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    Classic Series 
Due to patchy archives and fact-checking, a lot of attempts at these in the 70s were botched slightly. Inaccuracies are less common once the more fannish culture took over the show in the 80s.

New Series

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    Series 1 

    Series 2 
  • 2005 Children in Need Special: The Doctor proves his identity to Rose by reminding her of the first thing he ever said to her: "Run."
  • "The Christmas Invasion":
    • This isn't the first time the Doctor's regeneration almost failed... or, for that matter, he spent most of the episode sleeping.
    • On seeing the Sycorax, Mr. Llewellyn asks if they're actually Martians. UNIT Major Blake dryly informs him that Martians look completely different.
    • Big Ben is covered in scaffolding from being rebuilt.
    • Rose's address to the Sycorax is basically her rattling off whatever useless bits of knowledge she's gained about aliens over the course of the prior season.
    • The Doctor regrowing his hand is seen by some fans as an explanation of how Romana managed to do "trial" regenerations in "Destiny of the Daleks".
    • The Fourth Doctor's outfit can be seen while the Doctor is picking out his new clothes.
  • "New Earth": At the beginning, the TARDIS is parked on the (faded) giant chalk "Bad Wolf" graffito from "The Parting of the Ways".
  • "Tooth and Claw":
    • The Tenth Doctor arrives in 19th-century Scotland and uses "Dr. James McCrimmon" as his alias. Jamie McCrimmon was one of the Second Doctor's companions, hailing from 18th-century Scotland.
    • The werewolf, in human form, tells Rose that she has "something of the wolf" about her, and that she "burned like the sun", referencing Rose's brief time as the Physical God Bad Wolf in "The Parting of the Ways".
  • "School Reunion":
    • Sarah Jane calls Rose the Doctor's "assistant", because when she first met the Doctor, he was still UNIT's scientific advisor, and thus had lab assistants rather than travelling companions.
    • The Doctor tells Sarah Jane he couldn't take her to Gallifrey with him because "back then humans weren't allowed".
    • Rose argues with companion from the 1970s (or the 1980s) Sarah Jane over who faced the toughest aliens and monsters, referencing actual episodes of the classic and new series, including the previous week's. During The Sarah Jane Adventures, when she first encounters the Slitheen, Sarah Jane remembers that argument, saying aloud, "Slitheen in Downing Street". The Slitheen also mention their routine job where the family members never came back.
  • "The Girl in the Fireplace":
  • "Rise of the Cybermen"/"The Age of Steel":
  • "The Impossible Planet": Rose, talking to one of the food-serving Ood, mentions that she used to be a dinner lady.
  • "The Satan Pit": The Doctor mentions the inhabitants of Dæmos, attributed in "The Dæmons" as the source of demonic imagery in human mythology, among the races who share similar Satan-like characters in their mythologies.
  • "Fear Her":
  • "Army of Ghosts":
    • Rose suggests the Gelth as a possible explanation for the ghosts. The Doctor dismisses the idea on the grounds that the Gelth were just coming through one small rift, while the ghosts are transposing themselves across the entire planet.
    • The Doctor claims to Torchwood that Jackie is Rose after having undergone Rapid Aging by staring into the heart of the Time Vortex.
    • That sarcophagus at Torchwood looks... somewhat familiar.
    • One of Torchwood's lever room technicians is named Gareth.
    • While wondering what's in the sphere, Mickey rattles off several Cyber-things as potential candidates.
  • "Doomsday":
    • The Doctor asks Pete who's become President of Great Britain in his universe: Harriet Jones.note 
    • The Doctor mentions being at Pete and Jackie's wedding. "You got her name wrong."

