Listen to the Doctor Who podcast: The Pilot’s fresh start

Pearl Mackie’s big entrance to the Doctor Who universe made a splash in 2017 – but does it really work as a jumping-on point for the series?

Peter Capaldi and Pearl Mackie in their first Doctor Who appearance (BBC, HF)

With ex-Doctor Who boss Steven Moffat releasing The Pilot’s draft script online, it seems like the perfect time to revisit the introduction to series 10 (and new companion Bill) that delighted audiences when it arrived in 2017.


Standing as both a great start for Pearl Mackie’s Bill Potts and an easy jumping-on point for fans, The Pilot (once called A Star in Her Eye) has a lot to recommend it – but with a proper show reboot coming just a year later, how does it stand as its own episode?

In this week’s podcast we try our best to find out, delving into the fresh approach of the story, how it cemented the best version of Peter Capaldi’s Doctor and informed series 10 as a whole.

We also touch on some pretty obscure Doctor Who trivia and trends from the episode, and ponder how well Bill would have fared with Jodie Whittaker’s subsequent Doctor – assuming, of course, that she’s not about to meet her already…

You can listen to the full podcast above, or listen to our entry on the 1996 Doctor Who movie – which we discussed on last week’s episode – elsewhere on

Want more Doctor Who fun? Here’s our breakdown of how The Pilot evolved from script to screen.


Doctor Who returns to BBC One in late 2020/early 2021 – check out what else is on with our TV Guide