What’s in a label?
News of the new Doctor Who companion has the internet a-flutter, with Bill Potts, played by Pearl Mackie, dropping her sexuality into her second line of dialogue in when we meet her in two weeks’ time, the BBC reports.
She will be, we are told, the Doctor’s “first openly gay companion”. The BBC report continues,
“It shouldn’t be a big deal in the 21st Century. It’s about time isn’t it?” Pearl Mackie, who plays Bill, told the BBC.
“That representation is important, especially on a mainstream show.”
She added: “It’s important to say people are gay, people are black – there are also aliens in the world as well so watch out for them.
But wait. Sure, two of the other queer characters that leap to mind – Captain Jack Harkness and River Song – are bisexual. And Mickey’s parallel-world doppleganger Ricky is, well, from a parallel universe. But what about Madame Vastra and Jenny?
It seems that like the LGBT umbrella there are a range of labels for people who travel in time and space with the Doctor, and apparently those two recurrent sidekicks were not companiony enough to make the companion tag.
They’ll just have to keep one another company.
Doctor Who returns on BBC1 on Saturday April 15th.