Doctor Who's Latest Special Splits Fans Into 'Normies' And Die-Hard Whovians

Doctor Who's Latest Special Splits Fans Into 'Normies' And Die-Hard Whovians
Image credit: BBC

How the word ‘binary’ has triggered a good half of Britain.


  • Doctor Who is a British science fiction show that is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.
  • To celebrate, the show is releasing three special episodes featuring the 14th Doctor, portrayed by David Tennant, and Donna Noble, portrayed by Catherine Tate.
  • The first episode, The Star Beast, which aired on November 25, was controversial for its open support of transgender people.

If there is one thing that no one has ever been able to describe Doctor Who as, it is conservative. The show has always been slightly political and daring at times, especially since its revival in 2005. After all, it was only fair that the show focused on the adventures of a time traveler from outer space to question the traditions that mankind has built.

Sure, there were some episodes that seemed to cater to older audiences with more traditional views, but they were all heavily criticized.

For example, The Idiot's Lantern (S2E7), aka the episode where the 10th Doctor tells an abused boy to make peace with his father. Or Kill the Moon (S8E7), where the 12th Doctor does nothing but start a pro-life campaign.

Doctor Who's Latest Special Splits Fans Into 'Normies' And Die-Hard Whovians - image 1

Otherwise, to not notice Doctor Who's support of progressive views, you'd have to watch the show on mute and without subtitles, ignoring a good half of John Barrowman's appearances. However, the show's open support for transgender people, which was stated in the first 60th anniversary special The Star Beast, has caused a lot of drama on the internet.

Has Doctor Who Gone Woke?

The drama was caused by the character named Rose, a transgender person, who also happens to be the daughter of Donna Noble, the beloved 10th Doctor’s companion. Rose’s identity is hugely supported throughout the episode by her family, as well as the Doctor himself. And, as it turns out in the end, it plays a huge role in the mystery of the plot.

The episode The Star Beast also delves into the exploration of the Doctor's identity. As established by the 13th Doctor, portrayed by Jodie Whittaker, the Doctor doesn't have to have a male body to continue being the Doctor, which calls his own gender into question.

While one side of the fandom was freaking out on X (formerly known as Twitter) about how awful it was that Doctor Who had gone "woke," only now realizing the overwhelming support for the cause, another part of the Whovians was trying to make sense of Russell T. Davies' awkward ending to the episode.

When the Doctor was finally established as gender fluid, giving many viewers a much needed representation, the finale went back to the same old gender jokes. A very valid reason to be upset, and certainly different from the one presented by the haters.

If you weren't already intrigued by Doctor Who's latest special episode, you need to watch it now and make up your own mind. The Star Beast is available to stream on Disney Plus.