The eleventh season of Doctor Who, the historic British show and the longest running series in the world, made its debut on Sunday 7 October. Talking about such a large and symbolic series for the United Kingdom is complex and requires to keep in mind the importance that the show has covered and still has for the subjects of Queen Elizabeth II. Entire generations have grown up watching the series and even some performers of the last few years have been spectators of the show as children. Unfortunately for Doctor Who, last season did not end positively.
The situation of the Show
After a real golden age under the management of the showrunner Russell T. Davis, protagonist of the English Saturday night with an average audience of 8-10 million, the series was conducted by the well-known Steven Moffat. Unfortunately for lovers of the series, the management of the latter has been incomplete, lackluster and in some places contradictory. Excellent characters and, above all, exceptional actors have been misused under his leadership. At the end of his work, Moffat left an average of spectators more than halved compared to Davis' run. Years earlier, in the face of the same numbers, the BBC had decided to freeze the series indefinitely.
The challenge of Chris Chibnall
The new showrunner presents itself to the public with a respectable curriculum, thanks to the conduct of some wonderful episodes of Torchwood, Doctor Who and the extraordinary Broadchurch series. At the helm of the latter he also met the current interpreter of the Doctor, Jodie Whittaker, the first actress to play the Gallifrey fugitive.
In a desperate attempt to lift the series and rejuvenate it, making it attractive to the public again, Chris decided to change course completely compared to the past. The first and most evident sign of this new era is the Doctor's first female reincarnation. The second and equally important change is the structure of the episodes, which abandon self-exclusivity in favor of a single linear story, which allows you to give more space to the development of a well-written and in-depth plot. The third major turning point, suggested by the BBC's upper floors, is the evening change. Instead of confronting other Saturday night shows, Doctor Who will air every Sunday at 7pm, English time.
Before reviewing the episode with subjective considerations, it is good to provide some data in retrospect: the first episode conquered the evening with 40% share, an incredible result. Whether it's trivial curiosity or a true passion for the series, such a milestone cannot be ignored. Will the show keep 8 million viewers? We will find out before this year's Lucca Comics.
Despite the excellent result in terms of share, the episode caused more than a few raised eyebrows to myself. Jodie Wittaker's acting is good, there is little to say about it, so I guess his Doctor Mcgyver is a writing problem. The character is very talkative, tending to give voice to his thoughts and questions, ending up speaking alone for most of the episode. Another thing that is perplexing is Thirteen's ability (doctors are also called with their number for convenience) to recreate complex and advanced technology by Time Lord with the help of some simple welding tool and a whole set of spoons . I wonder how he managed to reproduce the software side too ...
The plot of the episode is quite simple and serves mainly to introduce the psychological characteristics of this new doctor and his cap covers. To the delight of the spectators, we will have a balanced cast between males and females and between black and white people.
The direction is very good and the special effects are as always up to the series. What worries are some small inconsistencies with the past plot, already present in the first episode.
The keys of the Tardis
Fans of the series will remember how the keys of the Tardis allow the greatest prodigies, from remote control to the possibility of locating the Doctor's famous blue cabin. Twelve used to always have copies in his pocket and others scattered around the Tardis himself. Is it possible that in the fall that threw Thirteen out they were all lost?
In spite of the great research laboratories, scientific knowledge and the common imagination, it seems that to build a teleporter capable of locating a remote signal in space are sufficient: a car battery, a microwave, some wires, an old antenna and an alien capsule. Obviously no one could ever do it by chance, it would take a Gallifreyan mind.
Humans don't believe in aliens
Earth has been invaded several times on a large scale, special forces have been created to contain these kinds of threats, yet the average Brit is still skeptical of aliens and needs some more proof. I wonder how this is possible and how it can be justified consistently.
Some stereotypes never hurt
We conclude with a small arrow on the first episode: were stereotypes about the talkative woman really necessary, which takes a century to choose what to wear? In the final scene there is the classic curtain where dozens and dozens of clothes come out of the dressing room, only to bring out a decidedly poorly dressed person. Will Thirteen be the first Doctor to dress sensationally badly? We will find out by living.