Is ‘Doctor Who’ getting a dark twist with director Ben Wheatley?

It seems that “Doctor Who” is going dark for season eight. As suggested in the season seven finale, the future isn’t looking so bright for the good doctor, plus the casting of Peter Capaldi to replace the decidedly bouncier Matt Smith only seemed to confirm that impression. Now comes word that director Ben Wheatley (“Kill List,” “Sightseers”) will be directing the first two episodes of the show. Given Wheatley’s track record for dark comedy and horror, don’t expect any cute aliens when new episodes start airing next fall. 

“I am very excited and honored to be asked to direct the first two episodes of the new series of ‘Doctor Who.’ I”ve been a fan since childhood (Tom Baker is my Doctor if you are asking),” he told Screendaily. “I”ve been watching the current run of ‘Doctor’ who with my son and have discovered it all over again. The work that has been done is amazing. I”m really looking forward to working with Peter Capaldi and finding out where Steven Moffat is planning to take the new Doctor.”

Wheatley, whose previous work is best described as macabre, may have to tone down his natural impulses for “Doctor Who,” which is decidedly more family friendly. But he’ll be able to let his freak flag fly in his upcoming feature projects, including “Freakshift” and “High Rise,” an adaptation of the J.G. Ballard novel.

Do you think Wheatley is right for “Doctor Who”?