Doctor Who's 50th: The Real Reason John Barrowman Won't Appear in Anniversary Special

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary SpecialUnless you’ve been locked in staring contest with a Weeping Angel, you know that John Barrowman‘s Captain Jack will not be among the Doctor Who vets appearing in the franchise’s upcoming 50th anniversary special.

But, contrary to Interweb scuttlebutt, the actor tells TVLine that it was absolutely not for lack of interest on his part.

RELATED | Doctor Who: David Tennant, Billie Piper On Board for 50th Anniversary Special

“Everyone on Twitter tries to make it like it’s my decision, but the bottom line is I was not asked,” he maintains. “[The Powers That Be] don’t want to put Jack in it. And I know fans are really upset about it, as was I.”

Barrowman is particularly frustrated that some have suggested that his busy schedule — in addition to his recurring gig on The CW’s Arrow, he just shot a guest stint on ABC’s Scandal — precluded him from slipping back into Jack’s trademark trench coat  WWII greatcoat.

“People have tried to say it’s my schedule; it’s absolutely not,” he insists. “I was told by the producers of Arrow that if I was asked to do the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who they’d let me go and do it. It was nothing to do with my schedule. It’s just a matter of fact that I wasn’t asked.”

RELATED | Doctor Who Season Finale to Reveal [Spoiler]

And despite his disappointment, Barrowman stresses, “I understand why they did it. They want to move forward, they want to try some different things… I know from how [former EP exec producer Russell T. Davies] approached things, they’re not doing [the special] just for the uber fan; they’re doing it for the wider audience. And if they’re going to bring a character back it wouldn’t be just for the uber fan, it would be for everybody. So perhaps that’s the thinking they had. I don’t know.”

The Steven Moffat-penned anniversary special is currently in production and is scheduled to air on BBC America later this year.

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  1. Steve Gray says:

    Steven Moffat is the (uselss) E.P. now, not RTD. And Moffat seems to not like characters he did not create. Surprised Rose even got a look in actually.

    • Sam says:

      Last time I checked, Steve, Moffat wrote the first episodes Jack appeared in. So don’t be so snarky about him not liking characters he didn’t create. Since, you know, he did create him.

      • Autumn says:

        He was in Moffat’s episode but the character actually is RTD’s creation.

      • Dominique says:

        Even though you’re right about Moffat writing Jack’s first episode, you do know that writing does not equal creating, right? All the writers, as well as producers, are a part of that process.

      • Maggie says:

        RTD created the character of Jack and the outline of his multi-story arc. Moffat may have been assigned to write Jack’s first episodes, but he didn’t create the character any more than he created The Doctor or Rose, who were also in those episodes.

        • Drew Melbourne says:

          Actually, RTD envisioned a character named Captain Jax who was fleshed out (and renamed) by Moffat.

          • Emily says:

            And then Jack became an actual character in four series of Torchwood by RTD. What are we actually arguing about here?

          • Paul says:

            Actually Emily in the first two series of Torchwood RTD only wrote the first episode that introduced Gwen Chris Chibnall was the one who ran the show and was responsible for Jack’s chaacter growth.

    • Josh says:

      I at least hope River Song isn’t in it…She is one of my least favorite characters on TV…which says a lot because I love Alex Kingston(she’s fantastic in the role…but the writing for her is SOOO bad)

      • Sheila says:

        God, I thought I was the only one!

        • Your not alone. I am friends with many who loving people that ALL hate River Song and ALL agree her amd Moffatt should be drawn and quartered. Its a shame Who went from this magnificent heart wrenching scifi thrill ride to a show for 10 year olds as soon as Moffatt took the reins. I fear for the continued dumbing down of who thanks to Moffatt who was only good at writing Coupling. He should have stuck with that it was the only show that could make me laugh hysterically with out anyone else around. Now Who is getting made into dribble by Moffatt and a man that looks like a cross between a drive-in movie screen and Frankenstein’s monster. Its a shame. Bring RTD, Billie, and Tennant back get ride of the rest since Smith it should be brushed under the rug and hidden away so we can pretend it didn’t happen. I know why Tennant left he saw thee worst who villian there will ever be who would have ruined his career, it goes by the name of The Moffatt.

          • David says:

            Absolutely, 100% agree with kimberlygbianco. Moffet has dumbed down a great show. He has destroyed the Doctor with Matt Smith. Tennant was the best, but there was hope that #11 would carry on where #10 left off. what a joke. Moffet and Smith’s Doctor Who is boring and childish. The Amy Pond Show for the last season was horrible — Smith made the Doctor act like a teenager who just discovered puberty. Smith is a joke. He looks like a freak of Frankenstein with an immature attitude. DW used to be a sci-fi thriller — one you didnt want to miss. Now, who cares if its on. The new companion Clara has potential, but I am sure Moffet will ruin that character with some ridiculous back story. Time for the showrunner to regenerate into RTDavies and bring the real Doctor Who back to life.

          • saucykitty says:

            YES, finally! I really hate what Moffatt has done to the Doctor. Apparently, the sonic screwdriver can now solve any problem at all. He has, as a writer, destroyed any will suspension of disbelief I had when it came to the good Doctor. (I’ve been a fan since I was 7 and watched Tom Baker eps every week.)

          • JimH338 says:

            You do realize that 50 years ago the target audience of Dr. Who WAS 10 year olds!

