We’ve known since July that lead writer Chris Chibnall is set to leave Doctor Who, alongside current Doctor Jodie Whittaker, after the upcoming Series 13 and 2022’s series of specials. While we’re still awaiting news on who will take over Whottaker’s role at the helm of the TARDIS, the BBC have now announced that Chibnall’s replacement will be none other than Russell T Davies.
This comes as a big surprise, because in Doctor Who’s timey-wimey fashion, its new showrunner is also its old one. Davies brought the show back in 2005 after it had been off air for sixteen years, and over four series with Christopher Eccleston and then David Tennant as the Doctor, he led the show to unprecedented success as a global phenomenon and ratings hit. In the years since leaving the show, Davies has been the writer behind award-winning dramas A Very English Scandal, Years and Years, and It’s A Sin.
With Doctor Who currently struggling to retain its past popularity, many fans are glad to have his steady hand back on the helm. With BBC Studios partnering with Bad Wolf to produce, Davies will lead the show once more starting with its 60th anniversary year in 2023, and seems to have committed for more series after that.
Of his new gig, Davies says:
“I’m beyond excited to be back on my favourite show. But we’re time-travelling too fast, there’s a whole series of Jodie Whittaker’s brilliant Doctor for me to enjoy, with my friend and hero Chris Chibnall at the helm – I’m still a viewer for now.”
Chris Chibnall adds:
“It’s monumentally exciting and fitting that Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary will see one of Britain’s screenwriting diamonds return home. Russell built the baton that is about to be handed back to him – Doctor Who, the BBC, the screen industry in Wales, and let’s be honest everyone in the whole world, have so many reasons to be Very Excited Indeed about what lies ahead.”