Fire up the TARDIS....
Unless you’ve been hiding on Gallifrey, it’s been pretty much impossible to avoid the fact that Doctor Who returned last night.
As Jodie Whittaker made her full debut as the thirteenth doctor, we were treated to a story that introduced us to a whole new set of characters. What’s more, we faced the extremely unexpected scenario of an alien invasion in Sheffield. Here are the main things we learnt from the first episode of Doctor Who’s 11th season.
Jodie Whittaker was funny, charming and a worthy action hero too
From the minute Jodie Whittaker makes a mysterious debut on a broken down train, it’s clear that she’s the perfect fit for Who.
Initially, it’s a performance that oozes with The Doctor’s never-ending sense of worldly wonder. Although the Doctor has lost their identity, there’s a brilliant sense of curiosity and eagerness as she becomes acquainted with her friends.
“I’m calling you Yaz, because we’re friends now”, she remarks to her new pal early on. It’s the kind of familiarity and kinship that the Doctor has had in greater and lesser quantities throughout the years. But later on, Whittaker proves she’s brilliant at the emotional stuff too – her efforts in defeating the toothy monster prove that she’s a capable action hero too.
All in all, it’s a convincing performance that bodes very well indeed for the rest of the series.
Her companions are relatable
Sure, Whittaker’s brilliant – but she’s been joined by a team of companions who are more than capable in helping to show the feels as rounded as perhaps it’s ever been. It begins from the moment that we first see Tosin Cole as Ryan Sinclair. As the show opens, there’s a touching moment that tackles Ryan’s dyspraxia directly as he struggles to ride a bike.
It proves integral in introducing the first sign of alien life – but it’s so much more than this. It shows him dealing with the very human side of a little-explored condition before heroics eventually follow.
The same can be said for Mandip Gill’s Yaz Khan. She’s great at portraying the turmoil of a lowly police officer who wants to tackle bigger cases. When they do eventually come, they’re quite literally out of this world.
If a slight criticism is to be made, it often feels like Bradley Walsh’s Graham O’Brien is slightly underused – but we’re sure that greater screen time will follow as the show goes on.
It’s a return to good, old-fashioned adventures
Critics of the Moffat era of Who will argue that his time in charge of the show was a massive move away from traditional Who, where you could tune in every week for an entirely new adventure.
Instead, the Chris Chibnall era feels entirely self contained – this first offering suggests that we’re in for something different every week. With rumours of civil rights and witchcraft in future episodes, we can’t wait to see what’s next.
Doctor Who has never looked this good
For all the love of Doctor Who, even its biggest admirers will admit it’s not always been convincing in the production stakes – you need only look at the CGI of the Eccleston and Tennant era to realise that it didn’t always look *that* believable.
But something’s changed, big time. The production values have been seemingly upped – and it’s one of the first times that Who has looked just as good as its stateside rivals.
The viewers are loving it too.
Is Whittaker a success? Well, let’s take a look at the viewing figures…
Doctor Who returns next Sunday…