          • Selkie says:

            How old are you? Matt is one of the best actors who ever played the Doctor, if not the best, his way of portraying the old/young duality is just perfect.Steven Moffat is one of the best script writers and show runners, he writes excellent stories, characters and dialogues. The RTD era was addressed to young, a bit immature people (“Rose”) and completely changed what the show formerly was (I’d like to forget Captain Jack and Rose ever existed and Barrowman’s whining “I was not invited” every month … no comment). As for the looks of the actors, I much prefer Matt to David, although I liked David Tennant in the role as well.

          • I’m old enough to have the intelligence to know not to tell my age. Also old enough to have seen the doctors from early on. Tom Baker was one of my top pics. But Matt is just a big clown. That and Frankenstein’s monster loook alike.

          • vincent says:

            anyone who agrees with you is a horses ass….and you are queen of the assclowns

          • Ender says:

            I don’t know how you can say that Moffat has turned Doctor Who into a show for 10 year olds. Since he took over my 10 year old sister has had more episodes of Who that she couldn’t watch compared to RTD’s four seasons. I’m not defending Moffat here but he has definitely not turned Doctor Who into a kids show by any stretch of the imagination.

      • Kevan says:

        My least favorite character as well. I started off liking River but as time has passed I just wish she would go the heck away.

      • Arthur says:

        River is flawless. End of story.

          • Jacen says:

            I think thats my problem with her, she is the DW Mary Sue. I would love to see her get slapped down good and hard, would do the character so good to be honest. River was great in Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead (one of my favorite episodes of the New series) and her first couple of episodes under Matt Smith were ok. But after awhile it was ok River your just a bit to perfect……

        • Lexi says:

          I agree 100%!

      • DirigibleTardis says:

        They’ve already announced that she’s going to be in it.

        • Ender says:

          It’ll be great if she is in the anniversary special. Maybe we’ll finally get to see how River learns the Doctor’s name.

      • Bob says:

        I’m upset they’re throwing her into the final episode of the current season. Her parents are gone. Storyline over. Move on. Yes, yes, I know. She’s the only one who knows the Doctor’s real name and the final episode is probably where he tells her. Big whoop!

      • scooby says:

        So glad I’m not alone. Loathe River Song. If she’s gonna be in the 50th anniversary special, it’s really gonna put a dent in the enjoyment of it for me. I get that maybe Jack fits and maybe he doesn’t, but River Song just doesn’t belong here. Would much rather see Donna meet 11.

        • Emiy Romana says:

          I hate River Song with a passion. She’s IS a textbook sociopath. I’ve studied psychology for 20 yrs and no matter how many scientific facts I present that Moffat seemed to have been using the traits of a sociopath as a blueprint for River, they still deny she is one. Like talking to the living dead. Well, brain-dead.
          But I think I’ve found a way to make this loathsome creature genuinely BAD instead of lame. Trust me. In my Fanfic Stories Roman4ever starting with Series 7 story 7 River shows a lot of improvement. And I turn Moffat’s inane garbage on it’s ear. I also have a series 8 lined up which after the 7th story leads into my OWN 50th anniversary stories which will be about 8 parts. I know that’s a lot BUT I DO include EVERY DOCTOR and 99.5% of the companions!
          I think the stories are good but what do I know? right? lol
          Well I hope everyone will at least give them half a chance. The first 6 stories are only so-so. I’m kind of proud of the 1st one BUT the 2nd one got away from me. I’m liking the 3rd story coming up better.

          • River song is excellent, as is Moffat’s directing, it at least isn’t straight forward and has encompassing story arcs. There is obviously more going on with the time reset than meets the eye, especially the spoilers comment. I would like to have had Captain Jack appear, though not quintessentially part of the whovian, the character has brought enough impact to at least have been worked into the Christmas special. Matt/Tennant are both as good as each other, one of the joys of the doctor each regeneration brings something different.

      • parker says:

        Yes the writing….like I said resting on their reputation.

    • Mama Luigi says:

      Mentlegen, I have an interesting tidbit of info: Moffat HAS TRIED to use Jack in the past, in “A Good Man Goes to War”, but it never came to fruitation due to Torchwood. So the mystery deepens: If Moffat is willing to use Jack, why isn’t he?

    • Emily says:

      LOL! Many of my friends have been saying that for almost 2 yrs.
      I agree. Moffat almost seems allergic to anything he didn’t create BUT he seems almost deathly afraid of anything pre-2005!
      What is this garbage THEY (BBC, Moffat and now sadly Barrowman) are babbling about?
      ANNIVERSARIES are about reminiscing about the PAST, NOT ABOUT MOVING FORWARD. Have none of them never attended a wedding anniversary party before? While many wish the couple good luck in the future and hoping they have more years ahead of them, they ALWAYS talk about the good times of the past! ALWAYS!
      So only complete imbeciles would have some little anniversary with nary a thing about the past. Oh he’ll probably give the pre-2005 Doctors a mention of two but as I’ve predicted all along………..This won’t be a 50th anniversary as much as it will be an 8 yr anniversary. And it will (at the end of the day) Turn out to be some lame-azz tribute to Steven Moffat FROM Steven Moffat! RME! What a loser!
      And P.S HE DIDN’T MAKE DR WHO MORE POPULAR! that’s yet another one of the lies being told! In America on PBS, Dr Who in the 80’s USED to bring in more then 4 million viewers a week! Now on BBCA they are barely able to bring in half that number.

