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Anji Kapoor

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Anji Kapoor
Anji Kapoor
Species: Human
Place of origin: Earth
First seen in: Escape Velocity
Appearances: see list
Anji Kapoor was a companion of the Eighth Doctor.

Biography Edit

Anji was born in 1973 in Yorkshire. She was a third-generation British-Asian working as a futures trader. (PROSE: Escape Velocity) She was a Hindu, but never visited the temple since she was a child. (PROSE: The Crooked World)

Anji had a brother named Rezaul, who was interested in astronomy. (PROSE: Fear Itself) She used to baby-sit Rezaul, and vividly remembered the first time that she held him, it being the closest time she came to motherhood. (PROSE: Dark Progeny) She used to smoke out of his bedroom window whilst their parents were downstairs. When Anji was a child her dad used to take her to see Leeds play football. (PROSE: Fear Itself)

When she started school, she pretended that her name was Angela in an attempt to be accepted.

She left home at 17, stifled by her family's antiquated attitudes towards women. She had spent a year studying in Boston and loved being a stockbroker, viewing it like playing a game of chess. Anji thrived on making money, but also understood that possessions only gave one so much happiness. (PROSE: Escape Velocity)

When Anji was twenty-eight, her boyfriend, actor and science fiction fan Dave Young, died during a Kulan invasion of Earth. (PROSE: Escape Velocity) Anji found this hard to deal with. Her grief was so severe that she had Dave cloned. (PROSE: Hope)

On the Crooked World, Anji helped the Skeleton Crew to discover the mystery of Scary Manor. (PROSE: The Crooked World)

Anji left the TARDIS when she became the legal guardian of Chloe, a young, time-sensitive girl. She returned to her old job and used some of the knowledge of future trends to make a tidy profit in futures contracts. (PROSE: Timeless)

Anji became engaged to a man named Greg. She had kept in touch with the Doctor's later companion, Trix, who fed her stock tips. Anji placed a share of the money in an account for Trix. (PROSE: The Gallifrey Chronicles)

Personality Edit

Anji did not consider herself a hardcore feminist. She favoured science over religion, preferred rational explanations and did not follow her parents' beliefs in Hindu gods. She rarely went to temple and never wore a sari. She considered her inner self Asian, but regarded George as her patron saint. (PROSE: Escape Velocity) Anji loved to take long, luxurious baths, (PROSE: The Domino Effect) sometimes so long the Doctor and Fitz left without her after landing the TARDIS. (PROSE: The Crooked World)

She spoke some French and did not like boats. She was calm in crisis and took rape defence classes in University. Though she had travelled in Europe and the United States, she felt them too much like home and longed to go somewhere truly new — a wish fulfilled when she travelled with the Doctor. The Doctor reminded Anji of her father, whom she was close to while growing up but who had grown distant from her in recent years. (PROSE: Escape Velocity)

Relationship with Fitz Edit

During her travels in the Doctor's TARDIS, she was accompanied by Fitz, who had introduced her to the Doctor in the first place. Though she trusted him, there were times when she was very annoyed with his patronising attitude — he had been with the Doctor for a much longer time and thought of himself as the "senior" companion — or for being chauvinistic — for he was from a significantly earlier part of the 20th century than she. Once, when he had riled her, she thought of him as a "ignorantstupidknuckledraggingsexuallyunconsciousthrowback" and imagined "cathartically hitting him with a chair, too". (PROSE: The Book of the Still) When he was excited, rather than worried, about a large boat having mysteriously arrived atop the TARDIS console, she thought him a child. (PROSE: The Infinity Race)

Habits and quirks Edit

Before meeting the Doctor, she usually wore skirts and high heels, but gradually became a much more practical dresser. (PROSE: The Crooked World)

Kapoor spoke and read French fluently prior to her adventures in the TARDIS. She learned Catalan whilst in Barcelona during the Spanish Civil War. (PROSE: History 101)

Behind the scenes Edit

Will the real Anji Kapoor please stand up? Edit

Anji Kapoor was an inconsistently written character. Different authors treated the same trait in different ways. One of the clearest instances is her racial background. The series is contradictory as to whether Anji's parents were Indian or Pakistani. In her first outing, she thought that "some core part of her, some inner self, was definitely not British or English, but Asian, Indian." In her last regular appearance, she was shown to be fiercely hanging on to her identity as an Indian, even rejecting Fitz' use of the word Hollywood, in favour of Bollywood. In The Book of the Still, she understood Hindi and had a possibly imaginary Uncle Abdul who photographed Indian cities — things arguably inconsistent with her being Pakistani. However, in The Domino Effect, Fitz said Anji is "of Pakistani descent" and the Doctor said, "Her grandparents came from Pakistan".

Of course, it's perfectly possible for her parents to be Indian and her grandparents to be Pakistani. One could well imagine that her grandparents were from what is today called Pakistan, but then moved to India after partition, making Anji's parents Indian. No book ever reconciles the apparent contradiction, however.

Eighth Doctor Adventures writer Lance Parkin has described the inconsistencies with Anji's character thus:

"The Indian background thing . . . when Colin Brake created her, I’m sure he thought nothing of it, but it’s the sort of thing writers love to play with, and so suddenly there’s more backstory, but it wasn’t terribly well coordinated, so she was of both Pakistani and Indian origin, she was from a liberal household that was also religious and strict and so on, and you could almost hear us writers all thinking, ‘What does her background mean?’, which is a question with the best motives, but not one we would ever ask if she was Angie Cowper.
"[Another] problem is that we writers are all self-employed and basically sit around at home all day, and so for some of us ‘working in an office’ isn’t, y’know, what every normal person does, we picture it as this weird world where people sell their soul and have empty, futile aspirations to be Ally McBeal if they’re women and blokes in shaving gel ads if they’re men. It didn’t help that some of the writers saw Anji working specifically in financial services as somehow making her complicit in the deaths of every baby in the Third World since the dawn of time. As opposed to, say, not."[1]

Similarity to Milly from This Life Edit

In an article in DWM 294, Eighth Doctor Adventures editor Justin Richards mentioned that people had asked if Anji was based on Milly, a similar character from the television series This Life. Richards noted that although any similarities were unintended, companions were archetypal "to a degree".

Footnotes Edit

  1. Lance Parkin, "Lance Parkin Interview". Daniel Berry. Unreality SF. 2 June 2008.

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