Following on from a comment I made in reply to Karen, attached to my previous post “My Ideal Companion!”, I asked myself the question if the eleventh Doctor were to be female, who would I cast? More to the point, who would Russell T Davies cast? He has, of course, just cast ex-“EastEnder” Michelle Collins in a supporting role in one of the upcoming episodes but who could fill the shoes, albeit more feminine ones, of the previous ten incumbents? I mention her because this does seem to be the sort of area the executive producer looks to when choosing actors and actresses to play all the various parts. Last year, we had another ex-“EastEnder” in the shape of Tracy Ann Oberman, as head-of-Torchwood Yvonne Hartman, who did her duty in the final two episodes of the season. In the first of those episodes, ex-“Crossroads” actress Freema Agyeman died in confrontation with the Cybermen and we all know what’s become of her! Even Barbara Windsor popped up in the same story playing herself, no less!!
Having said that soaps appear to be a favourite hunting ground for new guest stars to appear in “Doctor Who”, Russell also does look further afield. Stars from sitcoms, such as Richard Wilson and Zoë Wanamaker, have made their mark on the programme, although, to be fair, these are “serious” actors who have needed to make a living by whatever work comes their way. This tradition continues next season with Ardal O’Hanlan and Mark Gatiss. Then there are what you could call the cream of the crop, hopefully without appearing to be snobbish about it! In the recent past, actors as diverse as Simon Callow, Pauline Collins, Sophia Myles and Maureen Lipman have all graced the series. Coming up this season, viewers are to be treated to performances by Sir Derek Jacobi and “Life on Mars” star John Simm. In what capacity? I couldn’t possibly comment!!! And, while the original series might cast those who are generally regarded as light entertainers, such as Bonnie Langford and Ken Dodd, in the new series we’ve even seen an ex-pop singer in a pivotal role.
So, who could one choose who has had diverse experience hitherto and might fulfil some or all of the criteria required to play our good lady Doctor? I suggest Martine McCutcheon. She’s undoubtedly best known for playing Tiffany in 165 episodes of “EastEnders” between 1995 and 1998. Like Billie Piper, she’s had number one chart success with “Perfect Moment”. She’s appeared in “serious” drama such as “The Knock” and I loved her performance as Tash in “Spooks”. Coming up, later in the year, is an appearance in “Marple: At Bertram’s Hotel”. Martine’s also dipped her toes in the movie world playing alongside Hugh Grant and Bill Nighy in British romantic comedy “Love Actually”. She’s worked in the theatre in the musical “My Fair Lady” and she’s just been seen as a judge in “Soapstar Superstar”. I think she might just be loverly in the role of the next female Time Lord. In the pictures above, she’s even wearing Chris Eccleston’s leather jacket and the scarf is very appropriate, not to say fetching! Below, from “Party in the Park 2000”, Ms McCutcheon is seen in rock chick mode, alongside Queen guitarist Brian May in one of the pictures. And, who do you think was on the bill with her? None other than our very own Billie Piper!