DOCTOR WHO: SPYFALL- PART ONE (S12E01)
Besides carrying the name of a dodgy looking board game...
...this week's premiere of DOCTOR WHO marks the long awaited return of a show which has been off the air for just over one year. We've previously pontificated herein on the clunkiness and perils of BBC's scheduling and production practices, so there's little point in flogging the network's self-destructive proclivities once more. Although, I guess I just sorta did.
Trailers for Series / Season 12, along with clips like these...
...suggest the show may finally be recapturing some of the pop and energy viewers have come to expect from DOCTOR WHO, after decidedly tepid directorial and editing approaches frequently dragged S11 to a standstill.
Additionally, Resolution, last year's New Years Day 'special' - and the last time we saw the Doctor in action - hinted that Team Chibnall may finally be waking up a bit, and may possibly be invested in generating a show more stylistically competitive with the current genre marketplace. This said, one episode out of 11 hardly represents unequivocal proof.
Written by Chris Chibnall, Spyfall Parts 1 and 2 are described thusly by BBC:
Intelligence agents around the world are under attack from alien forces, so MI6 turns to the only people who can help – The Doctor and friends.
As the team travels the globe looking for answers, attacks come from all sides. Earth’s security rests on the their shoulders – but where will this planet-threatening conspiracy lead them?
Action-adventure for all the family, starring Jodie Whittaker, Bradley Walsh, Tosin Cole and Mandip Gill.
Written by Chris Chibnall. Directed by Jamie Magnus Stone. Guest starring Stephen Fry and Lenny Henry.
In part two of this epic spy thriller, a terrifying plan to destroy humanity is about to reach fruition. Can The Doctor and her friends escape multiple traps and defeat a deadly alliance?
Jamie Magnus Stone - director of Spyfall's first installment - appears to have limited experience with DOCTOR WHO, or with genre titles in general. However Lee Haven Jones (director of Part Two) - while not having helmed DOCTOR WHO per se - previously directed several episodes of Russell T. Davies' WIZARDS VS. ALIENS. Which admittedly, is not DOCTOR WHO - but it's at least in the wheelhouse. So, there's that?
The gallery below is an assemblage of high resolution promo images for not only Spyfall, but Series 12 in general - including high resolution images of a revised TARDIS interior, and a high-res look at S12's iteration of the classic Judoon.
Images of revised TARDIS interior via Radio Times
So here we go...
So many questions: is Chibs up to this task? Were the few genuinely bright moments of last Season / Series blips on an otherwise dreary radar? Or will Tem Chibs dig in, take some chances, and bring about a little bit of gusto this time around? Will Jodie Whittaker find her character / voice in S12? She seemed very much adrift and undefined last time around, with her most memorable qualities often being the evocation of previous Doctors. She deserves better.
As always, expect episode-specific DOCTOR WHO posts throughout this run of new episodes, with possible additional posts dedicated to any specific / worthy newsbits which could feasible arise (they'll otherwise will be folded into the weekly posts).
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PLEASE NOTE: atypically, the next DOCTOR WHO episode is scheduled to transmit 5 January - so this week will bring two reader reaction forums instead of just one.
COMING SUNDAY JANUARY 5:
Spyfall Part 2