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Helen Mirren Will Not Stop Talking About Doctor Who, Has Very Specific Suggestions For The 12th Doctor


We’ve heard from Dame Helen Mirren on the topic of Doctor Who, in particular, the casting of the new Doctor, a few times now. But she’s not done yet (or at least people aren’t done asking her about it yet) and we’re totally fine with that. Hear who she suggested to take up the mantle. 

Mirren was asked by ITV’s Daybreak whether or not she’d take on the role of the 12th Doctor on the long-running BBC sci-fi series. She answered, “absolutely not.” And although we’ve heard that from her before, she made sure to drive the point home.

“I’m not going to be the first female Doctor Who – no, no, no,” she said. “I absolutely wouldn’t contemplate that.”

Although she does think there’s a right person for the job.

“I do think it’s well over-time to have a female Doctor Who. I think a gay, black female Doctor Who would be the best of all.”

The series will return for the 50th anniversary special on Saturday, November 23 but soon after we’ll see Matt Smith’s Doctor making a transformation come the Christmas special. Although folks have been throwing around rumors as to who the 12th Doctor will be, we likely won’t have the official announcement until late summer, early fall.

(via Blastr)

Previously in Doctor Who

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  • Anonymous

    “I think a gay, black female Doctor Who would be the best of all.”
    Jaime Murray would be 2 of 3.

  • Anonymous

    A black, female sci-fi protag that is also gay? I’m sure someone’s head just exploded.

  • area 51 comics

    I’m all for having strongly well written female characters, but change for the sake of change doesn’t benefit the character. Changing the Doctor to a female would come off as a bad body swap that would grow tired after a while. The reason I say this is not that I think they couldn’t write good scripts for her, but moreover you are asking a character who has been male all his career to step into the role of a female. He/she hasn’t lived or grown up or experienced life as a woman. Lets say it happened, are the writers now writing for the Doctor or are they writing on how the Doctor is coping on being a female? So if you write business as usual, you now neglect the fact that the Doctor has a female “voice”. If that is the plan then the change was just a change in appearance and not character, or a gimmick. There is always differences in character between the actors some major some subtle. If you write the character to show the major differences on being a woman as apposed to a man, then it is no longer Doctor Who in the traditional sense. You’ve lost the plot, bad things happen the good guys run, the doctor saves the day. As far as addressing the Doctors sexuality. So far they really haven’t delved into a heterosexual stereotype beyond basic romantic kisses, & longing for Rose. To make him or her gay (if he was straight & turned into a lesbian wouldn’t he still be..I’m confused) would give mystery man an answer that many of us really weren’t looking for. (think Midi-chlorians, and telling us highlanders were aliens from the future sent to the past?) Keep some aspects of the Doctors life personal. As far as changing his color, I’m actually for it. . Knowing the real life implications would be groundbreaking, I really don’t think we should weigh heavily on the race of the character as a major change to the character.

    If you want a female timelord…MAKE ONE Wouldn’t a new and interesting character be more fun to watch then BBC doing a body sway series? All I’m saying is don’t do it just to do it.

  • Camille Monae

    I was about to say the same. The fandom would most definitely blow up

  • LizbethAnne

    The Doctor is an alien, not a human, and there’s every indication that Time Lords do not view gender in the same way as humans do. For example, in “The Doctor’s Wife” there’s specific mention of the Corsair taking both male and female forms, and earlier Doctor Who canon indicates that Time Lords can reproduce asexually/not in the same way as humans.

    The Doctor is also hundreds and hundreds of years old, and grew up in a society that is radically different than that of modern Earth. Gallifreyan life is also different from the historical Earth times he’s visited, and very likely from every other place in the universe that the Doctor travels to. Why would it matter if the Doctor has “lived or grown up or experienced life as a woman”? The Doctor hasn’t actually experienced life as a human either, and yet you don’t complain about every actor being a human male.

