This evening, The A Word is back on BBC1, once more starring the Ninth Doctor, Christopher Eccleston; in preparation for its return, Eccleston has given a moving interview about the series, his passion, and autism.
The drama, written by Peter Bowker (Marvellous), shows how a family cope with finding out the youngest member, Joe (Max Vento) is on the autistic spectrum. While it deals with the topic beautifully and in a truly heart-warming way, one of the best things about it is how it focuses just as much on the family dynamic as a whole. Eccleston plays Joe’s grandfather, who is struggling to carry on with his love life following the death of his wife.
Over a year ago, Eccleston granted a rare interview to filmmaker, Gerard Groves, who is himself on the autism spectrum. The pair have again caught up with one another on the eve of The A Word Series 2. It’s a genuinely lovely interview that you simply have to watch.
You know, you hear a lot of stories about Eccleston being somehow grumpy because he only did one series of Doctor Who. And those stories are rubbish. Just utter nonsense. What a wonderful man, perfectly encapsulating all it means to be the Doctor. I think it’s contained in this sentiment:
“If we all live with the idea that we’re not the most important person on the planet, we’d do a lot better.”
No wonder Russell T. Davies chose him to be the Ninth Doctor, to resurrect Doctor Who.
Thank you, Gerard, and thank you, Christopher.
The A Word Series 2 begins tonight on BBC1 at 9pm.