    Series 3 

    Series 4 
  • "Time Crash": The Fifth Doctor mentions LINDA, which has apparently been bothering him.
  • "Voyage of the Damned" nods to the previous two Christmas Episodes by having everyone realize that London isn't a good place to be on Christmas unless you like being at ground zero of an alien invasion.
  • "Partners in Crime":
    The Doctor: No, I've met cat people… you're nothing like them.
  • "The Fires of Pompeii":
    • The Doctor's comment about the Great Fire of Rome nods to the First Doctor serial "The Romans".
    • The Doctor uses the phrase "volcano day", first used by Captain Jack Harkness in "The Empty Child", when he and Donna figure out where they've landed.
    • At the end, the Doctor admits that Donna was right: sometimes he does need someone.
  • "Planet of the Ood":
    • Back in "Partners in Crime", Donna mentioned she'd packed for cold weather. Here, she slips inside the TARDIS to retrieve a winter coat.
    • Donna compares the TARDIS unfavourably to a rocket ship ("You've got a box, he's got a Ferrari!") similarly to how the Doctor compared Jack's Vortex manipulator unfavourably to the old girl in "Utopia".
    • The Doctor gives Donna a brief recap of his last encounter with the Ood: they were possessed by the Devil, or at least something that claimed to inspire the legend. She thinks he's taking the mickey.
    • The Oodsphere is in the same solar system as Sensesphere, which the Doctor mentions he visited a long time ago.
    • Donna has learned to whistle.
    • The destruction of the "circle" around the Ood brain is very similar to a scene from "Time and the Rani".
  • "The Sontaran Stratagem":
    • The Doctor makes an "In-tru-da window!" pun.
    • The Sontarans mention the Time War and how the Doctor fought in it. They're upset that they didn't get to take part.
    • Donna's mother and grandfather recognize the Doctor from their previous encounters with him.
    • Sylvia complains that Donna has been gone for days.
  • "The Poison Sky":
  • "The Unicorn and the Wasp":
  • "Silence in the Library":
    • The Doctor is delighted to see a "little shop" in the Library.
    • River Song has a squareness gun. And Moffat confirmed that it's the same one Jack used earlier, which he'd left in the TARDIS at the end of Series 1.
  • "Forest of the Dead": The Doctor escapes from being cornered by the Vashta Nerada by dropping through a hole in the floor, in a scene reminiscent of that time Nine escaped from an impromptu firing squad because he'd been backed up against a lift.
  • "Midnight":
    • The Doctor mentions he had a friend lost in another universe (which has actually happened twice).
    • While testing the possessed Sky's repetition, the Doctor rattles off the names of all three main companions of the new series up to that point, as well as the TARDIS.
  • "Turn Left":
    • The Trickster, whose Brigade the Time Beetle belonged to, is a major villain on The Sarah Jane Adventures.
    • Sarah Jane is mentioned as having formerly worked at Metropolitan Magazine, her employer in "The Time Warrior".
    • The beetle on Donna's back is a confirmed nod to the spider on Sarah Jane's back in "Planet of the Spiders". The idea of it consuming the time she might have had is straight from the Weeping Angels, although not in the same way.
    • Donna dies the same way Pete Tyler did and for the same reason (averting a Bad Future).
  • "The Stolen Earth":
  • "Journey's End":
    • Obscure one: In "Destiny of the Daleks" (Tom Baker era, late 70s), quoth Davros: "Doctor, do you believe your puny efforts can change the course of destiny? ... Destiny, Doctor... Invincible necessity... Power. My power. My invincibility. My supreme plan to control the universe... Errors of the past will be rectified. I will add new design elements to the Daleks' circuitry. They will be armed with new weaponry. Weaponry so devastating that all matter will succumb to its power! I will equip them with all the knowledge of the universe! ... The Daleks NEED ME!" Here, Davros does, indeed, equip them with a universal-knowledge level weapon capable of destroying, quite literally, all matter in the universe.
    • A reminder that Sarah Jane and Davros have met before:
      Davros: Impossible. That face... after all these years.
      Sarah Jane: Davros. It's been quite awhile. Sarah Jane Smith. Remember?
      Davros: Oh, this was meant to be. You were there on Skaro, at the very beginning of my creations!
    • Not as far reaching as most of the above, but upon seeing Gwen, of Torchwood on the TARDIS viewscreen, the Doctor and Rose ask if she has a family history in Cardiff. She says that she does, going "back to the 1800s", indicating that Gwyneth from "The Unquiet Dead", played by the same actress, shared "spatial genetic multiplicity" with Gwen's family.
  • "The Next Doctor":
    • Early in the episode, the title character says "I talk of Cybermen, from the stars, and you don't even blink, Mr. Smith," while talking to the Doctor, which the Doctor seizes on in an attempt to jog his memory, mentioning Sally Sparrow and the Weeping Angels.
