BBC Study: 'Doctor Who' Praised In Study Of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexuals In Media

A new study from the BBC has the network realizing the need to do more than just put gay characters on screen — it needs to diversity them.

The BBC’s “Doctor Who" and "Torchwood" were among the dramas praised for their inclusion of gay, lesbian and bisexual characters. John Barrowman starred as Jack Harkness, an openly bisexual action hero, on both series.

“‘Doctor Who’ quite often has a gay character in it but it isn’t always an issue or the plotline,” anti-hate crime charity Galop said, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “It’s just incidental, which has been quite nice.”

BBC’s report finds that the majority of audiences “are comfortable with the depiction of lesbian, gay and bisexual people on radio, TV and online,” but that many lesbian, gay and bisexual people feel they are under-represented by UK broadcasters.

Experts who participated in the study said BBC should be more creative in how it represents gay, lesbian and bisexual people across various genres and platforms.

"Canton is nice. Vastra and Jenny are nice. Captain Jack is nice in both directions at once."

Steven Moffat on openly gay characters in Doctor Who.

See also: AfterElton interview with Doctor Who Show Runner Steven Moffat:

AE: I’ve think you’ve done such a good job with all the different characters and representing the world the way it is. At some point, not having a gay character is like not having a black character. 

SM: Yeah. But you can’t be driven by that. I just think you should be open to it. It makes Canton more fun. The moment you hear that a whole other life just unfolds in your head.

(Source: doctor-who-companion)

AfterElton interview with “Doctor Who” Show Runner Steven Moffat
AfterElton: The first two episodes of this season with the Canton Delaware character were terrific. I love what you did with the character, and I wonder if you could talk about where the idea came from and sort of the genesis of it.
Steven Moffat: I wanted a sort of kick-ass American agent, but he’d have to be someone off-centered because he’d have to be good with the Doctor. Someone who would trust the Doctor more than the President, which is a weird thing. Well, two things. One, I wanted to find ways that he wasn’t your typical agent, and I wanted to really annoy Nixon. [laughs] And I thought that would do it.
But also someone pointed out to me [that] in the previous Doctor Who, the first one I had run, there were no gay or bisexual characters and I was sort of slightly appalled. I was thinking, I’m not like that at all. I would never have done that. So I was thinking, “Dammit, it’s the one criticism I’ve ever listened to. Good point, Doctor Who should always be…” It’s not because it’s politically and morally correct. It’s right forDoctor Who, isn’t it? It’s cheeky and off-centered. And fun.
AE: I’ve think you’ve done such a good job with all the different characters and representing the world the way it is. At some point, not having a gay character is like not having a black character. 
SM: Yeah. But you can’t be driven by that. I just think you should be open to it. It makes Canton more fun. The moment you hear that a whole other life just unfolds in your head.

AfterElton interview with “Doctor Who” Show Runner Steven Moffat

AfterElton: The first two episodes of this season with the Canton Delaware character were terrific. I love what you did with the character, and I wonder if you could talk about where the idea came from and sort of the genesis of it.

Steven Moffat: I wanted a sort of kick-ass American agent, but he’d have to be someone off-centered because he’d have to be good with the Doctor. Someone who would trust the Doctor more than the President, which is a weird thing. Well, two things. One, I wanted to find ways that he wasn’t your typical agent, and I wanted to really annoy Nixon. [laughs] And I thought that would do it.

But also someone pointed out to me [that] in the previous Doctor Who, the first one I had run, there were no gay or bisexual characters and I was sort of slightly appalled. I was thinking, I’m not like that at all. I would never have done that. So I was thinking, “Dammit, it’s the one criticism I’ve ever listened to. Good point, Doctor Who should always be…” It’s not because it’s politically and morally correct. It’s right forDoctor Who, isn’t it? It’s cheeky and off-centered. And fun.

AE: I’ve think you’ve done such a good job with all the different characters and representing the world the way it is. At some point, not having a gay character is like not having a black character. 

SM: Yeah. But you can’t be driven by that. I just think you should be open to it. It makes Canton more fun. The moment you hear that a whole other life just unfolds in your head.




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