Steven Moffat is stepping down from the helm of "Doctor Who" after his decade-long service in the BBC series. But before he passes on the baton to Chris Chibnall, the outgoing showrunner clarified an alleged controversy surrounding Jodie Whittaker's casting as the first female incarnation of the titular role for its Christmas special.

Showrunner denies casting backlash

The Scottish TV writer and producer, who was present at the Comic-Con 2017 in San Diego, has set the record straight on the issue after several news reports claimed that the long-running series has received a surge of criticisms for bringing in the "Broadchurch" star as the 13th Doctor.

Mofatt specifically blamed the media for allegedly suggesting that "Doctor Who" and BBC drew backlash for their decision to cast the actress to play the iconic character.

His statements came after the network released their official statement on the issue, wherein they explained their reason for coming up with the idea of a female Doctor. BBC emphasized that the show's main concept has always been to see the character evolve from the time it was introduced to the viewers in 1963.

BBC responds to fan critics

“The continual input of fresh ideas and new voices across the cast and the writing and production teams has been key to the longevity of the series," it wrote. "The Doctor is an alien from the planet Gallifrey and it has been established in the show that Time Lords can switch gender."

Former "Doctor Who" cast members have also expressed their thoughts on Whittaker's casting in the popular series.

John Barrowman, who played Jack Harkness, recalled their experience of getting the same reaction when the show appointed David Tennant as the successor of Christopher Eccleston.

"People weren’t happy about it. Seriously. There was a lot of upset, a lot of "This is ridiculous!" because David at that time was younger," he said at Comic-Con 2017.

Hence, the actor thought that this controversy on Whittaker's casting is a good sign for the show. Barrowman also returned to the main concept of the show, which is to offer fresh ideas and an evolving character arc for the Doctor. "It doesn’t say that he will be a he all the time," he added.

Karen Gillan, on the other hand, assured the "Doctor Who" fans that they can look forward to this new concept being a success, just like what happened to "Star Trek" series when they brought in Kate Mulgrew as the first female captain.