At long last, Doctor Who fans have been given a launch date for the upcoming 11th season. For months, all we’ve known is that the upcoming season starring new Doctor Jodie Whittaker would launch sometime in the fall. But finally, the BBC has announced that Season 11 of Doctor Who, which will open with the episode “The Woman Who Fell to Earth,” will launch at the same time in the U.K. and U.S. on Sunday, October 7.
That’s right; Doctor Who is moving to Sunday nights from Saturdays. This is a first for the series.
So, why are they doing this? As Chris Chibnall, new showrunner for Doctor Who and writer of the season premiere episode, said in a statement: “New Doctor, new home!”
Or, as Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content, elaborated: “With Chris Chibnall at the helm and Jodie Whittaker’s arrival as the new Doctor we are heralding a brand-new era for the show, and so it feels only right to give it a new home on Sunday nights at the heart of BBC One’s Autumn schedule.”
Whittaker and Chibnall have said they believe this new 10-episode season is a good jumping-on point for those unfamiliar with the long-running series. So starting on a new night does fit in with this recurring motif of starting a decades-long show anew. Let’s not forget, Doctor Who also has a new showrunner, a new Doctor (with Whittaker being the first woman to play the role!), and even a new music composer… so why not have a new weekly timeslot?
Season 11 of Doctor Who premieres on Sunday, October 7, on BBC One and BBC America. Geronimo!