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Doctor Who - Can it run forever?


Is Doctor Who the best conceived show in the world? Is there any reason the structure of the show can’t allow it to run forever?

Male or female, old or young, all time and space and an assistant who changes with the times to make it fresh halfway through a particular Doctor. This show really could outlast the human race when you think about it.

Is anything else so bulletproof?





It’s a great ‘story engine’ in that way. Endlessly adaptable and able to support a massive range of story types, tones, fashions and formats.


There’s no reason for it to end. You can do anything with it.

Jerry, you should say Coronation Street as it is older than Who, Eastenders is a whipper snapper in comparison, but they share to degree the same advantage, the concept is so loose there’s no real point in replacing it. “Some people living in an area like most people live in”. :smile:


Nothing lasts forever.

But it could. I guess.


I think it could go forever. As others have said, because of the nature of the character, almost everything else about the show is flexible.


Batman. I think Batman and The Doctor seem to be the fictional characters that will last for generations long after us, two characters we never get bored of no matter how many different iterations there are.

I could see Dr Who being relaunched one day though, and the character being dry docked for several years. It’s a little continuity heavy these days after the last few years and some of the villains are really used up, even though fans won’t let them go. It’s a bit like comics in that regard, so I could see a call in maybe a decade to relaunch Ultimate Dr Who. I think the BBC might have realized they’re in danger of overdoing it with Who (it felt that way with David Tennant) and so I can see them limiting episodes in response to keep him special. Like anything great, the secret to making it last is small doses rather than too much of a good thing.


It can, if it’s done well. The premise is simple and very strong.

I think the Doctor has become an eternal character, in a similar way to Sherlock Holmes. They can be changed and shifted in many ways as long as you keep the basics intact.

And when it strays off the point, it’s possible to wait it out and rejoin the series later, once it becomes the kind of Doctor that you like again.


Absolutely. Batman is the same: endlessly adaptable to fit any framework, yet still somehow retain that core character appeal.


I was originally going to post one of the long-running American “soap operas”, Days of Our Lives, which debuted in November 1965 and has run Monday through Friday for almost 50 years, but didn’t think Mark would get the reference.


Well, it can run as long as the BBC exists to make it. So another two years or so.


Oh, I don’t know. Batman relies, for example, on there being crime. If crime is every completely eradicated, that’s it for Batman. Poof.

Not saying that’s likely, but can you think of a similar change in circumstances for Doctor Who? Can you, Dave? Can you?!


Michael Grade taking over the BBC?


…yeah, okay, fair enough.

Though that makes me wonder what a Netflix Doctor Who would be like…


Well funded.


What if… time is eradicated??? :frowning:

More seriously… Robin Hood relies, for example, on people fighting with bows and arrows. Fighting with bows and arrows has been eradicated (in the Western world) and we still make Robin Hood movies.


We’re talking ongoing series though, not movies.


“Time is eradicated? That sounds like a job for The Doctor!” :wink:

(Seriously, I’m pretty sure a Moffat season finale revolved around time being destroyed and everything happening at once.)


I think they all did :stuck_out_tongue:


That’s a fantastic character comparison with Holmes. I’ve always thought of them as very much alike, always being the smartest guy in the room.
I loved what is now referred to as the "classic " series but from the relaunch I’ve found myself falling even more helplessly in love with the character than I ever thought possible culminating in the current regeneration played by the always captivating Mr Peter Capaldi.
Like all his predecessors before him he is my favourite!