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Moffat: Big Plans For Future Online Episodes

paul mcgann doctor who 2013 night of the doctor (2)Steven Moffat has revealed that there are big plans for future online episodes after the success of Pond Life and The Night of the Doctor.

Moffat told SFX: “We’ll certainly do some more. We’ll do more prequels and stuff. I’ve been in to talk to the channel controller of iPlayer and say ‘We need proper money for it’, and they’re very keen. And we don’t call them prequels, we don’t call them minisodes, we just call them Doctor Who. That’s all they are. As I say, why not do an episode that’s ten minutes? Or an episode that’s half an hour? It depends what it suits.”

Elaborating further, he says it’s time to take online content more seriously: “I think we now have to accept that online stuff isn’t a spin-off anymore. We used to treat it as a spin-off that maybe some people would watch. And to be absolutely honest I thought they were bank raids – they’d give me some money to do an online thing and I’d say right, what crew do we already have, what actors do we already have, what set do we already have? So we’d spend no money on it at all, whack it out in a day, pump the money into the episode and off you go.

“But then you suddenly realise something like ‘Pond Life’, which we took much more seriously, had an audience of over six million. You think oh wait, that’s a TV show! That’s just a TV show and a lot of our audience make no distinction between that and the TV show. Same with ‘The Night of the Doctor’. What I think is quite exciting about all that stuff is you’re allowed to do a six minute episode.

“I actually think ‘The Night of the Doctor’ is one of the best ones we’ve done, and I don’t think it would be improved by being 45 minutes long. What more storytelling do we need? Arguably always the problem with the regeneration show is everybody’s just waiting for the bit when he dies and regenerates – so why don’t we just do that bit? You don’t feel that you’re short-selling it at all. So there’s going to be more of that, up until the point when all television is like that. And it will be. All television will be downloadable content. It’s coming.”

Step back in time...

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209 comments
KarliRose
KarliRose

pleeeeeaase let the Moff put a mini Hurt time war series on this list

Maiden_Ty_One
Maiden_Ty_One

The Night of the Doctor was possibly the best thing they've done since they revived the show in 2005. I don't just mean for online content, I mean for the entire show itself.

TheSoundofDrums
TheSoundofDrums

I'm very hopeful from this statement from Moffat that more McGann shorts might be made after the success of 'The Night of the Doctor'.

TheSoundofDrums
TheSoundofDrums

I wonder what Online episodes will be, or have been, done for Series Eight. It's always nice to have these stories as additions to the main stories and it gives the series more scope and depth. A sort of imaginative behind the scenes content that actually fits in to the rest of the series perfectly and gives you something extra to enjoy. Plus it gives you something extra to have on the DVD boxsets.

Strontium
Strontium

I completely agree! But only as long as it doesn't compromise the actual episodes

AlexandraShepiro
AlexandraShepiro

cool and all..but not everyone can get into Iplayer........

BJAMES
BJAMES

More McGann! More Eighth Doctor!

Scootersfood
Scootersfood

Great! I loved the Online Minisodes, Can't wait for more!

Polyphase
Polyphase

Pond Life? Never heard of it. I wish they just televised it for us computer illiterates :(

Venawesomeo
Venawesomeo

Good to see Doctor Who is still innovating even when it's nearing it's 51st birthday. 

MaraBackman
MaraBackman

I think it's an idea with great potential. Lots of people watch the sow online to begin with, plus that the different format allows them to experiment with ideas that wouldn't necessarily work in a TV-show. What I'd like to see would be brief moments with the Doctor, ones that might feel out of place in a regular episode for one reason or other. I also see potential in showing brief snippets of daily life in the Whoniverse, of what is going on when the doctor is not involved.

awkward912
awkward912

Ok, I take it back: Paternoster gang online series NOW. 

TimCerchia
TimCerchia

I like everything in this article and agree with except regeneration. I think we typically need a full story to give the incumbent a proper send off.

