It’s a family affair for new Doctor Who showrunner Chris Chibnall.
According to production sources quoted by the Radio Times, the incumbent showrunner has made ‘family’ the watchword for his debut series. There’s been a family vibe to Jodie Whittaker’s TARDIS crew played by Bradley Walsh, Tosin Cole and Mandip Gill, and it seems that same vibe extends to all aspects of the show.
Filming has already begun on the new series and while the precise nature of their relationship has yet to be revealed, one production source has said the adventures are like a family, with Bradley Walsh’s Graham taking on the ‘parental’ role of the group.
The source said:
“The first Doctor played by William Hartnell was a grandfather to Susan and he had the companions Ian and Barbara in these early adventures…Chris’s show will be very much its own thing but that is kind of the vibe.”
Another source added:
“There is a feeling that the drama has been complicated by self-referential plotting at times and Chris wants his Doctor Who to be a show notable for its emotional intelligence.”
The BBC have refused to comment on the validity of the sources opinions.
The Radio Times goes on to quote an interview from last June with the Royal Television Society’s magazine Television where Doctor Who director James Strong elaborated on Chibnall’s desire to once again make Doctor Who a must watch show for the whole family.
“It used to be – and I stress this is my personal opinion – at the heart of the schedule, an unmissable family show and, for some reason, it’s slipped a bit from the national consciousness.
“For me, when it goes towards storylines that are a little bit more for the fans, I think you can lose that general appeal. I think Chris is going to offer a slightly different take on what the show should be… I think Chris, essentially, writes emotional thrillers, and that’s perfect for that show.”
Doctor Who will return this autumn on BBC One.