      • Emiy Romana says:

        Oh and to all who are babbling about how Moffat created Jack in the first place. Shut up!
        I for one thought Jack sucked in his first appearance. And before any of his babbling minions start in with their usual BS, I (along with most of the planet) had no idea who the Heck Moffat even when I first saw Jack.
        I thought he was a creation of RTD who was stupid at first but improved little by little. I thought Jack in ‘the Empty Child’ and ‘The Doctor Dances’ was about as exciting as a piece of cardboard. Only in the last 10 minutes did Jack finally start to show a little personality. And I didn’t like the rest of the story either. It was so stupid with the brain-dead nano-genes that couldn’t tell the difference between skin and rubber?! WTF!? REALLY?! That sort of garbage passes for entertainment for some?! (shaking head)
        when Torchwood came along THAT’S when Jack really came into his own. some of the stories were a little cheesy but overall, there was something I liked about the stories.

      • Nancy Calkins says:

        captain Jack is my favorite character of all time…..my favorite Doctors were Tom Baker and David Tennant. …I go clear back to the days the Dilects (spell ?) looked like they were make out of cardboard boxes….people would say you are staying up late to watch what..Dr Who?…Florida always got the good stuff late back then……Sara Jane was the best companion and I loved the mechanical dog (glad Sara Jane got it)……I don’t have a clue who every one is talking about who will be the next Doctor as they must not much over here….I’m kinda glad to see Smith go….he just wasn’t quite right although he seemed to be a good actor…..not confident enough and just too silly….actually someone kinda like Captain Jack..confident..slightly cocky..smart…at least a bit good looking…no bow tie………

    • Waffles says:

      Actually Jack Harkness is a Moffat creation.

  2. It’s still a huge disappointment.

  3. Mike says:

    Any word whether Doctor 9 is making an appearance?

    • No Eccleston. I wish he could have seen past whatever it is that places that stick way up his ass when it comes to Doctor Who. BTW, I think maybe there’s no Capt. Jack because no one wants anyone to be reminded of the tragedy that was Torchwood: Miracle Day.

      • Brooke says:

        Eccleston has more recently softened his take on DW and has indicated that he would be more open to the idea of returning for a reunion. Which was surprising, given his stance before. I’m not sure if they didn’t ask him, or if they did and couldn’t work something out, but the last time he spoke of it in an interview, he wasn’t taking his usual harsh stance.

        • Drew Melbourne says:

          Best current information is that they talked to Eccleston about it, and he decided to pass. Still possible that that’s a bluff and they’re filming his pieces in secret, but I wouldn’t get your hopes up…

  4. Oh man! I would have LOVED a Jack \ River flirt-off!

  5. Lady K says:

    Seriously? How can you have a 50th anniversary special of Doctor Who and NOT invite Captain Jack???? Does this mean the 11th Doctor will never have any interaction with the man who cannot die? Yet ANOTHER reason to forgo this iteration of the Doctor and pull out my 10th Doctor DVDs (where there are multiple interactions between Captain Jack and the Doctor)….

    • Moffat is asshole. he could not overcome his pride and admit that Russel T Davies had created way took interesting characters

      • TDS-Matt says:

        Um, Moffat created Jack.

        (And word on the street is that Moffat wanted Jack to turn up in A Good Man Goes to War, but Barrowman was busy in L.A. filming Torchwood.)

        • Hazeleyes says:

          Moffat penned the first episodes Jack was in, but he was actually RTD’s creation. Moffat was asked to include him to set up the character for the remaining three episodes in series one.

      • madhatter360 says:

        Technically speaking, Moffat created Captain Jack. He first appeared in The Empy Child/The Doctor Dances, which Moffat wrote.

        • Maggie says:

          No, RTD created Jack. He created the character and had Moffat include him in The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances. That’s long established, per both RTD and Moffat.

          • Bob says:

            Exactly, because RTD already had the idea for a Torchwood series swimming around in his head and wanted Captain Jack established in Doctor Who to then spin off Torchwood. The “Moffat created Jack” people need to look beyond the writing credits of a particular episode to know the real history.

      • I’m glad you thought farting aliens and belching bins were fun. I didn’t, and I definitely didn’t find two companions in a row lusting after the Doctor particularly interesting.

        • Arthur says:

          Agreed, Alex. DW under RTD was childish and melodramatic. I would have loved to see Moffat write more for Ten, because he has done brilliant things with Eleven.

          • Alan says:

            daleks, daleks everywhere. i need a villain for the end of the season, i know ill use daleks.
            ^the russel davies thought process. so glad he is gone and allowing someone else with ideas that involve using the entirety of the legacy of the show rather than just one iconic monster. i was ready to give up on who by the time he left i had become so boring and repetitive, the only reason i stuck with it was because moffat was taking over and i wanted to give him a chance and im really glad i did. the show is so much better now that the hack is gone and a masterful storyteller is in place.

      • Thank you. Reading this is helping me realize I’m not the only one with passion for hating Moffat era who.

    • Len says:

      Ugh the 11th doctor had much more going on than just his interaction with captain jack. Jack was just a small part of the 11th doctor. Are we to include every single person that had an impact on a doctor? That’d be impossible.

      While captain jack and Barrowman are awesome, I want the focus of the doctor who special, to be on the doctors, and their direct companions. That’s all there is reasonable time for in a special, and I don’t want it cluttered up with other characters.

      • Maize says:

        Jack was a bona fide companion. We didn’t get to see as much of his companioning on screen as we might have, but more adventures were alluded to than we saw (re: they would sit around reminiscing at diners, remember?) … Maybe not as long-running as Rory, but in a similar position in terms of being a third companion on the Tardis.

