As part of Team TARDIS, Ryan often acted similarly to a pupil to the Doctor due to his impulsive behaviour and willingness to learn; he obeyed her rules and followed her antics if they seemed fun. He grew to understand the Doctor well enough to explain her thoughts and actions to people outside Team TARDIS.
Early life Edit
In 2012, when he was thirteen, his mother died from a heart attack, with Ryan being the one to find her body. After his mother's death, Ryan's relationship with his father soured to the point of parental abandonment. (TV: The Tsuranga Conundrum) He began to feel that he wasn't deserving of his father's love. (TV: Resolution)
Young adult life Edit
Ryan suffered the effects of racism and noted that he was stopped more often by the police than his white peers. (TV: Rosa) Ryan was once on a messy holiday to Crete with his mates. (PROSE: The Good Doctor)
Ryan worked in a warehouse (TV: Arachnids in the UK) for SportStack, with one of his main jobs being packing trainers for delivery. Due to his dyspraxia, Ryan's first month on the job was a "total nightmare" for him, as he struggled to do things physically. Fortunately, he found friends who helped him, and he was able to master his way around the packing area. At one point while on the job, Ryan rode the warehouse conveyor belt, leading to him getting a sprained ankle, and a "final warning" from his superiors. (TV: Kerblam!)
Meeting the Doctor Edit
In September 2018, whilst trying to learn to cycle with Grace, and her husband, Graham, Ryan fell off and threw the bicycle away into the nearby woods out of anger. After his grandmother and Graham left him to calm down, Ryan went to retrieve it.
Whilst retrieving it from a tree, he discovered a glowing symbol and, upon touching it, summoned a strange blue pod. He touched the pod only to find it freezing, burning his hand. Calling the police to investigate, Ryan was reunited with Yasmin Khan, a classmate from school who now worked as a police officer, when she arrived to investigate the scene. Ryan confessed it wasn't a prank, making Yasmin confirm such by touching the pod. Walking away, Ryan received a call from his grandmother asking for help on the nearby train.
The pair raced to it, where they met the Thirteenth Doctor and were subsequently electrocuted by a coil creature. Ryan helped the Doctor track down the pod's occupant, Tim Shaw and prevented him from claiming Karl Wright as a trophy. However, Grace died via electrocution when disabling the gathering coil. Devastated, her death motivated Ryan to battle his dyspraxia in her honour. He later helped the Doctor make a teleport so she could reach her TARDIS only to be teleported with her. (TV: The Woman Who Fell to Earth)
On Desolation, he found Yasmin and the Doctor, who had been similarly saved by Epzo, Angstrom's rival in what would become the final stage of the rally. The rivals, with the Doctor and her friends in tow, were tasked by Ilin, master of the rally, to race across the planet; the first to reach the finish line at the Ghost Monument would win 3.2 million krin and salvation from planet's hostile surface. The Doctor discovered that the Ghost Monument was, in fact, her TARDIS, phasing in and out of reality. After the Doctor stabilised the TARDIS, Ryan entered it for the first time and the Doctor attempted to take them home. (TV: The Ghost Monument)
Trying to return home Edit
Attempting to land the TARDIS back in 21st century Sheffield, Ryan saw singing waterfalls made of pink crystals, a unicorn sanctuary on a lost moon and the Big Bang happening in front of his eyes. (PROSE: The Good Doctor)
Eventually, the TARDIS had latched onto nearby Artron energy and that they were in 1955 Montgomery, Alabama, exciting Ryan at his first-time travel experience. However, when he tried to return a dropped glove to a passerby, Lizzie, he was slapped by her husband who threatened to lynch him should he disturb a white woman in Montgomery. After Rosa Parks helped to calm the man, she explained to Ryan that outsiders were not safe from racism in segregated US states and told him of the death of the northern Emmett Till in Mississippi. Later, Ryan was denied service at Slim's Bar and labelled a "negro", and had to discretely enter the "whites-only" Sahara Springs Motel. He had to enter through the back door of the buses and sit at the back. To learn more about Rosa, given he only about Rosa Parks's defiant move which started the Montgomery Bus Boycott led by Martin Luther King, he followed her home and sat in on one of her annual meetings with other blacks campaigning for civil rights. There, he met King, astonishing him and explained how his grandmother Grace idolised the preacher.
