Russell T. Davies returns to ‘Doctor Who’

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ and I’m Tim Bradley!

So…this happened!

Yeah! After 13 years since he left the TV show in 2009, Russell T. Davies is returning to be ‘Doctor Who’s showrunner again for the 60th anniversary in 2023 and the series beyond. I’m not going to lie; this was something I didn’t expect. I’m quite amazed that RTD is returning to run the show again.

Russell T. Davies was ‘Doctor Who’s showrunner from 2005 to 2009 (And no, I’m not including 2010, even though ‘Part Two’ of ‘The End of Time’ was shown on New Year’s Day in 2010). RTD is the man responsible for reviving ‘Doctor Who’ back onto our TV screens for audiences and new fans to enjoy.

Over the years, I’ve expressed high praise for RTD’s talents as a writer and a showrunner. The Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant eras run by him were magical times for me when I was getting into ‘Doctor Who’ as a young fan. I still consider Series 4 to be the best season of RTD’s era. 🙂

So naturally when the news came that RTD would not only take over from Chris Chibnall as showrunner but also handle the 60th anniversary celebrations of ‘Doctor Who’, I, like many others, got a buzz. I can’t deny but feel quite excited about RTD returning to show-run ‘Doctor Who’ again. 🙂

With that said, I can’t deny feeling a little apprehensive about it too.

(Audience boos)

Hear me out! I’m not saying having RTD back as ‘Doctor Who’s showrunner is a huge mistake. Far from it! RTD has proven to be a good head writer/executive producer not just on ‘Doctor Who’ but also on TV shows made before and after he was the ‘Doctor Who‘ showrunner from 2005 to 2009. 🙂

RTD has kept himself busy over the years with shows like ‘It’s a Sin’. He continues to be enthusiastic about ‘Doctor Who’ by doing the ‘Rose’ Target novelization, writing stories for the ‘Doctor Who: Lockdown’ 2020 season and collaborating with Big Finish in their audio productions. 🙂

There’s no denying RTD still has love and passion for ‘Doctor Who’, even after leaving the showrunner post in 2009. In the words of Mr. Spock from ‘Star Trek’, I find it ‘fascinating’ that the upcoming neo-RTD era of ‘Doctor Who’ is happening. It’s something I never thought I’d conceive. 😀

At the same time though, I can’t help feel that the upcoming neo-RTD era might end up becoming like…well, ‘The Hobbit’ film trilogy after ‘The Lord of the Rings’ films were made. Not that I’m trying to compare RTD to ‘The Hobbit’ films. I’m just uncertain the neo-RTD era will be good as the original.

When I saw the original 2005-2009 run of ‘Doctor Who’ under RTD’s reign, I was a naïve and enthusiastic fan that didn’t know any better. Nowadays, I’ve grown to learn more about ‘Doctor Who’ and how it works, especially after having lived through the Steven Moffat and Chris Chibnall eras.

I’m not the same ‘Doctor Who’ fan that I was back in 2008. Things have changed in terms of how I perceive ‘Doctor Who’. I find that a variety of opinions don’t always match to how I perceive it. I’m apprehensive that RTD’s upcoming neo-era won’t meet my expectations compared to the original era. 😦

Now, I’d like to think I’m wrong on this. Maybe RTD will surprise me as he often does with his ‘Doctor Who’ writing. I found his ‘Rose’ Target novelization more engaging than Steven Moffat’s ‘Day of the Doctor’ novelization. I also enjoyed reading the original ‘Damaged Books’ book by RTD. 🙂

But there are times when I felt let down by RTD, especially when he wrote ‘Farewell, Sarah Jane’. I don’t know if RTD will answer my questions about whether Nyssa and Tegan are a couple or not. If he does answer them in his neo-era, will they be satisfying answers? Can he win me over like before?

I’ve also noticed RTD, whilst highly-praised as a ‘Doctor Who’ writer, can on a few occasions disappoint fans. This is the case when he wrote ‘Love & Monsters’ (even though I find merit in that story). He can also impress fans with an episode like ‘Midnight’ (even though I’m not a big fan of it).

And no, I’m not trying to single out RTD as the only ‘Doctor Who’ writer/producer who can produce good and bad stories in his era. Other writers/producers have the ability to do that from both classic and new eras. Even Steven Moffat and Chris Chibnall can produce good and bad stories in their eras.

There are also people from the classic TV series who have returned to the show before. Barry Letts returned to be ‘Doctor Who’s executive producer for Seasons 18 and 19 when John Nathan-Turner started as the show’s producer. Terrance Dicks has often returned to the classic show many times. 🙂

As well as being a freelance writer in contributing certain stories to certain seasons after being the script editor of Jon Pertwee’s era, Terrance Dick also wrote ‘The Five Doctors’ – the 20th anniversary special. Maybe RTD will be the new Terrance Dicks when he’s handling the 60th anniversary special.

