John Barrowman Apologizes For Exposing Himself On Doctor Who And Torchwood Sets
Amid extensive sexual misconduct allegations against former Doctor Who star Noel Clarke, it’s come out that another icon of the sci-fi series was guilty of some inappropriate behavior on set as well. The Guardian has shared an article about Clarke’s indecent actions, which also dug up the revelation that John Barrowman would frequently expose himself to members of the cast and crew on both Who and spinoff Torchwood.
Two women who worked as runners on the show recalled that Barrowman, who plays immortal Time Agent Captain Jack Harkness, “would get his genitals out on a regular basis.” It was made clear, however, that the actor was “larking about” and there were nothing sexually predatory about it. One of the women stated: “It was kind of accepted that it was his thing.”
Barrowman responded to the allegations in a statement to The Guardian. The former Arrow star, who identifies as gay, admitted to “tomfoolery” on set but stressed that his actions were never supposed to be sexual in nature. He continued by saying that his “high-spirited behaviour” was “only ever intended in good humour to entertain colleagues on set and backstage.” On the other hand, Barrowman is well aware now that what he did at the time was unacceptable, saying:
“With the benefit of hindsight, I understand that upset may have been caused by my exuberant behaviour and I have apologised for this previously. Since my apology in November 2008, my understanding and behaviour have also changed.”
Former Doctor Who exec producer Julie Gardner confirmed to The Guardian that Barrowman was reprimanded for his actions once the issue was raised to the higher-ups sometime in 2008. Gardner also notes that she didn’t receive any further reports of the actor exposing himself after he was told that his “inappropriate behavior” would not be tolerated.
Unlike Clarke, Barrowman remains an active part of the Doctor Who universe. He recently returned opposite Jodie Whittaker for an episode of 2020’s season 12 and in January’s New Year’s special in a more prominent role. He’s expected to feature yet again as well in at least one outing of the next run, which is shooting now and likely to premiere sometime later this year.