Why does nobody ever die in Steven Moffat's Doctor Who episodes? Does new companion Amy Pond fall in love with the Doctor? And how will the new Doctor surprise us? We asked Moffat and the show's stars our deepest questions.
Check out the video for the full interviews, which contain a few very minor spoilers. Here are some highlights:
Matt Smith (The Doctor)
What's it like playing an old man in a young man's body?
Fun, great fun — because I get to be the cleverest, maddest, oldest person in the universe, and I look like I do. So it's cool.
Did you change your mannerisms for the part?
I think your mannerisms always slightly change when you're playing any part, because somehow your body is not your own. But in the same breath, you draw on some of your own mannerisms. I mean, I don't know. Not consciously. [Notice at the end, he makes Waves hand in the Eleventh Doctor's manner].
How much has the Eleventh Doctor's character changed since you auditioned for the part?
Oh wow, hugely. Even from episode one to 13. By 13, I'm a different Doctor, you know. And I get better and better, I think... I think we've got a strong first step, and I think we get better and better and better — and by 12 and 13, we're on fire.
Can you give us a little insight into how [the Doctor] changes in 13 episodes?
Well, it's like anything artistic: the more you do something, the better you get [and] the more artistic you get. And I suppose those things apply to me as an actor. I don't know. I can't really because I don't analyze it in those terms. I hope he's just more sure, I suppose.
What is the one alien you've been most excited to act with in the Who-verse?
The Weeping Angels are probably one of my favorites. But I think episode six, "Vampires In Venice" because it was just six really hot vampires. Everyday was a joy, because we had these six really hot vampires showing up for work.
It seems like hardly anyone ever dies in your episodes. What is your reasoning for that?
There wasn't a reason. It's a big old coincidence that it happens, as many times. And I'm trying to work out when blood is first on my hands (in the series). It's in the first episode, though it happens off screen. Someone gets offed, and people do get offed this year. It's not a strategy — you couldn't keep that going, you'd be insane. I was a bit astonished when I realized I'd done it. I think there's another episode I've done this year in which nobody dies. But it's not the plan. Maybe I'm just not that dark. Who needs dark, it's dark!
What was it like changing the tone, the last few episodes and specials were a bit dour. What was it like changing it to a more family-friendly show?
To be honest, that's easy. It sort of sprung back to its natural form. I love the specials, but did I think we might have chased some of the kids out of the room. So it's good to get back to the fun and the adventure. The Doctor is never depressed for long. His idea of dying is getting 10 years younger and growing a bigger chin. It's just not that dark.
Karen Gillan (Amy Pond)
Do you think that Amy is in love with the Doctor and why?
I think that Amy has love for the Doctor. I think that there is a really deep connection between these two people. But as for romantic? No.
What type of relationship do they have?
A very turbulent roller coaster relationship. It's up and down. They drive each other up the wall, and yet they care so much about each other. And they probably drive each other up the wall because they care so much about each other. It's that level of passion towards each other.
After the screening of the season opener, Smith, Moffat and Gillan answered questions from the audience. Smith revealed that he drew from Albert Einstein for inspiration for his Doctor, especially the picture where the scientist's tongue is hanging out, as he looked "quite mad." When the cast was grilled as to who would be the Doctor's big original nemesis in this new series, they all smiled secretly and said that the audience had already seen "it" in the first episode. So eyes peeled, people — the baddie who's going to top The Master might be making a cameo, or at least being referenced.
Moffat was mum on the Neil Gaiman-penned episode, and same goes for the second season, still he did admit that he would be open to the idea of Michael Chabon writing a future script, as the writer had recently professed his love of the series — but truthfully the idea seemed pretty new to Moffat. The writer did admit, however, that the clock-work repair droids from his beloved "The Girl In The Fireplace" episode would not be returning, much to the dismay of one audience member.
When asked what historical even they'd like to set a new Who episode around Gillan went for Woodstock, which could be really brilliant, while Smith pondered a Lost City of Atlantis episode. Sadly, Moffat was not taking notes.
All in all the audience, which was populated by plenty of Doctor Who virgins, were very happy with Smith's doctor. The Tom Baker purists even remarked that the new episode reminded them of Baker's earlier work.