Nine Years of the Ninth Doctor: Series 1 Overview

doctor who series 1 christopher eccleston ninth doctor logo review nine years of the ninth doctor russell t davies bad wolf rose tyler billie piper

So, with the series over, I thought it would be a good idea to do a sort of retrospective on the series itself, as well as a sort of analysis on the marks I gave each episode, and how it averages out across the series.

First of all, then, are the marks given to each episode, in chronological order.

  1. Rose | Russell T Davies | 7/10
  2. The End of the World | Russell T Davies | 8/10
  3. The Unquiet Dead | Mark Gatiss | 8/10
  4. Aliens of London | Russell T Davies | 7/10
  5. World War Three | Russell T Davies | 7/10
  6. Dalek | Robert Shearman | 10/10
  7. The Long Game | Russell T Davies | 7/10
  8. Father’s Day | Paul Cornell | 8/10
  9. The Empty Child | Steven Moffat | 9/10
  10. The Doctor Dances | Steven Moffat | 9/10
  11. Boom Town | Russell T Davies | 8/10
  12. Bad Wolf | Russell T Davies | 9/10
  13. The Parting of the Ways | Russell T Davies | 10/10

I made a graph, to make everything look more official and analytical.

image

It’s very obviously quite a strong series, never getting less than 7/10, although admittedly there are quite a few of those. There are some obvious standouts, and some obvious patterns.

Dalek episodes tended to fare well; both of the episodes featuring them predominantly gained 10/10, and Bad Wolf, which featured them peripherally, got a pretty strong 9/10.

Historical episodes, The Unquiet Dead and The Empty Child & The Doctor Dances, did well with an average score of 8.6/10 between them, or 26/30 altogether.

The present day ish episodes (Rose, Aliens of London & World War Three, Dalek, Father’s Day, and Boom Town) did well too, with an average score of 7.83/10, or 47/60.

Future episodes (The End of the World, The Long Game, and Bad Wolf The Parting of the Ways) got high scores as well. They averaged out at 8.5/10, or 34/40.

Now, that’s not wholly indicative of quality, given that there’s quite an imbalance in the different episodes, and it’s not really in proportion. That applies to the writers as well; because of the way it’s worked out with averages and whatnot, Russell T Davies is, technically, the worst writer.

  1. Robert Shearman = 10/10
  2. Steven Moffat = 9/10
  3. Mark Gatiss = 8/10
    Paul Cornell = 8/10
  4. Russell T Davies = 7.875/10

It’s certainly odd to look at it like that. I do consider RTD to be amongst the best writers to have worked on Doctor Who over the past nine years, but here it would appear he’s not the best. But then again, being, ostensibly, ‘the worst’ doesn’t mean that it’s not “very, very good”.

I generally don’t like to rank stories in such a way, because it’s all very subjective. Each of the stories have their own merits and values, and always very different merits and values. I often say something along the lines of “7/10, but a different 7/10 to the last 7/10, because it’s a different episode”. Odd though that may sound, it’s very true, I feel.

But, I did give the stories numerical ranks, so, rank them I have:

  1. Dalek
    Bad Wolf/The Parting of the Ways
  2. The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances
  3. The End of the World
    The Unquiet Dead
    Father’s Day
    Boom Town
  4. Rose
    Aliens of London/World War Three
    The Long Game

That’s the 10s, the 9s, the 8s, and finally the 7s. Beyond that, I don’t think I could give them proper ranks – where the marks were shared, I simply left them in chronological order.

Overall, the whole series got a mark of about 8/10 (specifically 8.230769/10), which worked out as 107/130. To have only dropped 23 marks across 13 episodes is pretty damn impressive. As a series, it’s very, very strong.

At some point soon, I’ll try and write a post about the Ninth Doctor and his character arc, which will, I imagine, be altogether more interesting than this.

Related:

Nine Years of the Ninth Doctor Reviews

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