    • Here here! A woman after my own heart.

    • Simon Jester says:

      You’re an idiot. The 50th anniversary is about the ENTIRE history of the series, not just the stories since 2005 (when many American fans finally got a clue). I’m perfectly content for it not to exclusively feature recent characters.

      • Amy Miller says:

        Hey, that’s not fair about Americans finally getting a clue about Doctor Who in 2005. It’s really hard to get a clue about a show made in another country that you only can get, if you’re lucky, on the Public Broadcasting System, which is mostly nature and science shows.

        My mother got me addicted on Doctor Who at age 9, Tom Baker was the current one at the time. Luckily, we got a comic store in town that sponsored Doctor Who, we actually managed to get Jon Pertwee before the owner got run out of town for tax evasion, right after DW 2 was supposed to be on PBS, but before a single episode was shown, and there never was an episode shown, either.

  6. Russel T Davies? Seriously? he is gone for good from this project for ever :)

    • Maggie says:

      Steven Moffat said recently that he keeps in touch with RTD, and asks him for feedback on all the episodes. Moffat is still trying to get RTD to write more DW.

  7. kryptonsite says:

    Moffat did at least have a hand in the creation of Captain Jack, having penned his first episode… so I don’t think it’s that. Me? I kind of wanted people all from the past of the series, and am a little underwhelmed it’s just 10 and Woes. But, maybe they’ll surprise us, somehow.

  8. Dominique says:

    BBC/Moffat should be ashamed of themselves! Doctor Who is not their playtoy to bend and twist it to their liking. 50 years of an amazing show (granted with a few breaks here and there), and you’re telling me the BBC/Moffat only allowed Ten and Rose to come back? (And River, I suppose?) That is absolute rubbish. I understand they can’t just bring back all the previous doctors and companions, since not all of them are alive anymore, but would it kill them to just bring back a few more extra?
    And to leave out Captain Jack Harkness. psshhtt. Bad move.

    • JJ says:

      Just because they’ve only announced Ten and Rose, doesn’t mean they are the only ones appearing! I’d much rather they kept some things back and surprised me than to have laid out exactly what is going to happen.

    • D says:

      If they did that there’d be a serious danger of just turning the ep into fan service, rather than actually concentrating on the story they want to tell. It’s a shame Jack won’t be there, but there’s already more than enough to get their teeth into.

      • Chris says:

        Excuse me,. but fan service is exactly what the 50th anniversary SHOULD be (and obviously won’t be, seeing only that Farty and the Boomerang Blonde are coming back).

        • M.E.D. says:

          Shame on you Chris! For shame! How can you insult Tennant’s Doctor when he is one of the greatest! And Rose is also a great companion-mind you.

    • Bob says:

      Well, actually, it is up to BBC (show creator) and Moffat (current show runner) to mold and shape Doctor Who. They’re in charge. Stop with all the canon “holiness” nonsense.

      • Mil A says:

        You are saying that the audience can’t have opinions towards a show? The men in charge should NEVER be challenged?! What a NOBLE THOUGHT!

  9. cindy says:

    Mike, it’s a WWII greatcoat, not a trench coat.

  10. Shikouchi says:

    I love Barrowman as Captain Jack, and loved his appearances in Dr. Who, but it isn’t a travesty or some horrible injustice to not include him.

    Also, I don’t know where all of the negativism for Moffat’s Who comes from. Sure, it is different from what Davies did on the show, but it is still a great show. They’re both fantastic runs.

    • IMHO says:

      Thank you. All this obsession with the most recent companions is annoying. It is a 50th anniversary, not an 8th anniversary. There are many people who could be brought back and only some will be there. I would have preferred to never see Rose again but oh well. It would be good to have Jack return at some point as long as he doesn’t bring the remaining Torchwood staff, but I’m more than happy for it not to be for the anniversary. It is really sad that the recent doctors never got to meet the Brigadier but some things are beyond even the Doctor.

      RTD did a fantastic job getting the Doctor back on our screens. He made some really bad decisions during his tenure and some of his storylines were terrible. Mr Moffat did a better job as a writer before he took over the whole show but he is keeping things ticking over nicely still.

      All of the above is from someone who started watching in Mr Pertwee’s era …

    • Arthur says:

      THIS. Moffat has done brilliant things for Who and I love the Eleventh Doctor. Series 5, 6, and the first half of 7 have been some of my favorites in the history of the show.

    • Simon Jester says:

      @Shikouchi and @IMHO – Well said.

  11. drwho says:

    do we really want another Dimensions in Time people???? bloody awful. it would be way too much of a bloated mess to bring too many people back plus pretty damn expensive (and even tho it’s Who’s 50th, from the way the schedule is this year on TV I don’t think Beeb is really all that willing to splurge this year). just accept it and move on

    If you want classic Doctors you’re gonna have to go with the Big Finish audio drama special.

  12. John Berggren says:

    I hope Jack returns in a Torchwood run that speaks to the quality of “Children of Earth”.

    • Mary Ann says:

      I would so love a rebirth of Torchwood…….I miss that show and everyone in it!

    • Arthur says:

      Never going to happen, thanks to the franchise-killer that was Miracle Day. RTD slowly killed Torchwood – it could have been great if they had kept the original team and format around.

