Saturday, January 30, 2016

Doctor Who Future Continuity - Revision 4

Since it's been a while since I've done a future continuity post, here's a little reminder of what this article actually is. I'm basically going to try to guess what's coming up in the future of Doctor Who. This is not based on any inside information from the BBC, I'm as in the dark as any other fan.

First off, what we do know
  • Season 10 is Steven Moffat's last and will air in spring 2017
  • The only regular episode this year will be the Christmas special
  • Chris Chibnall will take over as showrunner in season 11, due for 2018
  • The spin-off series Class will air on BBC Three & BBC America in fall of this year
  • So far, Class has no cast members, but it has a writer in the form of Patrick Ness
  • Both shows will film sometime this year (rumors point to April/May)
  • Peter Capaldi will be in season 10, no word on who his companion is
Now for the fun part. This time around, there's a lot more to speculate on then there has been in the past.

If we follow the convention of David and Matt, then Peter should stick around for three seasons spread across four years. That puts his regeneration at the end of season 10 (if we follow convention even more, in the Christmas special, however that may fall under Chibnall). This allows the introduction of a new Doctor to line up perfectly with the introduction of a new showrunner. My personal choices for 13th Doctor are Hayley Atwell or Tatiana Maslany. They both have shows currently going on, but they're only 10 episodes a year, which leaves room for Doctor Who's extra 13. However, all three shows are spring ones, so something would have to move if one of these actresses wants both parts. I did hear that Orphan Black had five seasons planned out, so that would end it in time for Tat to become the Doctor. On the other hand, Supernatural also had five seasons planned when it first started, and look at it now.

Season 10 is going to mark the introduction of the new companion. I don't really have any particular actresses in mind for the part (except maybe Alison Scagliotti). I do however, have some strong opinions on the character. Mostly, I do not want yet another 21st century Earth chick. Every companion since Peri (except for Jack and River) has been from contemporary Earth. All but two were from somewhere in Britain. A little more variety would be nice. My first choice would be someone from colonial America. Another idea, which I read in a fan fic, is a college student from the future (preferably not the 51st century AGAIN) on a trip to early 21st century London. The thing is, she doesn't admit to being from the future right away. It'd be even more interesting if she time jumped illegally and hid it from the Doctor because she thought he was a time agent. Alternately, bring back Jenny (the Time Lady one).

Another thing that will be interesting is how the companion casting plays into the new showrunner. Chibnall will probably want at least one of the main characters to be his own, but the question is whether that's the Doctor, companion, or both. The companion from season 10 might not be the one from season 11. There is precedent for both no companion stories and single episode companions. However, I feel like ratings would drop if we had a full season with no companion. That leaves a few options: 1) new companion in season 10 who stays for 11, 2) new companion in 10 who stays for one season, 3) new companion in 10 with an additional companion added in 11, and 4) bring back an old companion for 10 and don't cast until 11. I think it'd be hilarious to see the Doctor try to keep control over Missy, Jack, and River all at the same time. I also like the idea of adding a second companion into the mix in season 11 as it's been too long since we had a proper TARDIS Team®.

As for the story arc, I feel like anything's possible. They've more or less resolved all the major questions that have been hanging over our heads since Moffat started. Since Chibnall undoubtedly will be doing his own story arc, season 10 will probably be something minor and inconsequential. I hope Moffat doesn't do another story arc centered around the companion like he did with Clara in season 7. Doing the same thing two characters in a row is just lazy writing.

I hope Clara at least cameos in Class. I know Jenna probably wants to move on with her life and do other things, but she should be in at least one scene (even if it's just a flashback). According to IMDB, Jenna doesn't have anything lined up after she finishes filming Victoria, so it's possible she could have a major role. It just depends on when Victoria finishes filming compared to when Class starts. Now if she showed up alongside her wife, Ashildr, and Ian Chesterton, that would be awesome.

Can we get Torchwood in live action again? I mean, I know they have those new Big Finish stories, but give me some television. I don't even need a full season 5, though that would be awesome. Just have the characters show up for a single story in season 10.

Speaking of spin-offs, there's no reason to stop at one. There seems to be lots of fan support (on Tumblr, at least) for a Clashildr spin-off. In case you're confused by the portmanteau, it's about the adventures of space wives Clara and Ashildr flying around spacetime in their retro diner. I also would love an MA-rated show about Jack, Missy, and River living/sleeping together in Missy's TARDIS. Then there's that long-awaited Jenny spin-off.

You know what else comes out in 2017? Star Trek. RTD was totally planning on doing a crossover with Enterprise way back in 2005, but they canceled that show. These shows are some of the most popular sci-fi programs on television, doing a crossover would only help ratings. As long as the story was good, I doubt most of the fans would complain (except for the ones who take any excuse to do so). The only real hurdles would be legal ones.

Another crossover I would love is with Arrow. John Barrowman, Alex Kingston, and Arthur Darvill are all already on that show, so it would make for something interesting story lines. It would have to be done with Arrow taking place in a alternate universe that Jack and River are either stuck or vacationing in. Bonus points if the Doctor doesn't realize he's in a parallel universe for a while/is convinced the TARDIS still can't travel between dimensions.

One things fans have been asking for for ages is more TARDIS interior scenes. So far, we've seen lots of the console room and very little else. This would not be that hard to factor into an episode. They don't even have to do an entire story devoted to it like Journey to the Center of the TARDIS. All it would take is lots of little scenes across the course of the season. We could have things like the Doctor barging into the companion's room at 7am to drag them off on an adventure, the Doctor and companion discussing the day's plans over breakfast in the TARDIS' kitchen, or them just hanging out in the library for whatever reason. Alternately, when they introduce the new companion, they could show the Doctor giving her a tour of the TARDIS. I mean, I imagine he does that with every companion, but we never get to see it.

I think this post may have turned into more of a wishlist than realistic predictions, but oh well, I was going to write one of those anyway.

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