    And why on earth (or in space) would a female Doctor not be able to participate in the ” bad things happen the good guys run, the doctor saves the day” plot? Are women somehow biologically incapable of running or saving the day? As a human woman, I can assure you, we are generally capable of running (I’ve never encountered aliens, but neither has any human male I know). How is “coping with being female” different than “coping with changing from a Northern-accented man with large ears to a skinny guy with floppy hair”? Sure, for a human in 2013, that would be an issue–but the Doctor is from a race where they are able to change their form (and where many regenerations are controlled, with the Time Lord choosing their form). Why would the Doctor hold to our hangups on gender?

  • http://scarylines.blogspot.com/ Art Wellden

    Ha ha…NICE..this put a smile on my face.. You tell em Mirren.

  • http://www.starlit-sorceress-jewelry.com/ Colleen

    Excellent point on change for the sake of change. I don’t think it would be a bad move to change the race/gender/sexuality of the Doctor, but it doesn’t feel right to do it just for the sake of doing it.

    As for “the show so far”, I just wanted to mention that when time lords regenerate, they change aspects of themselves. When the 11th Doctor discovered his love for fish fingers and custard, it was because his new regeneration had developed the taste, and it didn’t mean his previous regenerations would have liked it.

    So even if the 12th Doctor stayed a man, he could be gay without stretching believably in any way….and without changing the heterosexuality of previous regenerations.

    And thanks to Neil Gaiman’s episode, “The Doctor’s Wife”, it’s canon that time lords can regenerate into different genders. (11′s comments on the Corsair.)

    And I like your comment on spin-off shows. If Jack Harkness can get a spin-off show, the I would absolutely LOVE to see a spin-off show of a certain hot-headed time lady introduced at the end of season 6.

  • Melynda

    I’ve pretty much been downvoted into oblivion for stating that I didn’t especially want a female Doctor on another post. So I generally agree with you that the character is male, has been male, and aside from a throwaway line in ‘The Doctor’s Wife’ was not being male even a possibility before?

    As for “making the character gay” though, it would make sense that a character that has been male that has been attracted to females in the past would – when genderswapped – still be attracted to females. So if they were going to do it, it would actually make a lot of sense.

  • http://www.commonplacebook.com electrasteph

    Teeeechnically, Jaime Murray – the actress – isn’t gay. She plays gay very well, and we’re happy to claim her as ours, though. :)

  • Sabrina

    I’ll get the popcorn and watch the meltdown with glee! :D

  • http://scarylines.blogspot.com/ Art Wellden

    ^I dont wanna be the dude who says ..i was gonna say that…but i suppose i kinda am and my hats off to you miss’s for putting it better than i could.

    I have said many times with friends in discussion of this how the Doctor has mentioned being able to regenerate into any alien species and gender it just happens to be that human life is what he/it spends his time around the most so its likley his re-generations relate to the change in new culture and times on earth he is most around on a more regular basis perhaps?

    Also I always thought of the doctor as being Asexual up until the odd inklings with Rose and the marrying to River when i started to think him Bi.

    And maybe if not so comfortable with a strait up change to a women we could just ease him there and have a transvestite take on the role.. :P ..is Tim Curry or Eddie Izzard free?

    Oh what a world it would be to get an older Dr frank-N-furter as a new Doctor Who.

  • TKS

    Schadenfreude!

  • TKS

    I’m watching through the series for the first time, I’m near the end of the 4th series of the reboot, so I’m not an expert in all things Doctor Who.

    But, from what I can tell so far, this series seems to fly by the seat of it’s pants when it comes to continuity. They decide on what they want to happen (Daleks, Cybermen, The Master, Rose coming back) and they find a way to make that happen, regardless of what rules they had established. The whole “Only the Doctor can tell if something from the past can be changed or not” rule is the best excuse for not applying time travel rules to a story that I’ve ever seen. (Father’s Day pissed us off so bad. “You can’t changed the past!” “THAN WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING THIS WHOLE TIME?)

    Even if the possibility of a Time Lord changing gender is not established cannon, (Which some have pointed out it is), if any show can figure out HOW to make it cannon it’s this one.

