Doctor Who’s Jo Martin says her casting as the Fugitive Doctor was “groundbreaking”

"I was a fan of Doctor Who back in the day and not seeing myself on screen as a child was tough," says the Holby City actress.

The Fugitive Doctor (Jo Martin) in Doctor Who

Doctor Who actress Jo Martin has called her casting as a surprise incarnation of the Time Lord “groundbreaking”.

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Speaking to RadioTimes.com, the star also revealed that Black science-fiction fans have reached out to her following her unveiling as ‘the Fugitive Doctor’ in the most recent series of the BBC One drama.

“A lot of Black geeks who love sci-fi have sent me pictures of them doing cosplay. They thank me and tell me it’s great that they now have someone to dress up as,” Martin said. “I was a fan of Doctor Who back in the day and not seeing myself on screen as a child was tough. It’s an awful thing to grow up thinking it’s wrong to be Black. So it’s fabulous that there are now characters like this who young kids can look up to.”

Originally introduced with the character name of Ruth Clayton, Martin was later revealed, in the episode Fugitive of the Judoon, to be a previously unseen incarnation of the Doctor – a twist that series lead Jodie Whittaker called “an extraordinary moment“.

Now, Martin, who also plays hospital CEO Max Gerry in medical drama Holby City, has revealed her own feelings at being cast on both shows: “What’s really special about these parts is that they’re groundbreaking. No one would expect a Black, middle-aged woman to be Doctor Who, but there we have it.

Jo Martin in Holby City
Jo Martin in Holby City
BBC

“And on American medical shows, there’s a lot more black representation in terms of status. So for Holby City to have a black female CEO is an amazing thing as well. I feel honoured to be a part of both these shows and to be representing these characters. It’s great for everyone.”

Doctor Who is to return over the Christmas period with a new festive instalment entitled Revolution of the Daleks, while Holby City is back on Tuesday 10th November with a hard-hitting episode that’ll find Max having to manage her under-pressure workforce during the first spike of the coronavirus pandemic.

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