The Season of Many Viewers' Discontent continues with Demons of the Punjab, representing the first S11 episode not written by reigning WHO Boss Chris Chibnall.
This time around, scripting duties go to Vinay Patel - whose writing credits are scant and obscure to say the least. Having myself hacked through the scriptwriting meat grinder in Hollywood, I can attest to the fact that Patel not being a 'high profile' writer should in no way suggest he's unqualified for this job; how much work he has (or has not) done doesn't intrinsically impact his innate ability to deliver an exquisite piece of work.
Alas, with the erratic ghost of Chibs shadowing over S11, the better question in this circumstance might be: whether or not Patel is any good, will he be able to truly 'show his stuff' within the doggedly mediocre ethos Chibnall has advanced thus far?
Patel being something of a wild card is neither here nor there, but is at least an interesting development in an otherwise predictably static Season/Series. Frustratingly though, Patel's script will be helmed by returning director Jamie Childs, who underwhelmed considerably with S11's opening volley, The Woman Who Fell to Earth.
DotP is described thusly by BBC:
“What’s the point of having a mate with a time machine, if you can’t nip back and see your gran when she was younger?”
India, 1947. The Doctor and her friends arrive in the Punjab, as the country is being torn apart. While Yaz attempts to discover her grandmother’s hidden history, the Doctor discovers demons haunting the land. Who are they and what do they want?
While on the subject of 'official synopses,' THIS article in Radio Times has revealed the official thumbnails of the two episodes succeeding Demons.
“Delivery for the Doctor!” A mysterious message arrives in a package addressed to the Doctor, leading her, Graham, Yaz and Ryan to investigate the warehouse moon orbiting Kandoka, and the home of the galaxy’s largest retailer: Kerblam!”
After which we'll see The Witchfinders, Guest Starring Alan Cumming as King James.
The Doctor, Ryan, Graham and Yaz arrive in 17th century Lancashire and become embroiled in a witch trial, run by the local landowner. As fear stalks the land, the arrival of King James I only serves to intensify the witch hunt. But is there something even more dangerous at work? Can the Doctor and friends keep the people of Bilehurst Cragg safe from all the forces that are massing in the land?
An image from The Witchfinder...
...finds the Doctor sporting a far more agreeable look than that 'Tennant Sneer.' Small steps.
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COMING NEXT WEEK: