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The New ‘Doctor Who’: A Plea For Diversity, and 13 Dream Doctors

The BBC has an opportunity to be creative with their pick for the next Doctor. We hope they use it.

Peter Capaldi, "Doctor Who: The Return of Doctor Mysterio"

Peter Capaldi, “Doctor Who: The Return of Doctor Mysterio”

Simon Ridgway/BBC America

For non-“Who” fans, the news of Peter Capaldi’s departure from “Doctor Who” at the end of the year might be taken as a sign that the show might be ending. But that’s far from true. Instead, what this means is that, in classic “Who” tradition, the madcap alien who travels through space and time will be “regenerating” into a new form, thus being played by a new actor.

READ MORE: ‘Doctor Who’ Christmas Special Review: River Song Isn’t Forgotten in Heartwarming Retro Superhero Adventure (Spoilers)

Said new actor’s casting has yet to be announced, but to date, “Doctor Who” has cast 12 men as the Doctor (13, if you count John Hurt), and they’ve been different in many ways: Tall, short, young, old, wearing the most absurd of outfits or the most basic leather jackets. However, they’ve all had one thing in common — they’ve all always been straight white men.

Since the show’s revival in 2005, fans have clamored for the BBC to consider more diversity in its casting (and to be fair, many of the Doctor’s companions over the last 11 years have represented that). But it’s 2017, and it’s time to prove there’s room for diversity within the Time Lord sphere. Not only is there nothing in the show’s canon stating the Doctor has to be a straight white man (in fact, the show’s lore includes examples of other Time Lords who have regenerated from a man into a woman), but “Doctor Who” is a beloved family program in the United Kingdom and beyond. Choosing a minority to play the next incarnation of the role would make a bold statement for multiple generations of fans.

So check out the gallery of our picks for who might make an amazing 13th Doctor — all of them stellar actors, and all of whom would represent significant progress.

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