Doctor Who's 60th anniversary will see an iconic duo return to the Tardis

David Tennant as the Doctor
(Image credit: BBC)

Doctor Who fans might just want to tune in for the show's 60th anniversary next year, as one of the Time Lord's most fondly remembered actors is set to reprise his role for the anniversary, airing in 2023.

Slash Film reports that David Tennant, the tenth Doctor, will be returning to the role for what's likely to be a special episode for Doctor Who's 60th anniversary. He's also joined by Catherine Tate, who played assistant Donna Noble during Tennant's tenure in the Tardis.

The news comes shortly after the announcement of Ncuti Gatwa stepping into the Doctor's shoes as their fourteenth incarnation, with current star Jodie Whittaker passing the baton next year.

"They're back!" wrote showrunner Russell T. Davies in a post on the BBC Media Centre. "And it looks impossible - first, we announce a new Doctor, and then an old Doctor, along with the wonderful Donna, what on earth is happening?  Maybe this is a missing story. Or a parallel world. Or a dream, or a trick, or a flashback. The only thing I can confirm is that it’s going to be spectacular, as two of our greatest stars reunite for the battle of a lifetime."

Davies is no stranger to the Doctor Who franchise, having previously run the show while Tennant and Christopher Eccleston played the iconic sci-fi character.

That's a lot of Doctors

Just how prominent Tennant and Tate's return to the series has yet to be revealed, and we don't know if the iconic pair will majorly feature in a 60th anniversary episode, or if they'll simply be relegated to a cameo appearance.

However, Davies' wording has us thinking it'll be a bit more involving than that. Hinting at "the battle of a lifetime" seems to suggest that whatever's being planned for Doctor Who's 60th anniversary will be no small endeavor.

We wonder if any form of multiverse shenanigans will be afoot here, as it's not like the concept is wholly foreign to Doctor Who. In 2013, a special episode titled The Day of the Doctor aired to celebrate the shows' then 50th anniversary, and saw Doctors Matt Smith and David Tennant team up.

Perhaps the show's 60th anniversary will be along the same lines, then, albeit in a more ambitious capacity. We certainly wouldn't mind seeing the multiverse concept applied once again to Doctor Who, perhaps with an even greater number of prior Doctors alongside contemporary actors like Gatwa, Whittaker and possibly even Peter Capaldi, who played the character's twelfth incarnation.

In any case, we're now fairly excited to see what Doctor Who's 60th anniversary has in store. It's always a treat to see Tennant in the role, and an ambitious special might just be what the show needs after the divisive run of recent seasons.

Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.