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Doctor Who's Mandip Gill on if Yaz might return next season: ‘There are no rules’
The Thirteenth Doctor is ready to step out of the TARDIS but that doesn't mean Yaz' time is up
There's a lot of changes coming up on Doctor Who. Both showrunner Chris Chibnall and series star Jodie Whittaker will be stepping down at the end of 2022, marking the end of the Thirteenth Doctor's time in the TARDIS. This will be followed by the return of former writer and showrunner Russell T. Davies, as he steps back onto the helm of the BBC America show to help guide it into the future.
Of course, that doesn't mean everything has to change. In fact, one thing could possibly stay the same: Yasmin Khan (AKA "Yaz") carrying on as one of the Doctor's companions.
According to actor Mandip Gill, who plays the time-and-space-travelling police officer, she might just stick around past the end of Whittaker's tenure as the latest incarnation of the well-known Time Lord.
"I can't confirm it," Gill tells Entertainment Weekly. "There's just no rules to this."
She also goes on to add, "Companions do stay on thereafter. We still haven't finished filming these episodes. It could go any which way."
Of course, Yaz's future with the Doctor depends on a few different things. Firstly, the fact that it's not at all unheard of for a companion to shepherd in a new Doctor, or act as their continued guide to Earth, even as audiences (and the companion themselves) gets to know them. Within the 2005 reboot itself, Rose (Billie Piper, Penny Dreadful) acted as a bridge between the Eleventh Doctor and the Tenth, and Clara (Jenna Coleman, The Sandman) shepherded in Twelve after Eleven regenerated.
But no companion has stayed on beyond the end of a showrunner's run on a series. When Davies left the first time, he had Ten save the world with every companion he'd encountered one last time, while his successor Steven Moffat did something similar with Twelve when he prepared to say goodbye.
However, there has been some level of precedent during the seasons Chibnall's been producing as the previous season briefly brought back John Barrowman (Arrow) as Captain Jack Harkness, the former head of the Cardiff branch of the Torchwood Institute, something that hadn't happened on the series for more than a decade. So Gill and Yaz could well stay on past 2022, depending on what Chibnall writes, and what Davies decides he wants to do going forward. (While Yaz has more than enjoyed her time in the TARDIS travelling with the Doctor, she's also struggled with her mental health, so she might decide it's best for her to step away, not unlike Martha when it was her time — though that was because she'd developed feelings for the Doctor, which she knew he'd never reciprocate.)
"The audience are really good at going, 'Oh, it's a whole new cast and new companions' and they're on board with that," says Gill. "And they're also amazing at going, 'Oh yeah, that's a companion from the last Doctor, that also makes sense.' So who knows? But just know that I've had the most amazing time."
The current season of Doctor Who will consist of six serialized episodes that you can watch on Sundays on BBC America, and stream on HBO MAX. Chibnall and Whittaker will return for three more feature-length specials later next year.