“Doctor Who” star Yasmin Finney confirms details about her new character Rose. The 18-year-old actress will make her debut as the new character Rose in a special edition dedicated to the 60th anniversary of Doctor Who. The special edition will premiere the new season of Doctor Who, in which Finney will play Rose along with the Fourteenth Doctor Nkuti Gatwa. Doctor Who alumni David Tennant and Catherine Tate will return in the special, and Neil Patrick Harris will also star in the new installment.
During the filming of the Doctor Who special, there was a lot of speculation regarding the character of Finnie Rose. Rose is a well—known nickname in the Doctor Who universe. Billie Piper played Rose Tyler’s lover during David Tennant’s time in Doctor Who. When Finney was cast as Rose, it remained unclear whether she would play the same Rose Piper had played in earlier seasons, or just a character with her namesake. Although Rose Finney is named Rose Temple-Noble in the 60th anniversary special, implying a kinship with Donna Noble of the Tate, it is still unclear what the exact origin of her Rose is.
Related: Is Rose from the 14th season of Doctor Who the same character as Billie Piper?
However, one aspect of Rose Finney has just been confirmed: Rose’s character will be a transgender woman. Digital Spy retells Finney’s speech at the Trans Pride March in London. In her powerful remark, Finney reveals that her character in Doctor Who is transgender. She calls British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, reminding the politician that transgender people exist and that they are “not going anywhere!” Read Finney’s full statement:
“How many of you have watched Doctor Who? Yes, because it’s also a moment, and it’s also a show where my character is transgender. So Boris [Johnson], I hope you see the Heartstopper, I hope you see because I exist and I know that you know that I exist. We all exist, and we’re not going anywhere!
As Finney hints in his speech, Finney is also transgender. Finnie is a young actress who is just starting her journey. In winning for representation, her first two screen roles are in major projects in which she plays trans characters. In addition to her casting in Doctor Who, she also played El Argent in the LGBTQ+-focused Netflix series, Heartstopper. Heartstopper has received widespread critical acclaim, so hopefully Finney’s role as Rose in Doctor Who will also be well received.
The confirmation of Rose’s trans identity speaks well about where Doctor Who is heading in terms of representation. In a series that has historically been populated by white British protagonists and predominantly white colleagues, the situation for Doctor Who is changing. They began to change when Jodie Whittaker was cast as the first female Doctor, and moved even further in the right direction when Gatwa became the first black man to play a Time Lord. With Finney playing the Fourteenth Doctor’s trans companion, the next Doctor Who era could be a groundbreaking moment to represent the show’s decades-long phenomenon.