For nearly 50 years the British television show Doctor Who has been overwhelmingly popular overseas. Despite its strong fan base in the United Kingdom, recently the show has been pushing to gain a stronger audience abroad, specifically in America.
For the first time in the history of Doctor Who, the United States will have the opportunity to view the show on the same date as the U.K. broadcast. For the past five seasons, Doctor Who has only been available in America weeks, if not months, after its original British airing.
Season six marks the first occasion that American viewers can follow The Doctor, Amy, Rory and River, on their adventures through time and space without a delayed broadcast. In addition to the premiere date, Doctor Who is attempting to appeal to American fans by setting the first two episodes in the United States. This is another first, as the series has never filmed in the U.S. before.
To get American fans even more on board, on Monday, April 11 a New York screening of the first two episodes was held. The four main actors, Matt Smith, Arthur Darvill, Karen Gillan and Alex Kingston, as well as the head writer, Steven Moffat, attended. Fans lined up starting at 4 p.m. the day before in order to guarantee a spot in the viewing.
Only the first 500 to show up were allowed into the screening of “The Impossible Astronaut” and “Day of the Moon.”
As the episodes aired they were greeted with thunderous applause as well as laughter, cheers, sighs and gasps. The extremely responsive audience displayed a range of emotions as they witnessed Moffat’s creation. Instead of answering the long awaited questions proposed by season five, Moffat only raised more. The two episodes end
with an enormous cliff hanger that only assures viewers of just how huge season six will be. Fans of the show and casual viewers alike will be hooked and sucked into the world of The Doctor.
Seeing Moffat deliver the terror and suspense promised for the upcoming season in just the first two episodes only increased the anticipation. During the Q&A following the screening a fan asked if Moffat felt bad about all of the cliffhangers. The writer responded with a smirk, “No, it’s brilliant. And if you think that’s bad, just wait until episode six. It’s going to be a long summer.”
The season is airing in two separate series, with the first six episodes premiering in April, only to resume again
in September. Moffat has already confirmed that the first half will end with an “enormous game-changing cliffhanger.”
With the foreshadowing of terrifying monsters, dramatic twists and shocking conclusions, Doctor Who season six is a must see. If Moffat manages to keep the rest of the season on the same level as the first two episodes, this will easily be one of the greatest seasons of Doctor Who to date.
The show features The Doctor, played by Matt Smith, who is an alien from another planet. He has the ability to time travel, with the help of a blue police box called the TARDIS, and brings some companions along for the journey.
Season six of Doctor Who premieres on April 23 at 9 p.m. EST on BBC and BBC America with “The Impossible Astronaut.”