14 From Master to Missy from Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse [Video] (1:02)

Watch this entire presentation: Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse: Paving the Way for a Lady Doctor with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (36:58)

14 From Master to Missy from Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse

For her 5th Doctor Who lecture to the CPP community, Dr. Rosanne Welch discusses how society – and the show’s writing staff – prepared the audience for a major change in this 50-year franchise – the creation of the first Lady Doctor!


He gave us Bill Potts who is Pearl Mackie over there in the corner who was the last companion we’ve seen with The Doctor. Also, and out lesbian at that time when she was introduced as that character. So these are big steps in a show that was meant, originally, for children. These are big cultural influential steps. So, I tend to like — I tend to like Steven Moffat. Also in the layout before the announcement of a female Doctor Who, he gave us a female Master. And this was a huge surprise to people. So they were laying in the groundworks so you wouldn’t be so shocked when The Doctor turned into a woman this year. In this case, Missy is what they called her. These are all the men in the past who had played the regenerations of The Master and they’re all from previous — most from old Who and then right up front we get a couple of the newer Who guys. So he planted that in the storyline and so we would have that character to deal with and Iove Missy. I think she’s like — she’s like Mary Poppins and bad steroids, but she’s quite a fun character.

Follow Dr. Welch on Twitter and Instagram


Rosanne Welch, PhD

Rosanne Welch PhD teaches the History of Screenwriting and One-Hour Drama for the Stephens College MFA in Screenwriting.

Writing/producing credits include Beverly Hills 90210, Picket Fences, ABCNEWS: Nightline and Touched by an Angel. In 2016 she published the book Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop; co-edited Women in American History: A Social, Political, and Cultural Encyclopedia; and placed “Transmitting Culture Transnationally Via the Characterization of Parents in Police Procedurals” in the New Review of Film and Television Studies. Essays appear in Torchwood Declassified: Investigating Mainstream Cult Television and Doctor Who and Race: An Anthology. Welch serves as Book Reviews editor for Journal of Screenwriting and on the Editorial Advisory Board for Written By magazine, the magazine of the Writers Guild.

Watch Dr. Welch’s talk “The Importance of Having a Female Voice in the Room” at the 2016 TEDxCPP.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.