Monday, 13 May 2013

Miscellaneous Mondays: Doctor Who and The Problem of Gender Disparity, On- and Offscreen

I feel that I should probably preface any discussion of Doctor Who with the acknowledgement that I haven’t watched the show since partway through the sixth series. I couldn’t get past Amy’s pregnancy storyline, no matter how easily the character herself did. Whenever the topic comes up, I tell people that I’d like to watch the show again. I would, but I won’t until the writers treat women like people, instead of mysteries to solve.

Though I’ve joked on a few occasions that the only thing that would bring me back to Doctor Who would be the Doctor’s regeneration into a woman of colour, the improvement of the show’s treatment of women was my only real condition. Then I learned that there have been no women writers on the series since 2008, and another condition was promptly added.

This issue was raised in a (relatively) recent article in The Guardian. Mathilda Gregory describes the gender disparity in the Doctor Who writing room as indicative of a larger problem: the lack of women’s voices in genre television. It’s an interesting read, and well worth your time.

Also worth your time is this post by Tumblr user Theoncomingwolf, whose statistics show that Doctor Who has dramatically increased the frequency with which it fails the Bechdel test since Steven Moffat took over as showrunner. (Bonus: bar graphs!) If you’ve found Moffat’s run difficult to watch and you’re not sure why, this might clear some things up.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for linking me :)
    Hoping things will get righted soon so I can watch one of my favorite shows again...