Two-time drag race winner and dubbed “Queen of All Queens,” Jinkx Monsoon has just been cast in the long-running and iconic British time-traveling adventure series “Doctor Who.” By far the most famous queen from the Pacific Northwest, Monsoon is a Portlander who began their drag career in Seattle at the age of 15.
Monsoon starred in many musical theater performances, such as “Rent,” “Hairspray” and “Spring Awakening,” before their career was fully launched by her participation in “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” Known for her voice and singing ability, Monsoon also voiced the character Emerald on the popular animated show “Steven Universe.”
Monsoon, recently successful in their performance as Matron “Mama” Morton in the musical “Chicago” on Broadway, has spoken expressively about how her participation in the performance has been an incredible experience. Their participation in “Chicago” was an important moment for the queer community, as it was the first time a drag queen had been cast in that particular role.
“The kids are saying ‘she ate,’ so I figured, I might as well have seconds,” Monsoon said to Broadway Direct. “In all seriousness, playing for standing-room-only crowds throughout my run as Mama has got my mind blown and my heart full. Audiences from all over the world have generously brought so much joy to this show. The ‘Chicago’ cast has become my family, and I’ve made friends for life. I’m super excited for what the rest of the year holds, but first, I’m gonna keep feeling my oats on the Broadway stage.”
During the 8-week runtime of “Chicago,” Monsoon’s participation broke box office records. As it turns out, Monsoon will be “feeling their oats” all the way to England and throughout time and space.
“Doctor Who” has been a staple of British entertainment since it first premiered in 1963 as a cheesy, low budget tale of The Doctor, a timelord who travels through all of time, space and history to defeat evils and save the world (England, mostly), often with a human companion, over and over again.
Up until October 2018, the role of the Doctor had only been played by men, until Jodi Whittaker accepted her role as the 13th Doctor, introducing a new aspect to the old show. After facing a lot of criticism by lifelong fans of “Doctor Who,” Whittaker feels that the “gender question” has finally ceased to be of importance.
“Being a woman is who I am,” Whittaker told the Guardian. “And with this part, being a woman has less relevance than any other part I’ve played, except for that monumental historical moment of being the first woman Doctor.
As an avid lover of both drag and “Doctor Who,” I was fascinated and excited by the announcement that Jinkx Monsoon has been cast in a major role, which has yet to be revealed. What will Monsoon bring to “Doctor Who”? Known for her quick wit and title as a comedy queen, Monsoon will surely bring new life to the long-running British show. As the first non-binary actor cast on “Doctor Who,” Monsoon, along with Ncuti Gatwa, brings a fresh breath of queer representation to British television. Gatwa, who played Eric Effiong in the hit Netflix series “Sex Education,” has been revealed to be the 15th Doctor, bringing both more queer and Black representation to the TV show.
One of the writers and visionaries of “Doctor Who,” Russell T Davies, said that with Monsoon’s participation in “Doctor Who,” the show will never be the same.
“In a galaxy of comets and supernovas, here comes the biggest star of all,” Davis said in a press statement. “Jinkx Monsoon is on a collision course with the TARDIS.”
Alongside Monsoon, icons from “Doctor Who”’s past will be featured in the 15th season in November 2023; David Tennant and Catherine Tate are expected to appear in three special episodes to celebrate the show’s 60th anniversary. With this new era of Doctor Who, I am unsure what to expect from the promise that Monsoon will have “a major part” in the series. Hopefully, it means they will be featured all throughout the season and not only in a few episodes or specials.
No matter what, I greatly look forward to seeing them undoubtedly steal the show and make me laugh all the while. It is Monsoon season, after all.