Ncuti Gatwa has already made a stir in Sex Education, but it looks like the Netflix series star will be swapping Moordale for the TARDIS, as the BBC announced that he would be the next person to undertake the role of The Doctor in sci-fi series Doctor Who, after Jodie Whittaker bows out from the role later this year.
Gatwa, 29, became a fan-favourite with fans following his portrayal as Eric Effiong in the popular TV series Sex Education — with the actor even receiving prestigious award nominations such as the Best Supporting Actor BAFTA for his role in the drama series. As well as being Otis’ best friend, some of Eric’s storylines in the show include his struggle to reconcile his sexuality with his religious and cultural identity, being attacked by homophobic thugs, and his strained relationships with his family and bully-turned-boyfriend, Adam Groff.
Gatwa, who is of Rwandan heritage, is the first Black man to be cast in the role of The Doctor since the show started airing in 1963. He will be the fourteenth actor to undertake the role (including John Hurt’s one-off portrayal as The War Doctor).
“Ncuti Gatwa is so good on Sex Education, a lightning rod of charm and comedic timing,” film critic Robert Daniels tweeted. “A star from the moment he popped on screen. He’s going to be phenomenal as the next Doctor.”
“I am overflowing with happiness,” MCU star Simu Liu added in a tweet. “Ncuti makes all of our days brighter on set with his boundless enthusiasm and radiant energy. This could not happen to a better human being.”
“I feel so happy that a lot of black Doctor Who fans or general viewers feel seen/represented by Ncuti Gatwa playing the iconic Time-Lord,” another fan account Tweeted. “The beauty of the show is escapist fun but also being represented. Representation matters.”
I feel so happy that a lot of black Doctor Who fans or general viewers feel seen/represented by Ncuti Gatwa playing the iconic Time-Lord.
The beauty of the show is escapist fun but also being represented.
— Safe Space Who (@SafeSpaceDrWho) May 9, 2022
It looks like a lot of people are willing to give Doctor Who a chance for the first time now Gatwa is set to undertake the role. “We don’t even be watching Doctor Who like that,” screenwriter and author Bolu Babalola wrote on Twitter. “But now I am ready to watch the nerd phone box show.”
“They know our asses are gonna flock to watch that blue phone box show now,” another user added. “They’ve got us.”
We don't even be watching Doctor Who like that. But now I am ready to watch the nerd phone box show
— Bolu Babalola 🍯🌶 (@BeeBabs) May 8, 2022
Of course, there’s the minority of racists who are complaining about the casting, but that doesn’t really matter because they probably get laid even less than us Doctor Who fans.