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Wales Online
Wales Online
Sam Cook

Doctor Who: Who’s in the running to become Ncuti Gatwa’s companion?

Doctor Who fans were delighted when the identity of the new Doctor was revealed as Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa. In an unexpected statement on the official Doctor Who website on Sunday, May 8, Ncuti said: “There aren’t quite the words to describe how I’m feeling. A mix of deeply honoured, beyond excited and of course a little bit scared."

Following the announcement, people from across the globe have been desperate to know more details about the show’s future, including who will star as the next Doctor Who companion.

The Doctor, a time-travelling alien from Gallifrey, will need someone to join him on his adventures and fans have taken to Twitter, in their droves, to suggest who they’d like to see star alongside Ncuti. Let’s look at the main contenders.

Tanya Reynolds

Tanya is no-stranger to working with Ncuti Gatwa as the pair both acted in Sex Education. According to an article published by The Sun, sources say that Doctor Who producers are keen on Tanya because she’d be ‘unique’ and different to what has come before.

In 2005, Russell T Davies famously took somewhat of a risk when he cast Billie Piper as companion Rose Tyler. This decision was proven to be popular as the character has become beloved in British culture.

Unfortunately for Tanya Reynolds fans, the actress might be a little busy to commit to Doctor Who as she is taking part in HBO's The Baby. That said, with Doctor Who’s 60th Anniversary celebrations taking place next year, there are rumours that Ncuti’s first full series as the Time Lord may not be until 2024. This would allow Tanya to take part in the series. Could Doctor Who become a Sex Ed reunion?

Read more: Ncuti Gatwa 'stole' Doctor Who role says boss Russell T Davies

Ruth Madeley

Ruth Madeley alongside Arthur Hughes in Then Barbara Met Alan (Dragonfly Film & Television Productions Ltd/Samuel Dore)

Actress Ruth, who previously worked with Russell T Davies on BBC drama Years & Years, teased fans with a heart and winking emoji on Twitter following Ncuti’s announcement as the Doctor. Could she be about to join him in the TARDIS? After all, this wouldn’t be the first Doctor she has starred alongside. Last September, it was announced that she would star alongside sixth Doctor Colin Baker in a series of Big Finish audio dramas.

Should Ruth be cast as the next companion, it would mark the first time that a disabled actor played a lead role in the series. With Russell T Davies’ return to Doctor Who set to tick multiple boxes when it comes to diversity, the casting would be an inspired choice on his part. Following Ruth’s tweet, fans on Twitter said that her involvement would be ‘heaven’ but have we found our next Doctor Who companion?

Lydia West

Lydia West star of It's A Sin (BAFTA/David Vintiner)

If you were to Google ‘Doctor Who Lydia West', you'll no doubt see a huge number of results as the star was previously touted as the 14th Doctor. Now Ncuti has claimed the keys to the TARDIS, fans hope that Lydia will be involved in the show in another way. Considering how the star’s popularity has sky-rocketed in recent years, it wouldn’t come as a surprise for viewers to see her in the BBC sci-fi show.

Lydia previously went on record to say that she was ‘not the next Doctor’ but have fans been asking the wrong question: Is Lydia West the new Doctor Who companion? We could certainly see her in the role.

T’Nia Miller

T'Nia Miller in BBC drama, Years and Years (BBC)

As this list grows, it feels like we’re naming all the people who were originally contenders for the 14th Doctor… We promise, we’re not! For T’Nia Miller, being a companion would not be the first time that she has appeared in the show. T’Nia starred as a new incarnation of the Time Lord General in 2015’s Hell Bent, written by Steven Moffat.

Alongside Lydia West, T’Nia also starred in Russell T Davies’ Years and Years and therefore has experience of working with the writer. Davies, who is known to work with people he has previously worked with, could realistically cast T’Nia opposite Ncuti.

Catherine Tate

If it ain’t broke and all that… Catherine Tate was iconic as Donna Noble during David Tennant’s run as the Doctor. But could she be about to make a comeback?

Even during Jodie Whittaker’s run, rumours have been swirling that Catherine will return as the character… and that was before Russell T Davies’ return was even announced. Catherine previously told The One Show that “no one has been in touch” regarding a return but considering how she appeared on the show before, she certainly knows how to keep a secret.

2023 marks 60 years since the Doctor first entered our lives and Donna Noble has become somewhat of a fan-favourite and so fans are clambering for her return. During the same One Show appearance, Catherine said: “I wish they had [asked]” so fans should no doubt expect that the comedienne and actress would return.

Olly Alexander

Olly Alexander (PA Media on behalf of So TV)

Years and Years’ Olly was at the centre of a media-storm when the press thought he was going to take over from Jodie Whittaker. But again, were we looking at him for the wrong role? Having had a successful first stint in acting as Ritchie in It’s A Sin, we think that Olly would be a wonderful choice for the new Doctor Who companion.

That said, Olly certainly has a very busy few months ahead of him as he recently released his second album, Night Call. We wouldn’t be surprised if he made time for the Time Lord though, as the star’s schedule looks pretty empty at the end of the year.

And there's more…

Ncuti Gatwa is the new Doctor Who (Getty Images)

Other suggestions for Doctor Who's new companion are:

  • Katie McGrath
  • Helen Baxendale
  • Aimee Lou Wood
  • Joe Locke
  • Yasmin Finney
  • Nicola Coughlan
  • Tahj Miles
  • Gillian Anderson
  • Alison Hammond

Do you agree with any of these choices? Who do you want to be the new Doctor Who companion? Let us know in the comments

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