“Doctor Who ”star Ncuti Gatwa is ‘desperate’ to face a Dalek

Before his time in the TARDIS is up, the actor is determined to face off against everyone's favorite plunger-wielding baddies.

Doctor Who star Ncuti Gatwa has one wish for his time on the show: to face off against one of the Doctor’s most iconic foes.

Gatwa recently sat down with Entertainment Weekly for a deep-dive cover story on Doctor Who, where he opened up about taking control of the TARDIS. The 31-year-old star revealed that before his time on the show is up, he’s “desperate” to face one particular baddie: the Daleks, the Doctor’s legendary nemeses from the planet Skaro.

“I’ve heard chats about me not ever facing a Dalek,” he says indignantly. “I’d be so angry if that’s the case! By the time that I’m done with Doctor Who, I better have faced a Dalek. What on earth would be the point of me being Doctor Who without facing a Dalek!"

<p>Natalie Seery/Bad Wolf/BBC Studios</p> Ncuti Gatwa and Millie Gibson in 'Doctor Who'

Natalie Seery/Bad Wolf/BBC Studios

Ncuti Gatwa and Millie Gibson in 'Doctor Who'

Returning showrunner Russell T Davies has previously said that there are no Daleks in Gatwa’s first season — but he hasn’t ruled out a potential future appearance. “I do think we’ve had a lot of Daleks lately,” Davies said in 2023. “Because actually, lovely Chris Chibnall’s Christmas specials have all been Daleks. So I think they’ve been done a lot, so people are expecting them every year now. So I think they need a good pause.” He also confirmed that the Doctor’s other iconic villain, the Cybermen, won’t be popping up in Gatwa’s first season, either.

BBC/Courtesy Everett Collection A Dalek from 'Doctor Who'
BBC/Courtesy Everett Collection A Dalek from 'Doctor Who'

Still, Davies told EW to expect some intriguing new baddies this season: Drag Race alum Jinkx Monsoon is confirmed to play a mysterious villain referred to as “Maestro.” Plus, the BBC’s partnership with Disney+ means that the show has a bigger budget, something Davies says will be reflected in the creature design.

“There’s one episode where I’m very proud of the monsters,” Davies teases. “Finally, we can afford for different members of an alien race to have different faces! This is true of most science fiction, but when a lizard comes along, you tend to have six lizards, all with very similar faces. This time, we’ve got these bird-type creatures, so at last, you’ve got every single bird with a different face. It was a real design bonanza.”  

Doctor Who premieres Friday, May 10, on Disney+ and BBC. Read EW’s full cover story on the series’ return here.

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