The 2011 Neil Gaiman penned episode ‘The Doctor’s Wife’ namechecked a hitherto unheard of Time Lord known as The Corsair. This character has been fleshed out in spin-off media but has yet to appear in the show itself. I’m sure many fans including myself would like to see the Corsair have some on-screen adventures with the Doctor, the question is who should play them? Here are some suggestions:
This actor has shown by her work on Altered Carbon and Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD that she can walk the fine line between good and evil and compel the audience to keep watching. I think Dichen Lachman would make a very subdued and secretive Corsair who would be more than a match for the 13th Doctor. The writers would have to be careful that this character did not just become another Captain Jack Harkness or John Hart. With that in mind, it might be good to see the Corsair impersonate the Doctor and frame her for crimes that the Corsair herself committed, while always keeping a half step ahead of our time-traveling hero.
I think if Chris Pratt was to portray the Corsair we would see a much more happy go lucky and lighthearted version of this character. The show could also mine Pratt’s comedic talents, with his version of the Corsair needing to be rescued by the Doctor from a massive debt or a bounty placed on his head perhaps. Given the retcon of the Doctor’s backstory that took place in the series 12 finale, maybe this version of the Corsair knew the Doctor from when s/he was in the Division and becomes the Oncoming Storm’s partner on the run from this secretive sect of Time Lord society.
A Corsair played by Lin-Manuel Miranda would be a lot more heroic and really sell the idea of this Time Lord as a swashbuckling adventurer. I think this actor could also bring some great humour to the role, and it would be great to see a love triangle develop between the Corsair, Yaz and 13. A storyline like this would have to be balanced with the main plotline and the sci-fi elements but I think Doctor Who is overdue some romance in the TARDIS. I’d quite like to see the 13th Doctor have to choose between saving Yaz’s life and the Corsair’s, only for her to choose Yaz and for the Corsair to regenerate into my next choice:
Also a Whedonverse actor, I think Brett Dalton would be great at conveying a bitter and vengeful Corsair that felt he had been betrayed by the Doctor and was now out for revenge. An interesting storyline might be that the Doctor wouldn’t know who Dalton was at first, much like the way Sacha Dhawan’s Master was initially introduced. A possible storyline might be for this incarnation of the Corsair to visit the asteroid House that we saw in The Doctor’s Wife only for him to somehow cheat death and alter the timeline by promising to bring the Doctor’s TARDIS to the House. This could be a way for us to see Idris and the 11th Doctor again as well.
Even though Ruth Bradley has already played Molly O’Sullivan in Big Finish I believe that she could deliver an intriguing and morally opaque Corsair, much like her character on Humans. A potential storyline for this Corsair could be that she manipulates Yaz into doing ever more questionable things and gaslights her into believing that the Doctor doesn’t want her around, or even plans to kill Yaz out of jealousy of hers and the Doctor’s relationship. I think if this storyline was done correctly we could see some 13th Doctor episodes that are on the level of Vincent and the Doctor, or The Zygon Inversion.
Would you like to see the Corsair onscreen? Do you agree with our casting ideas? Please leave a comment below and remember, time will tell, it always does.