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For our 300th episode, we spent an evening debating the ups and downs of the Thirteenth Doctor Era to date

What-ho, Podcastland!

Would you believe it’s been 300 episodes and in just under 7 years?! We can tell you, it feels pretty amazing.

To commemorate this special occasion, we sat down for one last pre-quarantine, in-person recording, to discuss the State of the WHO-nion. Yep, this episode is (pretty much) all about the most current of Whovian developments, focusing on the recent Season 12 closer and all of the plot twists and turns it entailed, but also branching out to tackle other parts of the Thirteenth Doctor/Chibnall era. Tune into this mega long bonus episode of Who Back When as we discuss:

  • The Thirteenth Doctor and how we feel about her after two seasons
  • Her companions
  • Her TARDIS
  • The Lone Cyberman
  • The ‘Timeless Child’ subplot and The Doctor’s new backstory
  • The Master
  • The Writing overall
  • The references to Classic Doctor Who
  • And so much more!

Best of all, we had very different opinions about some of these points…

Thank you all for joining us on this temporal road for 300 episodes so far. You’re the best audience a podcast could wish for!




Spoilers: Stick around for the post-credit section where we discuss some of the latest non-televisual developments. As promised in the recording, here are some links to check out:

Here's what you think 8 Responses to “B066 The 300th Episode State of the WHO-nion Extravaganza”
  1. Edd | @eddsutch / @dwimpossblog

    Dear WBW

    Happy 300th Episode to my (relatively) newly discovered favourite podcast!

    I have largely enjoyed Jodie Whittaker as the 13th Doctor, but feel that she wasn’t well served by her stories, especially in Series 11. I’m really pleased to say that Series 12 has been a vast improvement though. Dhawan’s Master has been great and bringing back some classic foes has made it feel more like Doctor Who.

    The highs: Fugitive of the Judoon, Haunting of Villa Diodati & The Witchfinders.

    The lows: Orphan 55, The Tsuranga Conundrum and The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos.



  2. The doctor Gamer | @doctorgamer789

    Season 12 in 5 words or less:

    Fun, good villains 4/5

    Orphan 55:
    Boring 2/5

    Nikola tesla night of terror:
    Above average 3/5

    Fugitive of the judoon:
    Um… wow 4/5

    Interesting plot 3/10

    Can you hear me?
    I don’t know… caaan you? 3/10

    The haunting of idk the name:
    Very interesting and well executed 4/10

    The Finale:
    Wow… in a mixed way 3/10

    Corona virus:
    Hopefully it will be over soon… at least it’s a good opportunity to marathon some doctor who i guess.
    It feels like a massive base under siege story but there is millions of bases.

  3. Tracey | @yecartniatnuof

    Hey guys. Let’s skip the pleasantries for now and get right to it.

    The latest season of Doctor Who was a whirlwind. Too short, a little bit everywhere and I’m just left really confused. What happened along the way?

    Well, the season opens strong. The end of Spyfall 1 had me in delighted shock. The reveal of the Master makes So Much Sense! Random deaths all around the Doctor are just the kind of dick move the Master would use for no other reason than to get her attention. Very classic. So too is the Master arranging for some evil alien to do his dirty work. Nice callback in part 2, shall we say “she will tap four times”?

    As the season continues, a little bit of character growth, perhaps clumsily written. Points for effort I guess. Graham’s comedic lines mostly hit the right pitch. We muddle through a nice variety of bad to medium episodes to finally get to the big news: the Doctor is herself the Timeless Child, mother to all Time Lords, and she didn’t even know. My head is spinning. The Master was so upset he burnt up their entire planet. What are we to make of this? Tantalizingly, strangely, sadly, the Doctor does not get to unpack this to her ‘fam’. Instead the Judoon arrive and imprison her. I’m left wanting. Which I suppose at least means I’m ready for the next season.

    Season rating: four dimensional wizards chess

  4. Kyle Rath | @sinistersprspy

    Let’s get to the hearts of the matter.

    The Doctor, both the character, and the show, is fundamentally changed, forever. Possibly.

    My first reaction was: This is a set up. A special “For Your Consideration” column to follow.lo

    I’ve heard two things often since the finale.

    One: This new shift doesn’t matter, because there is no continuity in Doctor Who.

    Except for: The T.A.R.D.I.S
    The sonic screwdriver
    The Bad Guys

    However, if the continuity is not immutable, then why not make the T.A.R.D.I.S a grapefruit, or a mathematical equation, or the colour of farts.

    The companions could be theoretical concepts, a talking sombrero, or the severed head of a Cyberman.

    Two: This new shift has made The Doctor mysterious again, and made limitless new stories possible.

    From the finale:
    “Have you ever been limited by who you were before? “.

    Listen, even bad writing needs context, and for a show with as much history and do-overs as Doctor Who, context is crucial. Every showrunner leaves their mark, changing the rules to suit their take. That’s fine. That’s television.

    Inevitably, this run will end. Changes will be made, and unmade.

    Wibbly wobbly. Timey wimey.

    So in 5, 10, 57 years down the road, will we be still contemplating the nuances of an alien cavorting around the Universe? Likely.

