Brand New DOCTOR WHO and the Premiere of Class This Saturday
Normally April 15th is a dreadful day, full of wondering if your tax returns will reward or penalize you monetarily. This year, BBC America has changed that by bringing us the new series Class, as well as the awaited return of everyone’s favorite time-traveling “Doctor.”
We’re all super excited here to see more of the Doctor, after the small Christmas sampling we received. Sadly it will be Peter Capaldi’s last outing as the titular character, but after chatting with him at New York Comic Con 2016, it sounds to be an adventurous exit. In addition we were able to chat with newest Who cast member, Pearl Mackie and learned bits and pieces on one of the Doctor’s newest companions, Bill.
When first scoring the part of Bill on Doctor Who, Pearl said “On a scale of 1 to excited… excited.” When her agent called, she was in disbelief. She feels she was welcomed into an amazing family. Upon getting the part, she was doing a play in West End at the time and was secretly whisked away to Cardiff, Wales to film the trailer. Once it was done, she wanted to tell everyone but couldn’t, for a couple months. Producer Brian Minchin justified the secrecy, saying that they specifically wanted everyone to find out together, via the trailer reveal.
As far as her character of Bill, she echoed Peter’s words as to how she will react, in a way where the Doctor (as well as the audience) will not expect. She is new, fresh, and she assures us Bill will at least react to the inside of the TARDIS as we expect her to.
Following in the tradition of classic Who spinoffs such as Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures, Class tells the story of London’s Coal Hill Academy (featured prominently in Who, but most notably where former companion Clara Oswald taught). Four students band together to face Wibbly-Wobbly Timey Wimey stuff while the Doctor is off on his own adventures.
Back at NYCC 16, we were also able to chat with the cast (Greg Austin who plays Charlie, Fady Elsayed who plays Ram, Sophie Hopkins who plays April, and Vivian Oparah who plays Tanya) as well as writer/creator Patrick Ness.
The cast collectively said their favorite thing about the show is its honestly. The show has its surreal moments, but it is still grounded in reality. All of them are well versed in Doctor Who and appreciate greatly the prestige of the show in order to bring it over to Class. Patrick Ness explains that his Young Adult style of writing works well with the show, making the comparison of a teenager’s ups and downs being similar to being on top of the world or having the world end.
While much about the character descriptions had to remain secret, the only details we could get are of the Charlie character. Greg stated there is something that happens from the first episode that changes his life completely. While the rest of the cast couldn’t really go into details, they did say that all will be revealed once the show airs.
BBC AMERICA’s new Doctor Who spin-off, Class, comes from award-winning YA writer and executive producer, Patrick Ness (A Monster Calls), and is executive produced by Steven Moffat and Brian Minchin.
Following the season 10 premiere, the new eight-part series will follow four Coal Hill School students who have hidden secrets and desires, navigate a life of friends, parents, school work, sex, sorrow – and possibly the end of existence. Coal Hill School has been a part of the Doctor Who universe since the very beginning, but that has come at a price. Time travelling over the years has caused the very walls of space and time to become thin. There’s something pressing in on the other side, something waiting for its chance to kill everyone and everything, to bring us all into Shadow. The program stars Greg Austin as Charlie; Fady Elsayed as Ram; Sophie Hopkins as April; Vivian Oparah as Tanya and Katherine Kelly as Miss Quill.
Class is a BBC Studios Wales production, co-produced with BBC AMERICA and BBC Worldwide.
Doctor Who Series 10 premieres this Saturday at 9/8 Central, followed by the Series Premiere of Class, both on BBC America.