Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat was interviewed by io9.com at the recent San Diego Comic-Con, and he told them he intends to resolve many of the dangling plot lines that have been woven through the show since Series 5 before the end of Matt Smith’s tenure as the Doctor.
There are still many unresolved questions – why the TARDIS blew up, and why the Silence were so keen to kill the Doctor are just two of the questions that have fans debating for hours on online forums and chatrooms. Smith will leave the show during the 2013 Christmas special, and when io9 asked Moffat if he felt he owed the fans some answers by then, this is what he had to say.
“Well, we are going to do it all. It’s going to end at Christmas. Yeah, [there will be closure]. But ‘owe them’? I don’t know about ‘owing.’ But yeah, there’s a plan, and we will end the Eleventh Doctor’s run with the answers to some of those questions.”
If Moffat is to believed, Smith’s departure will at least put to rest some of the plot lines yet to be tied up. The Doctor’s wife, River Song, is no longer one of those plot lines, for with ‘The Name of the Doctor’ her story came full circle.
Viewers have now seen her story from start to finish, and now the Doctor has finally said goodbye to her onscreen, they have been left wondering if Alex Kingston’s popular character will make a return at any point in the future. Moffat told io9 that when it comes to that, he’s still undecided. Whereas before the full sequence of her story had to be played out on screen, she will only appear now if and when he has a story that calls for her to make an appearance. If so, then she will be back.
“But I quite liked where we got to at the end of ‘The Name of the Doctor,’ with him saying goodbye to her. So we’ll see.”
That said, Moffat was finally asked what he had learned during the eight years he has spent writing for Doctor Who, spending the previous three series as showrunner.
“I feel as if I’ve learned nothing. That’s a despairing attitude! Because every Doctor Who episode is different. I’m writing one right now and thinking, ‘Ooh. How can I have been writing this for so long, and I still don’t know what’s going to work?’ Each script is a very different challenge, and that’s probably special to Doctor Who. There isn’t a paradigm episode.” Every episode has to be fast, funny, emotional and inventive. “Every scene ends in a cliffhanger. Every moment is huge and powerful. That’s the aim, anyway. Whether we do it all the time is another matter.”
Fans the world over are waiting with bated breath to find out precisely how he rises to the challenge of tying up so many individual plot lines for the final two episodes of the Eleventh Doctor. The 50th Anniversary special is due to be on screens on November 23rd, and the Christmas special is to be broadcast on Christmas Day itself on BBC1.