With Russell T Davies examining the world of soaps in his new ITVX drama series Nolly, the writer has said that if he were put in charge of EastEnders he would cut down its weekly episode count.


In a wide-ranging feature for The Times alongside one of Nolly's stars, Mark Gatiss, the returning Doctor Who showrunner was asked what he would do with the BBC soap.

Davies said that he would "reduce EastEnders to three episodes a week and you’ve created 100 spots of television a year".

He continued: "I’d use those to give EastEnders writers - inventive teams who have created enough divorces and chases and drugs and murders - to write sitcoms and come up with game shows."

Jessie Wallace as Kat Slater and Shona McGarty as Whitney Dean in EastEnders.
Jessie Wallace as Kat Slater and Shona McGarty as Whitney Dean in EastEnders. BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron

Davies's new series Nolly focuses on Crossroads star Noele Gordon, played by Helena Bonham Carter, who at the height of her popularity on the long-running soap, was axed from the show.

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According to ITV, it will also look at "how the establishment turns on women who refuse to play by the rules, the women it cannot understand and the women it fears".

Davies previously spoke exclusively with RadioTimes.com about the series, and said: "It’s a story of a queen losing her crown, of a woman falling from grace and having it all taken away from her by men. So even if I'd invented this story, I'd be very proud of it because it's a great story of a woman in the workplace fighting."

Meanwhile, Davies is also currently working on the 14th season of Doctor Who, which is set to debut next year following three 60th anniversary specials this November.

In the same interview with The Times, Davies said he wanted to "make all of the back catalogue" of the series available on iPlayer, adding: "It’s our heritage, it deserves to be there so kids can fall in love with Doctor Who like they love Friends."

Visit our dedicated EastEnders page for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers. If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV Guide or Streaming Guide, or visit our Soaps hub.


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