Delayed Reaction

It’s been over a fortnight since the announcement was made, now. Eighteen days and I’m still not sure how I feel about it. Matt Smith is going to be the eleventh Doctor Who.

It was odd watching the build-up to the announcement. For one thing, I was surprised by David Tennant’s declaration that he wouldn’t be in a new season; I was expecting another surprise regeneration. The thing is, Tennant leaving changes everything. Russell T. Davies, Phil Collinson and Julie Gardner, the executive producers, have all bowed out of the series to leave a new creative team in charge. There isn’t a hanging companion character between series either, so having a new Doctor on board means that Doctor Who is not going to be the same show as the one that ended so spectacularly last June. This, to my mind, isn’t necessarily a bad thing, given who the new production team are. It’s sad, though, because David Tennant was very good as the Doctor.

Obviously, there was going to be media speculation about the new Doctor. The usual lists from William Hill and Ladbrokes were trotted out and the usual speculations about a female Doctor were made (as they have been for nearly thirty years). Still, I was expecting the speculation to go on for a while – it was odd to watch it cut short suddenly by an early announcement. To put this in perspective: Doctor Who has begun its run around Easter since 2005. This means we’ve been told the big news fifteen months before we see the new Doctor on our screens. I suspect that this is to get us used to the idea of the new guy so the sudden change of style next year isn’t quite such a shock to the system.

Then there it was. A lengthy introduction and discussion, new faces appearing on the screen with the name captions catching up a few seconds later. I’d never seen Piers Wenger’s face before, so it was with curiosity that I first looked at Matt Smith as he appeared on screen. There was no drum roll or fanfare; he just appeared in the middle of a discussion about the new Doctor. The youngest actor to be given the roll, and a lot younger than Steven Moffat ever intended. I must admit to having doubts when I first saw his face. And then he spoke. There’s something about his mannerisms and the way he talks that made me see what the production team probably saw in him. Yes, this man is the Doctor, and the right Doctor, too.

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~ by Scary Rob on 21 January, 2009.

One Response to “Delayed Reaction”

  1. I’ve just picked the DVD of Party Animals, the big series he’s been in, so once I’ve watched it you can give it a whirl.

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