'Doctor Who': Varada Sethu Officially Joins Ncuti Gatwa's Second Season

"Doctor Who" stars Millie Gibson, Ncuti Gatwa, and Varada Sethu

"Doctor Who" stars Millie Gibson, Ncuti Gatwa, and Varada Sethu 

 (Photo: James Pardon/Bad Wolf/BBC Studios)

A new face is set to board the TARDIS for Fifteenth Doctor Ncuti Gatwa’s second season of Doctor Who. Varada Sethu has been tapped to join the cast as a second companion alongside Millie Gibson’s Ruby Sunday. 

Sethu played Cinta in Disney+’s Star Wars series Andor, and her other credits include roles in Jurassic Park Dominion, Annika, and Strike Back. We know virtually nothing about what sort of character Sethu’s companion will be; unlike the announcement of Gibson’s casting, we’re not even given her character’s name. But maybe that’s part of the mystery. 

“I feel like the luckiest person in the world. It is such an honor to be a part of the Whoniverse, and I’m so grateful to the whole Doctor Who family - because that is what they are - for welcoming me with open arms and making me feel so at home,” Sethu said in a statement. “I couldn’t ask for a better team than Ncuti and Millie to be on this adventure with. This is SO much fun!”

Rumors have been swirling for months that change was afoot in the world of Doctor Who. The trades were reporting Sethu’s casting back in January, though neither Disney nor the BBC commented on it at the time. But it seems safe to assume that this announcement is meant to help tamp down the related chatter that Gibson would be leaving Doctor Who after just a single season in the cast. 

This news was accompanied by a pair of photos from a table read from the latest season, and, yes, everyone looks very adorable together. However, the deliberately vague wording of the news certainly leaves some wiggle room regarding the scope of Gibson’s involvement in the next season. The current round of internet rumors suggest she’ll likely only appear in a handful of episodes in Season 15/Season 2/however we’re doing this numbering thing now, and if that’s something that the BBC and Bad Wolf could have also contradicted here, you would think they would have 

"Doctor Who" stars Varada Sethu, Ncuti Gatwa, and Millie Gibson

"Doctor Who" stars Varada Sethu, Ncuti Gatwa, and Millie Gibson

(Photo: James Pardon/Bad Wolf/BBC Studios)

Nevertheless, the man in charge certainly seems enthusiastic about it all.

“I first worked with Varada on a BBC production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and it’s a joy to welcome her on board the TARDIS,” showrunner Russell T. Davies said in a statement. Right now in the studio, shooting for 2025, we’ve got Ncuti, Millie, and Varada fighting side by side – we need all three because the stakes are higher than ever!”

Given that we still haven’t seen Gatwa’s inaugural season as the Doctor, there’s little concrete information about what to expect from his second. Doctor Who is shooting quite far in advance at the moment; the show is filming episodes that won’t air until 2025. There’s still an entire season of adventures ahead for the Doctor and Ruby, and a story that may make the reasons for Gibson’s (rumored) more limited involvement make sense. We’ll have to wait and see, like so many things about this show.

Doctor Who Season 14 ( or Season 40 if you’re old school... or Season 1 if you are Disney) will premiere on Friday, May 10, 2024, at 7 p.m. ET on Disney+ in the U.S. and at midnight GMT on Saturday, May 11 on BBC iPlayer. In the U.K., this will be followed by a linear broadcast of the two episodes back to back at 6 and 7 p.m. GMT on BBC One ahead of the Eurovision finale. 

For those who need to catch up before the new episodes, Gatwa and Gibson’s debut adventure, Christmas special “The Church on Ruby Road,” is currently streaming on Disney+.

Lacy Baugher

Lacy's love of British TV is embarrassingly extensive, but primarily centers around evangelizing all things Doctor Who, and watching as many period dramas as possible.

Digital media type by day, she also has a fairly useless degree in British medieval literature, and dearly loves to talk about dream poetry, liminality, and the medieval religious vision. (Sadly, that opportunity presents itself very infrequently.) York apologist, Ninth Doctor enthusiast, and unabashed Ravenclaw. Say hi on Threads or Blue Sky at @LacyMB. 

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