While it seems like only yesterday we heard Whittaker’s first “oh, brilliant,” the time has come to brace ourselves for the next set of the Doctor’s heartbreaking final words. After three years portraying one of Britain’s most iconic television characters, Doctor Who star Jodie Whittaker has announced she is leaving the show. In addition, showrunner Chris Chibnall — the man behind Whittaker’s casting — will be exiting as well. The duo leaves the project with nothing but kind words for the BBC and those involved and is apparently leaving as to fulfill the “‘three series and out’ pact” they made to one another when Whittaker’s tenure began.
The pair is scheduled to wrap up their respective roles in Doctor Who after the show’s third season — which airs this winter — and three specials releasing throughout 2022. Seeing as next year is also the centenary of the BBC, it’s likely the channel has big things in store for those specials and the fourteenth Doctor’s big reveal.
In his farewell, Chibnall celebrated his and Whittaker’s collaboration on the show before stating, “I can’t imagine working with a more inspiring Doctor – so I’m not going to!” Whittaker’s statement was also heartfelt, and gives us just a taste of the emotion she’ll bring with her during the show’s final episode:
“In 2017 I opened my glorious gift box of size 13 shoes. I could not have guessed the brilliant adventures, worlds and wonders I was to see in them. My heart is so full of love for this show, for the team who make it, for the fans who watch it and for what it has brought to my life. And I cannot thank Chris enough for entrusting me with his incredible stories. We knew that we wanted to ride this wave side by side, and pass on the baton together. So here we are, weeks away from wrapping on the best job I have ever had. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to express what this role has given me. I will carry the Doctor and the lessons I’ve learnt forever.”
As of right now, the BBC has not announced who will be replacing Whittaker once her saga reaches its end. However, considering the history Whittaker made as the first woman to ever play the iconic Doctor, it would seem whoever is next has some “size 13 shoes” to fill.