Twelfth Doctors I will accept:
- Chiwetel Ejiofor (35)
- Romola Garai (30)
- Sophie Okenedo (44)
- Richard Ayoade (35)
I know it’s a long shot that Steven Moffat won’t cast another young white man (sigh), but of the three categories fans are calling for (black, female, older than 40), I feel like a black man is probably the most likely, and a path of least resistance for the writers if they’re looking to inject some diversity.
Given the way the show handles race and gender, a regenderation (I’m sorry, I had to) would seem to entail a more pronounced change in personality/politics/ways in which the Doctor interacts with the universe & his/her companions. With a black male Doctor, Moffat could keep casting pretty, young “impossible girl” companions (diversity & characterization of companions is another issue altogether), and write off concerns about the Doctor traveling to past, more openly racist eras on Earth with a throwaway line about how “the past isn’t as different as you might think” (see: Ten to Martha when she expresses concern about walking around Elizabethan London in The Shakespeare Code).
With a female Doctor, they’d have to redefine the established relationship/sexual tension with the companion, and deal with issues of possible non-heterosexuality - the horror! - in re: Rose and River Song (though maybe not, as I can’t imagine Rose will ever return post-50th Anniversary Special and River’s storyline seems to be over). I know the show has had some wonderful queer characters over the years, but there’s a significant difference between Jack Harkness or Jenny & Madam Vastra popping in for a story once in a while and having a queer title character. I don’t know that the show (or its audience) is prepared to make that leap.
I’m also quite wary of the idea of a female Doctor written by Moffat, given his track record on female characters in general.
Older than 40 would be fascinating and I’d love to watch it, but I think it would probably get nixed by BBC execs - given the demographics who are watching New Who (especially in the States), they’ll most likely want to keep it Young and Sexy.
Also, no Idris Elba. I’ve already decided he’s the next Bond, so he clearly won’t have time to film both.
And if you want to keep your blood pressure down today, don’t search “new Doctor” on Twitter. Just don’t do it.
Quick regeneration/recasting guide for the newbies.
Fandom generally reacts the same way when this happens. So here’s what to expect.
For the next few weeks, the internet will be full of weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth. Angsty Tumblrs will be set up, proclaiming that once Matt Smith goes, they might as well cancel Doctor Who.
Certain long-time fans may start ringing the doom bell claiming that because of Name of the Doctor, Matt’s replacement must therefore be THE FINAL DOCTOR EVER (because a line of dialogue from The Deadly Assassin in the 70s is reason enough to cancel the show). Remember this, because it’ll be important in about 3-4 years time when the regeneration limit is ignored in the same way that UNIT dating is.
A new actor will be announced. They could be white, black, green, man, woman, space penguin or any combination of the above. Fandom will react as if the BBC had announced that Doctor 12 was being played by a robotic Jimmy Savile being piloted by Hitler’s brain. They will froth. They will growl. They will make nasty comments about the new actor’s ears.
Cue weeks of people poring over the new guy/gal/penguin’s previous career in an attempt to find any reason to hate them.
Certain old fans will claim that now would be a perfect time to announce that Chris/David/Matt were all actually the Rani (it’s not important) masquerading as the Doctor, and that the real Doctor is still Paul McGann, who should be re-hired forthwith. Ignore these people, as they are insane.
By about September, we’ll all be sick to death of speculation, of Matt Smith being interviewed about his reasons for leaving (he’s done three years, three years is the average time for a Doctor, so expect the “Well David Tennant told me that Peter Davison explained to him that Patrick Troughton had warned him to leave after three years.”) and the backlash to the Smith Era will begin. Mis-steps like Night Terrors will be thrown onto giant bonfires, and we’ll all start pretending that we hated The Pandorica Opens.
If the 50th Anniversary episode isn’t the best thing since sliced bread, expect the backlash to intensify and people to say things like “the only good thing that can happen at Christmas is that Matt regenerates before the opening credits.” (Note. This actually popped up in a review for Planet of the Dead, the first episode after David Tennant handed in his notice.)
One or two old fans will claim that the show should be cancelled, and we should all just watch DVDs of “Time and The Rani” until the heat death of the universe. WARNING. DO NOT EVER BUY A DVD OF “TIME AND THE RANI.” IF YOU FIND ONE, BURN IT. DO NOT WATCH IT.
