Doc­tor Who

JODIE WHIT­TAKER makes TV his­tory as she be­comes Doc­tor Who’s first fe­male Time Lord

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SCI-FI BBC1 HD, 6.45pm

This is a ground­break­ing new se­ries, with Jodie Whit­taker as the first fe­male Doc­tor, and the show mov­ing to a Sun­day slot.

Doc­tor who

sun­day, BBC1 HD, 6.45pm JODIE WHIT­TAKER’S CAST­ING as the first fe­male Doc­tor in Doc­tor Who’s

55-year his­tory has made plenty of head­lines over the past year, but now the most-an­tic­i­pated TV mo­ment of 2018 has fi­nally ar­rived.

With a fresh cast and now in a Sun­day-evening slot,

Whit­taker is lead­ing the well-loved sci-fi se­ries into a new era.

Af­ter be­ing hurled from the TARDIS fol­low­ing her re­gen­er­a­tion at the end of last year’s Christ­mas spe­cial, the new Time Lord soon finds her­self in dan­ger in this week’s open­ing episode – but luck­ily help is at hand in the form of her new friends, Gra­ham, Yas­min and Ryan (see above).

Tv&satel­lite Week trav­elled to the show’s set in Cardiff, where the 36-year-old ac­tress told us more…

HOW DID YOU FIND OUT YOU WERE CAST AS THE DOC­TOR?

I thought I was go­ing for my fi­nal au­di­tion, but showrun­ner Chris Chib­nall, who I knew from Broad­church, said, ‘We in­vited you here be­cause you’re the new Doc­tor!’ I cried. I never thought I’d get it and it’s such a big re­spon­si­bil­ity.

DID YOU FIND IT DIF­FI­CULT TO KEEP THE SE­CRET?

I had to make up ex­cuses when I went to au­di­tions and I couldn’t even tell my fam­ily. Af­ter the big re­veal last Sum­mer, my phone just ex­ploded, mainly with peo­ple say­ing, ‘You lied to me!’

WHAT CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOUR TAKE ON THE DOC­TOR?

She’s high en­ergy. Chris knows how en­er­getic I am, so that was writ­ten into it. The Doc­tor’s speed of thought helps drive the scene and ev­ery episode re­quires a dif­fer­ent side to her.

WERE YOU NER­VOUS ON THE FIRST DAY OF SHOOT­ING?

We all were, but af­ter you fin­ish the first take, you think, ‘Okay, this is it and I can do it.’ There’s a big stunt in the first episode and I did that my­self, which was great for my con­fi­dence.

DO YOU THINK IT’S THE RIGHT TIME FOR A FE­MALE DOC­TOR?

I think it’s time to show chil­dren – girls and boys – that role mod­els and he­roes on screen don’t all look the same.

It’s okay for boys to look up to a woman. But the Doc­tor is an alien with two hearts, not a man or a woman, so we can do what we like!

HOW DOES THE DOC­TOR RE­ACT TO HER NEW BODY?

Re­gen­er­a­tion al­ways comes as a bit of a shock to the Doc­tor, but she’s open-hearted and hope­ful with a child-like won­der about the way the world is, so she takes it in her stride. Un­for­tu­nately, she starts off with the old Doc­tor’s clothes so she doesn’t feel like her­self un­til she gets a new out­fit – which I ab­so­lutely love.

DID YOU ASK ANY OF THE PRE­VI­OUS DOC­TORS FOR AD­VICE?

The day be­fore I was re­vealed, I called

David Ten­nant, who I knew from

Broad­church. I was des­per­ate to talk to some­one about it and I could speak to him. He said, ‘I knew it was go­ing to be you!’ He told me it’s like noth­ing you’ll ever do again and it goes so fast, so en­joy it.

WHAT AD­VEN­TURES AWAIT THE NEW DOC­TOR AND HER PALS?The Chase host Bradley Walsh plays Gra­ham. ‘He is Ryan’s step-grandad. The show’s all about friend­ship, fam­ily and loy­alty, which you see from the first episode,’ he says. ‘Jodie is bril­liant. she’s an ex­cep­tional ac­tress and has so much en­ergy. It was dif­fi­cult keep­ing up with her.’Mandip Gill plays the doc­tor’s sec­ond com­pan­ion, yas­min. ‘she is a po­lice of­fi­cer who re­sponds toRyan’s 999 call when he finds a strange alien pod, and that’s how they meet the doc­tor,’ she says. ‘The di­ver­sity in the new se­ries is bril­liant. I hope we can in­spire anew gen­er­a­tion.’ NEW SE­RIES BOSSCHRIS CHIB­NALLGRA­HAMYAS­MIN

Tosin cole plays the doc­tor’s other com­pan­ion, Ryan. ‘Ryan has dys­praxia, which af­fects his co-or­di­na­tion, but he’s de­ter­mined to make some­thing of his life,’ says cole. ‘I’d only seen a cou­ple of episodes ofDoc­tor Who be­fore. It’s been an amaz­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.’RYAN

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