Doctor Who Online Episodes and Prequels

Since 2003, the BBC has released various Doctor Who episodes online. While these are short episodes (some as short as 60 seconds), most are canon and considered official episodes of the series. These free Doctor Who episodes include prequels, animated specials and mini-episodes. They feature the same actors as the full-length episodes, and often introduce significant plot details.

In addition to the online episodes, there have also been Doctor Who mini-episodes broadcast on TV as part of UK telethons such as Children in Need and Red Nose Day. Yet another class of mini-episodes are the box set exclusives. You might be surprised to see just how many Doctor Who mini-episodes there are!

Unfortunately, the availability of mini-episodes is very inconsistent. Some are available on the Doctor Who website and some are not. Some are available on DVD and Blu-ray, and others are not. Most are free to watch but some are not. Some are widely distributed, onto practically every platform – while others are very hard to locate.

Pre-2005 Mini-Episodes

Dimensions in Time is a two-part special broadcast in 1993, for the Children in Need telethon and for the 30th anniversary of Doctor Who. It is actually a crossover between Doctor Who and EastEnders, and features all Doctors between the Third and the Seventh inclusive. These days it is hard to find.

Doctor Who and the Curse of Fatal Death is a series of 4 mini-episodes broadcast for the Red Nose Day telethon in 1999. Although the special is a parody of Doctor Who, it was written by the current showrunner Steven Moffat. It was released on VHS but is hard to find these days.

Scream of the Shalka is an animated Doctor Who serial, originally released online in 2003 to mark the show’s 40th anniversary. The Doctor is played by Richard E. Grant and this 6-episode serial is thus considered non-canon. There is also a cameo by David Tennant, before he was cast as the Doctor. It’s now available on the official Doctor Who website and is on DVD.

Tenth Doctor Mini-Episodes

Doctor Who: Children in Need special was broadcast in 2005 as part of the Children in Need telethon. This is the first episode to star David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor, and displays the first few minutes after his regeneration. It’s now available on the series 2 DVD.

Attack of the Graske is an interactive mini-episode that was originally released to the BBC Red Button service immediately following the broadcast of the 2005 Christmas special, The Christmas Invasion. It stars David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor, and is now available on the official Doctor Who website and the series 2 box set.

The Tardisodes are a series of 13 short prequels for each of the episodes in series 2. These were released on the official Doctor Who website in 2006, but have since been removed. They were not released on DVD and are now hard to find.

The Infinite Quest is a series of 13 short animated episodes, released in 2007 and starring David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor and Freema Agyeman as Martha. It was broadcast on BBC TV, and is now available on DVD, on Netflix, and on iTunes for $1.99 or £1.89.

Time Crash is the 2007 Children in Need special, which stars the Tenth (David Tennant) and Fifth (Peter Davison) Doctors. It was written by Steven Moffat, and is now available on the series 4 DVD.

Music of the Spheres is a mini-episode that was produced in 2008 for the Doctor Who Prom live concert. It stars David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor and is now available on the specials DVD and Blu-ray.

Dreamland is a series of 6 animated episodes, released in 2009 and starring David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor. It was originally released on the BBC Red Button service and the official Doctor Who website, and is now on DVD, on Amazon Instant Video for $1.99, on iTunes in the U.S. for $1.99, and on BBC iPlayer.

Eleventh Doctor Mini-Episodes

Meanwhile, in the TARDIS… is a series of 2 mini-episodes that depict the conversation between the Eleventh Doctor and Amy, in between the episodes of series 5. These are box set exclusives and only available on the series 5 DVD and Blu-ray.

Space and Time are two mini-episodes broadcast as part of the Red Nose Day telethon in 2011. They feature the Eleventh Doctor with Amy and Rory, and are now on the series 6 DVD and Blu-ray.

Similar to the Tardisodes in series 2, the BBC released short prequel videos online for 5 of the episodes in series 6The Impossible Astronaut, The Curse of the Black Spot, A Good Man Goes to War, Let’s Kill Hitler and The Wedding of River Song. All 5 prequels are still available on the Doctor Who website, as well as on the series 6 DVD, iTunes and Amazon Instant Video.

Death is the Only Answer is a mini-episode written via a junior school writing competition, Script to Screen. It stars Matt Smith as the Eleventh Doctor, and was broadcast on BBC TV in 2011. It was not released on DVD or Blu-ray, and is hard to find.

Night and the Doctor is a series of 5 mini-episodes starring the Eleventh Doctor and the series 6 companions – Amy, Rory, River and Craig. These are box set exclusives and only available on the series 6 DVD and Blu-ray.

A prequel was released online for the 2011 Christmas special, The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe. It is still available on the Doctor Who website, on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, and on iTunes and Amazon Instant Video.

Good as Gold is the second mini-episode written via the Script to Screen writing competition. It stars the Eleventh Doctor and Amy, and was first broadcast in 2012. It was released on the series 7 DVD but in the UK only.

Pond Life is a series of 5 online episodes starring the Eleventh Doctor with Amy and Rory. They are available on the Doctor Who website, on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, and on the iTunes Store.

A prequel was released online for the 2012 episode, Asylum of the Daleks. It’s available on iTunes for free and on Amazon Instant Video for 99 cents, and is also on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray.

The Making of the Gunslinger is the name of the prequel released on iTunes for the 2012 episode, A Town Called Mercy. It’s available on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, and on iTunes for free.

P.S. is a unique mini-episode, in that it displays the storyboard for a scene that was never shot. The scene was going to be about the character of Rory informing his father that he is permanently stuck in the distant past. The video was released exclusively on the Doctor Who website, where it remains today. It was never released on DVD or Blu-ray.

The Great Detective is a prequel for the 2012 Christmas special, The Snowmen. It was originally broadcast as part of the Children in Need telethon, but is also available on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, on Amazon Instant Video and on iTunes.

Vastra Investigates is a second prequel for The Snowmen. This prequel was released on the Doctor Who website, where it remains today. It is also available on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, and on iTunes for free.

The prequel to the 2013 episode, The Bells of Saint John, was originally released on the Doctor Who website and is still available there today. It’s also on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, and on iTunes and Amazon Instant Video.

The Battle of Demon’s Run – Two Days Later is a mini-episode that was released in 2013 and serves as a prequel to The Snowmen, despite being released 3 months after that episode. It’s available on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray, on Amazon Instant Video and on iTunes.

She Said, He Said is the first of two prequels for the 2013 episode, The Name of the Doctor. It was originally released on the official Doctor Who website and on the BBC Red Button service. It remains on the Doctor Who website and is also part of the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray.

Clarence and the Whispermen is the second prequel for The Name of the Doctor. This is a box set exclusive and is only available on the series 7 DVD and Blu-ray.

Rain Gods, Clara and the TARDIS and The Inforarium are three short bonus episodes that are bundled with the Doctor Who: The Complete Seventh Series box set. They are box set exclusives and are not available online.

The Night of the Doctor is a prequel released to promote the 50th anniversary special, The Day of the Doctor. It displays the Eighth Doctor’s regeneration into the “War Doctor”. It’s available for free on BBC iPlayer, the 50th anniversary box set and Amazon Instant Video. It’s also on iTunes, however only as part of a $29.99 or £14.99 collection.

The Last Day is a second prequel to the 50th anniversary special, displaying the last day of the Time War. It’s not on the BBC website, but is in the 50th anniversary box set, on Amazon Instant Video and in the iTunes Store.

Watch Full Doctor Who Episodes

The prequels and mini-episodes aren’t the only ones you can watch online. The full, official Doctor Who episodes are available too. Find out how to watch Doctor Who full episodes online.