    People were pissed that Starbuck was a woman in the Battlestar reboot. “Change for the sake of change is bad!” They said. Well, I think she turned out just fine. (And the Mary Sue icon agrees with me.)

  • RMCoyote

    No, you were downvoted for not having any other points than “casting has been incredibly racist/sexist in the past, so it should continue to be so!”

    Also, seriously, it isn’t ‘just to do it’. People stop saying that. There are a million and one reasons both in writing and in real life why we should change the doctors gender at this point. The importance of reflections in culture, how awesome it would be to see a female character not constrained by gender because they have no where near the same concept of it as a leading character, the fact that it’s shown that it’s been possible and it’s defying believability for him to have gone this far and only have appeared as a white male so to avoid plotholes and eye-rolling they should change him, the fact that it enables writers to explore history from a slightly different perspective AKA how people react to the Doctor as a woman in the past vs. as a white male.

  • Anonymous

    Exactly.

  • Anonymous

    It always seems so ridiculous when people bust out the “change for the sake of change is bad!” argument. But especially for Doctor Who. I mean, look at what show you’re talking about, people. They recast the doctor every couple seasons, just to freshen things up. It’s all about change for the sake of change.

  • Sabrina

    Doctor Who is basically fuelled by “Change for the sake of change!”

  • Seth Brodbeck

    Well, and the flip side of “Change for the sake of change is bad!” is “Keep things the same so they can be the same!” which just seems rather ridiculous to me. And that’s leaving aside that there are plenty of reasons for change besides change itself.

  • Jason Hunt

    The bottom line is if such a change was introduced the ratings would down turn a lot. Ratings matter. The way to approach it is not to change the Dr himself, but to introduce a long lost time lord character that is a black lesbian. Once introduced as a character, write a spin off series for them as they did with Sarah Jane.

  • BabeWoreRed

    In The Doctor’s Wife ep (written by badass Neil Gaiman) it is flat out stated that Time Lords can and do regenerate into different sexes. So…yup its cannon now.

  • Melynda

    So casting a man in a role that until maybe two years ago was always and could only ever be a man was sexist? I get the compulsion to push for a female Doctor, but I honestly don’t think that it’ll turn out the way everyone seems to think it would. The writers of Doctor Who have been questionable with their portrayals of female characters and even the Doctor himself in the past. Moffatt seems unable to decide what to even do with the character as he’s been so wishy-washy since he took the reigns that I wouldn’t trust him with a female lead.
    You all can say whatever you want and pound your fists on your desks and be indignant at the people who don’t think that changing a character’s established sex just because of the belief that the writers are morally obligated to do it, I don’t think it would be a good idea to put that kind of responsibility in those hands. If Moffatt can introduce a strong female that doesn’t have to play the damsel or the vixen in order to be pertinent to the story line, maybe I’ll take it back.

  • Anonymous

    Whether the Doctor should be played by a woman* and whether Moffat can be trusted to write her** are two ENTIRELY different questions.

    *Awesome idea.
    **Terrible idea.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    Fairly certain you misquoted her terribly.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    I agree with your conclusion having reached it by different avenues, though I’ll leave room for an exception. If they changed the Doctor in a way I did not like/desire…I would still watch and hope. The example I typically give is the new Ultimate Spider-Man, Miles Morales. Without going into too much detail, Marvel promoted the character in such a way that his introduction felt like a stunt. I found their promotion distasteful because, to me (and this will ALWAYS be the case) the story is more important than any agenda or supposed moral responsibility, especially if it seems like the change is happening only to drum up ratings. But the writers did amazing things with the character’s intro and convinced Me that they definitely had a story worthy of telling that drew on the legacy of the character while also standing on its own merit. The same thing could happen with the Doctor, so I remain optimistic. Apologies for typos. I’m phoning this in. From a phone.

  • Anonymous

    I want Dame Helen to be my BFF.

  • Anonymous

    If she won’t play (the) doctor, they should at least make her executive producer now!

  • Myomorph

    Sorry, not a Whovian but you can’t live on the internet and not pick things up. So…I thought you aren’t supposed to refer to the Doctor as Doctor Who? Cos, that’s only the name of the show and he’s simply The Doctor etc.

