With Peter Capaldi's Doctor Who regeneration imminent and a new incarnation of the Time Lord currently being sought, talk has once more turned to the possibility that we could be about to see the show's first female Doctor.

Whether that comes to pass will ultimately be the decision of incoming showrunner Chris Chibnall, but it's his predecessor Steven Moffat who has prepared the ground for the Doctor to change genders, says former companion Karen Gillan.

Not only did Moffat create Missy, the Master’s first female regeneration, but strong women have been commonplace during his tenure, reckons Gillan (whose companion Amy Pond was no pushover herself).

“He writes strong women really well. Just think about River Song and Missy, you know?”

Talking to Radio Times, Karen Gillan voiced her support for a woman of colour to replace Capaldi.

“Absolutely! You should embrace anyone for this role,” she argued. “A woman Doctor would be really cool because a lot of people are sceptical of having a woman play the role, but I think they probably were before Kathryn Janeway came along in Star Trek: Voyager, and she was amazing.”

(FAN DIGRESSION: Yes, Gillan is a Trekkie too – “I watched it when I was growing up with my mum.” Later she talked about eventually retiring into the ‘Captain’s pension plan’ on the convention circuit.

“The captains and the Doctors are, like, set for life.”)

“I mean obviously [Moffat’s] not writing it any more, but I just think [a female Doctor] would be great. I think they should do it.”

Karen Gillan stars as Nebula in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, out in UK cinemas on Friday 28th April