With the David Tennant era of Doctor Who finally at a close, attention inevitably has started shifting to the return of the show in the spring. And with that in mind, details have started sifting through about who will be writing the 13 episodes that are coming up in the coming months. Here’s what we’ve been able to piece together, although it should be noted that some of these are yet to be confirmed, and thus should be treated as rumours.
Firstly, Steven Moffat has already revealed that he’ll be writing six episodes of the new series, which will include, we’d wager, the series opener and the final two or three episodes. Richard Curtis’ involvement has already been widely reported too, which leaves six episodes.
One of those at least is being taken by Gareth Roberts (Planet Of The Dead, The Unicorn & The Wasp). That said, his is rumoured to be a two-parter, but that’s not been confirmed. So, we’ll assume one episode for the moment. And Blogtor Who has picked up the story that Mark Gatiss, who previously wrote The Idiot’s Lantern and The Unquiet Dead, has been signed up for a story too. That takes us down to four.
Of those, then, Simon Nye and David Renwick, both more known as comedy writers (although don’t forget Renwick penned Jonathan Creek), have been linked with an episode. Whether that’s them working in tandem, or on an episode apiece, is unclear, but we’d guess the latter.
Philip Pullman, of the His Dark Materials trilogy fame, has been rumoured for an episode too. There’s a further link there in that Matt Smith appeared on TV in an adaptation of Pullman’s The Ruby In The Smoke. We can’t find substantive confirmation of Pullman’s involvement, however, even though he’s expressed his interest in writing for the show before.
If he was down for an episode, that’d leave us with just one unaccounted before. We know that previous Doctor Who writers James Moran and Paul Cornell aren’t involved, sadly. One person who was rumoured to be involved, however, was Neil Gaiman, although he has denied any involvement. If Gareth Roberts is, indeed, on a two-part story, however, that could theoretically be the line-up complete.
We’d take the six Moffat episodes, as well as the Richard Curtis, Gareth Roberts and Mark Gatiss involvements, as concrete. That gives us confirmed writers for nine of the episodes of series five so far, with decent to long-shot guesses for the other four. We’d expect confirmation one way or the other in the coming months…