Half an hour ago the BBC announced via a special live broadcast that Peter Capaldi will play the 12th Doctor. I… don’t really know anything about the guy. Looking at his IMDb page, I realize that he looks familiar because I’ve seen him in several things before. I bet he’ll be great. I mean really, can you think of anyone who’s played the Doctor that you thought, “Ugh, I’d like this show if only it weren’t for that guy.“? So congratulations to Mr. Capaldi. As always, I cannot wait to see what happens next.
However, I do want to express a certain degree of disappointment. I really thought the producers of Doctor Who might take this opportunity to try something really new and different. Part of the reason I thought so is because I saw or read a number of interviews with Stephen Moffat where he said just that. “This is an opportunity for us to try something really new and different.” Or words to that effect. What did that mean? I wondered. Rumors flew that they were considering a black actor, or a woman. Either option would certainly have been new and different, considering that for the last fifty years (!) the role has been played by a white male. And Moffat himself mentioned in the big special that it’s already established that Time Lords can switch gender, so why not? Lots of brilliant choices out there.
But no. When the big reveal came, it was the guy everyone already kinda knew had the gig. He is a little older-looking than the last couple of guys. But this isn’t really a turn in a new direction. It’s barely a slight veer.
It’s not like I’m gonna stop watching the show. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I really do hope they can do something really exciting and unexpected. My DVR is already set.
Awesome geek site io9 reports that, according to Neil Gaiman, the role of the Doctor was in fact offered to a black actor, who turned it down. Okay. Good. But… Now obviously the color of an actor’s skin shouldn’t be the only factor considered when deciding who should play the Doctor, or probably just about any other role. But I am curious to know just what qualities Moffat and Co. were looking for that, when this first actor said no, made them give up and go for the old standby instead.
There is one sentence in this article that made me to a double take: “I’m not sure why, exactly, but somehow it feels like a female or black (or, god forbid, a black female!) Doctor will have more impact after Capaldi than it would after Smith.”
“God forbid” a black female? The sentence is less shocking in context, but nonetheless, I I think it’s time to start campaigning now: NAOMIE HARRIS FOR THE 13TH DOCTOR.
Who’s with me?