UNIT’s Kate Stewart is back to defend the Earth alongside Ncuti Gatwa’s Doctor. But who is the mysterious Roger ap Gwilliam?
The BBC have confirmed that Jemma Redgrave will be returning for Ncuti Gatwa’s first series of Doctor Who as UNIT’s leader Kate Stewart. She’ll be joined by 1899’s Aneurin Barnard as new character Roger ap Gwilliam. But is ap Gwilliam friend or foe?
Redgrave has been playing Stewart since 2012, first appearing in The Power of Three. Altogether she’s appeared in ten episodes and five series. Gatwa’s incarnation will be the sixth Doctor she’s encountered on screen, and Millie Gibson’s Ruby Sunday the twelfth companion. And that’s not even counting the four other Doctors who featured in The Power of the Doctor but shared no scenes with her. It’s fair to say that over the past eleven years Kate has become a worthy 21st century successor to her father Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart. (The Brig met six Doctors and eight companions between 1970 and 1989, for anyone keeping score.)
Doctor Who Series 14 will also see Ncuti Gatwa’s Doctor meet Aneurin Barnard’s ap Gwilliam for the first time. But is he friend or foe?
Meanwhile, Aneurin Barnard will also be appearing in the 2014 series as Roger ap Gwilliam. Barnard has recently thrilled audiences as the mysterious Daniel Solace in Netflix’s 1899, from the creators of Dark. Solace’s unexpected arrival on a ship carrying passengers to a new life in America at the end of the 19th century is swiftly followed by strange and horrific events. Whether he’s responsible for them or the only hope to end them is the mystery at the heart of 1899. And for now a similar question hangs over his Doctor Who role.
Casting announcements frequently accompany location filming, and that seems to be the case this time. So it’s very likely that ap Gwilliam and UNIT are featuring in the same episodes. Every story needs a great villain, so it seems likely will be his role here. But we’ll have to wait until some time next year to be sure.
Doctor Who returns in November for three 60th Anniversary specials