Friday, August 2, 2013


On Sunday the BBC will announce who the new Doctor will be. But it doesn't matter who they cast as the new star of Doctor Who.

Whoever the new Doctor is, I won't like him (or her).

I know this because it's always the same.

I know this because I've been through this before.

Seven times.

When Tom Baker regenerated into Peter Davison I thought that would be the end of the show. There was no way it could ever be as good as it was when Tom Baker played the Doctor. Tom WAS the Doctor.
I mean, sure, I had seen Jon Pertwee in the role. He was the first Doctor that I watched. But Somehow I missed his transformation into baker. I lost touch with the show, but then I heard so may great things about it I picked it up again.

Tom Baker was fabulous as the Doctor. It was like he was born to play this part. Of course, he was, because he was really playing Tom Baker. That's the beauty of Doctor Who, each actor puts his own personal stamp on the role. His time as the Doctor becomes inextricably linked with who that actor is and vice versa.

And when Baker left it wasn't the end of the show. It was never as popular, of course, as it was during the Baker years. That kind of popularity wouldn't come until later with the show's return.

Peter Davison because the Doctor. I knew him from his role as Tristan on the BBC's All Creatures Great and Small. He was different. He was contained and sincere.
He won me over, so much so that when it was announced that he was leaving I was sure that the show was coming to an end. It could never be the same.

It wasn't. Colin Baker took over the role and I didn't like him. Until he won me over as well.

I met Baker at a convention in Bellingham, Washington shorty after he was fired from the role by the BBC controller. It was an awful situation. The producer, John Nathan Turner, wanted to move on. Baker wanted to stay. BBC controller at the time, Michael Grade, hated the show. He did exactly the opposite.

Baker was bitter about it, to say the least. he'd heard that they'd cast some actor named Sylvester McCoy. "I don't know who he is," he said. "I only know that he does a comedy act where he puts ferrets down his trousers."

Baker wanted the show to fail. I didn't, but I still didn't like Sylvester McCoy.

But then he grew on me.

So that when the show was finally cancelled I thought; that's it. That's the end.

I introduced my daughter to Doctor Who -- to the Sylvester McCoy Doctor. She loved it.

Then it came back with Paul McGann. I remembered McGann from the movie Withnail and I. My daughter and I watched the movie. We watched as McCoy regenerated into McGann.

I didn't like him.

He was too young, too handsome, too pandering to American audiences.

Then it was over and I thought; well, that's it, Nice try but its done.

Then, years later, they brought the show back. My daughter and I were excited. I saw pictures of the new Doctor, Christopher Eccleston with his short hair and leather jacket and I thought; when are they going to show him dressed as the Doctor?

So the show premiered and I didn't like him. His hair was too short and his clothes were contemporary.

But he grew on me.

He only lasted one season.

So we watched as he regenerated into David Tennant. And may daughter said to me; "I don't like him"

So now Matt Smith is leaving and everyone who criticized him when he took over (myself included -- He's too young, not forceful enough) are sad to see him go.

So when they announce the new actor on Sunday I will not like him.

Until the new season is well underway, then he (or she?) will grow on me.

And when this actor announces that he or she is leaving the role I will be sad and when they cast his or her replacement, I can guarantee that I won't like him.

Until he grows on me.

UPDATE: I just had a sudden certainty that the new Doctor Who will be Julian Rhind-Tutt. I'm probably wrong. I was absolutely certain that actor Rhys Ifans would replace David Tennant and I was completely wrong about that, so take this for what its worth. (Nothing)

If I'm right no one will be more surprised than me. (Of course I'll act all cool about it, like I knew all along, but inside I'll be gobsmacked).

I've been here and there. I've drawn a lot of pictures. I've written a bit, too. I'm not good at this self-promotion thing. Look, you want to know about me? just visit these websites. Okay?


cerebus660 said...

Great post, Mike! We've all been here before, haven't we? My first Doctor was Pertwee and I was just at the right age ( about 7 or 8 ) for his man of action / father-figure version of the character. I was totally gob-smacked when he regenerated into Tom Baker... even though The Three Doctors had shown me this had happened before. Who was this curly-haired clown? Bring back the real Doctor! Of course, within a couple of episodes, I was completely hooked and Tom went on to be my all-time fave Doc. And still, after all these years, the process still goes on...

cerebus660 said...

OK, I used the word "still" too many times in that last comment, but you get the point...

M. D. Jackson said...

What's really rewarding is watching my daughter go through exactly the same emotions and reactions now that I did back then. It make me feel as though I've done at least one thing right as a parent.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Hey, I detect a pattern here . . . . Great post, very funny! Enjoy the new Doctor.

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