Today is the morning after the night before.  We now know that Jodie Whittaker will be gracing our television in Doctor Who’s series 11.

Brilliant. I am thrilled.

Before everyone starts making comments about Jodie Whittaker, yes, I am woman.  Yes, I’m a long-term Doctor Who fan.  I have been ever since I can remember.  I, also, run and edit one of the biggest Doctor Who fansites.   And I work with a team of writers, the vast majority are men but a number of women as well, posting news, reviews and opinion about our favourite show. (Plug here we are always looking for new writers)

Yesterday morning I was convinced that the powers that be were going to go with the safe approach – a known name that would be younger than Peter Capaldi but along the vein.  The most significant change I was expecting was a younger, unknown male actor to be cast.

As the day went on, change seemed to be in the air.  Jodie Whittaker was moving up the betting ranks and felt like some new was coming.

And what great change we got!!

Change is what Doctor Who is about.  This programme has been on the air in some form or another since 1963.  It takes a lot to remain current and relevant for that period of time.  No other sci-fi programme has done that.  Each time the Doctor regenerates there is an injection of new energy.  A new creative direction and a new generation of fans. And this time around will have a new lead writer/executive producer, a new companion and a new female Doctor.  That is a lot of newest – just think of the possibilities.

Jodie Whittaker is the perfect choice for Chris Chibnall.

But I am very comforted that Chris Chibnall has decided upon an actor that he has already worked with.  Just as Casanova, helped Russell T. Davies pick his perfect Doctor in David Tennant, Chibnall knows Whittaker from Broadchurch and can draw on their already great working relationship and friendship to build a solid team.

Jodie Whittaker is perfect for Doctor Who.

Andrew Buchan & Jodie Whittaker - BAFTA
Andrew Buchan & Jodie Whittaker – BAFTA

Jodie Whittaker is a talented and accomplished actor. I have been impressed with her work in Broadchurch and Attack Block.  She is relatively unknown, young and will bring a fresh new approach to the role.  In addition, she will be a great ambassador for Doctor Who.  I have had the pleasure of meeting her several times at various organised events for Broadchurch and she is a very lovely person with a great sense of humour.  I have no doubt that she will be able to handle all the demands of the role.

 

But what about ……

What about all the complaints about Political Correctness.  The Doctor should be a man.  Gimmick casting. etc. etc.?   For the most part, people on our Twitter and Facebook Feeds have been welcoming.  We have had the usual angst and mourning of saying goodbye to the existing Doctor and head writer while looking forward to another but we haven’t been a huge negative response. People haven’t been so kind to the official BBC feeds but being a Doctor Who site we tend to have the true fans instead of the internet trolls. They debate and disagree but they don’t spout hatred at each other.

But we have had some very visceral negative and nasty comments which has been very disappointing and disheartening.  So much so, I wonder if we’ve been watching the same show for years.  But I take heart.  Doctor Who Fans are a generally a tolerant, accepting group of people. The transformation of the Master to Missy went off without a hitch.  No one gave a whit whether Bill was gay or not.  And in the end, I don’t believe a female Doctor will be a big issue in the end, either.  I believe in the Doctor Who fans.

In closing, may I say: “Hello, Doctor.  It is lovely to meet you.”

 

Doctor Who S11 - Episode: n/a (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: The Doctor (JODIE WHITTAKER) - (C) BBC - Photographer: Colin Hutton
Doctor Who S11 – Episode: n/a (No. n/a) – Picture Shows: The Doctor (JODIE WHITTAKER) – (C) BBC – Photographer: Colin Hutton

15 COMMENTS

  1. I am pleased that the 13th Doctor is a woman she will show warmth, love also a bit of steel. I wonder if Jodie’s new companion will be male as the roles might be reversed.

    I’d love to see Jodie’s Doctor taking on a dalek saying if you don’t behave I’ll spank your behind

  2. What a shame that people like yourself can’t accept that a lot of us have had the Doctor taken away from us.

    We are here to be insulted when our opinions are just as valid as the positive ones. I am socialist and I really believe in womens rights. But this just feels daft to me and I’m sorry. I feel like a big part of my life has been removed.

    • Not sure what you have been insulted on. Perhaps you can explain.

      As I said in another response – the gender swapping started with Moffat and Missy. I can accept that you didn’t agree with the approach that Time Lords can switch gender but once the Master had, it has to be expected that the Doctor would switch gender. If the Doctor didn’t after the audience had been seen that Time Lords could, the question would need to be asked why not? Did the Doctor consider women to be inferior? Or did the Doctor consider himself to be inferior and hence stayed as a man? Is the Doctor so hopeless at regenerating that it is random and if it is random why hasn’t the Doctor been a woman?

