Davies Defends Tate

Russell T Davies has hit back at criticism over Catherine Tate’s performance and expected impact on Series 4 of Doctor Who.

Speaking to SFX, Davies criticised the expression of opinion in internet forums. A bit of a dangerous attitude to take in this day and age, isn’t it?

On the negative reactions to Tate’s role in ‘The Runaway Bride': “It was vitriolic. What are you going to do, cast someone according to what message boards are going to say? I think the great danger is that the writing of a drama becomes a public debate.

“The doubts about her, as far as I can see, are fundamentally stupid,” continued Davies. “They say she’s going to shout her way through the whole thing. They say she shouted her way through ‘The Runaway Bride’. No, she didn’t. Literally, factually, no matter of opinion, no, she did not.”

Holding judgement on Series 4 – after all, we haven’t seen it yet – Tate’s initial casting caused such a poor reaction among fandom because of her abrasive performance in The Runaway Bride.

No one made this up, Russell; no one woke up on Christmas Eve 2006 and sent an email around saying: “Let’s all slag off Catherine Tate on Outpost Gallifrey and Kasterborous after the Christmas treat carved by Russell’s own hand”.

It just happened – she did shout, she was annoying, and she did remind a lot of people of the annoying and desperately sad people who are dying to get married at any cost.

But Russell, you wrote her. You created her character, so if there is any blame to be apportioned, it should be equally as much your fault as it is Tate’s interpretation of the role.

You cannot honestly say, in all seriousness, “I think the great danger is that the writing of a drama becomes a public debate.”

What danger? It’s here now, it’s art, it stimulates discussion, so what’s the problem?

Get a grip!

Christian Cawley

A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

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