In terms of looking for someone to blame for people committing crimes, this latest gambit might be the boldest and ridiculous yet. Instead of looking at families, or socio-economic disadvantages, or mental health, or really anything else, one British politician is laying the cause of the uptick of crimes by young men at the feet of Doctor Who and some other characters who’ve been cast with female leads. This one sure seems like a stretch. A member of the British Parliament, Nick Fletcher, took the floor to talk about the rise in crime in young men and blamed, of course, Jodie Whittaker. Makes sense.
In speaking about how crime in Britain is on the rise, Fletcher spoke about how many popular movie and television characters had, in recent years, been recast with female leads. He mentions Doctor Who but also throws in references to Star Wars, James Bond, and Ghostbusters as well. And according to Fletcher, at least tangentially, when young men see this happen they just can’t help themselves. It’s all too much and the crime just rises. Flimsy? Yeah, a bit. Check out what Fletcher had to say on the subject.
After blaming all of the gender shifting of certain iconic characters as the root cause for violence among men, Fletcher then says that this leaves dudes with only the likes of Tommy Shelby (Peaky Blinders) to look up to and emulate. Sure, once Doctor Who becomes a woman then it’s time to just look over to another show and start hurting people. Makes a ton of sense. The Chair of the Labour Party, Anneliese Dodds responded with the understatement of the year when she said the debate was “far more complex”.
Jodie Whittaker took over as the first female Doctor on Doctor Who back in 2018. She is now in her third series as the lead character and her time on the show has been critically praised throughout. The idea of making the Doctor a female had been kicking around for years with the program, though Whittaker was the first one cast in the role. She began her third and final run as the lead last month. Her timeline will be coming to an end at the finale of this series, though there’s been no word on who will ultimately replace her on the show.
For all of the positive critical responses to Jodie Whittaker as Doctor Who (Fletcher’s ridiculous claims aside), the ratings haven’t necessarily followed. In this way, far fewer people might be affected by a female Doctor than Fletcher asserts. The last episode of Doctor Who reached new lows for this iteration of the franchise with fewer than 3.5 million folks tuning in for the overnight ratings. This was a 10% decrease from the episode before. Could it spell the end of the series? That much isn’t clear at this point. For a show that’s been on the air over the better part of 58 years, it has the ability to withstand ratings dips. But maybe, if what Fletcher says is correct then they should rework the show so fewer boys go out there and commit crimes. What a ridiculous assertion.