      • Maize says:

        Agreed. Miracle Day was a travesty. I loved Torchwood so much, and I have to say Children of Earth was the most devastatingly incredible thing I’ve seen in a long time…. but Miracle Day was so awful I could hardly watch it. If it’s a choice between the show dying and more Miracle Day awfulness, then it’s fair that it died.

  13. Michael Boon says:

    So he knows ‘fans are really upset about it’ does he? Well, some are….mainly teenage girls I suspect but I’m a fan and am not remotely upset. Who the hell does he think he is? This show has been going for fifty years and there will be many long standing and probably far more deserving companions from that time that won’t be in it. The difference is they don’t have egos the size of a planet and realize that the 50th Special is a drama, NOT the return of This Is Your Life. Oh, and to the poster who said Doctor Who is not the BBC’s ‘playtoy’ (whatever that is)..er, YES IT IS. They’ve been making it for 50 bloody years so whose else would it be.

    • Emily says:

      Whoa, just breathe. Social media always makes things seem a lot bigger deal than they actually are, and that’s probably all he’s hearing (I’m guessing he’s on Twitter? If he is, to my knowledge there aren’t many Doctor Who affiliates who are, so he’s probably experiencing the brunt of the crazy). It sounds to me like he’s just annoyed that people are accusing or excusing him of things that aren’t true, as the internet is apt to do. All he said was he’d love to have been part of it, and is disappointed he wasn’t asked. He’s got a right to be disappointed, even if he doesn’t have a right to be a part of it.

      Or who knows, maybe it’s all misdirection. I for one don’t care who is or isn’t in it as long as they bring in at least one pre-2005 Doctor or companion, and only if it makes sense. Above all, it has to make sense!

  14. Vanessa says:

    I really like Captain Jack, I wish he was going to be seen in the 50th anniversary special… But the 50th is being celebrated all year! So maybe, just maybe, he and other characters will pop up along the way that makes sense?

    A Whovian can dream :)

  15. I’m a huge Doctor Who fan, and I’m disappointed that Jack won’t be back. However, we still don’t really have any idea as to the events of the 50th Anniversary episode, so it’s entirely possible he just wouldn’t have fit. I can definitely understand his disappointment though. One of the things I love most about JB is that he loves Doctor Who so much.

  16. Alan says:

    i would much rather a well written story than something that was written just to accommodate having certain guest stars so if moffat doesnt have a good story involving jack then there is no point shoving him into a story just to say “look here he is”.
    do people really want a badly written, bloated cameo fest over a tightly written well scripted episode to celebrate 50 years? all this “urrgh arrgh moffat hates jack” crap would be hilarious if it wasnt so ridiculous.

    • Maggie says:


    • Arthur says:

      Totally agreed.

    • Simon Jester says:

      @Alan – Absolutely.

    • Lily says:

      Well said, Alan. Absolutely well said.

    • David W. Gibson says:

      “…a tightly written well scripted episode…”

      You mean like The Angels Take Manhattan? The damage that episode did to my faith in Moffat, both as a writer and as the Executive Producer, is immeasurable. If this gets the same treatment as that did then I’m done with the show until Moffat is.

      I’m not as strict as the 10th- i.e. “No second chances; I’m that sort of a man.” Moffat has written some great episodes, and I’m looking forward to seeing what he has up his sleeve. I’d still like to throw a satsuma at him every time I think of The Angels Take Manhattan and, to a lesser extent, everything since.

      I am sad that Eccleston won’t be there. I probably liked him more than most people did. I’ve never looked at anything he’s said about the show or his leaving, so my opinion isn’t colored by real life in that regard. The 9th, 10th, and 11th Doctors, all in “manic mode” like they just jacked a Starbucks… How much fun could that be?

  17. JAO says:

    Regardless who begat who and who doesn’t like who … an episode with Capt. Jack makes perfect sense as he is part of the Who-verse. I’m disappointed that he won’t be a part of this as I really like his character and ALL of the Torchwood series. Are they bringing back Amy & Rory? Martha? Donna? I don’t need to know but it seems a cameo would be nice if nothing else.

  18. Eyrie says:

    Inspector Spacetime > Doctor Who

  19. mia says:

    Barrowman has always been clear on this (and his love of the Whoverse). He’s just so awesome with his fans, I can’t ever see him saying no to something like this.
    If not the 50th, I do so hope he’ll be brought back for an arch in the future. He’s such a rare and wonderful character, its a shame not to use him more.
    And we need a River/Jack episode. Those two together!

    • Theresa says:

      I was really hoping the 50th Anniversary would somehow allow me to have the amazing Nine/Donna interaction that I’ve always dreamed of.

      • Tracy says:

        Wow, Nine and Donna…never thought about that before but that would be damn hilarious. He would get so frustrated with her! Partners I could never imagine: Nine and Amy, or Eleven and Martha. Just wouldn’t work. Ten can shoot the breeze with anybody/anything for hours and make it compelling so I can picture him rolling with any companion :-)

        Sad Capt. Jack won’t be returning- such a great character with too few episodes.

  20. Brooke says:

    I wonder if BBC/Moffat are just trying to keep the Torchwood series/characters separate from DW these days. Children of the Earth and Miracle Day spun off pretty damn far from DW and it would be difficult to reconcile the two continuuities, I would think.

  21. Rick says:

    John (Capt Jack) Barrowman need sto get back into TORCHWOOD. He;s too big to play a tiny part

    • Mary Ann says:

      I want TORCHWOOD!!!! Miss it terribly and nothing since has been written so well and with such depth in characters!

