The 13th Doctor to take control of the TARDIS is going to be a Time Lady, and a small, vocal group of Doctor Who fans are very mad. It turns out the BBC isn’t here for sexism, and is going to treat 13th Doctor Jodie Whittaker the same as it did Peter Capaldi, including with how much she’ll be paid.
While the overwhelming majority of Who fans seemed thrilled over BBC’s announcement that Whittaker would be the first female iteration of Doctor Who’s titular Time Lord (now a Time Lady), there were, as expected, a fair number of dissenters. Trolls descended across the internet to cry foul, complaining about menstruation in space or something equally ridiculous.
Here’s the BBC’s official response to anyone’s complaints about Whittaker’s casting, as the BBC is a publicly funded entity and is required to address the public’s concerns:
Since the first Doctor regenerated back in 1966, the concept of the Doctor as a constantly evolving being has been central to the programme. The continual input of fresh ideas and new voices across the cast and the writing and production teams has been key to the longevity of the series.
The Doctor is an alien from the planet Gallifrey and it has been established in the show that Time Lords can switch gender.
As the Controller of BBC Drama has said, Jodie is not just a talented actor but she has a bold and brilliant vision for her Doctor. She aced it in her audition both technically and with the powerful female life force she brings to the role. She is destined to be an utterly iconic Doctor.
We hope viewers will enjoy what we have in store for the continuation of the story.
And that’s the final word on the matter. The Doctor is an alien unconstrained by human ideas about gender. Whittaker will be “utterly iconic,” so get over yourselves — so says the BBC, just slightly nicer than that.
In Season 10, Episode 11, “World Enough and Time,” Capaldi’s 12th Doctor tells Bill Potts (Pearl Mackie) that Time Lords are “billions of years beyond your petty obsession with gender and its associated stereotypes.” Between that singular line and the Master’s time as Missy, fans probably shouldn’t have been so surprised by a female Doctor.
There also shouldn’t have been any surprise regarding concerns about the wage gap between men and women. But concerns should be put aside, as BBC Director-General Tony Hall announced that Whittaker would be paid the same amount as Capaldi, which is estimated to be between £200,000 and £249,999 (about $260,000 to $325,000).
A breath of fresh air — with an entirely new kind of Doctor and a new showrunner — is frankly what the series needs. Luckily, everyone seems pretty thrilled, though, no one’s probably more thrilled than Whittaker herself.