ruby in the street crying on doctor who
(BBC/Disney+)

I Would Live 100 Lifetimes With Ruby Sunday After This Week’s ‘Doctor Who’

Doctor Who has had some great companions through the years, and “73 Yards” solidified Ruby Sunday as one of them. The most recent episode of the series hit Disney+, and I cannot stop thinking about how it gave Ruby the time to come into her own, thanks to Millie Gibson.

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The episode leaves Ruby completely alone in the world. She arrives in Wales with the Doctor (Ncuti Gatwa), but after breaking a “fairy circle,” the two are separated for the rest of the episode. Instead, we get to see Gibson’s range as Ruby really take center stage. I wouldn’t necessarily want an episode like this with Rory Williams or Mickey Smith, but the women of Who have a power that allows them to tackle episodes completely on their own.

We have seen companions take over in the past, but what makes “73 Yards” feel so spectacular is how Gibson plays Ruby at different stages of her life. Ruby is only 19 years old when she meets the Doctor, but her entire lifetime plays out in this one episode. We see Gibson’s take on a Ruby in her 40s, a Ruby who is completely isolated and alone, and she shines in every situation she finds herself in.

Watching Ruby go through her entire life alone, trying to save the world from an evil man in power, just solidified her place as one of my favorite companions. If every episode were Ruby on her own, living out lifetimes without the Doctor there to help her? I’d watch every second of it.

Sure, Ruby stopping a bad politician may feel like a bit of girl power wish fulfillment, but watching as she still thinks of ways to help is a very much the pinnacle of what makes a good companion.

Ruby is an instant hit

Companions either grow on fans or are the kinds of characters that people just don’t connect with. Then we have, however, the few companions you instantly fall in love with and want more of. Ruby Sunday is, for me, one of those characters. The minute the Doctor met her in “The Church on Ruby Road,” I knew that I was going to love seeing this journey for her.

A quality that all good companions have is that they have the gut reaction to help people. It’s how the Doctor runs into them in most cases, but they all have this sense of purpose that comes without the Doctor telling them to be that way, and it’s clearly there in Ruby Sunday.

Through every episode of Doctor Who thus far, she has proven herself no matter who the two face off against. Without her, would the Doctor have survived his battle against Maestro (Jinx Monsoon)? “Boom” was all about Ruby helping to keep him calm and find help so the planet did not blow up. The two have a back and forth that works and makes their dynamic both entertaining to watch and one that really works for the adventures that these two characters go on together.

But in “73 Yards,” we saw that Ruby isn’t just a companion who works well with the Doctor. She is one who can carry this show on her own when she needs to, and that’s the best kind of person to fly in the TARDIS with the Doctor.


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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.