Image: Radio Times

Russell T Davies is one of Wales’ greatest assets when it comes to television. Davies has reinvented the wheel when it comes to TV drama, and in particular stories which shine a light on queer culture and celebrate the LGBTQ+ community. Showcasing the raw reality of being different in society, Davies strives to bring unconventional stories to the big screen and educate viewers on the reality of being queer. 

Davies is a screenwriter and producer best known for being the showrunner and head writer of the BBC Sci-Fi phenomenon Doctor Who from 2005 to 2010. Davies made an extraordinary comeback to the series in 2023, bringing it into the 21st century with a rebrand of The Doctor. Staring Ncuti Gatwa, Davies’s latest contribution to the franchise brings us a reimagining of the character that harnesses queer energy, giving Gatwa the opportunity to represent a generation through his portrayal. 

Russell T Davies has always found a way to project his personal voice through Doctor Who. Displaying his opinions on current affairs and society, Davies has never been afraid to share his innermost thoughts with his viewers. The fifteenth Doctor appears to be one of the most relatable, youthful and chaotic interpretations of the timeless character – a testament that Davies has injected life and modernism into the show once again. He has always been confident to play with unconventional stereotypes and challenge the idealism of ‘The Doctor’, and it is about time we see such a version come to life. 

Although the majority of audiences know Davies for his exceptional work with Doctor Who, let’s take a look back at his other work, which has helped solidify his name as a writer, creator and the voice of a generation. 

Queer as Folk (1999-2000) was a short-lived series following the daily lives of three gay friends living in Manchester. Although it was cancelled at the time, this series represents the beginning of Davies’ portrayal of queer characters in the media. From day one, he was experimenting with his unique voice and style as a creative, incorporating light-hearted moments with the often harsh reality of being queer.

In 2015, Davies wrote two queer television dramas; Banana, an anthology series that focuses on the lives of eight LGBTQ+ couples living in Manchester, and Cucumber, which explores the many facets of contemporary sex culture. Davies used Cucumber’s deep dives into the passions and pitfalls of 21st-century gay life to continue his conversation on gay relationships, communication, and anger in particular. Davies has continued to showcase the reality of relationships in his writing, leaving no stone unturned and presenting life on screen.  

Most recently, Davies wrote and created the heart-wrenching drama It’s a Sin (2021), which explores the story of three young men – Ritchie, Colin and Roscoe – who leave their homes to begin a new life in London. However, before they realise it, they find themselves struck by a virus.

Davies drew on his own experiences and the experiences of his friends; he wanted to commemorate those who suffered and died from the illness. It’s a Sin is a show which simultaneously educates and moves its audience, and Davies was able to write lovable characters whilst incorporating the serious and heart-breaking themes of grief, loss and prejudice. 

Written by Film Probe 

Author WCS

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