This new BBC Sounds spin-off launches on 17 April
BY NIC CROSARA
The quintessential British sci-fi/drama, Doctor Who, appeals to many, including LGBTQI viewers. We were overjoyed when we met Bill Potts (Pearl Mackie), the first openly gay companion to the Time Lord. This year, the show continued to fill viewers with queer joy when it was confirmed Yaz had feelings for the 13th Doctor. We’re all eagerly awaiting the release of the Easter special, Legend Of The Sea Devils, which airs this Sunday (17 April).
But that’s not all Whovians have to look forward to. BBC Sounds is launching a spin-off drama podcast, Doctor Who: Redacted, which also premieres on 17 April. Penned by trans author Juno Dawson and starring trans activist Charlie Craggs, the show is set to be brilliantly queer.
The 10-part series offers fans a brand new immersive experience filled with action packed adventures. Set in the same universe as the TV show, Redacted will intertwine both past and current storylines.
The story follows Cleo (Charlie Craggs), Abby (Lois Chimimba) and Shawna (Holly Quin-Ankrah), three broke uni drop-outs inhabiting different cities across the UK but remain connected through their paranormal conspiracy podcast, The Blue Box Files. The friends are intent on uncovering the truth behind the mysterious police public call box that keeps cropping up across history. They don’t know who the Doctor is, or if aliens are real, but soon learn that everyone who has ever met the Doctor is disappearing and being forgotten. The groups conspiracy podcast is so unsuccessful that our protagonists are the last to be affected by the redaction. Could they be the world’s only hope?
On the podcast, Juno Dawson has said: “Doctor Who was my first love, and it’s an absolute thrill to add to the ever-expanding mythology in podcast form for the first time ever. What a total privilege to write for something so beloved, and put my own little flag on the landscape.”
Charlie Craggs commented on what being part of the podcast means to her: “There are no words to express how huge it is, and how grateful I am, being a trans actress playing the lead role in something so special, but more so how significant the fact that my character is trans, and the lead role, too. This is a huge step for the trans community, and I’m so honoured to be part of this moment.”
Jodie Whittaker, who plays the 13th Doctor on the show and appears in the podcast commented on what it was like being part of redacted: “It was absolutely brilliant, I loved meeting Charlie [Craggs] and Juno [Dawson], their energy is ace, the writing is brilliant. It was wonderful to be a part of and great for me to revisit the character, having not really done anything apart from ADR since October. I think for Doctor Who fans they’ll really love the adventure, it’s ace!”
On whether people who haven’t watched the show could enjoy the podcast, the actor had this to say: “It’s got enough for Whovians but it’s also got enough for people visiting it for the first time. It never loses that wonderful Doctor Who identity which makes it unique, but it also never excludes.”
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