Doctor Who is going through a wild dramatic shake up, with showrunner Steven Moffatt stepping down, and Peter Capaldi has hinted Series 10 could be his last. His companion, Clara Oswald, (Jenna Coleman), bowed out during Series 9 in Hell Bent, in a controversial episode that forced the BBC to defend its decision to air Oswald dying slowly in agony before its 5 million children viewers. Game of Thrones actress Maisie Williams had a guest starring role last series, and many are hoping she takes over as the titular Doctor’s companion, but the actress is aiming higher. She wants to play the Doctor — as long as Idris Elba doesn’t want the role.
“I think a black doctor would be incredible,” she told the Evening Standard. “I’m all for Idris Elba – but if not I’ll take it for the team and do it!”
While some fans may be ready for a non-white Doctor in the TARDIS, the idea of a female/black Doctor seems to rattle many who just can’t wrap their heads around the concept. The Doctor has been on our television screens since 1963, always regenerating into a white male. With Capaldi speaking of his inevitable departure, could the series shakeup also include a reimagining of the classic science fiction character? The last three iterations of the Doctor were played by Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, and Matt Smith.
Maisie said that she’s a little too busy at the moment to take on the role full-time, but that a female incarnation of the Doctor would be “incredible.” Williams has appeared in a number of Doctor Who episodes, appearing alongside Capaldi as the immortal Ashildr. The Series 9 finale saw her and her borrowed TARDIS fly away with a Clara alien clone.
We’re ok with this. Maisie Williams is up for replacing Peter Capaldi on Doctor Who https://t.co/9vy822dy6M pic.twitter.com/dR8XDdgjjr
— Digital Spy (@digitalspy) February 9, 2016
Moffat, who is also the head writer for the BBC Sherlock series, has confirmed that Doctor Who Series 10 and Sherlock Series 4 will have 13 and 3 episodes, respectively, Den of Geek reports. He made the announcement while discussing what he intends to do after he leaves the series in Spring 2017. He previously said that it feels “odd to be talking about leaving when I’m just starting work on the scripts for season 10, but the fact is my timey-wimey is running out.”
— Doctor Who Official (@bbcdoctorwho) February 9, 2016
Moffat’s successor is Broadchurch showrunner Chris Chibnall, who Steven describes as “one of the true stars of British Television drama.” Steve says he is delighted about Chris “taking the Time Lord even further into the future. At the start of season 11, Chris Chibnall will become the new showrunner of Doctor Who. And I will be thrown in a skip.”
Whovians can get more of an idea of what Chibnall’s time on the series will be like via the Doctor Who episodes he penned: 42, The Hungry Earth, Cold Blood, Pond Life (webisodes), Dinosaurs on a Spaceship, The Power of Three, and P.S. (storyboard webisode). He also wrote the Torchwood episodes Day One, Cyberwoman, Countrycide, End of Days, Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, Adrift, Fragments, and Exit Wounds, per Doctor Who Watch.
As the new Head Writer and Executive Producer, Chris said, “It’s a privilege and a joy to be the next curator of this funny, scary and emotional family drama. I’ve loved DOCTOR WHO since I was four years old, and I’m relishing the thought of working with the exceptional team at BBC Wales to create new characters, creatures and worlds for the Doctor to explore.”
Doctor Who Series 10 will run after the 2016 Christmas special.
How do you feel about a female or black Doctor Who?
[Images via Vince Bucci/AP Images/Twitter]