The first female Doctor Who is already a huge ratings hit

Tabitha Dunn
October 9, 2018

'Doctor Who' continues on Sunday at 6.55pm on BBC One. They were just as excited as we were for the new season, and were willing to drop a few careful hints about what's to come in the next ten episodes. She's a curious cat, adorably self-effacing at times and admirably courageous in others - in short, the ideal qualities for a Doctor.

One viewer excitedly tweeted: "JODIE WHITTAKER IS KILLING IT AS THE DOCTOR".

When Yasmin refers to her as "madam", Whittaker's Doctor ask: "Why are you calling me madam?" So of course, I jumped at the chance to ask Chris Chibnall and Matt Strevens about it. When an alien invades the train she and Graham are travelling home on, she's the one who goes to investigate. "Our first historical is not a United Kingdom historical".

I got together with a bunch of friends at my apartment to watch it and everyone loved the episode - even people not that familiar with the series.

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So, we chatted with Jodie Whittaker, the 13th Doctor herself about the new role, about the fandom, and all things Doctor Who. Now, I know that nothing's ever universally loved, so I've genuinely tried to find some less positive reactions, but I can't find anything too venomous at all. The fact that these three appeared in all the promo material alongside Whittaker made it pretty obvious from the opening scene that something was going to happen to Grace.

I ask her if the groundbreaking nature of the change - the first female incarnation of The Doctor on TV - was part of her attraction to the role. She wanted to encourage everyone, both as the Doctor and as an actor, "to see the beauty and the joy in possibility". She said that she was involved in every step of the design process, and that the outfit has a journey that will be revealed throughout the episodes. Naturally, she also comes with her distinctive sonic screwdriver, because ... well, why wouldn't she. One of them was a black-and-white photograph of a woman striding through a field, wearing a skirt and a T-shirt. It's basically an opportunity to give the show a soft reboot, it's a farewell to beloved old characters and a chance to say hello to a whole new cast.

While The New York Times said the first episode did not pop as much as previous seasons had, Lucy Mangan in The Guardian said the episode revived a show that had become to complex and self-involved.

What do Whovians have to look forward to in season 11?

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