What a bloody palaver
January 3, 2009
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I'm going to have to flannel a bit because the first sentence of this post will appear on Marie's blogroll, and I know she's trying to remain spoiler-free until she comes back from Africa… Ah. That's better.
Right. This Eleventh Doctor nonsense.
A couple of days ago, Will Facebooked: "Will wonders why as Doctor Who is so shit the
BBC keeps flogging it with specials and other crap. Maybe it's because
they have no imagination. And I replied, in the best traditions of Monty Python: "BLASPHEMER!" But when the Beeb announced their announcement of the new Doctor yesterday I started to wonder if he had a point… not about the shitness (blasphemer) but about the flogging of specials. This David Tennant leaving / new Doctor stuff has been done to death – a resignation speech live at an awards ceremony? Was that really necessary? Filming on the 2009 specials hasn't even begun yet; surely they could have held off until they had at least cast a replacement, spared us the silly season of casting speculation. Even if the story had leaked it would just have been another 'David Tennant leaving' filler piece of the kind that's been clogging up newspapers since he took the damn role.
And now this Confidential to announce the Eleventh Doctor… ooooooo it's made me angry. Getting onto proper news programmes? It's not news! It's cross promotion! Put out a fucking press release! Stop with the whole brouhaha!
Anyway. Liz called Matt Smith ten minutes into Confidential, so props there. She's seen him in enough stuff to be very pleased with the casting and I trust her instincts – and he's got an interesting enough face to be able to carry off Time Lord, I think. (I'm faintly amused to see he played Lockwood in the version of The History Boys that came after the seminal, perfect, cast; I wonder if Andrew Knott's wondering what he did wrong – the replacement gets Doctor Who and he gets Spooks: Code 9.)
But he's 26. That's nearly five years younger than me. The Doctor's 900 years old and he's being played by someone younger than me. I feel like I did the first time Liverpool players started being younger than me. 'Tis worrying, 'tis true. And given that I'm currently shouting "Richard Hammond, get a haircut" at the TV, I think we can say I'm officially old.
Now we have to endure over a year of speculation (what will he wear? Who'll be his companion? Which previous Doctor will he be most like?) before Matt Smith even hits TV screens. Won't that be fun? Poor guy, I hope he knows what he's let himself in for…
Edit: And in agreement with Justin at Chicken Yoghurt. Paterson Joseph or Chiwetel Ejiofor would have been more interesting choices, perhaps (and would both have been awesome) – it just underlines the fact that Matt Smith's going to have to do something incredibly different to get out from Tennant's shadow. (Metaphorical shadow; his actual shadow would only be about six inches across.)