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Feature: Doctor Who 2005

New old dangers for the Doctor

If you’ve been wondering what the new series of Doctor Who will be like, here’s your chance! We get the inside view from Russell T Davies…

Doctor Who is everywhere. And there’s no one more surprised about that than the executive producer of the hotly-anticipated BBC TV series, Russell T Davies. In recent weeks, though, Davies’s name has become just as widespread, his quotes appearing everywhere from Radio Times to The Guardian to Teletext to Radio 1. When a men’s magazine recently decided to photograph series star Billie Piper in her skimpies for their cover, Davies was there too. Well, not there, but in a little mini-interview alongside Billie’s. The reason for all this is very simple: he’s excited about what’s been accomplished on the new series and wants to tell the world. “The funny thing is,” he admits, “during all the years that it was off air, I never really used to dream about bringing it back. I used to wish it was on, but I was very happy with what it had been as well, and I thought we’d have to wait another 20 years until it came back; I thought a whole generation would have to pass. Little did I notice myself getting older and a whole generation did pass. You don’t feel like that when you’re living it; you think you’re always 21.

“I really thought it would come back in 2020 in the way that Sherlock Holmes gets revived every so often, something like that. So I didn’t plan it. I hadn’t been sitting there scribbling out ideas; I’d literally not sat and thought what I would do with it until they phoned up and said, ‘We want to make it,’ and then I’m like, ‘Oh, f**k’. The fact that I know it so well, that I had thought about it passively for so long, meant I did know straight away what I wanted to do with it.”

Davies has already had one well-received stab at Doctor Who with the Virgin New Adventures novel Damaged Goods, but he’s now been presented with a blank slate. His plan for relaunching the show is amazingly simple: “To keep the absolute basics: Time Lord, TARDIS, that essential core grouping of an alien with a Human together travelling through Time and Space. It’s a genius idea. You look at what they did in 1963 and they were brilliant. Whoever sat in that office and said, ‘Let’s have the inside bigger than the outside’ – we’re so used to that idea we take it for granted, and it’s genius! It’s absolute genius! How clever were they? So all of that you leave intact.

by Paul Spragg

Get the full interview in
Cult Times #115

Image © Visual Imagination, Doctor Who © BBC
Feature © Visual Imagination 2005. Not for reproduction

Taken from
Cult Times #115, see below for ordering options
Cult Times #115
April 2005
ships from Mar 24 2005
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