Radio Times

From the Editor

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There has been a great deal written in response to the new series of Doctor Who in recent weeks, some of which you will have read in our Feedback pages. But whether you’re an avid fan or a casual viewer, how the show is received is very important to its future, and to the future of the BBC.

This latest incarnatio­n of Doctor Who is “a canary down the coal mine”. As much as I might wish that the TV world was stuck back in the time when I was hiding behind the sofa, watching on our 19-inch black-andwhite Pye TV as Patrick Troughton battled the Ice Warriors, things have moved on.

The BBC brought back Russell T Davies to take the Whoniverse to a new global audience – and also handed over the streaming rights of the show to the Walt Disney Company. This seems to be leading the way for the BBC to create and fund shows that have worldwide appeal, and that keep up with the streaming companies and their megamillio­n-dollar budgets. While, in the case of Doctor Who, it’s keeping the values and principles of a show that has been part of British culture since 1963.

It’s a gamble, but in terms of the viewing figures and critical response, it’s one that appears to be paying off. Russell T Davies is to be commended for once again making Who more accessible to younger viewers, the people who were always awed and inspired by it from day one.

We talk to Davies on page 12 about the two-part finale to a series that has been full of energy and vigour, thanks in no small part to the new Doctor, played by the immensely talented Ncuti Gatwa. Davies won’t be drawn on what we will see, but he does say this: “It’s one of my favourite stories. It’s the story that I pitched this whole show to Disney with!” A story with which to perhaps welcome a new era of programme-making for the BBC.

Shem Law, Editor Radio Times

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