    • Jackson has a fob watch, which the Doctor initially thinks might be a Chameleon Arch.
    • The infostamp with information on the Doctor contains footage of all ten Doctors up to that point, the first time footage from the classic series was used in the new series.
    • Alien technology under a Thames floodgate? That would explain what Torchwood was doing down there.
    • Miss Hartigan's black eyes as the Cyberking.
    • This isn't the first time a strong-willed woman has overcome Cyberman programming.
  • "Planet of the Dead":
    • Barclay compares San Helios' three suns to the planets in the sky.
      Nathan: But it was the Earth that moved back then, wasn't it?
    • The Doctor is briefly reminded of the last time he was on a Bus Full of Innocents:
      The Doctor: Humans on buses, always blaming me.
    • The Doctor knows UNIT so well he can tell when they salute him, even over the phone.
    • This exchange between UNIT scientist Malcolm and the Doctor:
      Malcolm: The Doctor! Cor blimey! I can't believe I'm actually speaking to you! I mean, I've read all the files.
      The Doctor: Really? What was your favourite, the giant robot?
  • "The Waters of Mars":
    • The Doctor mentions the Ice Warriors. The humans regard the idea of a sentient race having once lived on Mars with skepticism.
    • This isn't the first time the Doctor has met a "funny robot". He also says that robot dogs are different.
    • The Philippines is strongly implied to be a world power at this point. Those who remember "The Talons of Weng-Chiang" will know that it will get even more powerful in the future.
  • "The End of Time":
    • At the beginning of Part 1, the Doctor tells Ood Sigma that he married "Good Queen Bess", calls it a mistake, and notes that her nickname is no longer... well. May explain why she's less fond of him in the future.
    • Joshua Naismith got the Immortality Gate and Nuclear Bolt Cabinet from the ruins of Torchwood One. And they came from the same spaceship that crashed at Mt. Snowden, just like the Magno-Clamps from that story.
    • The Master's plan is in essence what would have happened if what happened in "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances" was a deliberate act as opposed to A.I. Is a Crapshoot.
    • The Master's last words to Lucy. "You will obey me!"
    • A shout-out by way of special effect. The effect used when the Immortality Gate and Rassilon transform humans into the Master Race and vice versa is a callback to the TV Movie. At one point in the movie, when the Master is attempting to take over the Doctor's remaining lives, his head begins shaking in a super-fast motion, interlaced with split-second cuts of the Doctor's head on the Master's body. The overall effect is almost identical to, though somewhat less polished than, the one used here.
    • That gauntlet of Rassilon's looks disturbingly similar to the Resurrection Gauntlet of Torchwood.
    • Rassilon's plan to escape the Time War by ascending the Time Lords to beings of pure consciousness beyond Time itself is reminiscent of the Beast's nature as a being of thought who existed "before time". This also indicates just how far the Time Lords have fallen, and why the Doctor will go to such lengths to stop them.
    • Lord President Rassilon refers to his plan (sacrificing the entirety of the cosmos so that the Time Lords themselves can escape extinction) as the "Final Sanction" when the High Council votes on it. In "Arc of Infinity", Lord President Borusa used this same term for the High Council's decision to sacrifice the Fifth Doctor to prevent Omega's return.
    • "Contact!"
    • As well as all the references to past episodes (most obviously "Last of the Time Lords" and "Journey's End"), the Master's skeletal visage reflects the late seventies version who had passed his final regeneration.
    • The President Master says he can send the UN protocols to the Master. The Raxacoricofallapatorians in "Aliens of London" were defeated mainly because they couldn't receive these codes quickly enough. He got them pretty quickly.
    • One of the Silver Cloak members mentions phoning Netty, confirmed via Word of God invoked to be Wilfred Mott's girlfriend who suffers from Alzheimer's and helped defeat the Mandragora in the novel Beautiful Chaos.
    • So at the end, the Tenth Doctor is about to regenerate into Matt Smith and say his last goodbyes to his companions over the years. And then there's Alonso from "Voyage of the Damned". And THEN there's the great-granddaughter of Nurse Redfern "Human Nature"/"The Family of Blood".
      • His goodbye to Alonso is both nice and a bit thoughtless. He hooks Captain Jack Harkness up with Alonso. However, the scene becomes a lot darker if you know why Jack is there and not with Torchwood at the time.
    • When Donna is given a lottery ticket as a wedding present, she stuffs it down the front of her dress. Presumably it doesn't have pockets.
    • Eleven checks his ears after regenerating and notes that they're not too bad. He also notes that he's still not ginger.