      I can accept that you don’t accept the gender change but that decision happened in Series 8 with Michelle Gomez not with Jodie Whittaker

  3. A troll isn’t someone expressing a differing opinion to the casting of an actor or some such thing. A troll would say stuff like, “I hate her, she’s hopeless, a b%^#h, go and die” etc. Truly nasty stuff and always uncalled for. BUT! Someone saying that they believe the Doctor should be male, no gender swapping, etc…for whatever reason, isn’t a troll. Comments like this make me believe that we’ve gone down a path of nasty lefty militarism, where people can’t express an opinion. I for one think that the Doctor should be male (Moffat started this, despite any previous general suggestions of gender swapping) however, I also think as an actress, Jodie is great. Time will tell I guess. Thanks for allowing me to express an opinion without being shot down (hopefully)!

    • Thanks for the response. The internet trolls statement referred to the responses on the BBC Official feed which have been very nasty. And the gender swapping started with Moffat and Missy as you said. Once the Master and other Time Lords had switched gender, it has to be expected that the Doctor would switch gender.

      And no shooting down here. Just debate.

  4. My only concern was that they picked an actor with enough experience to be “The Doctor” & not some cute unknown who’s experience was limited to a minor role in a UK soap. I think they got that right. Changing gender however was a bold and brave move and we will just have to wait and see it goes down well.

    What has saddened me is the hate, bile and disrespect to others generated by fans of a show I have loved and watched since 1963. Most of what I have seen has been in Facebook groups some of which I admin in. I see the same thing over Star Trek Discovery, a show which has not even been broadcast yet. How did we get to the point where we can hate something so much. Come on people don’t hate something you have not seen or disrespect and abuse those who don’t agree with you. I thought the fans of Doctor Who were above that sort of behaviour, was I wrong?

  5. Why not? Stupid argument. You could make a sausage out of liquorice if you wanted to… Why not. Personally I don’t like the idea because it’s naff and too obvious… Why would the Doctor want to be a woman all of a sudden. If it isn’t intentional then it would cause a lot of mental confusion just like if I became a woman right now without having any desire to. I’m personally also not interested in what ever horrible humour or stupid sassy lines that will come from this. I am not against women but that doesn’t mean I want to see my favourite male role model become one.

    I think the smugness on the other side is equally as horrible as the bile (most I don’t agree with) on the other side. I don’t think there is a political agenda to this… Being leftwing and a supporter of LGBT rights myself. This shouldn’t be the place for it however and I do think it’s stupid and silly and dangerous to say to some of us who have been with the show in times when hardly anyone knew what it was to ‘get over it’ or we aren’t ‘true fans’ is simply disgusting and very hurtful. I think you should all be very cautious about dehumanising all of us who don’t agree with the female doctor. I also think you don’t understand the pain this has caused some of us…

    • I say I have been with the show since 1966 or 1967. And remained with it even when it was off the air. Very few people have been with the show that long. There are some but not many. And I can understand that you aren’t happy with it. I have friends that are broken hearted but we are still friends and aren’t abusing each other. But what I can’t accept it the attacks given that is being given to the happy fans and the younger fans. Be sad and mourn the change from the past but don’t begrudge those that are happy and thrilled about it and a lot of them are older fans as well.

  6. I believe in all the good that Doctor Who stands for. I’ve been watching this show since I was 3 years old. So why is it that my heart feels broken? Some might be inspired to do good by things like religion, but for me it is believing in the good that the Doctor has shown me. That’s why it breaks my heart for the thing I hold as dear to me as some would say Jesus or Allah, to be blasphemed. That’s what this is. The Doctor was killed by the PC movement. Why is it necessary to be gender swapping established roles in movies etc these days? What they did to Ghostbusters was utter crap. Now a female James Bond too? I get the reasons why this was done. But it seems like all it’s caused people is pain or reasons to gloat and make fun of people. And I was pissed off about the Master becoming a female, they could have just brought the Rani or another evil Time Lord back. But this doesn’t just piss me off, it breaks my hearts. Both of them. This really stings. My childhood hero has been killed. That’s how this feels to be quite honest. 🙁 Btw Glenn Murphie, I agree with you.

    • Yes, my sentiments exactly. The Doctor was cast as a male and he was a role model for me. In general, Steven Moffat has ruined the show. Gender swapping has never been on the cards until Series 8. He has messed with the formula just for the sake of it..like his failed Series 5 dalek remodel and convoluted story telling, with poor resolutions. And Meh I agree. What now, funny quips about women’s rights or “just because I’m a woman” statements that will come will only be annoying. In the words of Berity Lambert or Will Russell on DVD commentaries, “we played it for real.” This casting mistake can’t be reversed. Now Chibnall needs to get rid of hammy, pantomime, childish and silly performances and play his characters “for real”. Even Pat Troughton and the 3rd Doctor and Hinchcliffe’s 4th Doctor played their doctors in a down to earth..more realistic way. Chibnall..please get rid of the silly, over the top acting. Peter Capaldi deserved better…

    • I’ve been reading the reviews in the press. Who did not like the change and treated pejoratively. Nothing against the actress, but for me and unacceptable oum Doctor woman, as well as would not accept a Mary Poppins man.

      • Could be but there was some mention of in one of the books of his dad dying in WWII in North Africa. We will see.

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