Jenna Coleman WAS Leaving Doctor Who in 2014
Peter Capaldi’s inaugural year as The Doctor saw fans (somewhat) divided after a (somewhat) drastic shift in the types of stories – or the overall mood. This was (somewhat) overshadowed by the question of whether or not Jenna Coleman would depart the show and leave Clara Oswald behind. Will she leave or won’t she? Oh, wait…she won’t…but, maybe, will leave at Christmas. But, she didn’t.
The Impossible Girl
Jenna first appeared on the show as Oswin Oswald in “Asylum of the Daleks” months before she was to officially replace outgoing Amy Pond, portrayed by Karen Gillen. Then, (SPOILERS), the character died.
The Doctor encountered another character, this time named Clara, during “The Snowmen” on Christmas Day 2012; however, at the episode’s end, (SPOILERS) the character died. Jenna did not make her official full-episode debut as Clara Oswald until the 2013 episode “The Bells of Saint John.”
Since then, Steven Moffat crafted a storyline that, many debate,integrated Clara into the mythos of Doctor Who more than any other companion. So, it was only natural that she depart along with Matt Smith?
But, like many companions of the classic era, she didn’t. She stayed and continued traveling with the Twelfth Doctor.
The relationship, as portrayed in the 2014 season, didn’t quite work for me. And, with that said, I wasn’t too saddened to hear that she might depart.
NOTE: This opinion is in no way a dig at Coleman’s abilities. Instead, it is my take on Moffat’s direction.
Coleman’s Decision to Stay
I watched the 2014 Christmas episode, “Last Christmas”, fully intending Clara to exit. But, she didn’t. In fact, she will remain for ALL of Series 9 in 2015 – making her the longest running companion since 2005.
Clara Oswald was set to be written out in the Series 8 Finale ‘Death in Heaven’. Speaking to the DWM, Moffat said Jenna asked him to write her out of the Series as she didn’t want to carry on. Jenna read the script and saw where she was going to depart from the TARDIS. Jenna then approached Moffat and asked if she could be in the Christmas Special ‘Last Christmas’. Moffat was like sure, I’ll write you out in that episode instead.
An article on BBC News also states the same:
The actress was widely rumoured to be leaving her role as Clara Oswald after a cliffhanger in the series eight finale, Death In Heaven.
Moffat confirmed to Doctor Who magazine she had asked to be written out.
Was it all part of a scheme to hook viewers into the will she/won’t she question? Maybe..maybe not. All we know – for now – is that Clara will return for Series 9 later this year. After that…WHO knows.