Doctor Who has its first openly gay companion and it's about time.
According to BBC News, incoming Doctor Who co-star Pearl Mackie has confirmed that her character, new companion Bill Potts, is openly gay. Bill Potts's sexuality will be revealed in her second line of dialogue in the first episode of Series Ten, "The Pilot".
Speaking to the BBC in an interview, Mackie said, "It shouldn't be a big deal in the 21st Century. It's about time isn't it? That representation is important, especially on a mainstream show."
She added, "It's important to say people are gay, people are black. There are also aliens in the world as well, so watch out for them. I remember watching TV as a young mixed race girl not seeing many people who looked like me, so I think being able to visually recognize yourself on screen is important."
"[Being gay] is not the main thing that defines her character," she continued, "it's something that's part of her and something that she's very happy and very comfortable with."
This will be the first time the series has featured an openly gay companion. Previous Ninth Doctor companion Captain Jack Harkness, played by John Barrowman, was revealed to be omnisexual, and recurring character River Song, played by Alex Kingston, was revealed as bisexual.
This will be Peter Capaldi's last season as the Twelfth Doctor, and Steven Moffat's last season as showrunner before he's replaced by Chris Chibnall, so it remains to be seen if Mackie will return for Series Eleven in 2018.
Doctor Who returns to BBC1 and BBC America in "The Pilot" on Saturday, April 15th.