What Are the Chances of a DOCTOR WHO/SHERLOCK Crossover?; Matt Smith Says “I’m Not Averse to It”

     October 29, 2012


Two of my favorite shows are Sherlock and Doctor Who.  Both star amazing actors, feature brilliant writing, film in the United Kingdom, and share some of the same creative team (specifically Steven Moffat).  Since Doctor Who is currently filming part two of season 7 and Sherlock will be filming its third season starting in January, I thought now would be the perfect time to make my dream happen: I want to see the Doctor (Matt Smith) walking behind Sherlock (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Watson (Martin Freeman) in a scene, or vice versa. I think having the characters cameo on each other’s show would be a very cool nod to the fans.  Keep in mind, I’m not looking for a full scene.  I’m looking for a second or two.  I’d just like to see they are in the same universe.

Cut to a few days ago.

At London Comic-Con this past weekend, I got to participate in a small roundtable interview with Matt Smith where I asked his thoughts on making my dream happen.  He didn’t sound optimistic: “I think Mark (Gatiss) and Steven (Moffat) kind of hate the idea of Doctor Who and Sherlock ever meeting.”  But Smith did admit, “I’m not averse to it.  I’m kind of open.  I’m like yeah, because I just think they would find each other so remarkable.”  Hit the jump for more.

Here’s the part of the interview where we talked about the chances of the Doctor and Sherlock/Watson ever crossing paths.  Look for the full interview with Matt Smith in the coming days.  Leave your comments about how you’d like to see a cameo play out.

Finally, if the Sherlock crossover can’t work out, maybe the Doctor can swing over to Downton Abbey and recruit Edith as a new companion.  I mean, she can drive a car and everything.  And it’s not like she’ll be tied down by a husband any time soon.

doctor-who-matt-smithQuestion:  It’s really growing.  I want to know if there’s any chance of an Easter-egg in Sherlock or vice-versa where Sherlock’s going on, because they’re filming in January, February…

SMITH: They are, yeah.

..and you’re like standing in the background of the scene or reverse you’re filming and they’re standing in the background of a scene.

SMITH: I think Mark and Steven kind of hate the idea of Doctor Who and Sherlock ever meeting.

It’s be a nice Easter-egg for the fans.

sherlock-martin-freeman-benedict-cumberbatchSMITH: No, I know, I know, and listen I’m not averse to it.  I’m kind of open.  I’m like yeah, because I just think they would find each other so remarkable.

I don’t even mean like they’re having a conversation, I mean you’re just walking by in a scene.

SMITH: But how can Doctor Who walk by in Sherlock Holmes?

I don’t know.

SMITH: Because he’s fictional.  Doctor Who could, but it’s just nah, it’s you know—and The Doctor with Watson, he’d be like, “Cheer up mate.  It’s not that bad, I know you’re really clever, but there’s an alien over there, let’s go and talk.  He’s got wiggly bits on.”


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  • Corr

    As much as I love Doctor Who and Sherlock, I don’t think I would like a crossover. Mainly because Sherlock is a serious show that is really rooted in reality, and because of that I think it would detract from the show if we saw a scene with the Doctor or his TARDIS in the background somewhere. It just wouldn’t really fit.

    • mushu

      Sherlock is deeply “rooted”, as you say, but in ITS OWN reality. I think this may work, and heck, there have been worse ideas, so why not try and do something with them together?

      • Alan

        “heck, there have been worse ideas, so why not try and do something with them together?”

        Making out with your cousin, swearing at your boss, getting into an actor’s eyeline, inviting Sean Penn to a Mitt Romney fundraiser, leaving Woody Allen or Roman Polanski alone with your child, doing a Sean Connery impersonation in front of him. Sure, these aren’t great ideas, but let’s not do it just because there are “worse ideas” in the world.

      • stove

        i agree that both have a very separate tone and themes, but damn it if this couldn’t totally work as a two part Christmas Special and be a fun romp!! There have been plenty of Matt Smith related episodes that can easily reflect the darker tone of Sherlock, plus both enjoy a good adventure/mystery, yeah?

