Doctor Who

Episode Christmas Special

The Runaway Bride

Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Dec 25, 2006 on BBC America



  • Trivia

    • As the Doctor is applying his sonic screwdriver to the mobile phone he borrowed from one of the wedding guests, to trace the ownership of H.C. Clements, the webpages for U.N.I.T. and The British Rocket Group, who designed Guinevere One in The Christmas Invasion, flash briefly on the screen.

    • When the Doctor and Donna went back to watch the creation of Earth, the Doctor stated that this was the furthest back in time he had ever been. However, in Castrovalva (series 19 of the classic series), the TARDIS went back to the big bang, the creation of the Universe. The Doctor had also previously returned to near the big bang in Edge of Destruction - in the very first series of the classic series.

    • During the motorway chase scene there is a Saab with the numberplate N197 OYO. This car has also appeared in the Torchwood episode "They Keep Killing Suzie" as Gwen's vehicle.

    • During the opening wedding scene, the music being played as the bride walks down the aisle towards the altar is Mendelssohn: The Exit March which should play after the ceremony as the newly weds walk down the aisle post ceremony.

      Traditionally the bride marches to, The Bridal Chorus Here Comes the Bride from Lohengrin by Wagner.

      Pachelbel's Canon in D is played before the march, as the wedding party (sans the bride) assembles.

    • As Donna and the Doctor enter the reception, the song Merry Xmas Everybody by Slade is playing.

    • Two very brief flashbacks from New Earth, when the Doctor dances with Rose at the end of that episode, occur when the Doctor is at the reception watching everyone else dancing.

  • Quotes

    • Donna: Santa's a robot!

    • Donna: Who are you?
      The Doctor: I'm the Doctor. You?
      Donna: Donna.
      The Doctor: Human?
      Donna: Yeah. Is that optional?
      The Doctor: Well, it is for me.
      Donna: You're an alien?
      The Doctor: Yeah.

    • (The Doctor looking down into the tunnel in the floor)
      Empress: Down and down all the way to the center of the Earth.
      The Doctor: Really? Seriously, what for?
      Donna: Dinosaurs!
      The Doctor: What?
      Donna: Dinosaurs!
      The Doctor: What do you have with dinosaurs?
      Donna: Like in that film, under the Earth, with dinosaurs! Trying to help!
      The Doctor: That's not helping.

    • (When Donna first appears in the TARDIS)
      The Doctor: What?
      Donna: Ahhh?
      The Doctor: What?
      Donna : Who are you?
      The Doctor: But!?!
      Donna : Where am I?
      The Doctor: What?
      Donna : What the hell is this place?
      The Doctor: What!?!

    • Donna: Am I ever going to see you again?
      Doctor: If I'm lucky.

    • Donna: I'll tell you what we'll do though: Christmas dinner. (The Doctor is puzzled) Oh come on...
      The Doctor: I don't do that sort of thing.
      Dona: You did it last year, you said so. And you might as well since mum cooks enough for twenty.
      The Doctor: oooh... (Struggles with his answer) Alright, but you go first, better warn them. And, don't say I'm a martian. (Donna laughs) I just gotta... park her (referring to the TARDIS) properly, she might... drift off to the middle ages. I'll see you in a minute. (Enters the TARDIS)
      (Donna turns away, and turns back when she hears the sound of the TARDIS about to fade away)
      Donna: Doctor! DOCTOR!!! (The TARDIS fades back)
      The Doctor: Blimey, you can shout!

    • The Doctor: The wedding! Yes, you're getting married, that's it! Best day of your life, walking down the aisle - oh, your body's a battle ground! There's a chemical war inside! Adrenaline, acetylcholine, WHAM go the endorphins, oh you're cooking! Yeah, you're like a walking oven! A pressure cooker, a microwave, all churning away, the particles reach boiling point,SHAZAM! (Donna slaps him) What did I do this time!?!

    • The Doctor: Oi! Santa! Word of advice: if you're attacking a man with a sonic screwdriver ... Don't let him near the sound system.

    • The Doctor: H C Clements, did he wear those... those, erm, black and white shoes?
      Donna: He did! We used to laugh, we used to call him a fat cat in spats. Oh, my God!

    • The Doctor: (to the still hiding Empress) Only a madman talks to thin air, and trust me, you don't want to make me mad! Where are you?

    • The Doctor: (Referring to Lance's involvement with the Racnoss) It was all there in the job title. The Head of "Human Resources"!
      Lance: This time, it's personnel!

    • (part of the TARDIS console explodes)
      The Doctor: (hitting the console with a hammer) Behave!

