Doctor Who ERA |OT| It's Almost Time... But Not Yet

#1
New forum, new Doctor, new home!

WHAT IS DOCTOR WHO?



Doctor Who is the long-running BBC sci-fi drama, about to celebrate its 54th birthday, which follows the adventures of the Doctor, a member of the ancient alien race known as the Time Lords. Rattling about the universe in their trusty TARDIS, a time machine in the shape of a classic 1960s Police Box, the Doctor and the friends and acquaintances that get taken along for the ride fight evil, get into trouble, and run down many, many corridors.

WHO IS DOCTOR WHO?


From left to right: William Hartnell (First Doctor (1963-1966, 1973)), Patrick Troughton (Second Doctor (1966-1969, 1973, 1983, 1985)), Jon Pertwee (Third Doctor (1970-1974, 1983)), Tom Baker (Fourth Doctor (1974-1981), Christopher Eccleston (Ninth Doctor (2005)), Matt Smith (Eleventh Doctor (2010-2013)), Peter Capaldi (Twelfth Doctor (2013-2017)), David Tennant (Tenth Doctor (2005-2010, 2013)), Sir John Hurt (War Doctor (2013)), Paul McGann (Eighth Doctor (1996, 2013)), Sylvester McCoy (Seventh Doctor (1987-1989, 1996)), Colin Baker (Sixth Doctor (1984-1986)) and Peter Davison (Fifth Doctor (1981-1984, 2007)).

One of Doctor Who's defining characteristics is its potential for reinvention and reinterpretation. Time Lords can regenerate in order to cheat their own deaths, and the Doctor is no different, periodically changing their face as new actors are cast in the lead role. The most recent Doctor is Peter Capaldi, the 59-year-old Scottish actor previously best known as Malcolm Tucker in the celebrated BBC political comedy The Thick of It, as well as its cinematic spin-off In The Loop.

However, times change, and so must he; Capaldi announced his departure from the role early last year, and in mid-July his replacement was announced as Jodie Whittaker, star of Broadchurch and the first woman to play the role in the programme's history. The events of the series 10 finale, World Enough and Time/The Doctor Falls, left him mortally wounded and fighting off his regeneration; he regenerated in the 2017 Christmas Special Twice Upon A Time, leaving Whittaker to take over for series 11, beginning in Autumn 2018.



Capaldi, of course, is not the first actor to play the role- there have been thirteen main actors to play the role since the series' beginnings (William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, Paul McGann, Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, Matt Smith, and Sir John Hurt as a one-off Doctor between McGann and Eccleston in the 50th anniversary special), and Capaldi's Twelfth Doctor will be appearing alongside the First Doctor in the upcoming Christmas Special; the First Doctor, originally portrayed by William Hartnell, was played by David Bradley in Twice Upon A Time.

WHO ARE DOCTOR WHO'S FRIENDS AND COMPANIONS?

Doctor Who has generally (but not always) featured a few characters who travel in the TARDIS alongside the Doctor has co-leads for the programme. Although his name is in the title, it is rare that the Doctor is the sole main character of the series; the companion tends to be the audience's surrogate into the action, and serves to humanise both the Doctor, and the rest of the programme in general.



In series 10, there were two main companions- Bill Potts, as played by Pearl Mackie, and Nardole, as played by Matt Lucas. Bill was a student at the university where the Doctor was teaching, while Nardole was assisting him in keeping his arch-enemy imprisoned under the university- it's a looooong story. Bill was eventually converted into a Cyberman before being transformed into a space-faring, time-travelling being by her girlfriend who had undergone a similar transformation when we first met her (it's a LOOOOOONG story), whereas Nardole was last seen protecting a village of colonists from a Cyberman invasion. We already know that Mackie is returning for the upcoming Christmas Special, so we know her story's not yet done, but it has already been announced that Twice Upon a Time will be her last appearance. In addition to this, Mark Gatiss, long-time Doctor Who writer and collaborator with Steven Moffat, will be played an as-yet undisclosed character in the Christmas Special.

Beginning in series 11, Jodie Whittaker's Doctor will be travelling with a new, wider group of friends. These are;
  • Graham, as played by Bradley Walsh
  • Ryan, as played by Tosin Cole, and
  • Yasmin, as played by Mandip Gill.

Almost nothing about these characters is known yet, but the TARDIS is going to be as crowded as it ever has been with the three of them joining the Doctor.

WHAT'S ON THE HORIZON FOR THE SHOW?

