Doctor Who queer romance story will be handled ‘delicately’ in new special

Side by side images of the 13th Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) and Yaz (Mandip Gill) from the TV show Doctor Who

Doctor Who writer has teased that the romance between Yaz and the Doctor will be addressed in a ‘delicate’ way in the new special “Legends of the Sea Devils”.

Fans were thrilled to see the show finally address the romantic tension between Jodie Whittaker’s 13th Doctor and her companion Yaz (Mandip Gill) in the New Year’s special.

With only two episodes left for Whittaker, viewers have eagerly waited to see how the long-running show will feature the fan-favourite couple and their blossoming romance. 

Writer Ella Road — who co-wrote the Doctor Who: Legend of the Sea Devils with showrunner Chris Chibnall — told RadioTimes that the romance between Yaz and the 13th Doctor will be addressed “delicately” in the upcoming special. 

“I mean, I guess once those conversations had been opened up, they need to be continued,” Road said. “I think that we were all keen to make sure that we were handling all of that stuff delicately.”

She added that there were “conversations that needed to be had” within the show’s production team on how Yaz and the Doctor’s relationship developed in the previous episode. Road added that the Doctor Who team “continued to have” those discussions, but said “that’s all I can say” at this time. 

But Road teased that it was a “really fun challenge” for her to balance the adventurous sci-fi plot alongside a storyline focused on developing relationships between the show’s characters.  

“For me, again, it was like being able to engage with human relationship conversations amid the epicness and the fun of all the swashbuckling,” she said. “It was a really fun challenge.”

In the Doctor Who New Year special, Yaz opened up to Dan (John Bishop) about her feelings for the Doctor, and Dan pressed the 13th Doctor about her feelings for the other woman in a separate conversation. 

Gill previously teased that the relationship between Yaz and the Doctor will be further addressed in the Easter special, saying it is the “heart” of the new episode. 

“That’s where I think the heart [of the special] is, the understanding, the emotion that [Chibnall] is so good at writing,” Gill said. “So I won’t tell you which way it goes, but we obviously have to touch upon that again – it wouldn’t make sense not to.”

Gill added that she had loved to see fans’ reaction to the queer romance and saw people “building that up way before it was on screen”. So she believed it was “part and parcel” that Doctor Who would eventually explore a relationship between Yaz and the Doctor on the show. 

“So we’re like, ‘OK, you asked for it. And here it is’,” she said. “It was always exciting.”

However, it doesn’t appear that “Thasmin” shippers may get the happily ever after that they’ve always dreamed of for the couple. 

Gill promised in an interview with RadioTimes that there will be a “lot of tears” when viewers see how Yaz will exit the show, but she said that she “loved where it ended up”. 

“I think it was the right thing. It’s exciting,” Gill explained. “There’s a lot of emotion. And I think they’ll be – not pleasantly surprised, but I think they’ll realise that’s exactly where it should be going.”

Doctor Who: Legend of the Sea Devils is Whittaker’s penultimate appearance in the iconic role with a final special planned for later this year. 

Showrunner Russell T Davies and the BBC bosses have remained tight-lipped over who will be cast as the Doctor after Whittaker’s departure. 

However, there has been intense speculation over who the 14th Doctor might be. Olly AlexanderOmari DouglasLydia WestT’Nia MillerMichael Sheen and Hugh Grant have all been tapped for the role. 

Doctor Who: Legend of the Sea Devils debuts on BBC One on 17 April and will also be available to stream on BBC iPlayer.