While Doctor Who fans still have to wait until 2017 for the next full run of new episodes, word arrived yesterday that Mark Gatiss is returning to write at least one episode of the Season 10. Most famously, Gatiss is the co-creator (with Steven Moffat) of Sherlock; but for Doctor Who fans, he’s the guy who occasionally writes one weird episode per season. Last year, Gatiss contributed the offbeat “Sleep No More,” a kind of science-fiction take on the “found footage” horror genre. The episode featured the Doctor and Clara battling monsters which were literally formed out of the dust you get in your eyes when you wake up in the morning. And unlike nearly all Doctor Who episodes, there was no bombastic music, and very little humor.
Artistically, it was one of Doctor Who’s riskier moves and certainly engendered a divided reaction among the fans. Notably, this episode also ended on a downer of a cliffhanger, one which strongly suggested that the “Sandmen” were totally set to take over the entire universe. Could Gatiss’s episode for the 2017 season complete that storyline? Would the story be another horror-heavy installment of Doctor Who? For now, baring time-travel, we’ll just have to wait.