Monday, August 5, 2013

Doctor Who Tidbits: Thoughts On The New Doctor

So it has been less than twenty-four hours since the announcement of who will be taking over the controls of the TARDIS when Matt Smith leaves the Doctor Who during this years Christmas Special. Before I get into my thoughts about the new Doctor, I want to get some related thoughts out of the way. The first one being that I really don't want Matt Smith to leave, not yet anyways. I was hoping that he would at least stick around and do a couple more seasons (or series as the British call them) before he decided to call it quits. But I understand that being a Doctor Who fan means that you have to embrace change. Everybody comes and goes, even the actor playing the Doctor.

The second thing I would like to say is that I don't like the idea of announcing the person taking over the role of the Doctor. I am not really sure how it was done during the original series since I didn't discover the show until the early 1990s, several years after the BBC had canceled it. But I have to say that I think the regeneration from one Doctor to the next should be a surprise. We shouldn't have know that Matt Smith would not be coming back for another season. We should have found out  when he falls down and morphs into Peter Capaldi. In an idea world this is the way regeneration would take place. But we live in the age of the Internet, such secrets as these are difficult to keep under wraps. This kind of information would have been leaked out sooner or later. This way the BBC controls the avenue of how that information makes it way to the public.

Going into today I knew the big announcement was going to happen, I just didn't know when it was going to happen until five minute before the live broadcast. Since I live in America and do not get BBC America in my basic cable package, I was not able to see the BBC special
announcing who the new Doctor was going to be. But since It was going to announced live I knew there was no way they would say who the Doctor was at 2pm. They were going to build up to it. This was going to be very much like the LeBron James decision a few years back. Like that time I was going to keeping a close eye on twitter, seeing how it all turned out. Only this time I actually cared what that outcome was going to be.   

As I was following twitter to find out just who they had picked to be the new Doctor, I couldn't help but feel like a kid on Christmas morning. Even though I didn't want Matt to go, and was not in favor of announcing any of this before it happened on the show, I was emotionally invested in who was going to be the 12th Doctor. Who would be the face of my favorite show when the 8th season began?

The moment arrived and I saw the name being tweeted by several hundred of Doctor Who fans that had been watching the BBC's live special. Peter Capaldi was the new Doctor. Now I knew whoever Steven Moffat and crew picked to be the next Doctor I would probably not recognize them. I watch a lot of British television, but it is small in comparison to the amount of actual programming that is taking place in Great Britain. And most the shows that I watch are comedies. Not the likely spawning ground for the lead actor of one the biggest dramatic shows in the world. So when I saw the name I was not surprised that I didn't know it.

I immediately went to Peter Capaldi Wikipedia page, I had to get details on the man. The first thing I noticed was that he was Scottish, a plus with me. Make that several thousand pluses. I am of Scottish decent and love anything that has to do with Scotland. I feel a kinship with the new Doctor already. I also saw that he was an older man, at 55 years old. I have no problem with that, and actually welcome it. The problem with having a younger actor playing that role is that you get the wrong kind of person watching the show. They don't care about the science-fiction nature of the show at all. They only turn in because they think the Doctor is cute. And this leads to all the outcries whenever the actor decides to leave the show.

As I looked over Peter Capaldi filmography I had noticed that I seen him before, he had made several guest appearances on shows that I had seen before. Most notably the Doctor Who episode The Fire of Pompeii and Torchwood miniseries Children of Earth. Now I will have to rewatch both of these appearance by Mr. Capaldi so I can familiarize myself with his style. But I do remember his role in the Torchwood miniseries quite well, and I thought he did an excellent job. I have a feeling he will be an excellent Doctor as well.

Peter Capaldi joins Colin Baker, the sixth Doctor, as having appeared on Doctor Who before taking the role of the Doctor. Colin Baker played a Time Lord in the Arc Of Infinity serial.  

This looks like a good place to stop for now. Hopefully as the time grows nearer I will post on my thoughts about Matt Smith leaving. Until then I look forward to seeing how the 50th Anniversary episode turns out.

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