Review: Catching up with Doctor Who and Ncuti Gatwa’s stellar freshman season

black make in light blue striped shirt, blue pants, brown leather jacket, posing with hands in pockets in front of the TARDIS console

Enlarge / Ncuti Gatwa wrapped his first full season as the Fifteenth Doctor and proved more than up to the challenge. (credit: YouTube/BBC)

Doctor Who is now in its 61st year featuring a host of gifted British actors each taking on the iconic role in turn. So Ncuti Gatwa had some very big shoes to fill when he took on playing the Fifteenth Doctor. Now the season has concluded and the verdict is in: Gatwa is more than up to the challenge, bringing sparkling energy, charisma, and a superb sense of style to the role. He sings and dances, too, as does winsome new companion Ruby Sunday (Millie Gibson). They have terrific onscreen chemistry and Davies is in top storytelling form. In short, the new season mostly feels as fresh and energetic as ever and I’m already looking forward to more.

(Spoilers below.)

Here’s a brief summation for the benefit of those who may not have kept up with the more recent seasons. This is Russell T. Davies’ second stint as showrunner, having revived the series in 2005. He lost no time introducing a few new twists after signing back on as show runner. When it came time for Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor to regenerate, fans had expected Gatwa to be introduced. Instead, the new Fourteenth Doctor was played by former Tenth Doctor David Tennant, reuniting with former companion Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) for three specials.

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