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Russell T. Davies May Have Already Revealed 2 Doctor Who Spinoffs

Doctor Who showrunner Russell T. Davies may have already revealed two of his planned spinoffs. Doctor Who may be the world’s longest-running science-fiction TV show, celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, but its future couldn’t possibly look brighter. Russell T. Davies – mastermind of the 2005 revival – has returned, and Doctor Who season 14 is currently in production. Co-production and distribution deals with Bad Wolf Studios and Disney+ even seem to be making Davies’ dream of spinoffs a reality.

Writing in Doctor Who Magazine #579, Davies revealed his return has been in the works since December 2020. That makes comments from Davies in January 2021, in which he described a vision for Doctor Who‘s future growth, particularly interesting. There, he reflected on how streaming has allowed film and TV franchises to expand in unprecedented ways. “There should be a Doctor Who channel now,” Davies observed. “You look at those Disney announcements, of all those new Star Wars and Marvel shows, you think, we should be sitting here announcing The Nyssa Adventures or The Return of Donna Noble, and you should have the Tenth and Eleventh Doctors together in a 10-part series. Genuinely.” Aware his comments could sound extreme, he laughed and pointed out there’s now even a Star Trek spinoff starring Captain Pike – something nobody would have ever anticipated even a decade ago.

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Davies’ comment is particularly interesting given he mentions the return of Donna Noble, the popular companion played by Catherine Tate during David Tennant’s era as the Doctor. Although it’s not technically a spinoff, this is indeed happening in Doctor Who‘s 60th anniversary specials. This raises the possibility the other examples he cites aren’t just throwaway concepts either, but rather are things he was genuinely considering.

The idea of a multi-Doctor epic featuring past incarnations of the Doctor is a thrilling one, a logical extension of the show’s traditional anniversary events. More surprising is the reference to Nyssa, a classic companion played by Sarah Sutton. Davies has always seemed rather fond of Nyssa – he brought her back in an online short story he wrote back in April 2020, confirming a longstanding fan-theory she was in a relationship with fellow companion Tegan Jovanka (played by Janet Fielding).

Meanwhile, notice that Davies is discussing two different potential types of spinoffs. The Nyssa Adventures is clearly a riff on The Sarah Jane Adventures, the spinoff he launched back during his first stint as Doctor Who showrunner. It’s presumably an ongoing – and Nyssa is perfectly positioned for just such a show. She was left in the depths of space, committed to traveling the universe independently and continuing to do good. It’s easy to imagine her building up her own supporting cast (perhaps even including Fielding’s Tegan as well, who reprised her own role in The Power of the Doctor).

The second type of Doctor Who spinoff is more of a limited series – following Marvel’s Disney+ pattern, where not everything is an ongoing. These limited series would presumably be the bigger, more expensive, productions, each an event in their own right. It’s interesting that Davies hones in on David Tennant and Matt Smith, the two modern Doctors most likely to be willing to return. The dynamic between Tennant and Smith in the 50th anniversary special, The Day of the Doctor, was absolutely delightful; Smith has indicated a future return would depend on the quality of the script, and with Davies in charge, such a Doctor Who script would surely be good. Hopefully more will be revealed soon.

Next: Did Doctor Who Fix Its Longest-Running Companion Problem?

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