It looks like the role of the Doctor won't be the only thing shaken up as Doctor Who prepares for Season 11, as the series has reportedly cast its next companion, and if this rumor is to be believed, we're already excited. It's said a veteran of the Doctor Who universe, Bradley Walsh, has been tapped to return and play one of the oldest companions in the show's history. Here's what we know about the supposed casting for Jodie Whittaker's companion, and why fans of the series should be just as excited as we are.
While The BBC has said nothing official about the casting of Bradley Walsh, The Mirror is reporting the actor has already told some friends about the new role, and that he's very excited. While that claim is far from rock solid, The Mirror has been spot on with a couple Doctor Who scoops in recent memory, and Walsh has worked with new showrunner Chris Chibnall on Law & Order UK in the past, which helps validate the rumor a little bit.
In fact, one of the only things that kind of hurts this story is that Bradley Walsh is currently a host on a handful of U.K. TV quiz shows, and jumping into Doctor Who would surely affect his filming schedule with those projects. This point is addressed, and it's said that while Walsh will remain host on his quiz series The Chase, it's likely he will drop other shows like Play To The Whistle and Cash Trapped to commit to Doctor Who.
At 57 years old, Bradley Walsh would be the oldest Doctor companion in recent memory. That's not much younger than Peter Capaldi, who (similar to Walsh) also played a character role in the Doctor Who universe prior to a future lead role in the series. Walsh played the part of Elijah Spellman in the two-part episode "Day Of The Clown" in the Who-niverse spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures.
It's likely the series won't address this connection in the show if Walsh is joining the cast, but it's a cool factoid for fans to know regardless. Speaking of fans, it will be interesting to see if the Doctor Who community responds in the same way to the big change brought on by Walsh's potential casting as former cast members and fans did when Jodie Whittaker was announced.
Doctor Who returns for its Christmas special on December 25th on The BBC and BBC America. Bradley Walsh's companion has yet to be officially confirmed, or officially denied, by anyone involved with the series, so don't build up expectations to see him there just yet. But there are a few other familiar folks that definitely are and might be making an appearance that fans should keep their eyes peeled for. Those wishing to remain pure of Who-related spoilers may instead wish to check out the wealth of other programming coming in the next couple months in our fall premiere guide.