RTD: Rose Isn’t Special

Sick of Rose Tyler? Reckon Russell T Davies has made the chavvy companion too important to the Doctor Who universe? Perhaps he thinks she is special in some way?

That’s the angle of a particular question io9.com put to the outgoing Doctor Who showrunner about the various returns of Billie Piper’s character to the show since her initial departure in 2006’s Doomsday.

I don’t think she has been [treated as special]. I don’t think I feel any more special when I’m writing Rose than when I’m writing any of the others. I think there’s an iconography about Billie Piper. When the programme came back, it was the biggest advertised, most hyped-up programme in the world [and she was at the center of the imagery].

I’d never prefer her to Donna or Martha when writing her. But she was enormously popular and so — let’s be blunt — every time I brought her back, the ratings went up. It’s my job to make people come back to watch this.

Sometimes people roll their eyes and go, “Oh, you’ve got another returning character.” [To which I respond] “Yeah, leave me alone with my millions, thank you very much.” So you know, it simply works. Plus we like Billie… So simply by dint of being her, she’s come back the most often.

Dear Russell,

Congratulations on your millions.



PS. You’re wrong. A guest appearance by David Beckham would send the ratings up, but you wouldn’t have him in every week.

PPS. We love Billie.

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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