We are on the brink of a huge change of direction for the programme. Twice Upon A Time is the last episode to be made with Steven Moffat as the showrunner and head writer, a position he's held since series 5 back in 2010. Series 11, which is going to go into production over the next week or two as of the time of writing, will be overseen by Chris Chibnall, creator of Broadchurch, showrunner of Torchwood series 1 and 2, and writer of Doctor Who episodes such as Dinosaurs on a Spaceship and The Power of Three. We know almost nothing about the direction that Chibnall wishes to take the show in, but we do know that the episode count is set to drop from 12 per series to 10, albeit with a slight increase in running time to offset the losses. Beyond that, it's a mystery- exactly the sort of thing Doctor Who thrives upon.

WHAT ELSE IS THERE?

Don't let the fifty-four years of history intimidate you- Doctor Who has a habit of building in natural jumping-on points that anyone can join from. The most obvious is the start of the modern era, beginning in 2005 with Rose, written by Russell T. Davies and starring Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper, but other starting points include The Eleventh Hour, the first episode of series 5, written by Steven Moffat and starring Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill, or The Pilot, the first episode of series 10, written by Steven Moffat and starring Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie and Matt Lucas. The new series is available on Amazon Prime in the US and up to series 8 is on Netflix in the UK. All series of the new series are also available in various On Demand formats.

Our spoiler policy is a simple one; as soon as an episode has aired on BBC One, it is fair game for discussion without spoiler tags. If there is material officially released by the BBC, such as a trailer or a press release, it is also fair game for open discussion. For set reports or leaks, use spoiler tags.

IS IT DOCTOR WHO, OR THE DOCTOR?

Honestly, don't worry about it. Either works. :)

 
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#15
Truly a loss that the Time [To Change Forum] War wiped our memories of discussing the new TARDIS team. Please take my 'WHAT? WHAT? WHAATTTTT?' retrospectively. Anyway! A gang thing is fine.

10 episodes is a bit meh, but 10 tighter focused ones, a bit more on the episode length, fingers crossed it pays off.
 
#18
The next big thing I am looking forward to is the costume reveal.
I'm hoping they're shooting somewhere public pretty soon just so they'll reveal it asap.
Problem for me is that I really dig the costume Capaldi's wearing going into the christmas special, and I think it'll actually suit Jodie a lot

Oh, also, I was rewatching Journey Into the TARDIS the other day. I don't think they'll have the money, but it'd be nice if the new TARDIS had more rooms that are incorporated regularly next year.
 
#20
Excited to see what comes next. Whitaker's casting has really gotten me interested to see next season. Only 10 episodes is a shame, although they're 5 minutes longer, so it's more like 11 episodes running time wise.
 
#21
So is this the season The Rani returns? I love whenever a woman is cast, and her role isn't immediately announced, such as Sharon D Clarke, people immediately say that they'll be The Rani.
 

PlanetSmasher

The Abominable Showman
Member
#23
Disappointing that the show's dropping to 10 episodes, but I promised myself that I would give Chibs and Jodie one season to make the show their own before I start getting overly critical. They deserve at least that much!

Gonna miss Twelve, though. Capaldi is my favorite Doctor and it's going to take something positively Herculean to unseat him from that top spot.
 
#24
So is this the season The Rani returns? I love whenever a woman is cast, and her role isn't immediately announced, such as Sharon D Clarke, people immediately say that they'll be The Rani.
Of course Sharon D Clarke isn't The Rani.

She's Romana.

(Also, it has to be said, regarding both those Gallifreyans: surely by now we're at the point where we shouldn't need the 'is a woman' requirement to start imagining people are The Rani or Romana?)

But Bradley Walsh is clearly The Meddling Monk
 
#30
I would imagine Whitaker wouldn't have a full costume until the middle of the first episode or at least the second.
They don't necessarily film the opening episodes first, though.

Hello Who-ERA! After a very solid series 10, I'm really excited for the change of pace series 11 will bring. Just wish it wasn't still a year off!
 
#36
A lot of stuff coming out of the GirlyLetters twitter/#dwsr.

The director of the opening block is Jamie Childs
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923628821370277889

They are filming in an airplane hangar

https://twitter.com/GirlyLetters/status/923726856658006016

Episode 1 is 65 minutes long
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923814983875653632

Opening block is episodes 1 and 7
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923793157342539777

Asha Kingsley is playing a character named Sonia in the opening block
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923790899259367424
 

PlanetSmasher

The Abominable Showman
Member
#37
Quality over quantity :)
We'll see! I'm not a fan of Chibs' work, so I'm not expecting much yet.

Especially considering the episodes will probably have to be cut down for US audiences, the "less episodes, but longer episodes" change doesn't seem like a great move. Hopefully BBCA can find a way to not chop them up.
 
#39
A lot of stuff coming out of the GirlyLetters twitter/#dwsr.