  22. Mary says:

    Very disappointed! I wanted to see John Barrowman as the magnificent Captain Jack again. The character is really popular, he has his own very success spin-off.
    Also, I have nothing against Moffat but he doesn’t “created” the character he only wrote an episode! RTD is the creator.

    • Alan says:

      if he doesnt fit into the story then he shouldnt be shoved in for no reason. it should always be story over fanservice because a good story is good enough fanservice.

  23. Ciara says:

    I feel sad that John Barrowman won’t be making an appearence for the 50th anniversary. Moffat should have at least tried to get him in the special – even for a brief scene.
    And one thing I don’t get is why is BBC/Moffat/Whoever are making the 50th special for the ‘wider audience’? Doctor Who has reached its 50 years of sci fi goodness due to uber fandom and following. If there was no interest in the show then it would have never been renewed in 2005 itself.
    They should not make the special like a ‘Beginners Guide to Doctor Who’ and just stick to how its always been made.

    • IMHO says:

      “Always been made”? What does that mean? The show has gone through so many different styles, approaches, directions, durations, whatevers.

      I’d like to get back to multi-part stories without any overarching series storylines but that’s just me. Oh, and no more ‘all the world knows about the aliens and keeps on facing huge cataclysmic situations’.

      I really hope the 50th anniversary celebrations cover a wider audience than those who only started watching post-2005. Fingers crossed.

      Another thing, we are still none the wiser on why Mr Barrowman won’t be appearing. We just ‘know’ that he wasn’t asked. Could be due to storylines, finances, personalities, availability, preferences, prejudices, or a thousand other reasons. We will probably never know.

    • Alan says:

      its hardly a beginners guide to who if there are at least two different versions of the same character running around, that sort of thing would put off new viewers.

  24. Ross says:

    I’m not sure I buy that as the reason. I know from various other sources that John Barrowman and Steven Moffat met to discuss things, and I also know that Moffat has continually said that he wants Captain Jack back!! So the idea that Barrowman simply wasn’t asked doesn’t really seem all that likely. It’s probably what he was asked to say in interviews by the higher ups. I’d be more inclined to believe it was something a bit deeper than, “They didn’t ask me.” Who knows? Perhaps he is involved in some other way that we all are not aware of (you know, seeing as the 50th is still SEVERAL MONTHS AWAY!!) People need to lighten up and stop bashing Moffat, because whether you agree or disagree with his decisions, 1.) It’s his show right now, so let him tell it. and 2.) All of us are just fans, and as such have no clue of the inner workings of making the show. There are plenty of things that he probably has no control over. 3.) At the end of the day, (as much as I don’t like saying this being the huge Whovian fanboy that I am) IT’S JUST A TV SHOW!! LIGHTEN UP!!

  25. how could they NOT make room for Capt Jack? it’s very disappointing

  26. Toia says:

    I have a friend who’s met Barrowman and has an Aunt who does booking for the BBC apparently he is difficult to work with and not at all pleasant to meet in a non-event setting so maybe that has something to so with his not being asked back.

  27. David says:

    Moffat sucks….the 50th Anniversary is for the fans, not the wider audience. Does the wider audience really care the show has been around for 50 years?

    Honestly, Moffat wrote some great episodes during RTD’s era, but his time as showrunner has been horrible. I find the show so boring now.

    And this 50th Anniversary special is turning out to be nothing special but just another episode.

    Bring back Tom Baker one last time and maybe I will forgive…but this won’t happen because Moffat is clueless. It all started with the redesigned “fat” Daleks.

    • Simon Jester says:

      @David — “the 50th Anniversary is for the fans, not the wider audience.”

      And the fans include those of us who realize the anniversary is NOT solely about the series only since 2005. Captain Jack may be a fan favorite from recent years, but I’d rather see something that celebrates that classic series as much as the reboot.

      And not for nothing, but neither Moffat nor anyone in Britain give a damn about whether you will “forgive” it or not.

      • David says:

        Well so far no direct connections to the classic era, unless you count someone wearing a Baker pattern scarf.

        I know nobody cares about my forgiveness, but I don’t care what Moffat thinks either.

  28. Sunshine says:

    Sad Capt. Jack won’t be making an appearance. :/ I actually only ‘discovered’ Dr. Who & started watching after stumbling across an episode of Torchwood late one nite when I couldn’t sleep. I was instantly hooked on Torchwood after 1 ep!! Capt. Jack kept referencing The Doctor so I took to the Internet to figure out who/what the big deal was about Dr. Who! I was Hooked by the 10th Doctor, my fav. The first couple eps I saw were of the 9th doc & I liked the premise but David Tennant’s Doctor made me a fan!!
    I really wish they could somehow, someway have Capt. Jack make a cameo on the 50th anniversary but he would need to interact with the 10th doc & Rose! The camaraderie between them was great. :) :)
    I have not been able to really get into Matt Smith’s doctor as he tends to annoy me. I like River so I would watch the eps she’s in but I have to admit the new companion, Clara is making Matt Smith’s doctor more intriguing and a bit less annoying :)
    Still miss Torchwood but Loving John Barrowman on Arrow!!! Who knew he could play evil so well ;)

  29. Al says:

    There are people not doubt disappointed Nicola Bryant isn’t returning as Peri, or Janet Fielding as Tegan, or Richard Franklin as Mike Yates. You can’t have everyone you want. And I wish people would stop pulling a Star Trek Enterprise with the anniversary special (writing it off as a lost cause before a single second is broadcast). It doesn’t air until near the end of the year.

