Lesser Mortals

The former role of Head of Fiction at the BBC has received a savaging from the Guardian’s Gareth McLean recently following Jane Tranter’s Special BAFTA Award, delivered in a moment of academy sycophancy by outgoing Doctor Who star David Tennant.

As Tranter moves across to the USA, her role as Head of Fiction is being removed and replaced by two lesser positions, with Christine Langan moving up the chain at BBC Films to become creative director, Ben Stephenson confirmed as “the most important person in British drama” and Lucy Lumsden fulfilling the same brief in the world of comedy.

Whether 3 people are suitable replacements for lady described by David Tennant as having workload that would have “flattened a lesser mortal” is not the issue however, certainly not on Kasterborous.

Would it be scurrilous to suggest that the whole “Move to LA” operation of Tranter, then Gardner and now possibly Russell T Davies smacks of either an imminent Americanisation of Doctor Who or at best a David Tennant-starring movie – neither of which are needed nor wanted?

As a public broadcaster, the BBC should be making their intentions clearer in this matter. They have a responsibility to the Doctor Who product/franchise/work – however you want to put it – that an additional mainstream production (as opposed to niche audio adventures or children’s animations) can only damage.

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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