    Series 5 
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    Series 6 

    Series 7 
  • "Hide": The Doctor completes the psychic device needed to access the pocket dimension that the "ghost" is trapped in with a crystal from Metebelis 3.
  • "Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS":
  • "The Crimson Horror": In the flashback where the Doctor and Clara are shown arriving in 1893, after Clara asks the Doctor why he's so determined to take her to Victorian London, he mentions that he "once spent a hell of a long time trying to get a gobby Australian to Heathrow Airport" — referring to Fifth Doctor companion Tegan Jovanka, who was a flight attendant.

    50ᵗʰ Anniversary Specials 
  • "The Day of the Doctor" has one that rivals the one in "The Eleventh Hour": not only do they show all the Doctors, but they're not in flashbacks, they're all there in person (yet still stock footage) helping the current Doctors.
  • "The Time of the Doctor": The Eleventh Doctor uses the Seal of the High Council. The same one he stole from the Master in his third incarnation back in "The Five Doctors". He even outright mentions that moment.

    Series 8 
  • "Time Heist":
  • "Mummy on the Orient Express": The Doctor is having an involved conversation with himself about whether or not he should be investigating. The "other person" is him doing an impression of the Fourth Doctor's distinctive voice and accent.

    Series 9 
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    Series 10 

    Series 11 

    Series 12 
  • "Spyfall":
    • Yaz's sister Sonya's interest in Ryan is brought up again, as she wants his phone number. By now, Ryan isn't averse to her getting it.
    • When C expresses skepticism about the existence of aliens, the Doctor retorts that he should ask the people at GCHQ.
    • UNIT and Torchwood are mentioned as being "gone"; UNIT was sidelined due to funding issues in the previous episode and Torchwood was officially disbanded after the events of Children of Earth.
    • The glowing creature trapped inside a cage is reminiscent of the trapped "ghost" in "Army of Ghosts". Furthermore, their method of entering another dimension affects time travellers differently.
    • O mentions the unlikelihood of Daniel Barton being a fake identity, as with the extensive files and photographs of him at all stages of life, it's hard to falsify that kind of legend. Yaz chimes in that it isn't impossible, though, and she's right — The Master did exactly that when posing as "Harold Saxon".
    • Similar to what he did with Bill in "World Enough and Time", the Master spends time befriending the Doctor's trio of companions, especially Graham and Yaz, for no other reason than so that it's much worse for them when he reveals himself.
    • The Master's TARDIS makes its first TV appearance since "The Ultimate Foe", in which it also took on the appearance of a wooden building.
    • The Doctor engages in another round of The Tape Knew You Would Say That, albeit through extensive knowledge of her companions' personalities rather than a complete stranger's transcript.
    • The Doctor yet again tastes the air to figure out where she is.
      "I'm getting nineteenth century... early... with a touch of mid... top notes, London... steam? Why am I getting steam?"
    • Graham mentions what the Doctor told him and Grace the night they met when the companions are putting the pieces together about the existence of regeneration.
    • The Doctor uses a Morse code radio set to get the Master's attention... by broadcasting a familiar four-beat signal.
    • The Doctor mentions that the Master never apologized for causing a past incarnation of hers to fall off the Jodrell Bank radio telescope.
    • Hakim Khan's Conspiracy Theorist tendencies return as he (correctly, in this instance) surmises that the Khan family's brief paralysis during the thwarted Kasaavin incursion at the climax was the result of a conspiracy.
    • The Doctor's deflection of Yaz's request to visit Gallifrey at the end is reminiscent of Ten doing the same to Martha early in "Gridlock".
  • "Orphan 55": The Doctor's morose mood, which is why the companions think a vacation would be a good idea, is a clear holdover from the events of "Spyfall".
  • "Nikola Tesla's Night of Terror":
    • When the Doctor introduces her companions to Tesla and Dorothy on the train, Graham quips "Welcome to the Orient Express."
    • The Doctor mentions she built her sonic screwdriver out of spoons.
    • Venusians are mentioned again, after Venusian Aikido: the Skithra's ship was apparently built by them.
  • "Fugitive of the Judoon":
  • "Praxeus":
    • This is not the first time the Doctor's indicated they have multiple brains.
    • When the Doctor discovers that plastics are closely linked to the threat of Praxeus, her first thought is to suspect Auton involvement, but she quickly dismisses it as Autons aren't bacterial in nature.
    • Jake Willis, like Brian Williams before him, is a man who dislikes travel but grows to appreciate it after an encounter with the Doctor.
  • "Can You Hear Me?":
    • Graham's friends are surprised by how much his poker skills have improved.
    • Yet again, the Doctor's sonic screwdriver and the TARDIS cannot get any readings off attacking monsters.
    • Zellin namedrops the Black and White Guardians, the Eternals and the Celestial Toymaker.
  • "The Timeless Children":
    • To "The Deadly Assassin":
      • The ruins of the Panopticon sport a hint of the metallic green décor it had in the former story.
      • The Doctor references the "I Reject Your Reality" line from Four's dealings with the Matrix.
      • The Master mentions Borusa, the Doctor's teacher and eventual enemy who first appeared in this episode.
    • The Doctor using all of her memories, including previous incarnations' angst and every Master appearance, to break out of the Matrix nods to her speech about "honouring who [she's] been".
    • The Doctor ends the episode giving a Tenth Doctor-style "What? What!? WHAT!?" after abruptly being catapulted into an unusual situation.

