With Steven Moffat probably planning a huge jaw-dropping story to round of his swansong series, he’ll need to delegate wisely. He’ll probably write the series opener, the two part finale and a couple of single episodes in series ten. I’m going to choose who I’d like to write the other seven or eight. They’ll be realistic choices, all have written for the show before. And by realistic I don’t mean the return of Russell T. Davies or JK Rowling coming in to pen a special script, although both are fantastic prospects.
Gareth Roberts: Responsible for The Caretaker and Unicorn and the Wasp.
Phil Ford: Responsible for co-writing The Waters of Mars.
Neil Gaiman: Responsible for The Doctor’s Wife
Who I don’t want to see write for series ten
Mark Gatiss: Responsible for Sleep No More and The Crimson Horror
Matthew Graham: Responsible for The Rebel Flesh and The Almost People
Who I want to see write for series ten
Latest Episode: The Power of Three
Best Episode: The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood
It would be a surprise if the incoming head writer didn’t want to write an episode in series ten. It would give him a chance to get a feel for writing for Peter Capaldi, if he stays on, and whoever the new companion may be too. Although most of his Doctor Who stories haven’t been great, Chibnall wrote very well for Torchwood. He penned several brilliant character based stories, including Cyberwoman and Fragments. It would be good to see him write some similar stuff, perhaps to teach us more about the new companion and give us an insight into their background. Either way, I would be shocked if Chibnall was absent from series ten. He’s yet to write a story for the twelfth Doctor and now would be a great time to start.
Latest Episode: Vincent and the Doctor
Best Episode: Vincent and the Doctor
Richard Curtis has only ever written one Doctor Who episode, but what a tremendous episode it was. Vincent and the Doctor was my favourite story of series five and one of my favourites in the modern era. It had everything Doctor Who should have, a scary monster, it was set in a different time period, it used time travel effectively and beautifully and portrayed an art icon in a perfect light. In the forty five minutes, Curtis proved he understood the show and what it was about and I’d love him to return to write an episode as good. Give him another historical figure and let’s see what he does.
Latest Episode: Face the Raven
Best Episode: Face the Raven
In footballing terms, Sarah Dollard scored a late winner on her Doctor Who debut. Face the Raven was trundling along nicely and was all set to be a solid first attempt at an episode for the show. However, the last ten minutes were immense. If we forget Hell Bent ever happened (I like to do that anyway), Dollard scripted the most fitting and emotional companion departure of the modern era. Clara’s goodbye to the Doctor summed her up as a character; brave, independent and always wanting the Doctor to help anyone he can rather than seek revenge. She captured not only Clara’s, but the twelfth Doctor’s persona perfectly too as he reacted in a dark and destructive way to her death. For this script alone, Dollard deserves a recall and I’d love to see another episode written by her, although maybe one not as sad as her last.
Latest Episode: The Girl Who Died
Best Episode: Mummy on the Orient Express
In series eight, Jamie Mathieson was the standout writer, penning the impressive Mummy on the Orient Express and Flatline. Although his series nine attempt didn’t live up to the high standards he’d previously set himself, I’d like to see him return and even pen a two parter. In series eight he showed he knew how to write monsters well as the Mummy and “the Boneless” were probably the best of that year. With a two parter his stories could develop further. In the modern era, some of the scariest villains have featured in two parters. The scarecrows controlled by the Family of Blood, the Vashta Nerada and the Silence all debuted in two parters, so this would seem like the perfect way for Mathieson to introduce us to his next monster.
Latest Episode: Under the Lake/Before the Flood
Best Episode: School Reunion
Under Moffat, Toby Whithouse has been something of a regular writer for the show. Most of his episodes are quite different to the common episode I think and overall he’s done a pretty good job. The Vampires of Venice is the only episode of his I don’t like. Although I wasn’t a fan of the opening scene of Before the Flood (breaking down the fourth wall, the bootstrap paradox and the whole “google it” thing was a bit lazy), Whithouse did a solid job of his series nine two parter. School Reunion and The God Complex are both brilliant episodes of his too and he’s done nothing really to be dropped from the list of writers for series ten.
Latest Episode: The Zygon Invasion/The Zygon Inversion
Best Episode: The Zygon Inversion
In my opinion, the three episodes Harness has written in the past two years were a brilliant application for head writer, and if you compare his episodes to Chibnall’s he may feel hard done by (that is if he wanted the job of course). Kill the Moon was an excellent story and started off Harness’s run of episodes that posed characters with tricky moral dilemmas. It’s something he does brilliantly and if he returns I’m sure he’ll give us and the Doctor and co. something else to ponder.
Latest Episode: Dalek
Best Episode: Dalek
I don’t have much to say about Robert Shearman really apart from that I find it unbelievable he hasn’t written a single episode since Dalek. They haven’t been written as well since then. As the Daleks have to be in every series, they’re likely to feature in a story as the main enemy, so get the man that wrote by far and away the best Dalek story in to write it. It’s common sense really.