Being Human’s Toby Whithouse would have “loved” Doctor Who showrunner gig

Being Human creator Toby Whithouse has admitted he would have “loved” a chance to be Doctor Who showrunner.

The writer, who created the smash hit BBC Three supernatural series Being Human in 2008, has written a number of episodes in the modern era of Doctor Who beginning with School Reunion in 2006 starring David Tennant, and most recently The Lie of the Land in 2017 starring Peter Capaldi.

A popular writer amongst the Doctor Who community, his was a name rumoured for the showrunner job after Chris Chibnall and before the shock announcement of the return of Russell T Davies. And it turns out, he certainly would’ve been open to an offer should it have been made.

“I’d love to have done it. I really would – it’s such a perfect show,” Whithouse told Radio Times.

He added: “I’m so thrilled to have been a contributor on it. Whenever I would do an episode, I’d tell my kids and they would always ask ‘can you make it scary?’ because they genuinely loved that. It’s a very kind of safe introduction to being scared, that fearful adrenaline.”

Whithouse, who has an impressive track record in writing created No Angels for Channel 4 in 2006, The Game for BBC Two in 2014 and was showrunner for the adaptation of Malorie Blackman’s Noughts and Crosses in 2020.

Speaking at a BFI event marking a reunion for his cult show Being Human, Whithouse explained that it was flattering that fans had thought of him for the Doctor Who top job: “It’s very lovely that there was a portion of the fandom that were having those conversations about the idea of me as showrunner. I can absolutely say those conversations were never happening at the BBC!”

Adding: “I don’t really think I was ever in contention, but I’d really love to have done it. It always made me laugh when somewhere like the Daily Mail wrote ‘Doctor Who is too scary, it’s frightening.’ Children loved it being scary – that’s why they watched it!”

Whether or not Whithouse will return to write under Russell T Davies for Ncuti Gatwa’s Fifteenth Doctor remains to be seen – but with a pedigree of writing scary episodes for many diferent incarnations of the Time Lord, it’s certainly not something to rule out!

Doctor Who returns in November 2023 for three special 60th-anniversary episodes of the show starring David Tennant as the Fourteenth Doctor. These will be followed by Ncuti Gatwa’s first full episode as Fifteen around the festive season of 2023 where he will be joined by Millie Gibson as his new companion Ruby Sunday.

Season 14 of Doctor Who will play out across 2024 and will be the first full season as part of a new deal between the BBC and Disney+.