Ncuti Gatwa Is the New Doctor Who

Ncuti Gatwa Is the New Doctor Who

by Hedy Phillips

There’s a new Doctor in town, and it’s Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa. BBC announced this weekend that the Rwanda-born actor will take over on Doctor Who and be the first Black lead the show has ever had.

As the 14th Doctor in the series, Gatwa will take the reins from Jodie Whittaker, the outgoing Doctor and also the first woman to helm the series. "There aren’t quite the words to describe how I’m feeling,” Gatwa said in a statement. “A mix of deeply honoured, beyond excited and of course a little bit scared. This role and show means so much to so many around the world, including myself, and each one of my incredibly talented predecessors has handled that unique responsibility and privilege with the utmost care. I will endeavour my utmost to do the same."

Showrunner Russell T. Davies will also return to the series to welcome Gatwa into the family. He worked on the show from its inception in 2005, but stepped away from the series for a few years. “There are things coming up that are brand new ways of telling the stories that have never been done before, so it just feels new," he told Radio Times earlier this year. "I wouldn't go back if it wasn't feeling new. But that's the thing about Doctor Who — every episode is new. Every single episode.”

Speaking of returning to the Doctor Who universe alongside Gatwa, Davies said in a statement, “The future is here and it’s Ncuti! Sometimes talent walks through the door and it’s so bright and bold and brilliant, I just stand back in awe and thank my lucky stars. Ncuti dazzled us, seized hold of the Doctor and owned those TARDIS keys in seconds.”

And while Gatwa will be the first Black lead on Doctor Who, he’s not the first Black Doctor. That would be Jo Martin, who appeared during Whittaker’s run as the Doctor. Martin appeared as a shape-shifting alien of sorts, and while viewers thought she may end up taking over for Whittaker, that didn’t end up happening.

For those who have seen the Scottish BAFTA winner’s previous work, it’s clear Gatwa is well-equipped to take on such an iconic role. His season of the show will begin airing in 2023.

Photo via Getty/ Samir Hussein/ WireImage