Planet of the Deaf
Planet of the Deaf

I'm looking forward to a follow up to Clara and the TARDIS, perhaps this time we'll get to see the hologramatic leopard in Clara's bathroom :-)


Ivegotkidneys is in Sherwood forest
Ivegotkidneys is in Sherwood forest

while on the topics for prequels and minisodes I have to say I was a little bit surprised that there was none of that to do with the time of the doctor I thought such a big episode like that might of had a prequel although it did have it's own book and it would've been fitting for the 11th doctor final stories as his doctor has had more stuff like that than any other doctor and it's the only X of the doctor episode to not have any stuff like that 



Oodkind
Oodkind

Interesting article. Perhaps this explains the 12-episode series? I have to say I'm not a big fan of having important mini-episodes all the time. For one, not all fans can access them. Casual viewers probably won't see them before watching the episode. Pond Life was a good idea, but without knowing of it's existence before seeing Asylum, the whole divorce plot seemed really out of the blue. Mini-episodes are fine, but I would still prefer the TV series to them. However, in the long December to August wait we will apparently have through the rest of Moffat's reign, some mini-episodes would be nice.

The Outer Space K9
The Outer Space K9

My favourite prequel is She said He said. And Night of the Doctor of course...

measkren
measkren

As much as I love Paul McGann, I see problems with bringing him back for minisodes or spin-off internet stories, largely because his history as the Doctor is so convoluted. If you stick closely within the confines of the 8th Doctor movie, you've got the issue of his outfit, which, though many love it, he himself never really did (possibly because of that wig).  Then you've got the problem that a new TARDIS set would have to be built (doable, but expensive, since the only remaining piece is the console, and it's in private hands), and finally you have the question of the companions.  Who will be with him, or will there be anyone with him?  Will we just scrap everything and start over?  As there have been people on this forum that worry about continuity issues with internet episodes, I think this is an important consideration.  On the other hand, there is the real possibility that McGann or the powers-that-be won't do it.  I don't mean to sound so down about this, because I'd love to see an 8th Doctor series of some kind and the direction of media is moving more toward online productions.  I just don't know how the BBC and all the interested parties would proceed.

MeglosProductions
MeglosProductions

*GASP* LOOK EVERYONE! Moffat actually DARED to say something POSITIVE about his own work! RTD would have NEVER done that! DAMN, what an egomaniac he is!

:P

AztecsDaleksAndCavemen
AztecsDaleksAndCavemen

I don't like counting mini-episodes in the 'list of Doctor Who serials'. For me they're a side note. They're canon but if you count The Night of the Doctor, you've got to count Dimensions in Time. If you count Pond Life you've got to count Good as Gold.

ilyootha
ilyootha

I'm pretty sure it was on YouTube

Rani Nose
Rani Nose

If you were able to find DWTV I am sure you are capable of also finding 'Pond Life'.

TardisBoy
TardisBoy

They did, it was available on the red button feature! :)


Oodkind
Oodkind

@measkren You don't necessarily need to bring back the TV Movie props. That Tardis belonged to an old Seventh Doctor, so the Eighth could have changed it. As for his costume, he stole it out of a hospital. He could come back to the TARDIS and get some comfortable clothes. He regenerated with long hair, but he could get it cut immediately. There are ways around the problems.

I think it's unlikely, however, that we will see spin-off episodes of him. Perhaps every once in a while we will see a cameo, but I doubt he will do anything larger. I, personally, would like to see some more of him, maybe in the long between-series break in Moffat's new schedule, but I think it's unlikely.

Amy says Peter Davison is the Thirteenth Doctor!
Amy says Peter Davison is the Thirteenth Doctor!

Doctor Who doesn't have a canon, though. There is no one authority that can determine what does and doesn't count because so many aspects of the show are owned by different parties. For example, the BBC, despite owning Doctor Who itself, cannot say that the K9 spin-off does not count, because Bob Baker owns the rights to it. Not that the BBC would ever say what does and doesn't count anyway, because then they're just digging a giant hole for themselves. But Russell T Davies, Steven Moffat, Paul Cornell, Edward Russell (the show's brand manager), and others have all affirmed that Doctor Who doesn't have a canon, and that you can basically just pick and choose whatever you like.


The Outer Space K9
The Outer Space K9

Plus it could combine two of my favourite genres:sci fi and detective stories. If that's not an incredible idead for a spin-off I don't know what is.

Alex HN
Alex HN

How cool would Six meeting another Doctor be?!

Kathrin Lily Franke
Kathrin Lily Franke

@Oodkind  @measkren Paul has always said that while e wants to give Peter some time to get settled in, he'd love to do some more Doctor. Also Night has made his audio companions (at least the ones he mentioned) canon, if you consider minisodes/ prequels/ internet stuff canon (as I do) that is. So there wouldn't be a problem with that, unless those companions had issues with coming on screen. He's also changed his costume and hairstyle for the audios recently -  earlier last year, I think - into more or less what we've seen him wear in Night. Actually I think it was a bit more like Chris', i.e. still the leather jacket but not quite so battered, but it could just have been that he was younger than in Night. So the problems seem to be removed. I'd love to see him back, but I agree that they should wait at least until the hiatus between Peter's series (assuming he stays for more than one). It just doesn't seem fair to steal time just now - unless it's something immediately related to the episode.

