Former Dr. Who Christopher Eccleston On Show Canon: “I Just Ignore It.”


Dr. Who alumni Christopher Eccleston, known by fans as the Ninth Doctor, shared his candid thoughts about the science fiction show and the canon that was created around it.

After concluding his reprisal as the Doctor for a series of audio dramas, he spoke to Den of Geek about the rearrangement of the canon.


“I just ignore it,” Ecceslton explained. “And he does. We’ve just recorded an episode for instance where the Brigadier is saying to him, ‘You remember, you came to my retirement party and then we ended up on Gallifrey,’ and he said, ‘No, I don’t remember.’ An essential quality of him is he’s entirely in the moment… He can become Peter Capaldi, he can become Jodie Whittaker, he can become Jon Pertwee.”

He then poked fun at the United Kingdom’s current prime.

“Hopefully, he can’t become Boris Johnson,” he joked. “I don’t refer to any of that [canon]. My Doctor is very much in the moment.”

“I’m not a slave to the canon,” Ecceslton added. “I think if the show wants to survive going forward, it needs to explode the canon. That rigid adherence to, ‘There can only be this number of incarnations,’ et cetera, it’s nonsense. It’s nonsense. The imagination is limitless.”


He did not stop there. He also spoke about the “feminization of Doctor Who.”

“I think it’s time for the Doctor to meet the Cyberwomen in the 21st century. We’ve had enough Cybermen,” Eccleston opined. “I would very much like the Doctor to meet Emily Davison who threw herself in front of the Derby winner and was one of the forerunners of the feminist movement and a martyr for it. I think that’d be extraordinary for him to mix with Emily Davidson and Pankhurst and explore that. As I’ve said earlier, he’s very drawn to the feminine. And I think that it’s great that we now have a female Doctor, and I think we should take that further in the way that we look at history and look at it through a female lens. I think the [Ninth] Doctor would respond very well to that.”

Succeeding Paul McGann in the role, Eccleston’s tenure as the Doctor saw its 2005 BBC revival after a decades-long hiatus. Though little was known about his origins, it was discovered that he was a regeneration of the War Doctor played by John Hurt.

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