    To be clear – I’m not on board. There are more holes, more questions, and less context now, but I’m not going anywhere. I’ve just used up all my words.

  5. Michael Ridgway | @bad_movie_club

    Happy 300th Episode! I will only start worrying about Coronavirus when you stop broadcasting.

    Series 12 Mini


    • Gallifrey kaboomed, again? We never got a really good Gallifrey episode akin to Classic Who story The Deadly Assassin, or meet some other baddie Time Lords.
    • The Master. Crazy scary insane, but too John Simm? I wanted a more subtle evil genius. (Glad the shrink gun is back though).
    • Too many forgettable episodes? With two years to make a series, and with only a stingy ten episodes, they should all be shit-hot. Not 50% shit-hot and 50% shit.


    • Captain Jack!
    • The evil gods with the scary fingers. Yuk.
    • The lone Cyberman. The new Cybermen were pretty badass all-round.
    • Cyber-Timelords! (Surely they aren’t destructible though if you shoot each one twelve times!).
    • The Timeless Child. Holy moly. This uber twist has brought mystery back to the role of Doctor – quite similar to what Classic Who producers did with the Seventh Doctor.

    Summary: strokey beard interesting, most of the time.

    Rating: 3.1/5 tiny shrunken people in a matchbox. Awe.

  6. Trenton Bless | @trentonbless

    Hello for the first time in a long time.

    Over the course of 2019 and early 2020 I’ve kinda drifted away from my regular mini-reviewing and have sorta just disappeared. But I’m back, and I wanted to share my thoughts on the current state of the Doctor Who franchise. I may discuss spoilers, so listener discretion is advised.

    Series 12 was definitely a good step up after Series 11. Series 11 was very safe but kinda bland in some areas while Series 12 took some huge risks, some I didn’t even expect to be taken.

    I will say the Timeless Child arc has divided the fans very deeply. While I am a supporter of the idea of the Time Lord’s past being a lie, I can’t really say the same for the Doctor’s past. But I appreciate that they are kinda doing what Andrew Cartmel was trying to do in 1989 before the show was cancelled and give the Doctor a backstory. It’s just a shame Series 13 might be delayed by the current COVID-19 situation. I can’t wait for the story to continue.

    Still, many are unhappy and consider the show to be “dead”. Of course it isn’t dead. If it is dead, you killed it for yourselves when you gave in to the hate. You can dislike it but you don’t need to go rant about it on Twitter. There isn’t much point.

    In the end, I’ll keep with the show. Doctor Who was what got me through the tough parts of life. When everything went wrong the Doctor was there. And I wouldn’t give that up. Plus I’ve seen much worse. This new stuff isn’t so bad.

    So in summary, the fandom is divided, COVID-19 may delay Series 13, and I’m looking forward to what could happen in the future.

    Happy 300th Episode, WBW Team! Hopefully I’ll return to Mini-Review Land very soon. Got nothing better to do in quarantine.

  7. Jim The Fish

    By S11 everyone agreed that Jodie was good but the writing was bad.

    By S12 Jodie watched some previous episodes, her character has been given more to do, and to me she flopped. She still doesn’t feel like the Doctor, and even in situations that require more of her, she didn’t convince me.

    She really can’t pull off anger or ambiguity…She’s devoid of everything and next year will be her third??? By their first episodes I could basically point out what, 9, 10, 11 and 12 were about.

    The thing that shocks me the most is that her companions still feel like cardboard cutouts.

    They’ve been in TWENTY episodes so far. That’s more than: Martha, Donna, Jack, Bill and Nardole!

    And we still haven’t connected to them. A person can watch Jodie’s premiere and then watch this series finale and the characters will largely stay the same.

    What a let down

    Jodie just comes across as an over-enthusiastic primary school teacher. Utterly uninteresting to watch. My mind doesn’t accept her as the Doctor. I can understand that she is, but it’s clearly just a farce. It’s not that hard to watch Docs 1-12 as an unbroken continuity, but this era just doesn’t work.

    The funny part is that the Doctor is in theory unable to be miscast. The gimmick of regeneration is to allow a new take on the character rather than going over the same ground constantly. The fact that she’s managed to fuck it up is impressive.

  8. Nerdimus Prime

    Hello Whobackwhen! Tiz I Nerdimus Prime your long time listener. As in, I found the podcast around the time The Edge of Discrussion or The Daleks was posted. Obviously this is the first time I have… no, wait, it isn’t the first time I have posted. Many moons ago, I posted on the site that through the magic of comics, The Fourth Doctor is connected to Transformers and that there is a transformer who might just have a Dalek as an alternate mode!

    Now to the Rating! As I am about to rate the podcast. Dun dun duuuuuunnnnn.
    My Rating is! 4.0! Yes, unfortunately, I had to take a full point from the show, for I joined you guys with Ponken and Flapjack’s little experiment, back when you listed out every plot point and discussed them as you went along. I prefer reviews to go that route, and the round table discussion of the show in general after the Beescow is not ideal for me. But that is just me.

    You keep doing you, I love that you are doing the project, so HOWEVER you do it, I will be there to listen.

    Now, a little something for you Ponken.
    Pip Pip
    (Got to it first!)

    And as I always like to say!
    Till All Are Fun!

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