Oodkind
Oodkind

@Amy is Hannibal I consider all the BBC-produced series to be cannon. Classic series, New series, Torchwood, SJA. As for mini-episodes, the child-written ones don't count, in my opinion. But the prequels and mini-episodes do. As for the Audio adventures, I haven't listened to them, (don't have the time or money at this point) but based on what I've heard, I assume they are cannon. The books, however, are debatable.

AnthonyMercer
AnthonyMercer

@Amy is Hannibal Exactly. For example, I've always considered the revived series novels to be canon because they've been referenced on the show, but if someone else doesn't see them fitting in, then that's for them to judge as their own personal canon, and it's not my right to tell them otherwise.

MetamorphmagusWho met 7, 8 and Ace
MetamorphmagusWho met 7, 8 and Ace

@Amy is Hannibal  Agreed. With Doctor Who you can pretty much count and discount what you want. Whether you want Dimensions In Time, Pond Life, Good as Gold, the K9 spin-off show etc to be in the 'continuity' of the Whoniverse or not is completely up to you.

Kathrin Lily Franke
Kathrin Lily Franke

@The Outer Space K9 But isn't that what Doctor Who is most of the time anyway - a string of sci-fi detective stories? I mean he travels around time and space and the TARDIS takes him where ever there is something strange happening, whether on earth or on some alien planet, so he can go and investigate and resolve the problem (even if that means destroying one town to save the world).                                                                                                             And before they start anything new, they should bring Torchwood back. Everybody wants it (including, I think, RTD if he had the time) - the fans, the actors... and I'm sure nobody would mind if they were shorter episodes, or even one film, as long as it's a good story. And maybe they could integrate Alex Kingston/ River Song for an episode or two - I'm sure they could find a plausible way of having Jack and River meet on their own travels through time. They'd be absolutely awesome together, but I'm not sure I could stand it for a whole series.                                                                                                            But apart from that, yes, the Paternoster Gang seems a good option for a spin-off, and again there's the possibility of seeing more of Jack. After all he lived in Victorian England for quite a while, so it's not unlikely he might have heard of them.

supermoff of Sherwood
supermoff of Sherwood

@Ivegotnewkidneys on the 23rd  @supermoff Yeah, be interesting to see how he's coping in the trade...as a head XD Although he might still be stuck in the Transept of the Headless Monks! But, yes, it would have been great to see him again, he was a brilliant character (and Moffat has said how much he loves writing Dorium!) :D

Kathrin Lily Franke
Kathrin Lily Franke

@Oodkind  @Amy is Hannibal What mini episodes were written by Children? Or do you mean the Charity Specials (Children in Need, Red Nose etc)? As for everything else, for me it's all canon - novels, audios, comics, Classic/ New Who and all the spin offs and prequels/ minisodes/ internet stuff. And I'm immensely grateful for the guys who keep the wiki updated with all the new stuff that's coming up - or try their best anyway - it makes things a lot easier when trying to research something.

MrRazza, Investigating Missy and Mr Pink
MrRazza, Investigating Missy and Mr Pink

@Oodkind  @Amy is Hannibal The great things about the novels is you can pick and choose. Think that wouldn't really happen without the Doctor or his companion(s) making references to it later on? Then consider it a bit of fun. If it fits in with no clashes, then you can adopt it into your own canon. That's one of the great things about the lack of a definitive canon, not only can you be selective, but you can also just have some media that just uses the universe and characters for some fun ("Miracle Day", anyone?)

Amy says Peter Davison is the Thirteenth Doctor!
Amy says Peter Davison is the Thirteenth Doctor!

I don't recall it being addressed in any of those. I do know that he was once asked what he thought of that line in an interview, and his response was the typical "the Doctor was lying," but as I always point out whenever somebody suggests that that is the answer, the Doctor isn't the only one who says that the Doctor is half-human in that story. It's not just one line. The Master also confirms it. Besides, finding a more creative explanation is more fun. I like to believe that his regenerative process was corrupted by the human blood transfusions that he presumably underwent, and that his body filtered out the human blood shortly after the movie ended. :)