It’s been revealed today that Doctor Who star Jenna-Louise Coleman has quit her role as Clara Oswald, the Time Lord’s companion, and her exit from the show will a major storyline for this year’s Christmas special.
Of Jenna’s decision to leave the show – she’s played the role of Clara for eighteen months and as such, is one of the longest-serving companion actresses – a show source revealed that although her departure was a “mutual decision” made between Jenna and the show’s bosses, the consensus of opinion at the BBC was that, “It’s a part that should change after a [certain] period.”
Speaking to the Sunday Mirror, a show insider added, “It is important to keep the series moving and fast-paced.
“The feeling is that it could be a perfect Christmas storyline.”
Other former companions – there have been 60 of them since the show first kicked off in 1963 – have included Amy Pond (Karen Gillan) Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) Rose Tyler (Billie Piper) Leela (Louise Jameson) Melanie Bush (Bonnie Langford) and Ace, whose real name was Dorothy Gale McShane, (Sophie Aldred).
So who will be next? Well, there’s no hint about that as yet, but we’ve no doubt that casting for the Doctor’s new sidekick will be underway already.
As to what is evidently going to be Jenna’s last series – but her first starring alongside new Doctor actor Peter Capaldi – showrunner Steven Moffat recently revealed that series eight is going to be a significant one for Clara in several ways.
He said, “From a Doctor she could sort-of control, because he had a crush on her, she is landed with a Doctor who barely registers that she’s a girl.
“They’re great friends, but she has to be his human interface with everybody else.”
But while perhaps hinting about how Clara may be written out, he added, “One of the watchwords we have this year is that there are consequences for choosing to live like this.
“It isn’t a fairytale and we want to make it [clear] that these adventures can hurt.”
Will you be sorry to see Jenna go?
The new series of Doctor Who premieres on Saturday, August 23, at 7.50pm on BBC1, but for now, here’s a look at the show’s trailer…