Iconic ruler Queen Victoria is Jenna Coleman’s first role since leaving Doctor Who, so we’re betting that an awful lot of Whovians have tuned in – and if they did, they may have been surprised by all the familiar faces they saw at Clara’s court.
What, did you think Jenna was the only ex-Whoniverse traveller to appear in the 19th-century drama? Oh no – there are more than you might expect…
Playing dresser Jenkins in the ITV drama (at least until the most recent series), Myles will be best known to many as a lead character from Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood, the gun-toting ex-police officer Gwen Cooper. Appearing in every episode of Torchwood, Cooper also cropped up in Doctor Who for the 2008 two-part finale after appearing as a different character called Gwyneth in 2005 Who episode The Unquiet Dead.
Another star from the extended Doctor Who universe, Knight (who plays hallboy Brodie in Victoria) acted as the adopted genius son of former Who companion Sarah-Jane Smith (Elisabeth Sladen) in CBBC spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures. His character Luke also popped up in the same two-part finale as Myles, before returning for another cameo in David Tennant’s last story The End of Time part 2 in 2010.
Hopefully the spin-off stars won’t take it too personally that they’re stuck “downstairs” while Doctor Who’s Coleman lords it up on a throne…
As Household Steward Penge, Schiller plays a pretty shady character – but he’s nowhere near the depths of when he appeared as patchwork servant Uncle in fan-favourite Doctor Who episode The Doctor’s Wife, written by author Neil Gaiman for the 2011 series.
Though he wasn’t a Doctor Who veteran when he first appeared in Victoria, the actor (who plays chef Francatelli in the series) has since starred alongside Peter Capaldi in 2017 episode Empress of Mars, playing the villainous British soldier Catchlove.
Though many Who fans will recognise new cast member Rigg from her iconic Game of Thrones role Olenna Tyrell, she also cropped up in Doctor Who alongside Jenna Coleman in 2013, playing nasty mill owner Mrs Gillyflower long before she was Coleman’s Mistress of the Robes (aka the Duchess of Buccleuch) in Victoria series 2.
Blink and you’ll miss him, but Lord Melbourne’s ally the Duke of Sutherland is none other than Torchwood’s Tom Price, aka PC (later Sergeant) Andy Davidson in all series of the BBC3 spin-off.
Does Victoria’s Duke of Wellington look familiar? Well, you may be a real Whoniverse completist – because actor Peter Bowles (best known for his role as Richard DeVere in To the Manor Born) previously appeared in spin-off the Sarah Jane Adventures, playing the former editor (called Lionel Carson) of Elisabeth Sladen’s ex-companion in a two-part 2011 story.
Yes, even the Duke of Cumberland’s very German wife has a Doctor Who connection – she appeared as a journalist (called Vivien Rook) trying to interview the Master’s wife Lucy Saxon (Alexandra Moen) in 2007 episode the Sound of Drums, before meeting a sticky end at the hands of John Simm’s evil Time Lord.
A handful of Whoniverse additions
L-r: Simon Paisley Day, Robin Soans and David Bamber in Doctor Who
While we don’t think we’ve seen them onscreen yet, three other Doctor Who stars are also among the cast of Victoria – Robin Soans (who played a victim of the Chronolock in 2015’s Face the Raven as well as classic Who character Luvic in 1981’s The Keeper of Traken) plays Sir James Clark, Simon Paisley Day (who appeared in 2005’s the End of the World as the Steward, before returning for Face the Raven to play wolfish alien Rump) plays the Lord Chamberlain and David Bamber (who was Captain Quell in 2014’s Mummy on the Orient Express) plays the Duke of Sussex.
And finally…Jenna Coleman
Hey, we couldn’t leave her out of the list, could we? Former Doctor Who companion Jenna Coleman is obviously the biggest draw for any Whovians, with the erstwhile Miss Oswald starring in the lead role as Victoria and presumably igniting thousands of fan-fictions where Clara poses as the Queen of England.
So there you have it – a veritable sci-fi smorgasbord of Doctor Who alumni to worship at Queen Jenna’s feet. Now we only have to wait and see which other Who stars will act alongside Matt Smith’s Prince Phillip in Netflix’s The Crown, and we’ll have our complete Whoniversal Royal set…