  30. James says:

    After every thing Jack has done in Torchwood i don’t think the Doctor would be able to stand seeing him since he would know about it. also i don’t think Jack fits the 11th doctors feel of the show

  31. I wish they had found a smart way to include Barrowman, but after the mess they made of Torchwood its just as easy to understand why they do not

  32. What Rock have you been living under Ausiello, Barrowman has been begging and campaigning for a year and a half to be in the 50th anniversary. He seems almost desperate

  33. Luvmygreys says:

    I have only started watching Dr. Who. My dad raved about this show for years so didn’t see it until I got Netflix. Love the show. Not sure why there is so much dislike for the Rose character, I loved her with the 10th doctor? It would be a hoot to see some of the earlier ones especially with the actor from All Creatures Great and Small. I am now nearing the midway point of Season 6 here in the US. I am currently DVRing season 7. Love this show almost as much as Chuck.

  34. stefanie says:

    John is such a geek and Doctor Who fan, of course he would love to be there! But Moffat is a f***ing a****le. so there you go.

  35. Susan Honig says:

    Would have loved to see Capt Jack with the 10 th dr and rose. Very disappointed that he is not going to be in the 50 th. As for John, this character helped his career considerably and he adores playing him so I can understand his disappointment.
    Not really liking the last run we are seeing. Feel bored with it. I do hope it gets better

  36. I think it should be a sort of “this is your life” show as mentioned above. What would be awesome is if they brought back everyone still alive add in bits of the ones dead and then add all the characters conntected to who in any way. That would mean not only Jack being back but also Captain John Hart. I meam think about how awesome that would be. I could die happy if I saw James Marsters in Who with David Tennant. The 2 hottest men on the planet on Who at the same time. Mind blowing. Plus they could do another story arch like in the original years of Who like in Battlefield or The Invasion of Time. Imagine how amazing a web of who it could make and how much of a tribute to the original style of Who harkening back to the Pertwee years and Hartnell. How the legend began. A true trubute to the first 50 years of amazing stories that are timeless in every manner of the word and the wibbly wobbly timey wimey-ness that is who. Timeless, that would be the perfect mane for such an episode. I grew up watching Who started on Pertwee and yes I believe the 50th should be meamt to appeal to the long term fans as it wouldn’t be on as long without them. The tribute should be a tribute to the show and those who have been with Who since the name Doctor Who was first known. Yes the 50th is something amazing to celebrate and it should be the biggest tribute ever imagined in the existence of all time. After all 50 years is a lot of time and there is no other work of art that has been as dedicated to the subject of time.

  37. ben sherman says:

    Mike you are an idiot. Capt Jack is NOT a vet, moreso a very recent character with a weak back story.

  38. Budfy Glenn says:

    Maybe the 50th story has no room for Capt. Jack to be involved. You shouldn’t throw in a character for just a cameo (most likely it’s just an hour special and not extended movie). I know it’s the 50th, but the story is what counts. We don’t know what the storyline is. It’s not like every character from the recent years are in it. There’s no Martha, Donna, Mickey, Rose’s mom, or even Amy. You would think Amy would be involved in some form because of Smith. There are also no previous (and surviving) companions from the original run either. Let’s hope for a good special and enjoy that Tennent and Piper are going to be there in whatever form.

  39. Andi says:

    No wonder Moffat don’t want anything “belonging” to RTD in it considering how bad RTD treaded Jack in the last two TW-seasons. The character is broken. No way to fix it. Would not make sense to include Jack at all. Going back tot he 9th Dotor Jack would make no sense. Fans would expect a fixing of the character (probably including Ianto), not bying the old jolly Jack. Thanks RTD for ruining one of the best TV-characters for ever!!!

    • Does anyone remember it was thanks to Jack returning the Doctor’s handy spare hand that allowed the doctor to make another version of himself? Otherwise Rose and the Doctor wouldn’t be together in Pete’s world. The best storyline there has been since the return in 2005. The fire between Rose and the Doctor was electric and when she was stuck in Pete’s world the first time it made me cry like a baby. Jack returning would give the perfect reason for the return of the human timelord and Rose. It gives a huge option of endless storylines. I can’t believe how unimaginative who fans can be. Its like they just let the show have all the imagination and it gives them the right to not have any imagination to figure things out what so ever.

  40. Patrick Maloney says:

    This frees him up to do the final season of Torchwood. . . Fingers crossed

  41. ali says:

    we still have a bit of time, wouldn’t surprise me that he does make an appearance and it is a smokescreen to not spoil anything. “spoilers”

  42. David very true. Frankendoctor is like a newly horny teenager. Clara holds no interest and is a waste. I think how Moffat thinks which he has said we veiw who through the eyes of the companion, ruins it because he wamts it to dw a kids show again. So he writes the characters and makes them behave like the audience he wants, dumb kids. I guess he writes that way and says he wants the show to be for kids cause he knows he can’t write well enough to hold intelligent adults attention. Stupid stories and characters for a stupid audience that won’t know how bad his writing is.

    Also doesn’t anyone remember the story arch of Jack properly? His most interesting story points are yet to come. Personally I want to know how he ends up a giant face. Cassandra said while in Rose’s body, “Great now I got a head full of big face”. Come on. Its totally awesome and I want to see that. And since Jack supplied the handy spare hand to the doctor it give a perfect opening to bring him nack. All the companions pre amy knew Jack and all know he turns into the Face of Boe. They all look so excited when they talk about it. I want to see The Face of Boe’s freaking creation not some stupid character that dies all the time. Its like Moffat thinks dieing is a talent that makes a character interesting. Its only annoying as they are too stupid to survive. And…..The only good theory of Clara is the memes theory and its farther fetched than any crap Moffat has wasted who screen time on yet. I miss RTD he was brilliant.

