As ‘Doctor Who’ geared up for their season eight premiere last year, rumors emerged stating that Jenna Coleman would be wrapping up her run as current TARDIS companion Clara Oswald. Those reports said that the annual Christmas special would mark the Impossible Girl’s final appearance on the long-running British sci-fi series. And now, as the debut of Season Nine set for this Saturday quickly approaches, we’re all having a bit of déjà vu.
According to The Mirror (who also dropped the news of the actress’ supposed departure last year), Coleman has opted to leave her role on ‘Doctor Who’ in favor of a starring role in an eight-part ITV mini-series about the life of Queen Victoria written by novelist Daisy Goodwin. Their sources say that her final scenes as the longest-serving companion since the show was rebooted in 2005 have been shot already and will be included in this year’s Christmas special.
Regarding the rumors from last year, BBC shared that showrunner Steven Moffat later revealed that Coleman was indeed slated to leave the show after the episode titled ‘Death In Heaven.’ However, she changed her mind and stuck around for another season:
“That was her last episode. Then she asked me if she could be in [the] Christmas [episode]. So I said, ‘OK, I’ll write you out in Christmas.’ She came to the read through and did the ‘write out’ version – and again changed her mind.
But the truth is I never wanted her to go. And with ‘Last Christmas’, I’d already written the alternative version where she stayed, and I preferred that version. Frankly, I didn’t want to lose her. She’s an amazing actress, and she never stops working to make Clara better. I was very happy to go the extra mile to make sure we could keep her.”
Whether she left last year or at the end of the upcoming season, Coleman knew how the job went when she signed on for the role. As she told us on the blue carpet at the Doctor Who World Tour stop in New York City, the Doctor continues to travel through space and time after each companion’s story is over:
“You come into the show knowing that it isn’t going to last forever. Your time and your traveling with the Doctor is only ever going to fulfill your own journey. You’re not immortal. The show will keep rejuvenating and it will move on without you. That’s what makes it so great. So I think the key is to see it as a lottery ticket of an adventure and just enjoy it.”
If you’re worried about Clara leaving the Doctor, I wouldn’t put all your eggs in this basket just yet. Neither BBC nor ITV have issued any official statements about Coleman or her future projects. Even though there was some truth to last year’s rumors, you never know what will happen when you hang out with a madman with a box.
Do you think that this is the year that Jenna Coleman actually leaves ‘Doctor Who’? Would you miss her as a companion if she left? Share your thoughts and theories in the comments below.