Skip to main content

'Doctor Who' Season 13 — release date, cast, plot, rumours, trailer and more

Doctor Who Season 13

After a long wait, Doctor Who Season 13 is nearly here! Russell T. Davies revived the sci-fi show with Christopher Eccleston 17 years ago, and the Doctor has been saving the world from aliens across space and time ever since.

Jodie Whittaker is the current custodian of the TARDIS, although we now know that season 13 will be her last regular series as the titular Time Lord. Aside from the 2020 Christmas special, we haven’t seen new episodes of Doctor Who for a while now.

When can we expect the show to return? Which companions will join her? What enemies might she face? Here's everything we know about Doctor Who Series 13 so far!

Doctor Who Season 13 release date

Although a new teaser was just revealed for Season 13, we still don't have an exact release date. Currently, we only know that we'll be rejoining the Doctor and her companions "later this year". 

Jodie Whittaker chalking off time in the Doctor Who Christmas special

Jodie Whittaker as The Doctor in the 2020 Christmas Special, 'Revolution of the Daleks'. (Image credit: BBC)

How many episodes will Doctor Who Season 13 have?

The upcoming season of Doctor Who will be shorter than fans would want. Initially, Doctor Who Season 13 was planned for an 11 episode run. Due to the impact of COVID-19, filming was delayed, and the new season was cut down to a shorter run of just 6 episodes, plus two specials which will air in 2022. 

One of these specials will be the usual Doctor Who Christmas special 2021 (airing on New Year's Day), with the other following in Spring next year.

When the BBC revealed that Jodie Whittaker would be leaving, they also announced that a third and final feature-length adventure had been commissioned to help celebrate the BBC's centenary next year. This additional episode will air in autumn 2022 and will be the final time we see Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor before she regenerates into a whole new character.

How to watch Doctor Who Season 13

As before, Doctor Who Season 13 will be shown on BBC One and BBC iPlayer when it arrives later this year. 

In the US, the first 11 seasons of modern Who arrived on HBO Max last year when the streaming service launched in May 2020, and season 12 followed shortly after in September. Expect Season 13 to land on HBO Max sometime after they're broadcast in the UK.

MORE: Is Doctor Who on Netflix?

Who are the companions?

The Doctor might have gotten used to traveling with the fam since Jodie took over, but the 2020 Christmas special split up her traveling family.

Bradley Walsh and Tosin Cole both left the TARDIS for good at the end of the episode, leaving The Doctor with just Yaz (Mandip Gill) for company.

Although we don't know when he'll set foot inside the TARDIS for the first time, the Doctor and Yaz will bump into Dan Lewis played by none other than stand-up comedian John Bishop. He's joining as a brand-new companion this season and was first teased at the end of last year's Christmas special. 

John Bishop as Dan, the new companion in Season 13 of "Doctor Who."

We still don't know how Dan (John Bishop) will meet up with The Doctor... (Image credit: BBC/ James Pardon)

Thanks to the recent Comic-Con panel, we also know that Jacob Anderson (Game of Thrones, Broadchurch) will appear as Vinder. He didn't give much away about his new character, but he described joining Doctor Who Season 13 as "a real-life childhood dream" and said it was an honor to appear in the show!

Is there a trailer?

Yes! The BBC revealed a short teaser for Doctor Who Season 13 over the weekend, and it promises big things for the Doctor.

While it doesn't exactly reveal any huge plot details (or a release date!), we did get some brief glimpses at the Doctor, Yaz, and Dan in action, and a blink-and-you'll-miss-it shot of some rather menacing robotic creatures... 

As for drama, it looks like Yaz is interrogating the Doc about some sort of secret that she's keeping from them. Just what is she hiding?

With the trailer promising Season 13 will be the Doc's "biggest adventure yet", it looks like there's plenty of action to look forward to when the show returns later this year!

What rumors have we heard so far?

Captain Jack Harness (John Barrowman) may also feature heavily early in the series. These rumors started after a synopsis for a Captain Jack comic book tie-in briefly suggested it would link closely with the second episode.

In March, some eagle-eyed fans spotted Doctor Who filming on location in Liverpool. Among some sneaky snaps of the TARDIS, this also sparked debate around Donna Noble (played by Catherine Tate) returning to the show. Sadly, Tate’s spokesperson confirmed that she was “very much not in Liverpool” for filming at the time.

See more

Although Jodie's first season was dominated solely by new monsters and alien races, that all changed when the Daleks, the Master, the Judoon, and the Cybermen became important in series 12. It looks like that trend of returning monsters is set to continue for Doctor Who Season 13 as both the Sontarans and the Weeping Angels have been spotted on set. 

See more

The cast and Chris Chibnall also dropped some cryptic hints at their Comic-Con @ Home panel that another classic monster will be returning, although we don't know who (or what) that might be just yet...

Is Jodie Whittaker leaving Doctor Who?

Earlier this year, rumors circulated that Doctor Who Season 13 would be Jodie Whittaker’s last season in the TARDIS. 

As we already mentioned, these rumors have now been confirmed as true, as we know that Jodie will be leaving Doctor Who in 2022 along with showrunner Chris Chibnall after the three specials air next year.

If you're now wondering who will replace Jodie Whittaker in Doctor Who, Olly Alexander has been tipped as the prime candidate. His name has been thrown around multiple times, and he was recently rumored to be "thrashing out final details" with the BBC to play the role by The Sun.

However, his agent released a statement saying that the rumors weren't true as Olly was focussing on his music for the time being. Since his involvement is still unconfirmed, the Fourteenth Doctor's identity might remain a secret for some time yet.

Seasons 1-12 of modern Doctor Who are available to stream on BBC iPlayer in the UK right now, and US readers can find them on HBO Max. You can also watch episodes of classic Who on BritBox