Meet Bethany Black, The First Transgender Actor on Doctor Who

We may earn a commission from links on this page.

Now that shows like Sense8 have helped massively expand the presence of transgender people in science fiction and fantasy, one of the most venerable TV shows is following suit. Trans actor Bethany Black is appearing in Mark Gatiss’ upcoming “scary” episode.

Black previously appeared in Tofu, Cucumber and Banana, the LGBT show created by former Doctor Who producer Russell T. Davies. She wrote on her Facebook page, “Now to sit back and wait until The Mail realises the BBC have cast an open trans lesbian in a family show.”

Most notably, according to The Independent, “Black’s character is not transgender, and she was considered the best actor for the role.”


Not much is known about Gatiss’ episode yet—it also co-stars Reece Shearsmith, from Gatiss’ comedy show The League of Gentlemen. (Shearsmith also played Patrick Troughton in the Doctor Who making-of docudrama, An Adventure in Space and Time.) Shearsmith said this would be “unlike any previous episode of Doctor Who.”

Contact the author at Top image: Tofu, Cucumber and Banana.