Steven Moffat is a man torn between two shows. He is the co-creator for “Sherlock,” but he also has “Doctor Who” weighing him down, as he’s the current executive producer of the long-runner sci-fi show. At least, he makes it sound like “Who” is kind of a burden.
In a recent interview he said “Doctor Who” is the show that “stops me doing anything else.”
It doesn’t take many breaks and shoots much longer seasons than “Sherlock,” so naturally it demands more of his time. In that same interview, Moffat says that the time it takes will be the reason he eventually leaves “Who.”
Is that such a bad thing, though? Moffat’s time at the head of the Time Lord table has been marked with criticism for all kinds of things, from his own personal opinions to very confusing turns in the series. His latest crowning achievement, the 2013 Christmas special, was sort of a jumbled mess than ended with a solid regeneration scene.
It’s not that Moffat is bad for “Doctor Who,” because he isn’t. His time as a writer on the show led to some of the best episodes of the relaunched series and Matt Smith’s Doctor had many memorable moments. Thanks to “Sherlock,” there’s also evidence that him being in charge of a show can be a good thing.
There’s a big difference in the two shows though, and that’s a man named Mark Gatiss. Moffat and Gatiss are co-showrunners on “Sherlock,” so the former doesn’t shoulder all of the responsibility.
Perhaps Moffat works best when he’s not the sole head of the team. If that’s the case, maybe it’s time to hang up his sonic screwdriver. It’d give him more time for other projects and a fresh set of eyes on “Doctor Who” isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
It’s clear that Moffat isn’t planning on going anywhere for now, though. He’s already begun production on Season 8 of “Doctor Who,” with a brand new Doctor in Peter Capaldi. It’s possible working with a new lead actor and a relatively new companion (Jenna-Louise Coleman) will rejuvenate him. However, if it doesn’t and things stay business as usual, it might be time for Moffat to move on. “Sherlock” fans will certainly be happy about that and a section of Whovians definitely would be too.