    • Donna: Doctor.
      The Doctor: (opening the TARDIS door) Oh, what is it now?
      Donna: That friend of yours, what was her name?
      The Doctor: (broken tone of voice) Her name was Rose.

    • Donna: Promise me one thing. Find someone.
      The Doctor: I don't need anyone.
      Donna: Yes, you do. 'Cause sometimes I think you need someone to stop you.

    • The Doctor: What will you do with yourself now?
      Donna: Not getting married for starters. And I'm not gonna temp any more. I dunno. Travel? See a bit more of planet Earth. Walk in the dust. Just… go out there and do something.
      The Doctor: Well, you could always…
      Donna: What?
      The Doctor: Come with me.
      Donna: (after a pause) No.
      The Doctor: OK.
      Donna: I can't.
      The Doctor: No, that's fine.
      Donna: No, but really, I… I mean, everything we did today. Do you live your life like that?
      The Doctor: Not all the time.
      Donna: I think you do. And I couldn't.
      The Doctor: You've seen it out there. It's beautiful.
      Donna: And it's terrible. That place was flooding and burning and they were dying and you stood there like… I don't know, a stranger. And then you made it snow. I mean, you scare me to death.

    • (The huon particles in Donna are released into the pit)
      Empress of Racnoss: The secret heart unlocks and they will waken from their sleep of ages.
      Donna: Who will? What's down there?
      Lance: How thick are you?
      Empress of Racnoss: My children. The long lost Racnoss, now reborn to feast on flesh.

    • (The Doctor and Donna go back to the dawn of creation to see the Earth being formed)
      Donna: Puts the wedding into perspective. Lance was right; we're just… tiny.
      The Doctor: No, but that's what you do, the human race. Make sense out of chaos. Marking it out with… with weddings and Christmas and calendars. This whole process is beautiful, but only if it's being observed.

    • (Donna's fiancé Lance is revealed to be in league with the Empress of Racnoss)
      Donna: But… we were getting married.
      Lance: Well, I couldn't risk you running off. I had to say yes, and then I was stuck with a woman who thinks the height of excitement is a new-flavoured Pringle. Oh I had to sit there and listen to all that yap-yap-yap. Brad and Angelina, is Posh pregnant, X Factor, Atkins diet, feng shui, split ends, text me, text me, text me. Dear God, the never-ending fountain of fat stupid trivia. I deserve a medal.
      The Doctor: Oh, is that what she's offered you, the Empress of the Racnoss? What are you, her consort?
      Lance: It's better than a night with her.
      Donna: But I love you.
      Lance: That's what made it easy. It's like you said, Doctor. The big picture. What's the point of it all if the human race is nothing? That's what the Empress can give me. The chance to… to go out there, to see it, the size of it all. I think you understand that, don't you, Doctor?

    • Empress of Racnoss: Who are you with such command?
      The Doctor: I'm the Doctor.
      Empress of Racnoss: Prepare your best medicines, Doctor-man. For you will be sick at heart!

    • Donna: These particles. Are they dangerous? Am I safe?
      The Doctor: Yes.
      Donna: Doctor, if your lot got rid of huon particles, why did they do that?
      The Doctor: Because they were deadly.
      Donna: Oh my God.
      The Doctor: I'll sort it out, Donna. Whatever's been done to you, I'll reverse it. I am not about to lose someone else.

    • Donna: What do they want with me?
      The Doctor: Somehow, you've been dosed with huon energy, and that's a problem, because huon energy hasn't existed since the Dark Times. The only place you'll find a huon particle now is a remnant in the heart of the TARDIS. See, that's what happened. (off Donna's blank look) Say that's the TARDIS (picks up a mug) and that's you (picks up a pencil). The particles inside you activated, the two sets of particles magnetized and whap! (puts the pencil in the mug) You were pulled inside the TARDIS.
      Donna: I'm a pencil inside a mug.
      The Doctor: Yes, you are.

    • Empress of Racnoss: (viewing the Doctor and Donna) He shall come to me, and the beautiful Bride. Such secrets to unlock. I shall descend this night. I shall descend upon this earth and dine!

    • The Doctor: Question is, what do camouflage robot mercenaries want with you? And how did you get inside the TARDIS? I don't know. What's your job?
      Donna: I'm a secretary.
      The Doctor: (scanning her with the sonic screwdriver) It's weird. I mean, you're not special, you're not powerful, you're not connected, you're not clever, you're not important…
      Donna: This friend of yours, just before she left, did she punch you in the face? (slaps his hand away) Stop bleeping me!

    • Donna: So come on, then. Robot Santas. What are they for?
      The Doctor: Oh, your basic robo-scavenger. The Father Christmas stuff's just a disguise. They're trying to blend in. I met them last Christmas.
      Donna: Why, what happened then?
      The Doctor: Great big spaceship, hovering over London? You didn't notice?
      Donna: I had a bit of a hangover.

