Friday, January 22, 2016

Today, news broke out that Steven Moffat would be leaving Doctor Who in 2017, giving up showrunner duties to former Doctor Who and Torchwood writer Chris Chibnall.  Furthermore , in 2016 it was also announced that there would only be one episode of Doctor Who, a Christmas special before Series 10 starts in spring of 2017. Below are my extended thoughts about all of the Doctor Who-related news.

First of - Moffat's leaving. I have never been a huge fan of Steven Moffat's though I do think he has written some great episodes of Who. As for his seasons as showrunner, it has been hit and miss especially his last two with Peter Capaldi as the Twelfth Doctor. I was not a fan of series 8 for the most part while this last season was one of the best Who seasons since Tennant's run as The Doctor. During Moffat's run as showrunner, he has written a ton of the episodes and had hit a creative peak with Hell Bent and Heaven Sent , bidding farewell to Jenna Coleman's Clara in a run that some  people considered the best of new Who.

I think that this is a good time for Moffat to bow out. When he finishes 2017, he will have been in charge of Who for 7 years. His mark on the show will not be forgotten but he has also has his detractors who think he has ruined Doctor Who. Even though it is not the reason he's leaving, that has get to a person in time. Also since 2010 as well Moffat has worked on Sherlock and will continue to do so this year (as much as Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman schedules allow) and that also puts a strain on him. So Moffat is right to go out while still producing quality work and can focus on new projects in the future.

Second - What about Capaldi? Peter has been dropping hints about season 10 possibly being his last as the Doctor. Now if this would happen, it would be almost unanimous disappointment from all Doctor Who fans. Sadly I think this might be happening for a couple reasons. One is that by the end of season 10 , Peter will have been The Doctor for 3 seasons and a special, close to Tennant's run and as much as Matt Smith's run. That's a good run for anybody and Peter would be happy to go out at the top of his Doctor game.

The other big reason and the one I think will happen is that since Moffat is leaving , that Peter will leave with him. I think this is likely to happen as Peter could show a sense of loyalty and go with Steven in 2017. I personally hope he stays for another season after 2017 but will not blame Capaldi if this is his choice (and I really hope he gets to make the decision and is not forced into one.)

Third - no episodes for 2016 except a Christmas Special. This is one you can not blame on Moffat as this was a decision by the BBC. I'm very disappointed about this though I hope it gives Moffat more time to be able to work on both Doctor Who and Sherlock and make them the best they can possible be for 2017.

Finally, the new showrunner : Chris Chibnall. Now mostly known for being the creator of Broadchurch, he has written a few episodes of Doctor Who and a lot of Torchwood episodes (A spin-off of Doctor Who for those who have not watched it). His Torchwood episodes are really good in my opinion while his Doctor Who ones are good to pretty bad (Dinosaurs on a Spaceship - Woof). I think he can be a fine showrunner as long as he surrounds himself with the best writers possible (go with a good bit of season 9's writers starting with Sarah Dollard "Face the Raven") and he could be helped out by Peter Capaldi staying though.

So in short, Doctor Who is not going to die. It might take a long vacation in 2016 but it will return with a vengeance in 2017 for Moffat's final year. Doctor Who has become a world-wide phenomenon , thanks some to Steven Moffat and regardless of your thoughts good or bad of him, let's wish him the best and hope he can produce a spectacular Series 10 for all of us to enjoy.

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