After years of being resistant to exploring spin-offs, Steven Moffat will executive produce a new eight part Doctor Who spin-off set at Coal Hill School. Class will be written and co-produced by author Patrick Ness and is due to go before the cameras early next year.
In a statement from the BBC, Patrick Ness expressed his excitement over forging new stories aimed at young adults within the Doctor Who universe.
“I’m astounded and thrilled to be entering the Doctor Who universe, which is as vast as time and space itself,” Ness said. “I can’t wait for people to meet the heroes of Class, to meet the all-new villains and aliens, to remember that the horrors of the darkest corners of existence are just about on par with having to pass your A-Levels.”
Steven Moffat added;
“No one has documented the dark and exhilarating world of the teenager like Patrick Ness, and now we’re bringing his brilliant story-telling into Doctor Who. This is growing up in modern Britain – but with monsters!”
Coal Hill School has been a fixture on Doctor Who since the very first episode, well I say fixture, it was only seen a couple of times before Clara started working there in The Day Of The Doctor. The current series seems to have recaptured some gusto based on the first two episodes, while live watch viewing figures have taken a dip the overall numbers are on par with previous years. I only draw attention to this as I’m fed up of reading headlines such as “Doctor Who in ratings slump” or “Is This The End Of Doctor Who?”. It has been two episodes people, and live viewing figures are no longer the singular basis to determine how popular a series is. Just to prove that point, after all BBC I-Player requests were counted the viewing figures jumped by more than 2 million.
Class will consist of eight 45 minute episodes and should be a big part of BBC Three’s move to be an online platform next year. Based on the students we’ve seen from Coal Hill in previous episodes (The Caretaker), we could be in for a very annoying spin-off.