Christmas will come, Matt will bid us adieu, we’ll all remember why we loved him so, before instantly forgetting everything about him as Doctor number 12 blows us away in what amounts to a glorified end-of-episode cameo.
Those angsty Tumblr users from before will create one GIF for every frame that the new Doctor is in, before frotting themselves stupid.
Someone on Outpost Gallifrey will claim not to have watched the regeneration episode anyway, because they prefer to just listen to that Big Finish audio play where Colin Baker has to defeat an impostor pretending to be the real Doctor. They will brand the episode as “disappointing” regardless, and award it 2/10 in the voting thread.
The important thing to remember is that this has happened before. Sometimes we’ve had great Doctors (Pat Troughton, Tom Baker, David Tennant), sometimes we’ve had fairly average or downright divisive Doctors (Peter Davison, Sylvester McCoy, Christopher Eccleston), but only once have we been lumped with Colin fucking Baker, and those dark days are long behind us. So enjoy the ride, and don’t get too upset.
10 times out of 11, it all turns out OK.
What the WHAT
Whovians, rejoice! We’re THRILLED to finally share with you the stunning cover for our upcoming book, Doctor Who: The Vault, which goes on sale October 29th! The Vault is the ultimate, official, visual celebration of 50 years of the BBC cult hit Doctor Who filled with unseen and iconic material, photos, artwork, and production papers from the previously untapped BBC archive as well as from private collections.
We at Harper Design are all such huge fans of the show. We’re really excited about this project and can’t wait to share more about it as we get closer to onsale!
Can I tell you all how excited I am that my company is publishing this beautiful, beautiful book? When fandom and work collide…
The Angels can do so many things. They can bend time, climb inside your mind, hide in pictures, steal your voice, mess with your perception, leak stone from your eye… New York in 1938 was a nest of Angels and the people barely more than farm animals. The abattoir of the lonely assassins!
In those terrible days, in that conquered city, you saw and understood only what the Angels allowed, so Liberty could move and hunt as it wished, in the blink of an eye, unseen by the lowly creatures upon which it preyed. Also, it tiptoed.
Translation: “The Angels can do whatever we need them to do narratively, because we don’t believe in consistent story logic or in following the rules we’ve already established. Also, I’m a smartass and you’re all at my mercy.”
“I’ll put it on basic. Because you’re a girl.”
Yeah. The Doctor’s been kind of a condescending dick about women this series, hasn’t he?
This is a face I often want to make.
Works very well for Mondays
My face when I was supposed to be on a 6am flight back to NYC this morning so I could go into work but the airline cancelled all flights out of Rochester but one at midnight last night.
Doctor Who Announces All-Star Cast for 50th Anniversary
Ahead of tonight’s premiere, Doctor Who has today revealed some of the all-star cast that will mark the 50th anniversary. David Tennant and Billie Piper will join current Doctor and companion, Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman, while John Hurt (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Alien, Harry Potter) will also co-star.
Last seen as the Doctor on January 1st 2010, this will be the first time Tennant has reprised his role as the Tenth Doctor. During his reign as the Time Lord, Tennant appeared in three series as well as several specials. He was first revealed as the Doctor in the 2005 series finale, ‘The Parting of the Ways’.
Meanwhile Billie Piper, who played companion Rose Tyler for two series following the reboot in 2005, will appear in the show for the first time since featuring in Tennant’s last episode, ‘The End of Time’ in 2010.
Also confirmed to join the cast is John Hurt who will also co-star in the 3D anniversary special that will form part of blockbuster celebrations later this year.
The 50th anniversary will be written by Steven Moffat and Directed by Nick Hurran.
Filming for the 50th anniversary starts this week. Meanwhile Doctor Who returns tonight on BBC America (March 30, 8/7c), BBC One (30 Mar, 6:15pm), SPACE Channel (March 30, 8e/5p), and ABCTV (March 31, 7.30p) for a run of eight epic episodes, which officially introduces the Doctor’s newest companion, Clara Oswald, played by Jenna-Louise Coleman.
It’s fine I’m just screaming out of joy.