Why is it Doctor Who Season 1 again?

Doctor Who Season 14 is here. However, if you talk to Disney, it's Doctor Who Season 1. Why are we on the first season again?
Doctor Who. Credit: BBC Studios
Doctor Who. Credit: BBC Studios /

Get ready for Doctor Who Season 1…again. Yes, despite this being the 14th season of the New Who, Disney has rebranded it to Season 1 once more.

Why would Disney do this? Isn’t that just getting a little confusing? It’s bad enough that there’s the Classic Who Season 1 and the New Who Season 1. Now we have the Disney Who Season 1?

Disney hasn’t got the original seasons on the platform

Let’s just start with one reason to call it Season 1 again. While Disney+ is becoming the global home (outside of the UK) for Doctor Who, the streamer is not getting the previous seasons of the series. The New Who is still available on Max, while the classic series is on BritBox and Pluto TV.

Disney can’t just take the episodes and put them on its own streaming platform. There are licensing agreements to follow, and that’s something Disney has to respect.

Opting for the rebranding of Season 1 makes it clear that this is the first season that Disney gets to air. It signifies that there is no guarantee that any of the original episodes will stream on the platform.

It restarts Doctor Who on a new platform

Another reasoning is to help draw in new fans. If someone saw Doctor Who Season 14 on Disney+ and no previous seasons, they may choose not to tune in. After all, they might miss out on a lot of storyline. This isn’t an anthology series, is it?

By rebranding it as Season 1, it pulls in new viewers. Those who have never watched an episode of the sci-fi series before may be more inclined to watch now. They may be interested to see what’s going on despite not watching previous episodes. The specials are on Disney+, so the important episodes to understand the current season are going to be easily accessible.

There is also a restart on the Doctor Who mythology

If you consider the fact that The Doctor hasn’t regeneration but gone through bi-generation instead, you could view this as a bit of a restart on Doctor Who. There’s a restart on the mythology, so the series may feel a little different as we’re reminded of that fact.

The change of Doctor and companion at the same time with Russell T. Davis coming back also brings the feeling of a fresh start.

It does get confusing, though. When New Who came out, it made sense to call that Season 1. While the show followed canon of the Classic Series, it was a fresh start and a full rebrand of the series to draw in new fans. This time it doesn’t make as much sense, but Disney will do what it wants in rebranding!

Next. The Doctors in order in the world of Doctor Who. The Doctors in order in the world of Doctor Who. dark