    • (The Doctor in his TARDIS chases Donna's taxi, which is being driven by a robot Santa, down a busy motorway)
      The Doctor: Listen to me, you've got to jump!
      Donna: I'm not jumping on a motorway!
      The Doctor: Whatever that thing is, it needs you. And whatever it needs you for, it's not good. Now come on!
      Donna: I'm in my wedding dress!
      The Doctor: Yes, you look lovely. Come on!

    • Donna: Ten past three. I'm gonna miss it.
      The Doctor: Can't you phone them, tell them where you are?
      Donna: How do I do that?
      The Doctor: Haven't you got a mobile?
      Donna: I'm in my wedding dress! It doesn't have pockets. Who has pockets? Have you ever seen a bride with pockets? When I went to my fitting at Chez Alison, the one thing I forgot to say was 'Give me pockets!'
      The Doctor: (pause) This man you're marrying. What's his name?
      Donna: Lance.
      The Doctor: Good luck, Lance.

    • Donna: (sees Rose's top) I knew it. (grabs it and walks over to the Doctor) Acting all innocent. I'm not the first, am I? How many women have you abducted?
      The Doctor: (sees the top) That's my friend's.
      Donna: Where is she, then? Popped out for a space-walk?
      The Doctor: She's gone.
      Donna: Gone where?
      The Doctor: I lost her.
      Donna: Well, you can hurry up and lose me!

    • The Doctor: Hold on. Wait a minute. What are you dressed like that for?
      Donna: (who is in a bridal gown) I'm going ten-pin bowling. (pause) Why do you think, dumbo? I was halfway up the aisle!

    • Donna: Tell me where I am. I demand you tell me right now where am I?
      The Doctor: Inside the TARDIS.
      Donna: The what?
      The Doctor: The TARDIS.
      Donna: What?
      The Doctor: The TARDIS.
      Donna: The what?
      The Doctor: It's called the TARDIS.
      Donna: That's not even a proper word! You're just saying things!

    • (Lance and Donna are hanging from the Empress' web)
      Donna: I hate you.
      Lance: Yeah, I think we've gone a bit beyond that now, sweetheart.

    • (The Doctor gives Donna his jacket)
      Donna: God, you're skinny! This wouldn't fit a rat!

    • Empress of Racnoss: (talking to Donna and Lance in web) Tell me, do you want to be released?
      Donna and Lance: Yes!
      Empress of Racnoss: You're supposed to say "I do"!
      Lance: No chance!
      Empress of Racnoss: Say it!
      Lance: (hesitant) I do.
      Donna: I do!
      Empress of Racnoss: I don't! (laughs)

    • Donna: Well what do we do?
      The Doctor: I dunno, I make it up as I go along. But trust me, I've got a history.

    • The Doctor: Thames Flood Barrier! Right on top of us. Torchwood snuck in and built this place underneath.
      Donna: What, there's like a secret base hidden under a major London landmark?
      The Doctor: I know, unheard of...

    • The Doctor: To you lot, this might just be a locksmiths, but H. C. Clements was bought up 23 years ago by the Torchwood Institute.
      Donna: Who are they?
      The Doctor: They were behind the battle of Canary Wharf.
      (Donna looks completely blank)
      The Doctor: Cyberman invasion.
      (Donna still looks completely blank)
      The Doctor: Skies over London, full of Daleks?
      Donna: I was in Spain.
      The Doctor: They had Cybermen in Spain...
      Donna: Scuba diving...
      The Doctor: That big picture, Donna, you keep on missing it.

    • The Doctor: Guess what I've got, Donna - pockets!
      (Removes large remote-control from pocket)
      Donna: How did that fit in there?
      The Doctor: They're bigger on the inside.

    • Empress of Racnoss: My children may feast, on martian flesh!
      The Doctor: Oh, but I'm not from Mars.
      Empress of Racnoss: Then where?
      The Doctor: My home planet is far away and long since gone. But it's name lives on ... Gallifrey!

    • (The Doctor and Donna stand on top of the Thames Barrier)
      Donna: There's just ... just one problem ...
      The Doctor: What is it?
      Donna: We've drained the Thames...

  • Notes

    • The scene where Donna and the Doctor attempt to hail a taxi was filmed on St Mary's Street, one of the main roads in Cardiff city centre. Howells department store doubles for Henrik's again (as it did in Rose, as the shop where Rose worked). St Mary's Street can also be seen later in the episode when the Webstar begins to destroy the humans.

    • In the opening credits of this episode, the Doctor Who logo has changed. It is now the logo identical to that on the merchandising, rather than the different one used for the first two series.

