The Conquest of France

Les French Whovians will soon finally get to see our favourite Time Lord Victorious in The Waters of Mars, or, to be language-specific, La conquête de Mars.  Having taken six years of French in a four-year high school (figure that out) in my younger years, I can personally tell you that “conquête” does not translate to “water,” but rather “conquest,” which means that the literal translation makes the title The Conquest of Mars!

Now, before you start bashing the French about always wanting everything their way, think about this: The Waters of Mars, translated perfectly, is Les eaux de Mars, which is pronounced like lays-oh-duh-Mars.  It really doesn’t roll off the tongue as well as “la conquête” does.

The announcement of the title was made in this PDF for the France 4 television channel on the very last page (see right).  Should be fairly easy to understand even if you don’t know French.

The episode will  be dubbed in French and feature an alternate ending in which Adelaide Brooke, angry at the Doctor for changing history, cuts off his head with a guillotine.  The Doc then regenerates into Matt Smith and The End of Time never happens.  Okay, that was completely made up, except for the French dub bit.

Fan reaction in France is overall excited, mostly about the fact that they’re finally getting to see the story in their own language!  French forumer badwolf59 of Beans on Toast has been kind enough to translate some of the thoughts south of Britain…


I’m really happy, the French title is good, Les eaux de Mars wouldn’t have been so cool…


The Conquest of Mars?… Rubbish. Why not Mars Attacks or Mars and You’re Off Again* while we’re at it?…

*”Mars et ça repart” is the French slogan in Mars bars adverts.


Like [juglar], I think [the French title] has nothing to do with the episode but in my opinion, the change of title was made to attract viewers who do not know Doctor Who…

Besides, when you think about it, the name The Conquest of Mars really does have a lot to do with the episode… the water, in the end, did manage to conquer the majority of people on the planet at the time, so it’s not entirely inaccurate!

For more fan reaction (albeit in French), check out Beans on Toast.  Meanwhile, watch this space for updates on the broadcast times if you happen to be in France or are lucky enough to go there on holiday while it airs.

(With thanks to Aurélie)


We’ve just heard that La conquête de Mars will air on Saturday, October 30th at 8:35pm French time, as per the Tweet from France 4.

Patrick Riley


Patrick has just been murdered and is currently seated on the edge of a lawn chair wondering when this Missy person will stop demanding his autograph. He probably can't tweet from the grave, but you should follow him anyway @10PatrickRiley.

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