    • Alan

      Exactly. I am not exactly sure I understand why Weintraub thinks that this is a good idea. One character is an expert in criminal psychology and the other … is an alien. One shows’s setting is a hyped-up, but still real version of London and the other’s setting … is a science fiction environment where the Earth is frequently under threat from space monsters. One’s physical stakes involves theft, murder and terrorism and the other’s … oh, you get the point.

      Other than the shared showrunner and a buddy set-up, these shows have little in common, and the idea that these two stories are set in the same world would instantly create odd and bizarre questions: if ‘Sherlock’ in set in the ‘Doctor Who’ world, then why would the characters be quick to dismiss the concept of a giant hound when the world is frequently under attack? Isn’t Holmes wasting his time fixating on crimes when the entire planet is under attack? Wouldn’t Holmes’ spiritual ideas be different if he knew that there was life on other planets? I could go on.

      Then again, I think that Weintraub has unwittingly stumbled on a decent idea: this is a good skit for Comic Relief. But a shared universe? Why does EVERYTHING need to be a shared universe? I like the Mark Wahlberg-produced ‘Entourage’ and ‘In Treatment’, so why don’t the characters team up to make a movie or something? Or, if not that, why doesn’t Gabriel Byrne’s Dr. Paul Weston turn up in the ‘Entourage’ film for a split second … because that would makes things better for some reason. Give me a break …

      • DisasterBlaster

        @Alan – EXACTLY!

      • stove

        The Doctor has totally had plenty of small adventures that don’t involve saving the world. There are plenty of cheesy episodes of DOCTOR WHO, but there are also plenty of serious character driven mystery plots that don’t involve Cyber Men or what-have-you.. Doctor Who visits tons of unrelated lives, Dickens, Van Gough…. so Sherlock is hardly out of the question. Doctor Who THRIVES on shared universes, that’s his whole deal. Both the Doctor and Sherlock solve mysteries and go on adventures and are eccentric people. Your cynical outlook seems to miss the whole point of Doctor Who: a practically immortal guy who has a time machine…. that set up means he can go ANY WHERE…

      • Alan


        “Your cynical outlook seems to miss the whole point of Doctor Who: a practically immortal guy who has a time machine”

        It’s not that i miss the point of Doctor Who, it’s that I understand the point of Sherlock. There’s a difference. If there were aliens in the Sherlock world, then why is Holmes so sceptical about the supernatural? Yeah, I know there are plenty of episodes of Doctor Who that don’t venture into space, but it doesn’t change the fact that The Doctor is … an … ALIEN. If Holmes is mates with an alien, then why does he need to use his mind to solve crimes? Why can’t he use alien technology or something? See how just the possibility of a serious crossover does damage to the Sherlock universe, and why the creators think that this is a silly idea.

      • stove

        only if the Doctor reveals himself. The Doctor is clever and I hate to say it, more clever than Sherlock. The Doctor just has to let Sherlock do most of the sleuthing and the Doctor is merely along for the ride…. and maybe if Sherlock hits a rough patch, the doctor whips out his screw driver just once, passes it off as homemade or something…. aliens never have to be mentioned, just subtle looks from Sherlock cause he knows something just isn’t quite right, but it’d be the one thing he couldn’t solve… besides that one nasty point at the end of season two, leap of faith in deed. I understand your worry about mucking up the universes here, but lets be honest, both series are written by very clever people who know how to craft a great story with driving characters… they have delivered before, so why not a little faith that they could have fun if they just change their minds….this isn’t Bret Ratner and X Men here.

      • Alan

        So your idea for a Doctor Who/Sherlock team-up is one in which The Doctor … pretends not to be The Doctor.

    • Trevin

      The TARDIS was already in an episode of Sherlock. In the Hounds of Baskerville episode it was at the top of a hill in one of the first shots of the forest, right at the beginning of the episode.

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  • DisasterBlaster

    Sherlock Holmes in a Dr Who story could work – it’s been done before in at least one novel. But The Doctor showing up in Sherlock is a dumb idea – it’s like you have no appreciation of what kind of show Sherlock actually is. This is a stupid non-story.

    • Alan

      But Sherlock Holmes is awesome! And The Doctor is awesome! And a cameo would be awesomer! By Frosty’s logic, a sex scene between Christoph Waltz and Judi Dench would be the greatest thing ever because those two people are awesome.

