Doctor Who

Doctor Who Showrunner Wishes He Adapted 60th Anniversary Story Sooner

Doctor Who showrunner Russell T. Davies reveals that he has always wanted to adapt "The Star Beast" story, which originated as a comic.

Russell T. Davies wishes that he had adapted the first Doctor Who 60th anniversary special story sooner. Davies returns as showrunner for Doctor Who season 14 and the 60th anniversary specials. The first of said specials, “The Star Beast,” aired this past weekend, and the second episode, “Wild Blue Yonder” will release on December 2.

Speaking on the BBC’s Doctor Who: Unleashed, Davies reveals that he has long wanted to adapt “The Star Beast” for the screen. After Davies “read the original Star Beast when it first came out,” he fell in love with its narrative, which he calls “a great piece of Doctor Who storytelling.” For years, he thought that they “never have quite gotten away with the Meep” but is glad that he finally decided to return to the story for the Doctor Who special. Check out the full quote from Davies below:

The Star Beast is a very simple ET template. Alien lands, can you get it back home? With a twist. I read the original Star Beast when it first came out. I loved it. I’ve still got my original comics, I’ve kept them, with that strip in. I’ve always thought it was a great piece of Doctor Who storytelling. So coming back to it… I don’t know why I didn’t do this when I originally was on the programme. Maybe I thought we didn’t have enough money to do it, maybe I thought all those years ago we’ never have quite got away with the Meep-but coming back to it with modern techniques and with an increased budget, I think it’s time to take one of the best Doctor Who stories from another medium, that, no matter how brilliant it is, maybe 50,000 people have read it, that’s all, and to show that to millions of people to say “Look how good this is.”

The Star Beast Original Story Gets a 21st Century Update

Beep the Meep hiding in a closet

The “The Star Beast” episode is based on a 1980 Doctor Who comic of the same name. The comic featured the Fourth Doctor battling a fluffy and unusual villain, Beep the Meep. Beep the Meep later appeared again in some Doctor Who audio dramas, before finally making its live-action debut in “The Star Beast.”

Just as the Meep searches for its home, Rose grapples with her own identity and sense of belonging.

In “The Star Beast,” the Meep calls itself “The Beep of All the Meeps.” With its 21st-century visual effects, the big-eyed, fluffy villain appears both adorable and sinister, showing the value of “modern techniques” and “an increased budget” which Davies describes. The Meep is also brought into the story with new characters, most notably interacting with Donna Noble’s daughter Rose, who first finds The Beep of All the Meeps in the Doctor Who episode.

Just as the Meep searches for its home, Rose grapples with her own identity and sense of belonging as Rose is a young transgender woman. By introducing the Meep at this moment in Doctor Who’s run, Davies and the team allow its story to connect not only using modern-day special effects but with modern-day themes and characters. Davies may have wanted to bring in the Meep for years, but luckily, the wait has paid off as Doctor Who makes creative use of the Meep’s storyline

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