I don’t want to judge RTD too quickly before his neo-era starts. These are just initial anxieties I have about whether the neo-RTD era will be as good as his original run from 2005 to 2009. Maybe it will be good. It’s hard to say. Perhaps RTD’s 60th anniversary special will be better than ‘The Day of the Doctor’.

Hopefully it will. There was a time when I thought it would have been better if RTD wrote the 50th anniversary instead of Steven Moffat. Maybe he will do well when it comes to handling the 60th anniversary celebrations. I’m just getting a sense of trepidation and that I’m walking on fragile glass.

I would like to think RTD can persuade Jodie Whittaker to return to the 50th anniversary before we get introduced to the Fourteenth Doctor. In terms of who would be cast as the Fourteenth Doctor, it’s undetermined at present. But I would like to think RTD has already set out the groundwork here.

In his ‘Rose’ Target novelization, RTD introduced the idea that future Doctors came after Jodie Whittaker, including ‘a tall, bald black woman wielding a flaming sword’ and a ‘young girl or boy in a hi-tech wheelchair with what looked like a robot dog at their side’. Maybe this will happen in future.

Perhaps Josette Simon (from ‘Blake’s 7’) will be cast to play the Fourteenth Doctor in ‘Doctor Who’ after Jodie Whittaker, as I predicted in my review on the ‘Rose’ Target novelization. Who knows? Perhaps RTD will go in a totally different direction in terms of how he handles his upcoming neo-era.

I’m pleased to hear the news that Russell T. Davies is coming back to show-run ‘Doctor Who’ again. I’m hoping his neo-era will be good and that it will reinvigorate the show. At the same time though, I can’t help feel nervous. I’m praying that the neo-RTD era won’t end up becoming underwhelming. 😐

I know I should have more optimism about how a ‘Doctor Who’ season is going to turn out. Like always, I hope to have an open-mind and identify positives and negatives about the upcoming era. It’s amazing to have RTD back in ‘Doctor Who’ and I hope he and the Fourteenth Doctor will do well.

Incidentally, I’ve pre-ordered ‘Mind of the Hodiac’ by Russell T. Davies from Big Finish, starring Colin Baker and Bonnie Langford. I’ve also pre-ordered the ‘Dark Season’ novelization audiobook by RTD from Big Finish. I’m hoping to check out those audios and the ‘Dark Season’ TV serial on YouTube soon. 🙂

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim. 🙂

2 thoughts on “Russell T. Davies returns to ‘Doctor Who’

  1. Williams Fan 92

    Hello Tim.

    It will definitely be interesting to see what RTD has in store for his second stint as showrunner of ‘Doctor Who’. His era of the show has to be among the best. I haven’t yet seen ‘Love and Monsters’, but I have seen ‘Midnight’ and I enjoyed it. I think there should be a special edition of ‘Farewell Sarah Jane’. Maybe the 60th anniversary special should be written by more than one person to make it good. It’s hard to think of who they should cast as the 14th Doctor. Maybe I’ll wait and see who they cast.

    I said on your Whittaker and Chibnall post that I am not that fond of the 13th Doctor era. I definitely think toxic fandom influenced that as you mentioned. Maybe one day I’ll rewatch S11 and 12 with an open mind and not let other people’s opinions influence me. I’d have to rank 13 above 11, 12, 6 and 7. Originally 13 was ranked third worst but I’ve decided to move her up. I’ll share my ranking of each Doctor and their era soon.

    P.s. I received ‘Warzone’/‘Conversion’ today.

    Take care, WF92. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Tim Bradley Post author

      Hi WF92,

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the upcoming neo-RTD era of ‘Doctor Who’. It will be interesting to see what RTD will come up with in his new era. Will it be as a good as his original era? Who knows? Hopefully it’ll be enjoyable enough. I have heard a rumour that Lydia West (who was in ‘It’s a Sin’ by RTD) is being cast as the Fourteenth Doctor. Whether that rumour is true or not, we’ll have to wait and see. I’ve not seen Lydia West before and it’s been a while since I’ve heard her in ‘Donna Noble: Kidnapped!’, but I’m willing to trust RTD’s judgement.

      I still rate Jodie Whittaker highly as the Thirteenth Doctor and I’m currently looking forward to Series 13 and the 2022 Specials. Peter Davison, David Tennant, Jodie Whittaker and Christopher Eccleston rank highly for me as the Doctors in ‘Doctor Who’.

      Glad you got ‘Warzone’/’Conversion’. Hope you’ll enjoy the two stories.

      Many thanks for your comments.

      Tim 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

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