Wednesday, July 3, 2013

CBBC wanted SJA gay character [UPDATE]

In the audio commentary for The Sarah Jane Adventures story Death of the Doctor - released on next month's DVD release of The Green Death: Special Edition - Russell T Davies states that one of the show's main characters, Sarah Jane's son Luke (played by Tommy Knight), was to have been gay should the show have continued. Speaking on the commentary, he reveals this information for the very first time with even some of the show's writers in the dark about the info. On the commentary for the story starring Matt Smith (The Eleventh Doctor) and Katy Manning (Jo Grant), Russell says:

"Tommy [Luke Smith] refers to his friend Sanjay. Now had we continued, Sanjay would have been Luke's boyfriend. Because children's BBC [CBBC] wanted to have - I've never said this in any interview anywhere - wanted us to have a gay character on children's BBC. Just a normal gay character."

"And so they said to us, 'Can you do that with [The] Sarah Jane [Adventures] and, I don't even think some of the writers on the show know this, because obviously we got taken off air sadly. Tommy [Knight, who played Luke Smith] wanted to come back into the show and we were going to approach him and say, 'Do you mind if he's gay and has a boyfriend?' So that was the plan, because of Steven Andrew [then Head of Drama and Acquisitions for CBBC] wanted it but it never came to pass. Isn't that sad? It's a shame."

Russell went to to reveal that a filmed line hinting at Luke's homosexuality was taken out of the Joe Lidster story, The Nightmare Man (review HERE); the former Who showrunner says:

"In the very last scene he says goodbye and Sarah Jane says, 'Have a lovely time at university. You'll grow up, you'll find a girlfriend,' and he says, 'Oh, could be a boyfriend!' And she goes, 'Well, as long as it's not alien, I don't care!' We ended up cutting it."*

Russell also talks about Matt Smith, stating the outgoing Doctor Who, is "amazing".

The Death of the Doctor audio commentary includes much more fascinating and hilarious insight into both The Sarah Jane Adventures and Doctor Who from Russell T Davies and Katy Manning. It is released on The Green Death: Special Edition DVD, out on August 5 (full details HERE).

The same DVD set also includes a documentary with stunning revelations on the show's return in the Noughties - read them HERE.

*UPDATE: Lovely writer Joe Lidster has been in touch to clarify the line was actually: "As long as it's not a Slitheen, I don't care!"

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

One has to wonder when the germ of this idea began. Looking back, they never seemed too enthusiastic about pairing Luke up with anyone - not Maria, and of course Clyde and Rani were shipped from the start. Did anyone bother to buy the Nightmare Man novelisation, which was only issued as an e-book? Does it include the dialogue that got cut from the episode?

Anonymous said...

Mostly, I just feel like RTD should be talking to us about Torchwood.

Anonymous said...

Glad this did not happen. One of the great things about classic Who was that it stayed away from potentially controversial and divisive subjects like this. Why interject something like this or any other hot button issue when it would only serve to alienate a portion of the audience and distract from the show?

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is really stunning! This would have been great. Typical nitpicker that I am, I am disappointed that Sarah was scripted to say that she didn't want Luke to be involved with an alien (why not, if the alien was a nice one?).

Harry Rickard said...

Why is it that every single thing which included RTD in it had to have a gay character in it?

We had Captain Jack Harkness and Alonso Midshipman Frame from Doctor Who, Jack (again) and Ianto from Torchwood and now Luke from SJA?

I even guessed after Series 3 of SJA that Luke was going to be gay with his quirky lines and dress sense (the shirt and scarf is usually associated with being camp). I don't have a problem with Luke turning out gay - but because RTD was the one once again in charge at the time of this decision, it just feels predictable and hardly original.

Mystic Lover of Fairy Tales said...

Why would Russell even think of doing something like that , The idea is so out of place, it would have made more sense to bring Jenny into the story or
even Maria back and as Harry above said it's predictable or why does Luke need to have anyone special. Glad they didn't do it, am sad that Lis died, but this idea sounds dumb

Seeing_I said...

Wow, I am shocked to see the anti-gay sentiment portrayed here. Like, how dare gay writers contemplate writing characters who reflect their lives? And surely having all those straight people all over television is even MORE predictable?

Anyway, I thought for sure they were going to say Santiago Jones was going to be the gay recurring character.

pertwee3d said...

I too thought santiago would be a recurring gay character!
But i also thought when liz sladen passed away the show would have returned after a year or so with jo grant or another companion such as ace or peri protecting the earth

Anonymous said...

Why is there a gay agenda with doctor who? The show is supposed to be about science fiction not some groups social agenda

Anonymous said...

There will always be some old mouth breathing relics who think being gay is 'controversial' -

keith solley said...

the daily mail would have had an absolute field day if this has gone ahead!

Anonymous said...

If you actually think about it, which I'm ridiculous enough to have done, it makes a lot more sense for Luke to be bisexual or pansexual than it does for him to be exclusively gay or straight. I mean, he was created from DNA from thousands of people, who presumably ran the gamut of sexual preferences. That said, this would've been amazing. Yet another reason to miss SJA! :(

Calum Jones said...

I would've found Luke being gay scary I am not homophobic but come on its science fiction not a bloody soap opera!

Anonymous said...

I think Luke being gay would've been strange, aren't you just turning kids gay, nothin wrong with gay people in any way, shape or form however okay you could see it as helping kids to come out, but that should be the story not just Luke being a stereotypical gay who flops his hand up and down and stands with his hand on his hip. I think the clothes he wears aren't gay so don't understand the comments above. IT'S SCI - FI NOT A BLOODY SOAP OPERA!!!

Bryce Thomason said...

Also the spoke of Hollywood, where Hollywood writers seemed to put a gay person on every single sit-com and at least one scene or character in every single movie - stating that wasn't right because there just are not that many gay citizens in our country by proportion. Then they spoke of the ""gay agenda" in our politics in Washington DC, in our entertainment manufacturing, at our college campuses, and claiming that the GLBT crowd was preying on adolescents who are going through their own hormonal awakenings, thus, in a way brainwashing them as they are confused about the changes in their own bodies.