'Doctor Who' Will Go Through Big Changes Soon — But What Do They Mean For The Show?
There have been a couple of big announcements for Whovians in the past 24 hours: One, show runner Steven Moffat announced he's leaving Doctor Who after the show's tenth season — and two, that tenth season won't air until 2017. Moffat has been running the show since 2010, but now he will be replaced by Chris Chibnall, who has written for Doctor Who and the ITV crime series Broadchurch. Moffat said in a statement:
Feels odd to be talking about leaving when I’m just starting work on the scripts for season 10, but the fact is my timey-wimey is running out. While Chris is doing his last run of ‘Broadchurch,’ I’ll be finishing up on the best job in the universe and keeping the TARDIS warm for him.
In addition to his work on Doctor Who, Moffat is the co-creator of Sherlock, starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Many fans of both Sherlock and Doctor Who will likely miss Moffat's Doctor Who touch, and it's difficult to determine for sure what a post-Moffat Doctor Who will look like — especially since it's such a long ways away. After all, Moffat still has this year's Christmas special, as well as Season 10 next year. However, here are some guesses about changes that will come with the eleventh season.
Less Fan Service
Moffat is known to fan service, the term for when creators and writers give fans what they want to see in a show. This isn't necessarily a bad thing — an example of this is creating sexual tension or romantic encounters between two characters whom fans want to see get together.
Moffat's shows are full of intricate plot twists and layering, often to phenomenal effect. I imagine that anyone following up Moffat might try to simplify things a little bit, if only because all those threads are difficult for most people to tie up.
More Complex Female Characters
A problem that many fans have with Moffat's writing is that the female characters seem to be flirty badass interchangeable templates — unrelated to the real world women most of them are supposed to represent. I hope that women we haven't seen before will appear in new seasons, especially since we're due for a new companion.
Part of me loves all the little jokes in Doctor Who that wink at the audience. Part of me finds them a little quippy and smug. I hope that upcoming seasons of Doctor Who will ease up on the cleverness a little, or use humor in a different way.
Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed many episodes of Moffat's Doctor Who seasons. Still, I'm excited to see where Chibnall takes the series in the many years, and many dimensions, to come.
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