Doctor Who fan LOUISE WILSON on her hopes and fears for the Season 13 Halloween launch.
Hi! I’m Louise, and I am a big fan of Doctor Who. With the new series premiering on Halloween, I thought it would be fun to have a weekly review blog where I talk about what I like, what I don’t, and pretty much anything in-between. So, before Doctor Who: Flux officially kicks off, I thought I would write something of a pre-transmission piece to outline my hopes and fears for our last full series with the 13th Doctor.
My biggest apprehension when it comes to Doctor Who in recent years lies with the current head writer, Chris Chibnall. I’ve written about my thoughts on Chibnall’s era before, but the gist is that I’m not a fan. His characterisation of both the Doctor and their companions is completely lacklustre and considering we’re entering our third series of this era; I still feel like I don’t know any of them. With the addition of new companion Dan (John Bishop), my fear is that we’re still getting quantity over quality.
My second concern is how much time this series is going to spend dealing with the aftermath of Series 12. I know some people liked it, but in all honesty I’d rather the whole thing get swept under the rug. The Doctor, in my opinion, is not the main character in this show. Yes, it is literally called Doctor Who, but each series arc tends to revolve around a companion. Doctor Who hasn’t really been about the Doctor in years, and I think that is one of the reasons why Chibnall’s era has yet to work. He puts too much emphasis on the title character when the story should focus on how the Doctor effects the lives of the people around them. My worry is that this pattern will continue as Chibnall tries to wrap up his ‘Timeless Child’ arc from the previous series, overshadowing any improvements he could be making instead.
Right, let’s get this one out of the way. I am really excited to see Liverpool in Doctor Who. I’ve loved how active the city has been in the promotional material, and as someone who is both from Merseyside and a lifelong Doctor Who fan, seeing the Tardis parked up around the Albert Dock earlier this year made me very, very, happy. As apprehensive as I was when John Bishop was announced as the newest companion, the prospect of a scouser facing off with the Sontarans is long overdue.
Secondly, it was announced earlier this year that instead of this series being made up of several stand-alone episodes, each ep would link together like one big film. This gives me hope because I think Chris Chibnall is trying to play to his strengths. Broadchurch is not only Chibnall’s best piece of writing, but it is also one of the best British dramas broadcast in recent years. It follows a similar concept of one overarching story spread across several episodes, and my hope is that the familiarity of that style of writing with work in Chibnall’s favour.
Finally, my predictions. My bingo card for Series 13. Created with the help of my six-year-old sister, some squares I have evidence for, others are complete wild guesses. By any means, I’ll refer to this bingo card as the weeks go on and see where I guessed right.
Written by Louise Wilson