Doctor Who: Chris Chibnall Stayed Around Longer Than Even He Expected

On October 31st, the BBC's Doctor Who: Flux finds Jodie Whittaker (The Doctor), Mandip Gill (Yaz), and John Bishop's (Dan) Team TARDIS facing their deadliest challenge yet. Jacob Anderson's (Game of Thrones) Vinder comes aboard for a storyline spanning all of Series 13 as a threat known as The Flux brings the fight of our heroes' lives to their front doors. Sontarans! Weeping Angels! Ravagers! Cybermen! Ood! The Karvanista! Plus more threats from across time and space- all focused on eliminating the Doctor once and for all. But after that, the biggest changes will happen behind the scenes as Whittaker and showrunner Chris Chibnall prepare to depart before Series 14 (with Russell T. Davies returning as showrunner). Whittaker and Chibnall will be a part of three feature-length specials in 2022- with the final special also marking the end of Whittaker's run (and the introduction of the new Doctor, still unknown as of this writing). The first special will screen on New Year's Day, with the second airing in the spring, the third in fall 2022 as part of the BBC's centenary celebrations. So with the end in sight, how is Chibnall feeling about handing the baton to the returning Davies?

doctor who
Image: BBC

"It's taken longer than expected if we're being honest. I've been throwing batons at people for about a year now. And finally, someone's picked it up," said Chibnall to RadioTimes.com, explaining that the process of finding a new showrunner started sooner than many expected. "We had that conversation right at the start, and I hope you can see that the atmosphere is so team-oriented and so positive, it is a proper family atmosphere. This cast and this crew are so close – you wouldn't want to do it with other people, because it's just been its own little, discreet show. And then the next version will be its own discreet show, just as Peter [Capaldi]'s era was, and Matt [Smith]'s era was, and David [Tennant]'s was."

"You couldn't enjoy it any more than we've enjoyed it. It's been such a laugh and such a privilege," he said. "And I think we've been deliberately very mindful of being in the moment. Obviously, I've known Russell [T. Davies] and Steven [Moffat] for a long time and part of their advice was just: 'Enjoy it while you're doing it because afterwards, you really miss it.'," Chibnall revealed. "We've definitely approached it like that. I don't feel any sadness about the end approaching. It's just: 'We came in, and we did what we set out to do.' And I feel like there's been an incredible atmosphere while we've been doing it. So it feels really good. And frankly, I'll get to see my family again, which would be really nice."

She's back. The Thirteenth Doctor is returning for the thirteenth series in what is set to be a six-part Event Serial. Since their last epic battle in "Revolution of the Daleks," the Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) and Yaz (Mandip Gill) have been exploring the universe together but with the Doctor now questioning everything about her past there, she will undoubtedly be searching for answers. This adrenalin-fueled; universe-spanning series will also see an addition to the TARDIS with actor and comedian John Bishop joining the cast as Dan Lewis who will quickly learn there's more to the Universe than he could ever believe. Jacob Anderson ("Game of Thrones," "Broadchurch") is also set to make his debut on Doctor Who as reoccurring character Vinder. Jacob's new role will see him join forces with the Doctor, Yaz, and Dan as the Doctor faces her biggest ever adventure. Series 13 is set to introduce some terrifying new adversaries and the return of truly iconic old enemies. Expect action, fun, scares, extraordinary new worlds as the Doctor and her friends confront a deadly evil…

Doctor Who: Flux Trailer - Team TARDIS Faces Mixed Bag of Big Bads
Image: BBC

Robert Bathurst (Cold Feet, Toast Of London, Downton Abbey), Thaddea Graham (The Irregulars, Us), Blake Harrison (The Inbetweeners, A Very English Scandal, World On Fire), Kevin McNally (Pirates of the Caribbean, Designated Survivor, Downton Abbey), Craig Parkinson (Line of Duty, Intergalactic, The English Game), Sara Powell (Unforgotten, Damned), Annabel Scholey (The Split, Britannia), Gerald Kyd (Cold Feet, Britannia), and Penelope Ann McGhie (The Crown, Harry Potter) also star. Showrunner Chris Chibnall is writing all six episodes, with Maxine Alderton (Series 12 "The Haunting of Villa Diodati") co-writing Episode 4 with Chibnall. Jamie Magnus Stone (Series 12 "Spyfall: Part One" & "Ascension of the Cybermen" / "The Timeless Children") will direct episodes one, two & four; with Azhur Saleem (Amazon & Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys adaptation) directing the remaining three.

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About Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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