The BBC has been receiving complaints about the first of the three Doctor Who special episodes, The Star Beast.
News has appeared this morning of the BBC receiving 144 messages from viewers, complaining about the inclusion of a human being in the Doctor Who episode, The Star Beast.
As reported by Deadline, the ire of the complainants is being aimed in the direction of Yasmin Finney, who plays the human character of Rose (the new Rose) in Doctor Who.
Deadline notes that one person has claimed the character is “anti-male”, and another talked of the “inappropriate inclusion of [a] transgender character.”
That character in question is Rose Noble, the daughter of Donna Noble and Shaun Temple.
Rose happens to be both a human being and transgender, and this is discussed in The Star Beast, in a short sequence. Finney herself happens to be a human being who is transgender, and she also takes a lead role in the series Heartstopper.
Quite what the problem the complainants have is unclear.
I’d suggest that it’s unhelpful we live in an era where politicians – rather than focusing on matters such as bringing down the cost of living and helping reduce poverty – are spending time stoking division. The way some reporting and speeches are going, it’s as if transgender people suddenly appeared a few years ago, and before that never existed.
Which would, in fairness, make an amazing Doctor Who episode, but moving on.
Finney is not the first trans actor to have appeared in Doctor Who either. But then trans representation wasn’t quite the same level of political football previously, and so the level of complaints was lower.
Russell T Davies has been vehement about the issue of transgender representation, and he’s talked of “newspapers of absolute hate, and venom, and destruction, and violence who would rather see that sort of thing wiped off the screen destroyed.”
He added “shame on you, and good luck to you in your lonely lives.”
The BBC hasn’t commented on the complaints, but then, if it responded every time a human being appeared in a TV show, it wouldn’t have any time left to make TV shows. What’s it to do?
On the off chance that Yasmin Finney is reading this, three things.
Firstly, hello! Secondly, don’t let them grind you down. Thirdly, do you have any spoilers for future episodes? Much love.
Doctor Who returns to our screens this Saturday in The Giggle. The BBC has been unable to confirm at this stage if more human beings will appear in the episode, but we fear they might.
[Please note: any culture wars crap in the comments will be deleted. Ta x]—
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