Dr Who News (4)

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    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord
    janetteB @janetteb

    @jimthefish YOu beat me too it Wow. I am excitted. Yes. Hope returns.

    (Just the news i needed… ((after end of term Friday night drinks))


    double cheers


    Cath Annabel @cathannabel

    I wasn’t expecting that! Yes, definitely good news. I feel a bit sad that we won’t get RTD working with Jodie’s Doctor, but nonetheless, worth raising a glass to!

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    Crikey! That is amazing news.

    Where I am it is 9.17am, so I will probably wait a bit before raising a glass. But raising a glass is definitely on the cards.

    A thought: should we expect the same RTD approach of yore or a different type of RTD approach?

    toinfinityandbepond @toinfinityandbepond

    Time for a gay doctor?

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    I’d say the odds of Olly Alexander as the next Doctor just shortened dramatically.


    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    @jimthefish (+ everyone else, big wave!)

    Really unexpected development that really makes you wonder what’s been going on behind the scenes. Not only Russell “The” Davies, but outsourcing production to Bad Wolf Productions (first time since the Eighth Doctor movie, fact fans) would seem to indicate that the BBC may be admitting they’ve screwed the pooch for some time with Doctor Who.

    It does seem a somewhat retrograde step, harking back to the past rather than look to the future … but?

    I’ve read a lot of (possibly wrong headed) comment pieces since the announcement of Chibnalls departure. Along the lines of “old fans shouldn’t be running the show”. You know the sort of stuff. Thing is, Davies was the one who made the show insanely popular at home, and Moffat was the one who made it arguably the biggest international success for some time. So – what went wrong with Chibnall? I think the simple answer is a few short years.

    When Doctor Who was rested it’s no secret that Davies and Moffat were independently lobbying Andrew Cartmel for a writing gig on the show – both buoyed by successes in Children/YA TV. Chibnall had become disillusioned with the show and gone to University. A traditional student life of beer, study and exciting times lay ahead I’m sure. I think it stung Davies & Moffat – being that close, but so far.

    So while Chibnall forged ahead in his early career, he wasn’t doing silly things like writing well received Who novel ‘Damaged Goods’, or composing letters to Doctor Who monthly congratulating them for making comic companion Izzy gay. He wasn’t writing well respected short story ‘Continuity Errors’, or taking the opportunity of sudden fame to do something crazy like ‘Curse of Fatal Death’ for comic relief. I’m sure he didn’t have the time to argue the toss on early internet forums about ‘that kiss’, and why it didn’t really matter. He didn’t read spinoff novels or listen to Big Finish and ultimately didn’t engage with a big conversation about how and why Doctor Who worked. Davies and Moffat had 16 years of dead space to think about how they would ‘do’ Doctor Who.

    Like or loathe their respective takes on the Doctor, I don’t think anyone would deny they had a clear vision for who the Doctor was and what they stood for. I don’t think Chibnall ever really had that, and I think that fundamentally harmed the show and especially JWs character of the Doctor.

    So Davies had 16 years to consider how he’d do it. What the Doctor meant to him. Since he left he’s had (believe it or not) 12 years. 12 years and two show runners. We know he kept in close contact with Moffat, and their jocular exchanges are legendary. I’m wondering how his thinking has evolved in that time. I think RTD phase 2 may throw more than a few people who are expecting more of the same a curveball. He’s not the same writer and these are certainly not the same times.

    It was a delight to see both RTD and Moffat engage with the lockdown watchalongs last year. They seemed energised by it all. Short stories, extra scenes, drawings, early scripts. However they protest, I don’t think those guys will ever stop wanting to tell Doctor Who stories. If that process got RTD energised again, perhaps we have something to add the ‘good stuff’ of Covid.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    I read that Russell T was returning and I was wondering if April 1st had come early. Then it got reported in the other papers.

    Well – I wasn’t expecting that, but definitely great news. He brings the best out in other writers (as well as being a bloody good writer himself).

    Sec1974 @sec1974

    I agree! Amazing news! So excited!! I just wish Eccleston and Davies could kiss and make up and somehow ressurect HIS doctor but I’m not going to hold my breath. And after reading comments that Matt Smith would come back if the timing was right is a bummer too since he’s in that new Game of Thrones spin-off. Doh!!! Oh well.

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord


    I’d say the odds of Olly Alexander as the next Doctor just shortened dramatically.

    I’m not so sure. I doubt RTD will want to return to YoungWhiteBloke territory plus Olly has a lot of irons in his fire to be taking on the life-consuming task of the Being The Doctor. I am hopeful though that it gives T’Nia Miller (currently top of my wishlist) dramatically shortened odds of getting the part. (Given that RTD had a future Doc who sounded really very like her indeed in his novelisation of Rose.)