    • The end scene of "Doomsday" is used as the opening scene of the episode; however, the scene was actually refilmed for the episode. A new lighting designer had been hired for the series and the scene had to be reshot in order for it to match with the rest of the TARDIS scenes.

    • The scenes with the phone-box and cash machine were filmed on Wharton Street in Cardiff with both the phone-box and machine being placed there by the crew- the cash machine was actually fitted into the side doors of the branch of Waterstone's bookshop.

    • The scenes in the corridors of the lower basement in HC Clements (when Donna, Lance and the Doctor ride Segways) were filmed in the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff. This location had previously been used in "Dalek."

    • The scene with the tank was actually filmed in the centre of Cardiff. Careful planning was needed to ensure that the tank drove over roads and bridges strong enough to take its weight.

    • For legal reasons, the production team made obviously fake banknotes for the scene where money comes flying out of a cashpoint. The £10 notes feature The Doctor's face and the phrases 'I promise to pay the bearer on demand the sum of ten satsumas' and 'No second chances — I'm that sort of a man'. The text is taken from The Doctor's lines in The Christmas Invasion. There were also £20 notes featuring producer Phil Collinson. These had the phrase 'There's no point being grown up if you can't be a little childish sometimes' on them, a misquote of the line originally spoken by the Fourth Doctor, in Robot. The notes have become collector's items, regularly selling for £50 or more.

    • This was the first Doctor Who story to be broadcast with in-vision British Sign Language interpretation, in a UK repeat on 30 December 2006.

    • International Air Dates:

      Australia: 28 June 2007
      Canada: 19 June 2007
      United States: 6 July 2007
      New Zealand: 19 August 2007
      Thailand: 7 October 2008
      Turkey: 10 October 2010

    • Brief clips from New Earth, of the Doctor catching Rose after her possession by Lady Cassandra, are featured in this episode.

    • Depending on interpretation, the Doctor's comment about humanity being "optional" to him can be regarded as confirming a popular fan hypothesis that the Eighth Doctor's controversial comment about being "half-human on his mother's side" (the 1996 movie) applied uniquely to that regeneration, rather than to the Doctor in general. It may also be a sly aside to the audience about that controversy, like the Daleks crying, "Do not blaspheme!" to Rose's comment about them being "half-human" from The Parting of the Ways.

    • This episode was released on DVD with Doctor Who Confidential: Music and Monsters, and the full Doctor Who Celebration Concert as extras.

    • There was a scene, cut for timing reasons, which featured the Doctor and Donna on a bus heading for Donna's wedding reception. The scene also featured Bella Emberg, reprising her role from the episode Love & Monsters.

    • The first shot of the zoom-in to Earth was previously used in Rose, The Christmas Invasion and Army of Ghosts, but this time it zooms into the church rather than the Powell Estate.

    • Donna is not in fact the first female companion to decline travelling with the Doctor as it is widely believed. The first was Dr Grace Holloway in the 1996 movie starring Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor.

    • This episode was watched by 9.35 million viewers making it the 5th most watched show on Christmas day. It was beaten by the two screenings of Eastenders, Coronation Street and The Vicar of Dibley.

    • The controller, while it may have the shape of a Playstation 2 control pad, is in fact a heavily modified Nintendo 64 pad. You can tell this as the N64 pad has three handles and not two (you can even see the exposed port for the 'rumble pack'). The middle handle also protrudes out the longest (with a mini-joystick) too.

    • The Doctor's mention of Gallifrey is the first reference by name to his and the other Time Lords' home planet in the new series.

  • Allusions

    • Wedding Videographer They said send it to "You've Been Framed". I said more like the news.
      You've Been Framed is a show similar in format to a number of shows worldwide, including America's Funniest Home Videos and Australia's Funniest Home Video Show. In a deal with various foreign producers of similar shows, many imported clips are used, in exchange for home-grown videos from the UK.

    • Lance: This time it's personal!
      This references the tagline of the 1987 American movie Jaws: The Revenge (i.e., Jaws 4). The featured tagline was "This time it's personal!" although the phrase has entered into common parlance as a tagline for any sequel, often in movie parodies seen on shows like The Simpsons. The movie has become synonymous with bad sequels, and features a shark seeking revenge on the sons of the man who killed it three movies ago.

    • Lance refers to X-factor and 'Brad and Angelina' when commenting on Donna's intelligence.

      The X-factor is a British talent show that is part of the wave of 'reality tv' that swept Britain.

      'Brad and Angelina' refers to Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.

    • Donna: That film, under the earth, with dinosaurs!

      A reference to the movie "Journey to the Centre of the Earth".