Doctor Who Season 14 Facing Extreme Upheaval Behind The Scenes

Doctor Who Season 14 is undergoing some serious upheaval.

By Erika Hanson | Published

This article is more than 2 years old

doctor who season 14

While fans are still reeling over the premier of the 13th season of the beloved Doctor Who series on BBC this past Sunday night, some major changes are already in store for the sci-fi phenomenon going into the show’s slated 14th season. Not only will the flagship BBC series be losing its 13th Doctor played by Jodie Whittaker and its current showrunner, Chris Chibnall, but the BBC also just announced some radical changes coming behind the scenes to Doctor Who Season 14. In a co-production deal, the BBC recently partnered with the Wales-based production company, Bad Wolf, in turn losing creative rights to the hit series going forward.

Starting with Doctor Who Season 14, Bad Wolf will have complete control over the creative future of the show. This means that the production company was able to snag the man responsible for the 2005 Doctor Who revival, Russell T Davies, back as showrunner. Davies was largely credited for propelling the show into a global phenomenon and making it one of TV’s biggest hits.  “It’s extraordinary that BBC Studios has just rolled over,” one source commented, as The Times reported that the BBC could lose upward of £40 million in commercial revenue for every ten episodes. The drastic change in production for the show likely came about as BBC and showrunners continuously expressed a desire to reimagine and reinvent the time lord, in order to keep up with their competition in the age of Disney Plus and HBO Max. 

doctor who

While many fans are sure to be pleased with the return of Davies as showrunner once more, the future of the flying TARDIS may be at risk due in part to Bad Wolf. Furthermore, it was announced in October that Sony is close to making a deal to buy out the production company-which possibly could have negative effects on the future of the show. Doctor Who has had a strong cult following since the series inception in 1963. Throughout this entire time, control over the show has always remained in-house at BBC studios, until now.  Many long-time “Whovians” of the series fear that the takeover by a major production company like Sony may turn the cherished show into another homogeneous blockbuster property and it could lose a lot of its originality. 

It’s important to note that the BBC would likely only agree to a deal like this if execs were confident that Bad Wolf and Davies could successfully increase the show’s profile starting with Doctor Who Season 14. Likewise, many believe the revival of Davies as a screenwriter will only improve the show. After all, Davies is considered a primary reason why Doctor Who is as large as it is now.  Davies even expressed his own beliefs that in order to keep the show profitable, the series would most likely have to up its game and expand, much like what Disney Plus is doing with the Marvel Cinematic Universe. 

“I was in the middle of running an empire,” Davies said of his time on Doctor Who in an interview with Radio Times. “And my god I did that 10 years too soon, didn’t I?” Davies was likely referencing the points at which his run on the show included spin-offs Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures, which ran alongside – and occasionally crossed over with – the main series. All of which notably came before the recent surge in popularity over shared universes. But can Davies, Bad Wolf, and possibly Sony pull off this epic plan to fly the TARDIS to new heights? Only time will tell, as we anticipate the upcoming Doctor Who Season 14, slated to premiere sometime in 2022.