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The new season of Doctor Who, starting Saturday, doesn't use a single female writer. The count is similarly poor for other British science-fiction and fantasy shows – so what's the problem?

On Saturday, Doctor Who returns, kicking off the second part of the seventh series with a James-Bond inspired episode that sees the Doctor and Clara whizzing round London on a motorbike. Which is exciting if you like interesting drama with witty banter and thoughtful concepts. But less exciting if you like interesting dramas that include women on their writing teams.

Because season seven of Doctor Who will feature no female scribes at all. Not in the bombastic dinosaurs and cowboys episodes that aired last year, and not in any of the new episodes we're about to receive. In fact, Doctor Who hasn't aired an episode written by a woman since 2008, 60 episodes ago. There hasn't been a single female-penned episode in the Moffat era, and in all the time since the show was rebooted in 2005 only one, Helen Raynor, has ever written for the show.

Isn't that is a pretty terrible record for a flagship TV programme? It even prompted website Cultbox to put together a list of women they would like to see writing the show, any of whom would be great.

When questioned on the subject last year, Caroline Skinner, the show's recently departed executive producer, said that it was her intention to see more women writing for Doctor Who. But none has emerged. So I asked producer Marcus Wilson about his plans to improve the balance of male and female writers on the show. "Due to schedules and other projects, both male and female writers whom we have wanted to join the team simply haven't been able to," he said. "For us it's about who can write good Doctor Who stories, regardless of gender."

Source: Full Article @ guardian

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