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“There’s the chiseled superhero that we’re used to seeing and we’ve all grown up with,” she said in an interview with Radio Times. “But Doctor Who has never been that, which is wonderful. It’s attainable in so many ways. And now it isn’t just attainable for half of the population. The other half can be the Doctor as well.”
She added: “Girls will no longer just think, ‘Oh, I could be a companion.’ Being the first female Doctor and showing children that their heroes in shows don’t always look the same is a huge honor for me.”
Whittaker, best known as the star of Broadchurch alongside films including Attack the Block, also claimed there was some element of “liberation” in the new direction taken with her in the lead role.
“The pressure is less for me, because I can only do this my way,” she said. “All the rules are out the window! That’s what makes it so fun.”
Whittaker’s comments came just two days after the first teaser landed of the 13th Doctor and her new companions — or “friends,” as they’re now being termed by the production team — Graham, Ryan and Yasmin, played by Bradley Walsh (Law & Order U.K.), Tosin Cole (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and Mandip Gill, respectively.
Season 11 of Doctor Who will open with a feature-length episode, followed by nine 50-minute instalments, in the fall on BBC America.
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