Season 11 of Doctor Who has really stretched the format of the show in some major ways. Two episodes, in particular – “Rosa” and “Demons of the Punjab” – pushed the human drama and mature themes such as racial and cultural tensions to the fore and let the sci-fi elements of the plot take a back seat. Some fans praised the bold approach while others heavily criticized it, arguing that the series had become “too politically-correct.”
In a new interview with Radio Times, season 11 stars Mandip Gill and Tosin Cole – who play companions Yaz Khan and Ryan Sinclair – were asked for their thoughts on this criticism. Gill spoke up first and hit out at the overused phrase itself and how bizarre it is as a complaint.
“It makes me laugh, because having the words ‘too’ and ‘correct’ in the same sentence is really bizarre to me. How can you be too correct about something?”
The actress then admitted that she’s found herself reading some negative reactions but said that she doesn’t let them get to her and is actually grateful that they’re drumming up interesting discussions.
“You do see some extreme comments under news articles. I’m only human, and I do check and read them. But they don’t bother me and actually they’re creating conversation.”
Cole’s take on the matter, meanwhile, was a balanced one: you can’t please everyone, he reminds us, but he’s personally proud of the fact that Doctor Who can raise these big issues in its own way.
“Everyone’s going to have their own opinion – it is what it is. The fact that we can give everyone a little friendly, entertaining reminder of these issues is great.”
Recent guest star Julie Hedsmondhalgh – who appeared in episode 6 “Kerblam!” – was previously asked the same thing and gave a similar response to Gill and Cole, though her’s was more colorful. The actress waved away the criticisms as “a load of b*llocks.”
The best way to deal with those complaining about Doctor Who suddenly getting “too PC” is to simply point them in the direction of some previous episodes of the show. The series has been tackling major social concerns, as all good sci-fi should, since it was first conceived. Just look at the Daleks – the monsters were clearly inspired by the Nazis, who were a very recent memory in 1963.