    Just, I’ve seen fanrages about this so a little confused. Am I reading the quotes wrong?

  • http://www.thenerdybird.com/ Jill Pantozzi

    Hmm, now that makes me wonder what Mirren meant. Did she mean the actress should actually be gay or just the character?

  • http://www.thenerdybird.com/ Jill Pantozzi

    Technically, yes, he’s just called “The Doctor,” but we’ll let Dame Mirren slide on this one. :)

  • http://www.commonplacebook.com electrasteph

    That is an interesting question. My personal opinion is that gay actors and actresses do a better job of portraying gay characters than straight people do – being in touch with the fear of social stigma, understanding the difficulty of having to grow up feeling different and at odds with society expectations, having chemistry with same-sex partners, not falling into the trap of using broad stereotypes of gay people in their performances. All of those experiences lead to better, nuanced performances that straight people have a hard time pulling off. On the other hand, gay actors and actresses playing straight – well, we’re taught to do that from birth, so most of us gay people can pull that off pretty well.

  • http://www.commonplacebook.com electrasteph

    I’m not convinced that the Doctor being gay would lead to him/hear being jailed or executed. As far as we know, the Doctor isn’t currently shagging his/her way through the time as a heterosexual. Other than Riversong, has the Doctor had a love interest? Being gay and actually having gay relationships aren’t the same thing. If he/she isn’t running around dating a same-sex partner, how would that make a difference?

  • Anonymous

    I don’t know. From what I understand Jaime Murray, Shay Mitchell, and Lindsey Shaw all play very nuanced and authentic gay people.

  • Anonymous

    If I remember correctly the Doctor was involved with Rose, and implied to have been involved with Jack.

  • http://www.commonplacebook.com electrasteph

    There are times when I think Shay has some problems with conveying passion. Jaime is really remarkable. Lindsey is getting a lot better than when she first started playing Paige.

  • http://www.commonplacebook.com electrasteph

    Did we see those things on screen, though? Unless he’s in a relationship and presenting that relationship to people as he’s traveling through time, or actively discussing his sexuality, I don’t see how the Doctor is in danger of being attacked or executed for being gay, as NoniDoll is suggesting.

  • Robert Vary

    What proof is there that ratings would go down a lot?

  • Bryan Cody

    The Doctor is (regardless of regeneration) a male. He’s had a wife (more than one), a past family, a grand daughter (Susan Foreman). He physically can not be female. Anyone familiar with the (50 year) story line would know this. There has been female Time Lords (Time Lady). Romona – companion of the 4th Doctor, Tom Baker – was a female time lord from Gallifrey. She even regenerated between seasons (so that a different actress could play her part).

  • http://www.thenerdybird.com/ Jill Pantozzi

    You are incorrect. He’s always BEEN a male but canon says Time Lords can change gender. He CAN physically be a female. Him having a wife/family doesn’t discount that.

  • Anonymous

    I tend to side with those who disagree/are wary of “change for the sake of change.” Or, as is usually more accurate “generating controversy just to gain ratings.”

    I think the Doctor could be female. I think the Doctor could be black/Asian/Inuit/Hindi. I think the Doctor could be gay/bi/pan (although I’ve actually thought that all along anyway). I think he could be any human type he wanted to be (except possibly ginger)… subjectively within the context of the show. But from the outsider objective viewpoint I’m just not sure it would be handled effectively. Ideally (to me) other than the whole “Oh hey, new body! Ohh, THIS is different” reaction from the Doctor I’d like to see the change happen without a lot of fuss. But you know it would get sensationalized and hyped and turned into a spectacle every single time to the point where the show would stop being about the Doctor having adventures and being OMG THE DOCTOR HAS BOOBS!!!11one!

    I’m also not convinced the current production would do justice to the concept or present it in a way that would expand the character in an agreeable/interesting way. I don’t think Smith and company were handled well, either, although goodness knows they tried their little hearts out.