  • Konishiki

    I wouldn’t want to see this in either show but if they’re both filming around the same time then I’d love them to do a small one off for Children in Need (for anyone not in the UK, it’s a telephon type charity event that screens on the BBC for a whole night every year). Doctor Who has done a couple already I think.

    • Guest

      I do think the children in need one off would work

  • StefH

    No thanks. Sherlock is great, Dr. Who is not.

    Dr. Who is a kids/family program more so than Sherlock.

    Dr. Who is plain and boring.

    • Michelle

      And you’re an idiot that’s probably only seen two or three random episodes.

  • Caspy7

    Steven Moffat has already been asked this.
    The answer is no (thank God).

  • JLC

    I think the real problem with a crossover is that you would see just how similar the two characters are. Dr. Who, at least in the current incarnation, is basically Sherlock with a time machine. In other words, smarter than everyone in the room and frustrated with the ignorance, with a everyman(woman) sidekick to keep him grounded. I first saw it when I thought how great a Doctor Cumberbatch would be, but then realized he’d be basically playing the same character. Best to keep things separate.

  • Guest

    I have the answer – just get Cumberbatch into Doctor Who as the Master. I think that would work perfectly.

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  • Reader123

    Insulting suggestion for Dr. Who to do a cameo on Sherlock. Shows zero understanding of the BBC Sherlock ethos. And then there is the fact that Matt Smith auditioned for the part of Watson… another reason why the suggestion was insensitive as well.

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  • Lob Taylor

    Not a good idea, Sherlock is a serious show, and though I enjoy Dr.Who I dont take it serious and they tend to overact and ham it up a bit….a great deal.

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  • Shelly

    Hmmmm. I don’t know about Sherlock/doctor Who crossover. But you know what WOULD be cool? Doctor Who/Community crossover.

  • The Vi

    Maybe they can do something for children in need, or Red Nose day. But having them in the same universe will be really distracting. Remember that everyone on Earth in Who world know about aliens and all that.

  • Andy247

    In the past I’ve complained that you specifically should return to writing your interviews out rather than leave them as clips that the majority of readers won’t watch. However, in this instance, I would much have preferred to have never known you asked for such a retarded wish to come true.

  • titan3

    A better idea: Have Benedict Cumberbatch be a special guest to take over the role of the Master for a season-ending arc.

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  • Hannah

    The problem is, neither show is based on anything historical, but both aim to portray the world surrounding the stories as what we know to be “real.” That is, The Doctor is fictional in the Sherlock universe, and Sherlock Holmes is fictional in the DW universe. Since both characters are fictional, there is no logical way to make an actual crossover work.

    Now, guest roles on either show by the cast of the other…those would be fun.

  • Shesh

    The only way I can see this working is if say John has some sort Doctor Who memorabilia or something along this nature and Sherlock makes a remark then goes at length at the impossibility of the show. I would not like it the other way around. Doctor Who is a long running show. I understand why because Sherlock and the Doctor are similar in many ways but they have nothing more in common aside from the sidekick.

    To suggest an actual cameo only shows that the author does not understand the fact you cannot put two shows together simply because you want to. Both shows are vastly different and are in their own universe and it would be unlikely that the 11th doctor would somehow break into a parallel world where none of the other worlds, the aliens, invasions exist.

    Sherlock’s cynicism of anything outside of science, facts etc comes at odds with the universe of Doctor Who when earth has been invaded and dealt with aliens enough times where it would go against with the very nature of Sherlock the character and the show. Even with the conspiracies of mass hypnosis, mirrors etc even the most skeptical would be forced to entertain the ideas if not accept them as real.

    Besides Sherlock has already crossed over into the Dr Who universe. The author may not have seen Classic Who or does not remember that Sherlock has already shown up. The Doctor met Sherlock Holmes, the original incarnation rather than the modern version that the author wishes the Doctor to meet.

    Sherlock met the seventh doctor and eight doctor over the course of several episodes “All Consuming Fires”, “Happy Endings” “The Shape of Things” “The Gallifrey Chronicles” and “Character Assassin” (I did, I admit, have to look it up. I remembered Sherlock being on the show but did not remember specific episodes).

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