It’s been a busy “off season” for DW; the show introduced a new Executive Producer, pushed back it’s new series until 2017 and unveiled it’s new companion during a football match.
A new companion announcement is among the most polarizing events in Whodom, and is inevitably followed by an explosion of posts, blogs, tweets and smoke signals espousing views on the casting and opinions on what direction the character should take.
And…we can’t help but get down on a bit of espousing too. So here’s 5 things we’d love to see from Bill in Series 10…
OUT OF TIME – There’s already a theory that Bill is actually from the ’80s (based primarily on her clothes, her lack of knowledge of the Daleks and seeming to consider 2017 the “future”) and we are praying to Rassilon that it’s true.
Look, from a strict business perspective, it makes perfect sense to have the Doctor’s companion based in contemporary times. Mass marketing data informs TV producers decisions in many cases, and focus groups would certainly report that it’s easier for a wide audience to relate to somebody from the same place (in time and space) as them.
But it’s also true that the DW audience are among TV’s most engaged and sophisticated viewers, and would easily accept that the Doctor, a time traveller, might invite a “out of time” companion to join the crew. Captain Jack, one of the show’s most popular characters, was from another time, as were Jamie, Vicki and Zoe in Classic Who, so it’s not as if this is a radical notion.
A new character, who has to have much of the 21st century hidden from her, who listens to The Smiths and New Order and who would have no idea if she is waiting for The Doctor in 2017, are interesting ideas to explore.
MORE TECHINESS – The likes of Rose, Clara and Donna have risen to almost equal footing with the Doctor in regards to strategy and daring. He’s inspired heroism and bravery in his companions, but there hasn’t been a sidekick who expressed any interest in quantum computing lessons or the inner workings of a black hole.
It would be interesting to see a companion who wants to peruse the Doctor’s library as much as she wants to save the day, who the Doctor could take under his scientific wing and teach or train in the ways of Time Travel.
Nobody’s asking for the return of insufferable know it-alls like Nyssa or Adric (except perhaps for the actors who played Nyssa and Adric) but a companion who thrives from being encouraged to think like a scientist and can take the lead once in a while in alien spacecraft recognition would be a welcome evolution
A CRAZY EX – Bare with us on this one…by crazy, we don’t mean tinfoil on the head, checking their food for rat poison put there by Davros (a apt description of the writer of this blog) but perhaps more along the lines of a mopey past boyfriend who is having trouble moving on.
Seeing the companion grapple with the excitement of travelling with the Doctor while fielding calls from her sobbing ex would make for a fun dichotomy. And looking back to discover what went wrong is something we all do when we end a relationship, but the magic of DW is that in Bill’s case this could be a literal trip to the past, which might be fun (and unique) to see on screen. And just imagine the Doctor’s derision at being asked to use the TARDIS for “couple’s therapy”.
A BIT OF ALIEN – It’s a virtual certainty that’s not the case with Bill, but a sidekick who isn’t overwhelmed by the notion of alien life and space travel hasn’t been seen in the TARDIS since Captain Jack.
An non Earth traveller could lead to all sorts of story options; arrival on a planet Bill actually knows more about than The Doctor, a last of her race who could relate to the Doctor’s loneliness or even another Gallifreyan (but not a Time Lord) are fascinating and fun themes to explore.
THE OFFSPRING OF ANOTHER COMPANION – This might be a bit kitschy, but suppose Bill was the granddaughter or niece of someone who travelled with the Doctor before?
She could come in with some preconceived notions about The Doctor that could challenge his views of himself (in either a fun or serious way)
ONE AND DONE – Amy and Clara both lasted quite a while, so it might be refreshing to see a companion come and go within one year. With a defined end date, would The Doctor let his guard down knowing he’s not susceptible to a messy break up? A companion who needs a vacation from her child or parent to care for, but doesn’t want to be gone for long, or who is about to be sentenced to prison (for a heroic crime of course) offers some interesting avenues to explore.
BONUS ONE AND DONE! EVIL COMPANION. IF the series were to embark on a One and Done companion, another intriguing idea is a double agent working against the Doctor.
The companion as a trap motif has been done twice to varying degrees with Amy and Clara, but a straight up double agent who wants to get into the TARDIS for some nefarious purpose might be fun to see. A companion struggling to complete her mission, or being compelled by another long standing enemy of the Doctor would add a layer of tension to the series. Does the Doctor know? What will he do when he finds out? Is she evil or being held hostage?
What would you like to see from the new companion? Let us know in the comments!