By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)
As the new era of Doctor Who begins with thirteenth Doctor Jodie Whitaker about to redecorate the TARDIS (and yes, we won’t like it), there’s a ton of Who news that includes the possibility that the BBC may release the entire series 11 for bingeworthy fans. Would it work?
Production of series 11 of Doctor Who is in full swing, with a new cast following the lead of head writer and show runner Chris Chibnall. In addition to the historic casting of Whitaker as the first female Doctor, other members to round out the cast include a trio of companions that include Bradley Walsh, Mandip Gill and Tosin Cole.
But with a brief 10 episode season, the talk is that the BBC is considering releasing the series all in one take in October on their streaming service BBC iPlayer, as well as other streaming options like Netflix or Amazon Prime. The rumor stems from a BBC Showcase event in Liverpool recently, where the show runner mentioned he’s been having talks with Netflix, iTunes and Amazon about how viewer habits are evolving. According to recent statistics, more TV viewers are cord cutting, preferring to binge their favorite TV series in large, mini series like gulps.
Even former Who general Steven Moffat says the idea of binging a season of Who is albeit inevitable. “I think the idea of dropping a whole series [of Doctor Who] and letting people find it, letting people watch it and binge it – I think it’s coming,” Moffat told Digital Spy.”People are showing a marked preference for bingeing, we all are. I think the day is coming, because the audience are actually in control and the audience are demonstrating a preference.”
Frankly, I think that’s a bit ambitious. Although series 11 will be a shorter, ten episode season, it’s also going to be longer, with a stream worthy length of 50 minutes. That’s a plus in favor of binging, since commercial breaks would make the show nearly an hour and a half. But while the series is in the fourth month of a 9 month shoot for principal photography you have to add post production for the effects heavy British sci-fi series. I don’t think all ten episodes would be available by October, but there may be the first half, with a mid season finale. That’s certainly doable, though. On top of that, the Beeb is moving Who from Saturday night to Sunday, to make room for Strictly Come Dancing, which is huge in the Fall.
In other WhoNews, Michelle Gomez was asked if her death at the end of Series 10 was really the end of the line for Missy and the Master. Speaking to Doctor Who again, Gomez hinted that Missy may yet have another life up her sleeve. “Even though, for now, she has been laid to rest, I don’t think she’s ever going to be that far away. I loved playing this character so much, and it was really hard to see her go. But I think that in many different shapes and forms, she will be back.”
Gomez went on to say though, that going up against Whitaker’s 13th would be somewhat of a different experience. “I don’t know about being a Master to another Doctor,” Gomez said. “I feel very loyal to Peter and I don’t know how that would work, but I am willing to find out at a later date.”
Lastly, we have tidbit about 9th Doctor Christopher Eccleston, who launched the current incarnation of the series for a single series back in 2005. Speaking to The Guardian, Eccleston said that leaving the show after only one season nearly scuttled his career. Eccleston said that once he left, the BBC “blacklisted him” and was hesitant to give him another role. “I was told by my agent at the time: ‘The BBC regime is against you. You’re going to have to get out of the country and wait for regime change,” Eccleston said.
That explains why we saw Eccleston in several US based films, including GI Joe: Rise of the Cobra, and “Thor: The Dark World,” (both of which weren’t Eccleston’s finest performances). “G.I. Joe and Thor were … I really paid for being a whore those times,” Eccleston said. Hey, you gotta pay the bills, Chris!
Now he’s back on the Beeb with a plum role in MacBeth, and while he turned down a chance to reprise his role as Number 9 for the 50th anniversary special, maybe the next time around he’ll step in the TARDIS again. But I rather doubt it.