    Expanded Universe 

Big Finish Doctor Who

  • "The Spectre of Lanyon Moor" features a character called Professor Morgan, who was first mentioned in passing by Professor Amelia Rumford in the TV story "The Stones of Blood" as an archaeological acquaintance of hers. She particularly mentioned him with regard to Cornish fougos, a major plot point in this story. Both Professor Rumford in the earlier story and Professor Morgan in this one speak of attending a Megalithic Symposium, and refer to a colleague called Leamington-Smith who is apparently an "idiot".
  • "The Kingmaker" features a scene in which a stranded Fifth Doctor leaves a note for his future self to find. It is "later" mentioned to have been delivered by "some bloke with big ears and a Northern accent", an apparent nod to Christopher Eccleston. In that same story, Tom Baker provides a cameo in the form of a clip from a history documentary, presented as the Doctor's taped notes (not actually Tom Baker, but a very convincing impression by Jon Culshaw).
    • Another character with an accent similar to Eccleston's also gets in a "Fantastic". Big Finish: tweaking the limits of BBC licensing restrictions for over 10 years.
  • And the Fifth Doctor audio "The Whispering Forest" features the Green Crescent medical symbol from "New Earth". At the end, the Mara sarcastically asks if the Doctor is leaving Purity because it's "too green for you", referencing the final line of "Kinda".
  • In "1963: The Space Race", the Doctor comments that the last time the TARDIS' air conditioning broke, he spent seven months trekking across China with Marco Polo.

Doctor Who New Adventures

  • All sorts of nods to past continuity (notably the Third Doctor era) were referenced in Who Killed Kennedy, where the plotline worked in many of the Doctor's adventures, from a ground level point of view. In his author's note, David Bishop acknowledged the Kurt Busiek/Alex Ross graphic novel Marvels, which gave a ground level view of the Marvel Universe.

Doctor Who Missing Adventures

  • In Millennial Shock by Justin Richards, the Fourth Doctor offers someone a jelly baby, and the person looks at the sweet in bewilderment. "It was a dolly mixture. He knew it was a dolly mixture." This is a reference to a scene in "Image of the Fendahl", where the Doctor offers a skull a jelly baby, while actually holding a liquorice allsort. (When a viewer pointed this out, Word of God was that the Doctor does this to confuse people.)

New Series Adventures

Past Doctor Adventures

  • Subtle one: in Seeing I by Jonathan Blum and Kate Orman (set on an Earth colony in the 23rd century) the Doctor is in a prison/mental institution called the Oliver Bainbridge Functional Stabilisation Centre, where people who Know Too Much are held. At the end of Blue Box by Orman (set in 1980s America), we're told that the villain ended up in the Bainbridge Hospital, which appears to be the same thing, only run by the US Government instead of a megacorp.


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