Apparently some Doctor Who fans are convinced the splitting of the show’s seventh season across this year and next is part of a BBC plan to quietly phase out the sci-fi series. The fans believe it is the BBC’s sly way of preparing the ground to axe Doctor Who once more. However, Doctor Who’s show-runner Steven Moffat has been quick to squash the conspiracy theories.
“It’s a huge money-spinner. It’s doing better than ever abroad—the global number of people watching Doctor Who has just gone up and up and up. It was the most downloaded show on American iTunes last year, so [there’s] not a chance of the BBC giving up on Doctor Who.” – Steven Moffat as quoted on Blastr
Next year is, of course, the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who which may partly explain why the seventh season has been spilt across this year and 2013 – so the series can mark the anniversary within the confines of the seventh season. Budget cut backs at the BBC may also be responsible with the costs involved in producing Doctor Who spread, perhaps, across the year.
Now while we don’t believe the BBC has any plans to axe Doctor Who – at present – we shouldn’t rubbish the conspiracy theorists completely. After all in 1985 Doctor Who was still quite popular with audiences when Michael Grade unexpectedly cancelled the series. While the BBC did later reverse Grade’s decision the damage had already been done and Doctor Who didn’t really recover in terms of ratings and was axed again a few short years later in 1989.