board the Sycorax ship were shot at the Clearwell Caves in Gloucestershire. 

  • The Doctor: Am I..... Ginger? 
  • Rose Tyler: No, you're just sort of...... brown. 
  • The Doctor:  Awwww, I wanted to be ginger. I've never been ginger. And you, Rose Tyler, fat lot of good you were. You gave up on me. Ooh, that was rude. Is that the kind of man I am now? Am I rude? Rude and not ginger? 
  • Sycorax Leader: I can summon the armada and take this world by force.
  • The Doctor: Well, yeah, you could. Yeah, you could do that, of course you could. But why? Look at these people, these human beings. Consider their potential. From the day they arrive on the planet, and blinking step into the sun. There is more to see than can ever be seen. More to do than.... no, hold on... Sorry, that's the 'Lion King'. But the point still stands. 
  • The Doctor: This new hand, it's a fightin' hand! 
  • Jackie Tyler: Well, I reckon you're mad, the pair of you. It's like you go looking for trouble. 
  • The Doctor: Trouble's just the bits in-between! It's all waiting out there, Jackie. And it's brand new to me - all those planets and creatures and horizons! I haven't seen them yet, not with these eyes. And it is gonna be... fantastic! 

  • At his request, David Tennant was credited as 'The Doctor' rather than 'Doctor Who'. Christopher Eccleston had been credited as the latter, as had all Doctors prior to Peter Davison's Fifth incarnation.
  •  The music for the closing credits of the episode restored the traditional middle eight section of the theme tune, absent in the music for Series One. The theme was performed by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.
  •  'Sycorax' is taken from name of the witch in Shakespeare's play The Tempest. In Series Three's The Shakespeare Code, the playwright takes note of the Doctor's reference to the name, thus creating something of a paradox as to where it originated. 
  •  Immediately after The Christmas Invasion aired on TV, viewers with digital TVs were able to use their 'red button' to take part in a special Tenth Doctor interactive episode, Attack of the Graske, written by Gareth Roberts. 
  •  The Christmas Invasion was the first Doctor Who episode to premiere on Christmas Day since The Feast Of Seven, part seven of The Daleks' Master Plan (1965). It was also the first episode to premiere on a Sunday. 
  •  The Doctor's right hand is severed during the story's climactic swordfight, revealing a previously unknown Time Lord ability. It seems that they can fully restore damage to their new bodies within fifteen hours of their latest regeneration cycle. The severed hand later went on to cameo in spin-off series Torchwood, before returning home with Captain jack in Series Three's Utopia. 
  •  The British Rocket Group, responsible for the Guinevere probe, was first mentioned in Remembrance Of The Daleks (1988). The name is a reference to the British Experimental Rocket Group from the classic BBC Quatermass serials. David Tennant and actor/writer Mark Gatiss starred in a live TV performance of Quatermass not long before Tennant's TV debut as the Doctor. 
  •  The Doctor refers to another Science Fiction icon, Arthur Dent. Created by former Doctor Who script editor Douglas Adams, Dent was the star of international publishing, radio, TV and film phenomenon The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy. The Doctor has previously referenced The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy in Ghost Light (1989), and also mentions a book (The Origins Of The Universe) by HH character Oolon Colluphid in Destiny of the Daleks (1978). 
  •  A special piece of music, Song for Ten, was composed by Murray Gold for the episode. Sung by Tim Phillips, it was the first original song written for the series since The Ballad of the Last Chance Saloon in The Gunfighters (1966). 
  •  The first full adventure to star David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor was preceded by a seven-minute mini adventure during the BBC's 2005 Children In Need appeal. As well as giving us our first extended glimpse of the Tenth Doctor in action, the special was also the first time in the new series that the sound effect of the TARDIS's warning system, the Cloister Bell, was used.

  • David Tennant - Tenth Doctor 
  • Billie Piper - Rose Tyler 
  • Camille Coduri – Jackie Tyler 
  • Noel Clarke – Mickey Smith 
  • Penelope Wilton – Harriet Jones 
  • Adam Garcia – Alex 
  • Daniel Evans – Daniel Llewellyn 
  • Sean Gilder – Sycorax Leader 
  • Anita Briem – Sally 
  • Chu Omambala – Major Blake
  • Sian McDowell – Sandra 
  • Paul Anderson – Jason 
  • Cathy Murphy – Mum 
  • Sean Carlsen – Policeman 
  • Jason Mohammad – Newsreader 1 
  • Sagar Arya – Newsreader 2 
  • Lachele Carl – Newsreader 3

David Tennant Talks About The Christmas Invasion:

The Christmas Invasion Trailer: 

Filming The Fight Scene:

What did you think of The Christmas Invasion? 
Leave us your comments below!


  1. The Christmas Invasion is perfect in the way it builds up to the Doctor's glorious return. He kicks butt and saves the earth while still trying to figure out his new regenerated-self. After watching this episode I was hooked! I continue to enjoy Doctor Who and now watch anything with Tennant starring in it.

  2. My favourite episode of the new series. I loved how strong Rose was and the personality of the "new doctor"

  3. It was a great entrance for David Tennant as the doctor and is until today one of my favorite episodes.

  4. One of my favourite Tennant episodes. It set him up as the Doctor brilliantly. I also loved the anticipation of when was the Doctor going to wake up, what is he going to be like, and how is he going to save the world.

    Also, Tennant is the only man alive who can pull off a sword fight and save the world in his pj's and look absolutely fantastic while doing it.

  5. This ├ępisode will always be one of my favourite christmas special ever,like previously said,the anticipation till the moment the Doctor woke up was brilliant!
    I melt literally every time when the doctor walked through the door of jackie's appartment and the doctor and rose looked at each over and eventually had a christmas diner together.That was his best day like the song said.

  6. Adored it. What an entrance; the inescapable attraction of pressing buttons. And in his pj's yet. Love the final, oh I'm from the states and we don't have them here, tangerine/clementine combination fruit.


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