Watch this entire presentation: Gender Diversity in the Who-niverse: Paving the Way for a Lady Doctor with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (36:58)
For her 5th Doctor Who lecture to the CPP community, Dr. Rosanne Welch discusses how society – and the show’s writing staff – prepared the audience for a major change in this 50-year franchise – the creation of the first Lady Doctor!
The show was canceled in 1989. It had finally run its course at that time. In 2005, this gentleman, Russell Davies, who I was so excited to actually, — this is an article that I wrote about him in a magazine for the Writers Guild, so I got to interview him when he came to the United States and was working on his show Torchwood. He was the most successful producer at the BBC for this show, Queer as Folk. He happens to be a gay man and he was an openly gay man and so he wrote Queer As Folk. Huge success. It also was redone her in the United States, but because of the success of this program, the BBC said to him “What would you like to do next? Invent any show you like.” And he said, “I want to bring Doctor Who back.” Which had never happened to a show. Show’s canceled. It’s done. We’re finished with it, but they were like, “Hmm, whatever you want, Russell, you can do it!” So he revived the show, which is an amazing step.
Dr. Rosanne Welch
Dr. Rosanne Welch teaches the History of Screenwriting and One-Hour Drama for the Stephens College MFA in Screenwriting.
Writing/producing credits include Beverly Hills 90210, Picket Fences, ABCNEWS: Nightline and Touched by an Angel. In 2016 she published the book Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop; co-edited Women in American History: A Social, Political, and Cultural Encyclopedia; and placed “Transmitting Culture Transnationally Via the Characterization of Parents in Police Procedurals” in the New Review of Film and Television Studies. Essays appear in Torchwood Declassified: Investigating Mainstream Cult Television and Doctor Who and Race: An Anthology. Welch serves as Book Reviews editor for Journal of Screenwriting and on the Editorial Advisory Board for Written By magazine, the magazine of the Writers Guild.
Watch Dr. Welch’s talk “The Importance of Having a Female Voice in the Room” at the 2016 TEDxCPP.