    So yeah, there’s a lot of things the Doctor COULD be, but until we get a better producer/writing team in there I’m not sure he SHOULD be. And there’s also the fact that I’m not sure the studio heads would go for any of that sort of “nonsense” anyway. Young Attractive Straight(ish) White Male is what- in their minds- pulls in the ratings and anything else could spell disaster. I’m not sure they’d be willing to take any chances and risk upsetting what they believe their fanbase is.

  • RMCoyote

    Oh god I want Moffat gone SO BAD. SOOOO BAD.

    Honestly, though I defend wanting a female doctor, I don’t want them as long as Moffat is here. a male Actor of color would still be awesome and less likely for Moffat to butcher.

  • RMCoyote

    Nah, I just pointed out the reasoning as to why all of them have been white males before, which everyone seems to ignore. You can’t say that it was a intentional choice that wasn’t rooted in racism and sexism, because it was. /shrugs

  • LizbethAnne

    Just because someone has a granddaughter, it does not make them male–even for humans, as millions of grandmothers could tell you. And plenty of humans on earth right now, are female and have wives–and on the show, female characters have wives (see Madame Vastra and Jenny).

    As far as Time Lords go, they are sometimes said to NOT reproduce in the same way as humans, which you’d know if you were “familiar with the (50 year) story line” (http://tardis.wikia.com/wiki/Loom). Yes, for the 50 years, he’s been played by human male actors, from the UK, who are white. That doesn’t mean that the Doctor is a white British human man. It’s called acting.

    I just find it strange that so many people can’t fathom the idea of an alien race that doesn’t act the same way as modern-day humans–we’re watching a show about an alien who travels through space and time having fantastic adventures.

  • Anonymous

    Less likely, but I’m sure he’d give it the old college try. Argh, I want RTD back. Or I want Neil Gaiman to write all future episodes. That would also be acceptable.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    Yeah, because whenever white men get jobs, it’s because of racism, not that they were selected because of anything they particularly bring to the table. Racism did it, that’s all. Easy. You’re a Loony.

  • Calum Garlick

    Honestly I think the idea is legitimately dreadful, and a complete smack-in-the-face to the canon of Doctor Who. “But the Corsair was a woman a couple of times!”, I hear some people say. Yes, the Corsair was allegedly a woman a couple of times, but we have no evidence to believe that it was as a result of normal Timelord regeneration. Or even more likely, it was another tall tale of the Doctor’s to make his destroyed past sound more whimsical.

    I mean heck, the Doctor’s claimed he could end up with two heads after a regeneration. How many times have we seen that on a Timelord? Anybody who’s ACTUALLY watched most of Doc Who (and not just the 2005-onwards episodes – no offense to the newcomers) will acknowledge the fact that, despite the Doctor’s bizarre claims about regeneration (gender-swaps, 503 lives, regenerating into different species etc.), every single Timelord that has ever been on the show has consistently regenerated into a form of the same gender and of the same humanoid form. And there was no shortage of Timelords in the original run of the show, so it’s not exactly like its just a facet of regeneration that hasn’t been fully explored. The rules of Regeneration are consistent – it’s the Doctor who isn’t (Rule 1: the Doctor lies, remember?)

    On the plus side, a black Doctor may not be so far off – River Song had no issue switching race through regenerations, so we’ll see, eh? I’m eagerly awaiting my downvotes.

  • Ashe

    Wow, she didn’t just suggest a minority. She suggested the ULTIMATE MINORITY.

    Helen Mirren forever!

  • Ashe

    Change for the sake of change*!

    *provided it doesn’t make me confront my own subconscious biases

  • Ashe

    I remember when I first started learning about Doctor Who and how weirded out I was that, after aaaaaall these reincarnations, he’s never deviated from the Straight Cis Able-Bodied White Man form.

    Then I remembered that anyone who isn’t a Straight Cis Able-Bodied White Man is immediately an undesirable, especially decades ago when the show first came out.

  • Anonymous

    My feelings exactly. In theory I’m very much in favour of taking the Doctor away from the white/male/apparently straight version we’ve always seen.

