In the five years since its previous two spin-off series, The Sarah Jane Adventures and Torchwood, went off the air, Doctor Who has grown into a global pop-cultural phenomenon. So the BBC thought the time was right to milk the cash cow—er, expand the universe—once more with a brand new spin-off called Class. And now we have our first official look at the series, which will debut (in America at least) in spring of 2017 alongside the new season of Doctor Who. (Brits, meanwhile, will get the BBC Three series much sooner, starting on October 22.)
Class is set at Coal Hill Academy, a location The Doctor has been visiting since his very first appearance back in 1963. Most recently, The Doctor’s companion Clara was a teacher at the school, thus making him something of a regular there. And the premise of the series is that The Doctor’s frequent visits have turned the school into an interdimensional hellmouth.
Though he’s not going to be a series regular, Peter Capaldi’s 12th Doctor will be making an appearance in Class’ first episode, and he gets most of the focus of the teaser trailer, which debuted at New York Comic-Con. After that, however, it’s up to Coal Hill students Charlie (Greg Austin), April (Sophie Hopkins), Ram (Fady Elsayed), and Tanya (Vivian Oparah) and teacher Miss Quill (Katherine Kelly) to save the day. The central cast only gets the briefest of glimpses in this trailer, but they reportedly had more to do in a longer trailer that was also screened at Comic-Con but isn’t available online.
Written by YA author Patrick Ness, the eight-episode series is supposed to have a more young-adult focus than Doctor Who. But, interestingly, this teaser makes it look downright scary, and even comes with a “contains some upsetting scenes” warning at the beginning.