    • mark says:

      First off, get your facts straight: only Martha knows Jack is the Face of Boe; Rose met Boe once and didn’t even know Jack was immortal until he was shot by the Daleks in Journey’s End.. Donna met Jack once and never met the Face of Boe, so why would she know? And why assume just because you want to see the Jack/Face of Boe storyline that the rest of us do too? The Who forums i’m a member of have no interest in Jack. The whole scenario you want in the 50th would be a convoluted mess; seriously? Trying to cram all those people you want into 90 mins would result in a trainwreck. The majority of Who fans i know would much prefer a good storyline paying respect to the show’s history rather than 90 mins of cameos from old faces just to please a minority. And FYI your opinion of Moffat’s tenure is just that: your opinion, don’t make out it is a view held by everyone, because it isn’t. I loved RTD’s era on the show; i loved 10 and Rose, but they’ve gone and they’re not coming back (except 10 and Rose in the 50th, obviously). Moffat is already prepping for Season 8 and there is absolutely no guarantee that his successor (at this moment Mark Gattiss or Toby Whithouse look to be the favourites to take over) will bring Jack back; they will want to put their own stamp on the show. So, yes, RTD was great, but not without his flaws (farting aliens, Love and Monsters), he’s history, please get over it.

      • I’m not talking cameo im talking all in it like in stolen earth and journeys end. So think about that. Not to mention I said like they did in the pertwee era or like the invasion of time or even like battle field. when the episodes were all connected and it took 5 episodes to get through it. So if your such a who fan on forums you should know about how who was in the 60s 70s and 80s. So get your facts straight mark. Not to mention do you really think the doctor that is living with rose in Pete’s world isn’t going to tell Rose all about how the face of boe is jack? Think about it. After Journey’s End and the leave them on the beach in norway, do you think Rose isn’t going to ask how jack came back to life or any of that? She loved jack and didn’t know she was the one to make him immortal. She is going to totally ask tons to find out all the details of how one of her friends was when she was left in the parallel world. And the newly created doctor will be happy to tell her everything he is there because of how much he loved her. So then there is no convoluted mess just a convoluted mark. Thats you.

        • mark says:

          Except in the 60s, 70s and 80s, Dr Who episodes were 4, 6, and sometimes 12 episodes long with alot of padding and exposition which wouldn’t work in this day and age. Bear in mind, the 50th episode isn’t there to just service the die-hard fanbase which makes up barely 10% of the target audience, it also has to appeal to the general audience who will be tuning in when it airs. Stuffing it full of fanwank will alienate the majority of that audience. The producers have also stated categorically that this episode will also be looking forwards as well as paying homage to the past and setting the show up for season 8 and beyond.
          As for Rose and 10, location filming in London and Cardiff confirms that the 10 Doctor in the Special is NOT the alt-10 but an earlier version of him, indicating (since his Tardis has also been seen on location) that this is possibly 10 and Rose from around series 2 (as Joanna Page looks to be playing Queen Elizabeth I. there’s some indication it may even be 10 from when he was travelling alone). The Rose and 10 from the parallel world are gone for good. Full stop.

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  44. S. says:

    Sad there will be no Captain Jack. At the same time, the show’s about the Doctor, not his companions. Captai Jack has gone on, had done his own thing. To shoehorn him in just because he was on the show for what, not even a full season, is unfair and demeaning to the whole franchise. I watch the show for the Doctoer. I liked Tennent better, but Smith is okay and I’m willing to sit back and see where it all goes.

  45. Lilu says:

    This s*cks !!! Captain Jack was a very important and loved character. He got his own spinoff for christ sakes!!! I was sure he would be on it… :(

    • Alan says:

      if he doesnt fit into the planned story then there is no point in forcing it. would you really rather a bad appearance from jack over no appearance? i know i certainly wouldnt.

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  48. Jellybean says:

    I actually don’t like moffat’s take on the new Doctor Who. I mean don’t get me wrong, Amy pond is a flawless character but then he switched to Clara which I honestly don’t like… Plus why doesn’t he get jack and maybe Donna back for the anniversary. And he also doesn’t have the right to name the doctor the supposed real name of the doctor…

    • Bob says:

      Who says he’s going to disclose the real name of the Doctor? Just because the last episode this season is titled ‘The Name of the Doctor’ doesn’t mean it will be disclosed. Did the Christmas special, ‘The Next Doctor’, actually introduce the next Doctor???

    • Alan says:

      moffat didnt switch to clara just for the hell of it, karen gillan didnt want to do it anymore.
      would you rather characters get brought in for pointless cameos or parts that dont fit in with the rest of the story? i know i would rather watch a well written story featuring only a few characters if that was the choice.
      and if you think anyone would ever reveal the doctors name then you just havent been paying attention properly. nobody would ever reveal a 50 year old mystery because they know nothing they do could ever live up to it.

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  50. Paul says:

    People really need to calm down, if I were to list all the major actors who probably aren’t returning for the 50th Anniversary I’d be here all afternoon. It’s entirely possible it’s about trying to tell the best story possible instead of an hour long cameo parade.