The director of the opening block is Jamie Childs
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923628821370277889

They are filming in an airplane hangar

https://twitter.com/GirlyLetters/status/923726856658006016

Episode 1 is 65 minutes long
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923814983875653632

Opening block is episodes 1 and 7
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923793157342539777

Asha Kingsley is playing a character named Sonia in the opening block
https://twitter.com/Ruther2/status/923790899259367424
Starting with 1 and 7? Quite far apart. But it does mean we'll definitely get a look at the final costume sooner rather than later!

I thought "The Hungry Earth" and "Cold Blood" were great episodes.
They were decent. I know more people disliked than liked them... Decent but unremarkable is really how I'd describe pretty much most of his work on the show so far.
I hope he manages to blow us away, but right now I'm just expecting consistency out of the new season. Fewer ups and downs, but no more high highs like Moffat's run**

**which admittedly also had pretty low lows but I always felt the highs were worth it
 

PlanetSmasher

The Abominable Showman
Member
#40
They were decent. I know more people disliked than liked them... Decent but unremarkable is really how I'd describe pretty much most of his work on the show so far.
I hope he manages to blow us away, but right now I'm just expecting consistency out of the new season. Fewer ups and downs, but no more high highs like Moffat's run**

**which admittedly also had pretty low lows but I always felt the highs were worth it
I really disliked the Power of Three, but I was already burnt out on the Ponds (and Smith) by the time it happened.

Moffat is definitely the kind of showrunner who could either deliver really good stuff or irredeemable crap depending on his mood, but I suppose that's part of the process when you're as crazy as he is.

Chibs seems a lot more middle-of-the-road, so I don't expect any Heaven Sent-level masterpieces during his run, but I also don't expect any Sleep No More-level disasters either.
 
#42
THE
VALEYARD
WILL
NEVER
COME
BACK
I will forever root for the Valeyard's return while simultaneously telling everyone that their Valeyard return theories are baseless and implausible.

Quality over quantity :)
Doesn't the total runtime of these extended episodes actually amount to more than the previous series, even though there are fewer episodes?
WWWWWWWWWWUH OH!
(Kidding)
 

PlanetSmasher

The Abominable Showman
Member
#43
The Power of Three really made it abundantly clear that every time a companion says something along the lines of "I'm not going anywhere" (Clara) or "I'll travel with him forever" (Donna), they're pretty much guaranteed to leave the show within the next couple of episodes.

The rest of the episode is almost entirely unremarkable, but it is at least amusing for being the most obvious example of "character decides to stay with the Doctor forever, gets written out of the show a week later" in the reboot era.
 
#45
It would actually be 30 minutes shorter than season 10
I guess that depends on how you consider the christmas specials.

Mysterio is being sold as part of series 10, so I guess Twice Upon a Time will get lumped in with series 11 and will be at least one hour. So excluding specials, that's 9hrs20min (s10) vs 10hrs (s11). Including them, that's 10hrs20min (s10) vs 11hrs (s11).

However it remains to be seen if the BBC will get greedy and decide to exclusively sell this year's christmas special standalone, despite the past few specials being also included in the series sets. They've been known to be sort of inconsistent with them in the past. Were that to happen, it would indeed be 10hrs20min (s10) vs 10hrs (s11).

I guess the conclusion I've come to is this: It doesn't actually matter and I was just making a joke, but I still got curious about the math so I did it.

Edit: It's all WRONG. I've been informed that the reports of full hour episodes are LIES and that they are actually only 5 minutes longer at 50min. Sad trombone.
 
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#46
I guess that depends on how you consider the christmas specials.

Mysterio is being sold as part of series 10, so I guess Twice Upon a Time will get lumped in with series 11 and will be at least one hour. So excluding specials, that's 9hrs20min (s10) vs 10hrs (s11). Including them, that's 10hrs20min (s10) vs 11hrs (s11).

However it remains to be seen if the BBC will get greedy and decide to exclusively sell this year's christmas special standalone, despite the past few specials being also included in the series sets. They've been known to be sort of inconsistent with them in the past. Were that to happen, it would indeed be 10hrs20min (s10) vs 10hrs (s11).

I guess the conclusion I've come to is this: It doesn't actually matter and I was just making a joke, but I still got curious about the math so I did it.
I believe that Twice Upon A Time is considered part of Series 10, just because it's Moffat's and his production team's last episode.
 
#48
I believe that Twice Upon A Time is considered part of Series 10, just because it's Moffat's and his production team's last episode.
But they're finally releasing the s10 "complete series" set and it's not included! Damn you BBC! You're probably right.

This means that they're going to sell it standalone, arent they? I hate aberrations in my collection.
 

PlanetSmasher

The Abominable Showman
Member
#49
It is basically the Moffat version of The End of Time, so I can see why they'd treat it like a big standalone thing.

Oh, Peter. It's going to hurt so much to watch you go.
 
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