Doctor Who returned for its winter special this New Year’s Day, and in doing so it teased a groundbreaking storyline for Jodie Whittaker’s Time Lord.
While every previous modern era Doctor has had some kind of romantic arc, Whittaker’s thirteenth incarnation has never had a love interest over the past three seasons. But that could be about to change, as the latest episode hinted that she’s about to come out as LGBTQ+.
Titled “Eve of the Daleks”, the special saw the Doctor and friends trapped in a time loop with a squad of Daleks. When Sarah (guest star Aisling Bea) comments that her mother always told her that “good-hearted weirdos” are the ones to hold on to, Yaz (Mandip Gill) gives the Doctor a loaded look. Dan (John Bishop) later admits to Yaz he saw this and encourages her to tell the Doctor how she feels. Yaz hints that she’s still coming to terms with her sexuality herself, and isn’t ready to open up.
Ever the matchmaker, when alone with the Doctor, Dan admits to her that Yaz has feelings for her. Dan also says he thinks the Doctor is holding back her own feelings for Yaz. The time traveler refuses to be drawn, but she continues to think about it with a guilty expression on her face.
While this episode didn’t go so far as to have the Doctor and Yaz declare their feelings for each other, these scenes are a huge deal as they confirm that the pair do have a stronger connection than just friendship, which is something that many fans have been picking up on for years now.
So, if this plotline comes to fruition in the next two specials, before Whittaker regenerates into the as-yet-unknown Fourteenth Doctor, that would make Thirteen the first openly LGBTQ+ Doctor.
Doctor Who returns this spring for “The Legend of the Sea Devils.”