As production for the next era of Doctor Who gets underway, showrunner Russell T Davies says the “next stage” for the long-running sci-fi series will include spin-offs, which he says are “ready.”
In a conversation with GQ, the Cucumber and It’s A Sin writer said that “with no criticism whatsoever towards the people who were running it at the time, because they were running it within the BBC’s measures — it was time for the next stage for Doctor Who.”
“I thought the streaming platforms are ready, the spin-offs are ready; I always believed in spin-offs when I was there. I did Torchwood as a spin-off, The Sarah Jane Adventures as a spin-off,” Davies said, whose comments align with a recent report that suggested a Doctor Who shared universe could be in the works.
Davies was responsible for reviving Doctor Who for modern-day audiences in 2005, and introduced a wave of spin-offs in the process. These included the adult-oriented Torchwood, and the family-friendly CBBC series The Sarah Jane Adventures.
Following a mixed reception to Torchwood: Miracle Day, John Barrowman reprised his role as Captain Jack Harkness twice during Jodie Whittaker’s era, most recently in the New Year’s Day Special in 2021. Elisabeth Sladen, a legacy companion from the classic era of Doctor Who, passed away in 2011, leading to The Sarah Jane Adventures to finish later in the year.
Davies felt that the shows “declined when I left, and I can see why. And I very much left after 2008, when the money became scarce, I think that’s fair enough for the public service broadcaster that the money is spent on other things.”
Doctor Who returns to our televisions in November 2023 for three special episodes. The series is available to stream via the BBC iPlayer, with classic episodes available on Britbox. What are you most excited to see from the future of the series? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!