Attempting to stop Krasko's plot to alter history, Ryan and Graham came to James Blake's fishing spot. Blake was shocked that the black Ryan was Graham's grandson and was told by Ryan of a staged event by black citizens in Montgomery that night, causing Blake to resume his place in history as the driver of Parks's bus. Later, he boarded Parks's bus to ensure it was crowded enough for whites couldn't sit at the front. He witnessed Parks refusing to move for the white passengers' and her historic arrest. Back at the TARDIS, the Doctor told Ryan that Parks was honoured by President Clinton in 1999, which Ryan thought took too long. He was taken to see Asteroid 284996, also named Rosaparks, in space. (TV: Rosa)
Team TARDIS Edit
Ryan and Team TARDIS travelled to the planet Gatan, arriving in the City of Radiant Stone in the midst of war. Ryan decided to climb to the roofs of the city to see what was causing the destruction, where he and Graham witnessed a robotic woman called Sandola Dell fly past and begin to commentate on the battle between Tumat and Kraytos. When he was spotted by Sandola, he attempted to argue with her, leading to him and Graham being teleported to her headquarters at the Freedom Thoughtcasting Network. After being briefly reunited with the Doctor on board, Ryan and Graham were locked up by Sandola in a disused dressing room. Learning of her struggles at work, the two convinced her to take some time off, leaving them alone. Learning they were in the room belonging to two actors who played Tumat and Kraytos for promotions, they used the powerful suits to break out and rescue the Doctor from being attacked by Berakka Dogbolter. They eventually used the suits to trick the real warriors onto a teleport pad where the Doctor fused them into one being, thereby ending the war. (COMIC: The Warmonger)
After helping the Doctor halt a war on the planet Lobos between the dog-like loba and human colonists, Ryan forgot his mobile phone there and asked to return for it. Accidentally, the TARDIS slipped almost six hundred years into the future, where the planet was now ruled by human zealots, served by slave loba. The zealots derived human superiority over loba from one joke by Graham, now worshipped as "the Good Doctor" while the real Doctor was forgotten. With women treated barely better than loba, Ryan and Yasmin were conflated into "St Rasmin", which gave Ryan a considerable authority. He befriended Brother Tempika from the Temple of Tordos, who turned out to work for the resistance. This helped the Doctor learn both sides of the story. In the end, the Doctor succeeded in uncovering the lie of the zealots, setting the record straight and brokering a lasting peace between humans and loba. (PROSE: The Good Doctor)
The Doctor and her team were tasked with preventing the Genesis Seed stored in the secret Vault 13 within the Galactic Seed Vault from falling into the hands of Nightshade. (PROSE: The Secret in Vault 13)
Psychological profile Edit
Ryan had dyspraxia, a coordination disorder, which often frustrated him. He struggled to ride a bike and lost his footing while climbing a crane. He was also scared of heights. (TV: The Woman Who Fell to Earth)
When confronted by a deadly adversary, Ryan was willing to take up arms to defend himself, even showing excitement at being in a situation where he could use a gun. (TV: The Ghost Monument, Arachnids in the UK) Ryan tended to have a muddled recollection of history, even significant events; he thought Rosa Parks was famous for being the first black woman to drive a bus. However, he did know Martin Luther King Jr pretty well due to Grace being a fan of his. (TV: Rosa)
Despite his initial hesitance to accept Graham as his new grandfather, (TV: The Woman Who Fell to Earth) Ryan still viewed him as better family than his own father. (TV: Arachnids in the UK) Ryan grew close to Graham during their time on the TARDIS; eventually calling him grandad. (TV: It Takes You Away) It was during his travels, that Ryan gained a better understanding of family; he knew that no parent is perfect, but so long as they're there for their children, they're doing a good job. (TV: The Tsuranga Conundrum)
Ryan had a fear of spiders and loved grime music. (TV: Arachnids in the UK) Ryan enjoyed films and had a particular interest in a series that featured the wizard Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings. His interest was so great that Graham took an interest in the films himself to connect with his grandson. (PROSE: Molten Heart)
Habits and quirks Edit
Ryan would feel an urge to push buttons, and often acted on the urge, (TV: The Woman Who Fell to Earth, Demons of the Punjab) even requesting to fiddle with the TARDIS control console, but respected the Doctor's denial to the request. (TV: The Ghost Monument)
After his unwillingness to listen to the Doctor nearly cost him his life, (TV: The Ghost Monument) Ryan obeyed any rules the Doctor set without question. (TV: Demons of the Punjab, The Witchfinders, It Takes You Away) He obeyed the Doctor's rule to never kill, something he successfully got Graham to conform to. (TV: The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos) As he always trusted the Doctor's ideas, Ryan would even tell other people that the Doctor was in charge (TV: Arachnids in the UK) and what she was thinking. (TV: The Witchfinders)
Ryan was skilled with social media. He had his own YouTube account called RyanS and chose to search Twitter when asked by the Doctor to look for any unusual recent events. (TV: The Woman Who Fell to Earth)
Ryan's studies as part of his NVQ meant that had some understanding of mechanical engineering. He was able to fix a solar powered boat, enabling the group to navigate the waters of Desolation. His qualification also meant he knew basic facts about acetylene. (TV: The Ghost Monument) Ryan loved cars and had aspirations of becoming a mechanic. After joining the Doctor, his mechanical interest grew into a curiosity about the inner mechanisms of the TARDIS engine and he frequently questioned her about her ship. Much like the TARDIS, Ryan was fascinated by the Doctor's sonic screwdriver and carefully studied her use of it to understand how it functioned. (PROSE: The Secret in Vault 13)
Behind the scenes Edit
- He is the third companion of the Doctor to have the surname Sinclair and the first not to travel with the Eighth Doctor. Both Izzy Sinclair and Helen Sinclair travelled with the Eighth Doctor.
- Coincidentally, Ryan's grandmother shares her given name with another of the Eighth Doctor's companions.
- Ryan is also the second companion to have a grandparent also become a companion, after Donna Noble, and the second companion to travel full-time in the TARDIS alongside their grandparent, after Susan Foreman (Santiago Jones also travelled alongside his grandmother Jo Grant once in Death of the Doctor).