It might be time for a female Doctor on Doctor Who. Since Matt Smith announced his departure from the popular BBC show, many have been speculating about the possibility of having a female or black Doctor. John Barrowman, who played Captain Jack Harkness on Doctor Who and its spin-off Torchwood, thinks it’s high time for a change.
“We’ve had great guys playing the role. The character of River Song was so popular in the last part of the series and it [had] such an impact — why shouldn’t we have a female doctor?” Barrowman told ITV’s Daybreak. “Give it a whirl. If it doesn’t work, she can always regenerate –she can always regenerate back to a man. I’ve been there — I’ve watched them do it.”
Actress Helen Mirren also suggested a woman take on the role as long as it isn’t her. “I’m not going to be the first female Doctor Who. No, no, no. Absolutely not, I absolutely wouldn’t contemplate that … but I do think it’s well over-time to have a female Doctor Who … I think a gay, black female Doctor Who would be best of all,” Mirren told Daybreak.
Jenna Coleman plays The Doctor’s most recent companion, Clara. When asked her opinion on having a female Doctor, she responded, “I’m not opposed to it. It’s about story ideas and what works.”
“Somewhere out there right now — all unknowing, just going about their business — is someone who’s about to become the Doctor,” showrunner Steven Moffat said in a statement when Smith’s departure was announced. “A life is going to change, and ‘Doctor Who’ will be born all over again! After 50 years, that’s still so exciting!”
Barrowman has also expressed interest in creating a spin-off with his character and River Song (played by Alex Kingston). “We got a glass of champagne and started talking about how it would be great if River and Jack — actually, she said River and Jack should have their own TV show,” Barrowman said.
Doctor Who returns for its 50th anniversary special (the final appearance of Matt Smith) on Saturday, November 23 on BBC America.