    But everyone seems to be acting like this kind of change would be brilliantly handled and a paragon of positive visibility. I find it far more likely – especially with the current regime in place at DW – that it would be an offensive mess in the writing.

    Basically, my DW fandom is operating on a pilot-light at the moment. I don’t have energy or enthusiasm to want anything from the show, because it has consistently disappointed and, worse, insulted me under Moffat’s lead. Until Moffat goes and I can stoke the fandom flame back up into full-on geekery, the most I can be bothered to hope is that he doesn’t use up any ideas that I;d like to see handled by a good, non-bigoted writer. ‘Female, black, gay Doctor’ most certainly falls into that category.

  • Anonymous

    You make a good point: time travel – at least, as it has been portrayed on DW – is a bit of a white fantasy, isn’t it? There aren’t many bits of western history a black character could go with the kind of blithe abandon that the current Doctor does.

  • Anonymous

    For what it’s worth, I kind of agree with you – I myself would like to see a different kind of Doctor (in an ideal universe where Moffat wasn’t in charge etc), but I don’t think it’s an issue of gender politics.

    I think it’s as reasonable to say the Doctor is a male character as it is to say Sherlock Holmes is a male character. Sure, the ability to change bodies is built into the Doctor’s character, but very little we have been told indicates that gender-change is part of this ability. Having only ever seen male Doctors, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to assume that maleness is an unchangeable part of his character (just like human-shapesness or adulthood are).

    Now that doesn’t mean it’s unreasonable to start changing gender now, just as it;s not unreasonable to have a Sherlock Holmes adaptation where the title character is made female.

    My argument is not that it shouldn’t happen, just that I’m not sure it’s discrimination to blame for it not happening YET.

  • Anonymous

    You are correct, but in fact it’s only really unbearable geekier-than-thou fans who’ll pick you up on it :) (For example, sometime I do it).

    Talk to any casual fan in the UK and they’ll happily call the character Doctor Who.

  • Anonymous

    You’re argument doesn’t make a lot of sense: no one is proposing to retcon his history and say he’s had a female form all along. All the male things in his past would remain true. He’d have change from a male form into a female one – that doesn’t affect his past, only his/her future.

  • Anonymous

    Exactly! I think a lot of people on this thread *really* don’t get how privilege and discrimination work. It’s not like the writers are sitting around the casting table talking about how much women suck and the Doctor should never be a woman (I hope). In the early years, it was probably more that it wouldn’t occur to them to make the Doctor a woman. But that excuse just won’t fly anymore; it’s canon that Timelords can change sex in regeneration, so there’s nothing in the story keeping it from happening, lots of fans want it to happen, it would enable lots of new and challenging storylines. The only reason not to make that change is “but this is the way it’s always been,” which is a pretty terrible reason when it comes to a show like this.

  • RMCoyote

    So, you are telling me in all these years not a single actor of color, actress of color, or actress was good enough or a great enough fit to play the doctor?

    Hun, I think you’re the loony one here sweetie. Or just incredibly racist and sexist yourself if you think no one has that ability.

    Be-T-Dubs: Racism and sexism isn’t always “WE HATE WOMEN/PEOPLE OF COLOR!!11″. It’s more common form is simply not seeing women or people of color outside of strict roles and stereotypes. This is racism/sexism/homophobia/transphobia/etc 101. Educate yourself dude.

    Now shshhhh. Ignorance isn’t cute. Shoo.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    You said, “I just pointed out the reasoning as to why all of them have been white males before,” which indicates that ALL OF THEM were cast for your specific reasons. Apparently you’re the omniscient narrator in this scenario. I’m saying that’s nuts. I don’t know (or care) why each individual actor was chosen. The system you’re endeavouring to describe is not inherently racist or sexist, but some people are. Could some actors have been excluded due to racist or sexist casting directors? Sure. Were ALL OF THE DOCTORS chosen because they were WHITE? No. To assume so would be pretty bigoted of you. ASSUMING almost 50 years of casting was done to intentionally limit some actors while promoting others is prejudice, unlikely, and marks you as the sort of d-bag that condescends, promotes bumper sticker politics rather than actually conscientious thought, and is a waste of time. Proof of that is assuming that since I disagree with your prejudiced assumptions, I must be a racist, sexist, or both. FYI, that chip on your shoulder or stick up your ass isn’t there thanks to me.

