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Jane Austen

Next Season on Doctor Who: Peter Capaldi Meets Jane Austen

In a recent Q&A in Brazil, Eternal Troll Mark Gatiss teased fans that writers may feature another famous British novelist on Doctor Who.

Since the revival of Doctor Who in 2005, writers have introduced our favorite time traveling alien to Agatha Christie, Winston Churchill, William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens and two English Queens.


Sorry, better make that three english queens:

Oh, Liz 10.

It’s been a fun and creative ploy, typically these episodes go over rather well with audiences.  Who didn’t love watching Queen Victoria facing down an errant werewolf? Or that time Charles Dickens took on a bunch of zombies? The Giant Wasp and Agatha Christie…well, that one  was a bit of a leap, wasn’t it?

Earlier this week, Mary Sue broke the story about the next celebrity centered storyline for Who.  According to Gatiss, Jane Austen stands a pretty good shot. The writer has already penned several of the aforementioned historical episodes, and he’s confirmed that he’s writing at least two episodes for Capaldi’s era — whether those episodes air in the upcoming season or in future seasons remains to be seen.

 “One of the things which new Doctor Who sort of invented was the idea of a celebrity historical – Charles Dickens, Agatha Christie,Winston ChurchillShakespeare …There’s three writers there so I think Jane Austen stands quite a quite a good chance actually… I’m not quite sure what the adventure would be. Maybe an alien posing as Mr Darcy.”

I won’t lie, this Jane Austen fangirl is more than a bit excited at the prospect. We’ve only received  a hint of what to expect out of Capaldi’s doctor but recurring quotes depict a darker, more rebellious characterization than before. I can just see it — the caustic Capaldi up against Jane Austen’s snarky wit? Perfection. If that doesn’t have potential, I don’t know what does.

Amy Pond Fangirl

Come on, those Doctor Who — Pride and Prejudice/Jane Austen fanfics exist for a reason.  Slight amendment though, and Mary Sue said it best: “[Jane Austen] can solve crime. Politely snark up the joint. Make the Doc wear high-waisted breeches. She can not fall in love with the Doctor. That last one is non-negotiable.”  It’s entirely plausible Steven Moffat or Mark Gatiss could try to spin history so that Austen was so infatuated by the Doctor that she would have rather died a spinster than settle for anyone else. Yikes. No way.



…You know who would write a great Jane Austen-centric storyline though? Neil Gaiman. Maybe it’s not his style, or maybe it is (but it’s probably not). Either way, personal opinion here, the episodes penned by Gaiman have been some of the best Who episodes yet. So, yeah….I’m just throwing that out there.

Of course, all of this is pure speculation based on one quote from Gatiss. It’s entirely possible that he’s playing with us. After all, in the same Q&A session, when asked whether or not they would write a part for Watson’s dog, a bull mastiff in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s works, Gatiss responded, “We haven’t really thought about it, we’ve already got a bloody baby in there! I don’t know what we would do with a dog as well…maybe the dog could eat the baby! Brilliant, that’s brilliant, thank you.” Clearly, there wasn’t a whole lot taken seriously during the interview. So who knows? Maybe we’ll see Jane Austen, maybe we won’t but I’m certainly holding out hope that we do. Time will tell.

Catch more of Gatiss’s Q&A here.

What do you think? Should the Doctor meet Jane Austen?


(Featured Image Photo by Huw Evans/REX (3531173a))

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