Did you catch Class on Saturday night on BBC America after the season premiere of “Doctor Who”? It is a YA show set in the Doctor Who universe. The BBC had done this before with “Torchwood” and “The Sarah Jane Adventures”. Those two shows were spinoffs of two characters who originated on Doctor Who while “Class” isn’t a direct spinoff; no one on this show was a character on Doctor Who. The show originated on BBC 3 and first aired on October 22, 2016.
The shows stars a group of young British actors I’m not familiar with yet. Charlie Smith (Greg Austin) is a student at the Coal Hill Academy, the former Coal Hill School that was the setting for the first episode of “Doctor Who” back in 1963. He says he is from Sheffield, but actually, he is an alien who is the Prince of the Rhodians. Miss Andrea Quill (Katherine Kelly) is a physics teacher at Coal Hill, but she is actually Andra’ath, the former military leader of the Quill, a race that fought the Rhodians and lost. The Rhodians enslaved Miss Quill as a servant and protector for Charlie. A race called the Shadow Kin wiped out both the Rhodians and Quill. The only two survivors of this genocide were Charlie and Miss Quill. The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) rescued them and placed them at Coal Hill to mingle with us humans.
The other main characters are Ram Singh (Fady Elsayed) a talented soccer player; April MacLean (Sophie Hopkins), one of the students who has an eventful encounter with the King of the Shadow Kin; and Tanya Adeola, a child prodigy at the school who was skipped three grades and has an overprotective mother. The first episode takes place during prom season. April is on the prom committee and she asks Charlie to be her date. He says no but invites a boy named Matteusz (Jordan Renzo) to be his date. Tanya is tutoring Ram; her mother won’t allow her to go to the prom because she is too young. A student is missing, it turns out the Shadow Kin killed him (with an assist from Miss Quill who was using him to fight them). The Shadow Kin starts attacking the rest of the cast. They are there looking for an item that Charlie possesses. During one of those attacks, the King of the Shadow Kin and April end up sharing a heart. The Shadow Kin attack the school during the prom, killing Ram’s prom date and severing his leg off. The Doctor shows up to save the day. He is able to give Ram a prosthetic leg. He appoints the kids protectors of Coal Hill, since it is an area of frequent alien intrusions. As punishment for Miss Quill allowing one of the students to die, the Doctor puts her in charge of the group.
The first episode was good. It successfully introduced all of the main characters and gave you some indication who they are. The CGI of the Shadow Kin wasn’t that great. Since it will be coming on right after “Doctor Who” I’ll be watching it, but it seems like your typical YA sci-fi show. No one character really grabbed my interest. The character I liked the most was Miss Quill because she was mean and snarky, my kind of woman. Maybe it will grow into something better. If I have time, and the show is worth it, I’ll try to give a season review.