There are some exciting plans afoot for the future of UNIT and the Doctor.


Fans of Doctor Who were delighted by the return of several characters during the show's 60th anniversary specials, as well as the introduction of some new ones, including Ruth Madeley's Shirley Bingham, Jemma Redgrave's Kate Lethbridge-Stewart and Yasmin Finney's Rose Noble.

When we last saw Rose, she came to a garden party with her family and Melanie Bush (Bonnie Langford), in which she was dubbed the Doctor's "favourite adopted niece" and it appears there could be more in store for her and UNIT as the series progresses.

In the latest issue of the Doctor Who magazine, Russell T Davies revealed his hopes to return to UNIT HQ "every year".

"I love that lot," he said. "With any luck, we'll return to UNIT HQ every year, in different ways. It's particularly lovely to see the Doctor greet Mel again, because she was holding his hand when he bi-generated – she was the first person ever to touch the new Doctor – so there’s a real joy in seeing them give each other a great big hug.

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Catherine Tate, David Tennant, Ncuti Gatwa and Bonnie Langford. David and Ncuti are holding each other and smiling as they look at one another with Bonnie and Catherine looking on in awe.
Catherine Tate, David Tennant, Ncuti Gatwa and Bonnie Langford. BBC Studios 2023/Alistair Heap

"And Kate and the Doctor have a lovely conversation about Brigadier Lethbridge Stewart, where he's remembered. Jemma, of course, has been such a constant…

"And the new parts we're building up… discoveries like Alexander Devrient, who gives such a subtle and detailed performance. It's a joy to give him more and more to do. And Ruth Madeley is still part of the gang. I can reveal that she'll be back next year. And Lenny [Rush] has become family – he'll be back at some point too."

Fans will get to see Rush in action later on in the season, with Davies previously teasing he joins the TARDIS team "just in time for the Doctor's greatest nightmare".

Rush will play 13-year-old boy genius Morris Gibbons, UNIT's new scientific adviser, who is filling in for Shirley "while she's in Geneva".

As well as the addition of Morris, the magazine confirmed that Rose is an official member of UNIT, which hints we could very well see them all in action as the Doctor takes on new adventures.

Yasmin Finney as Rose Noble in Doctor Who. She is wearing a green t-shirt and blue jean jacket as she looks ahead in a dimly-lit room.
Yasmin Finney as Rose Noble in Doctor Who. Alistair Heap/Bad Wolf/BBC Studios

"It's nice to give the Doctor friends," Davies told the publication. "It's important. It's a new Doctor, on a new platform, being new all over the place, so we need those moments that underline the fact that this is absolutely the same Doctor who was running around fighting Autons on the streets of London with the Brigadier."

The showrunner explained that nowadays, modern sci-fi franchises "are built on respecting the history", allowing them more freedom to delve into the past.

He added: "So it's a great time to do deep dives. And the casual, fleeting mentions. Both. It's brilliant."

The latest issue of Doctor Who magazine is out now.

Doctor Who continues on Saturday 25th May on BBC iPlayer and BBC One. Previous seasons are available to stream on BBC iPlayer with episodes of the classic series also available on BritBox – you can sign up for a 7-day free trial here.


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