  • Ashe

    People who haven’t challenged their privilege like to think that, in order to be a bigot, you need to sit around spouting prejudiced rhetoric at all times in the most obvious of ways.

    That way they can write themselves out of the equation, prove how not-racist and not-sexist and not-homophobic they are, and generally avoid all responsibility for what they say or do.

    And, ha, yeah. ‘The way things have always been’ is only used by people who have never had ‘the way things have always been’ used against them to their detriment.

    Privilege is fun!

  • Ashe

    It’d be a pretty poor argument to suggest white men aren’t handed the Favorite Torch most of the time.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    No one is making that argument. I am not suggesting it. The statement she made was either disingenuous or deliberately obtuse. Assuming that none of the actors deserved their roles is insulting as Hell.

  • Anonymous

    Yes! And they’re very big on meritocracy. As if the world has been run primarily by men for centuries because men are just better at it, and most movies are about men, because male characters are just more universal & relatable, and men have played the Doctor eleven times because they just happened to be the best for the role.

  • Ashe

    And when you challenge the patriarchy by mentioning all the women inventors who created groundbreaking things but never got the credit for it? Or all the women in positions of power over the years that did incredible jobs? Or all the women picking up the slack when the men left for wars? Or that male superiority is reinforced through violence, harassment, exclusion and neglect?

    You’re a misandrist!

  • Ashe

    I don’t see her claiming that none of the men deserved their roles.

    I did see her claiming that it’s not coincidental that white men always seem to be the most qualified applicants, even when the show’s own canon would work against that notion.

  • Ashe

    I’ve heard a lot of people adamantly against Moffatt with a woman character and it’s starting to make me nervous.

    I’m not familiar with his work, but apparently it’s not great!

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    “I just pointed out the reasoning as to why all of them have been white males before, which everyone seems to ignore. You can’t say that it was a intentional choice that wasn’t rooted in racism and sexism, because it was.”

    If this were the case, then they were unfairly chosen. So, they don’t necessarily deserve it.

  • Ashe

    I interpreted that differently.

    Pointing out the benefits that racism and sexism offer white men doesn’t automatically mean they didn’t deserve the role(s); it means we won’t know who else deserved it too.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    I completely agree.

  • Anonymous

    Taking up Mirren’s suggestion would kill the show, considering aside from a small minority, mostly hipsters that suggest but never watch, would just roll their eyes and turn the channel. Fact is, shows that feature women in these sort of roles don’t fare well … largely because the majority of women aren’t interested in them and the guys (who make up a majority of Who’s audience along with children) don’t want to see a character they can’t see themselves in.

  • Kevin Burnard

    I don’t get why casting a minority would be such a benefit to the show. At the end of the day, it’s the quality of the acting and the writing, not the demographic of the actor or actress, that really matter to most audiences.

  • Kevin Burnard

    To be fair, it falls well outside the desires of one of their fastest growing demographics of viewers (straight, American, female teens and young adults) who often are very vocal about their preferences for an attractive, white, male Doctor. I’m not saying it wouldn’t be interesting to have a female Doctor, but it would take away from the romantic fantasies many young women (and quite a few men, from my experience) have about his character. Just google 10/Rose fanfiction to get the idea of what some of them want…

  • Ashe

    A recent UCLA study found out that shows with more ethnic diversity garner higher ratings and general viewings than shows with more monochromatic casting.

    And that’s just race. You should try actually listening to people who normally are excluded from mainstream media: there are articles, publications, interviews, shows and Kickstarters about how much they DO care.

  • Kevin Burnard

    Sounds dubious to me, but I’d love to see the study regardless. I love seeing more perspective, particularly when done in an effective study.