    He brings the best out in other writers (as well as being a bloody good writer himself)

    Absolutely. As a manager of writers, I suspect he was better than Moffat and he’ll almost certainly be a massive improvement. I have only a couple of reservations, one of which I very much had even when he was showrunning before — and that was that Who is never really his best work and while he’s tied up running the show, we’re going to be denied the high-quality personal work of the likes of Years and Years and It’s a Sin. RTD to me is one of those figures (Chris Ecclestone and Jodie Whittaker being another two actually) who while not exactly being ‘too good’ for Who can’t fully play to their individual strengths within the confines of the show. It’s almost like they’re slightly forced to pull their creative punches.


    Yep, I think that’s all spot on. I definitely think that RTD and Moff got to tell stories that they’d been rehearsing in their heads for years and the Chibs didn’t really know what he wanted to do, didn’t even, in fact, have that firm a grasp on the character of the Doctor — to the point that he felt the need to rewrite her backstory. And as you say, Moff and RTD definitely still seem to have absolute love for the show. I’m not sure they’ll ever lose it.

    I think RTD phase 2 may throw more than a few people who are expecting more of the same a curveball

    I think so too. My other reservation about RTD was that he seemed to be running on fumes by the time he was going. He’d fallen back on Rose returning just one time too often and the year of the specials was a very mixed big indeed imo. But as you say, he’s had 12 years to ruminate on new ideas and it’s not as if the wider world hasn’t been given him plenty of food for thought. I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw an iteration of Who that isn’t even more socially engaged than it was last time he was in charge, given that seems to have been the direction of travel of much of his other work since.

    It’s very exciting though. If I were foolish enough to make predictions, I’d say we’re looking at a Tennant-focused 60th Special, with guest Docs (I’d like to that we’d get Ecclestone back but I’m sure he’s sworn never to work with RTD again). But it will, I’d guess, bring in a new Doc and then a new series that will initially be as pared back to basics as Ecclestone’s first one was till it finds its feet again.

    It would certainly be fascinating to know what’s been going on behind the scenes. The whole thing has that vibe of the family computer being taken back to the manufacturers to be returned to factory settings cos one of the teens tried to install some dodgy software and now all they can get is the BSOD.

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    @jimthefish I’m sure you’re right (although I image his odds have shortened at those stupid betting firms). I like your idea of T’Nia Miller. In a sense, there are almost an embarrassment of riches when it comes to actors who could do justice to the role with the right writer. Whittaker could have, but…

    I am particularly interested in how RTD is going to approach it the second time around, as the context of him taking on the role of showrunner is so very different this time.

    Missy @missy


    Thank goodness for that! The only news which (for me) could top this, is the return of Steven Moffat!

    As for Olly Alexander being the next Doctor (maybe) I don’t care. As long as it is a Male, British and he can act,

    I am content.

    As for JW, if she had been a good enough actress, she could have made up for the bad writing.

    The BBC have got some brains after all.


    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    Well,  well, well.   That one came out of the blue, didn’t it?

    Now maybe if Moffat can contribute a few episodes…

    I’ll sort of half-agree with Missy, I don’t really care who the Doctor is, so long as s/he is British and can act   😉

    (Hopefully the writing and direction will be taken care of with RTD in charge…)


    nerys @nerys

    Yippee! I saw this news on Facebook and immediately clicked on the “love” icon. What a relief to know that the good Doctor’s writing and direction are in good hands.

    I am saddened that Jodie Whittaker was generally let down by less-than-stellar writing, and who knows what all was going on behind the scenes. @phaseshift You provide a superb analysis for why this happened during Chris Chibnall’s time as showrunner. But, better days ahead!

    janetteB @janetteb

    @phaseshift did sum it up well. I think the BBC are desperate to keep Dr Who afloat and are turning back to “safe hands” but I am also certain that RTD has been watching Who and developing plenty of ideas of where he might go with it now. (And he is not the only showrunner returning to a former series…)

    like @dentarthurdent I half agree with Missy.”I don’t really care who the Doctor is, so long as s/he is British and can act.”

    The idea that Moffat might once again pen the odd episode also occurred to me. Fingers crossed.



    winston @winston

    I have liked JW as the Doctor and I am curious how RTD would have written for her. It might have been great. I have always felt that she would have been good in some of 10s adventures. The writing and directing has let her down sometimes but she also shines in many episodes.

    I agree that the Doctor has to be British and he\she should be a good actor but I have no idea “who” that should be. I am sure RTD will both surprise and impress us with his choice but lets have fun guessing and hoping for our favourite choices. I will have a think on it and get back to you.

    Meanwhile JW Doc is coming back with a new companion and I can’t wait!

    RTD is coming back.  Permission to squeeeeeeeeeee!

    Stay safe.

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    It seems that JW has just finished filming Who.

    Jodie Whittaker Wraps “Doctor Who” Filming

    Also read over at the Radio Times that Chibnall is the sole writer for (almost) all of Season 13.



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