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Only yesterday, someone was assuring me that Christopher Ecclestone wasn't going to quit as the Doctor after all, but that it was all a publicity stunt to get people excited. Guess not...

I'm sure this David Tennant guy will be fine, although I didn't watch any of Casanova, so I can't really comment myself. But it just annoys me that a whole incarnation has been used up on only one series, especially given the previous one was wasted on only a one-and-a-half-hour film. There are only 12 to play with, and the remainder need to be conserved! *mutters things about responsibility in the general direction of Christopher Ecclestone*

Also, if this must happen, I'd ideally like to see an older Doctor follow Ecclestone, just to keep a bit of variety in the role. Sure, there's a fine tradition of younger Doctors to follow - especially Peter Davidson. But I'd like to see an actor who can tap into those aspects of the Doctor's character so splendidly explored by people like Jon Pertwee.

Comments

( 22 comments — Leave a comment )
white_hart
Apr. 16th, 2005 10:46 am (UTC)
Casanova has actually been extremely good, and reassures me about Tennant's capability to play the Doctor. It's annoying that they've squandered two regenerations in such a short time, though (although Christopher Ecclestone is making far better mileage than Paul McGann managed!), but I can see that they felt they needed a big name to bring it back, and Big Names are not known for their sticking power...
damien_mocata
Apr. 16th, 2005 11:01 am (UTC)
*mutters something about Ecclestone not wanting to be typecast*

*mutters a whisper campaign to ensure he's always typecast ;-)*
ex_kharin447
Apr. 16th, 2005 11:31 am (UTC)
I agree that an older Doctor would be good; Ian Richardson, David Warner or David Collings maybe.

Still, I think Tenant will do well in the part, particularly given that he loves the programme (which Eccleston clearly doesn't; he wanted to work with Davies rather than wanting to play the Doctor) and will probably haved to be prised away from the part with a crowbar.
strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 12:28 pm (UTC)
Ian Richardson

You speak wisely, my friend!

And yes, a love of the programme has definitely got to be a plus. I suppose in a way it's a shame they didn't use Tenant straight away. But then again, I do really like Ecclestone's Doctor, and it would be a shame to have missed out on that.
purple_peril
Apr. 18th, 2005 09:33 am (UTC)
Ooohh, oooh Ian Richardson is da sex!
Definitely got my vote.
Or how about Geoffrey Rush?
qatsi
Apr. 16th, 2005 12:23 pm (UTC)
There are only 12 to play with

I'm sure that if the series is successful and it becomes necessary, they'll find a way to extend it (without body-snatching a la Anthony Ainley, of course).
strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 12:29 pm (UTC)
I'm sure you're right. But pedants like me will shake their fists from their armchairs, and shout at the television about changing the rules, nonetheless.
davesangel
Apr. 16th, 2005 01:17 pm (UTC)
I can't believe I fell for the rumours and stories that Christopher would be remaining in the role. Damn publicity stunts! :P
Whilst it is good that Tennant is a fan of the show, and thus might have more enthusiasm for the role, I think Richard E Grant or David Thewlis would have been better choices...Time will tell, I suppose.
strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 02:06 pm (UTC)
David Thewlis

I can't help but detect a certain bias, there, Mrs. Lupin!
davesangel
Apr. 16th, 2005 02:18 pm (UTC)
:D Well yes, but I also feel that he's been able to play such a variety of parts that he won't be in danger of acting the role in a similar way to previous Doctors - the danger with Tennent as you have quite rightly pointed out is that he's very young, and as such he's liable to act the role in a similar way to Davison (or even McGann). Actors with a broader range, such as Thewlis, may be able to bring something very original to the role.
aletharch
Apr. 16th, 2005 01:24 pm (UTC)
I'm wondering if there isn't a plus side to the rapid turnover - having a regeneration so early on in the new series will be another good way of introducing the mythology to a new audience. Of course, doubtless kids' parents will have explained to them what Doctor Who is, but given how most of the emphasis of the series so far has been on leaking gradual bits of information about a largely mysterious 9th Doctor to the audience via Rose (the "Time War", the destruction of Gallifrey, the Daleks) then a regeneration at Christmas would be perfect.

Someone wrote something rather interesting that I hadn't thought of before. If Gallifrey has been destroyed and the Doctor is the last surviving Time Lord, then Susan, Romana and possibly Leela are all dead. While I'm not too rabid about fan continuity, I would be rather disappointed if Eccleston doesn't get a single line lamenting the death of his grand-daughter.

Ooh, this is terribly exciting, isn't it? I can't wait for tonight's episode!
strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 02:14 pm (UTC)
Yes, you make a good point about the rapid turnover, given the tone of the series so far.

As for the stuff about Gallifrey, I'm probably not quite an avid enough fan to follow you properly there. I know Romana(etc.) was a Time Lord (Lady?), and I understand that Susan was the first assistant, and is referred to as the Doctor's grand-daughter: but does that automatically make her a Time Lord? I mean, is it genetic and automatic, or is it something some people on Gallifrey can choose to become, but others don't?

And I definitely don't know enough about Leela. I mean, I know she's basically prehistoric, but is she from prehistoric Gallifrey, then?

Sadly, I shan't be able to watch it tonight, as it clashes with a Christopher Lee programme I want to tape on another channel, and I can't tape one thing and watch another on my set-up. Since Doctor Who is repeated (the next night on BBC 3) and the Christopher Lee programme isn't, Mr. Lee has to win out, and I'll just have to wait.
aletharch
Apr. 16th, 2005 05:39 pm (UTC)
I'm not an avid fan, but I've read enough about the show - I tend to live things vicariously rather than experience them directly. I don't know whether or not Susan is actually a Time Lord, and it would also depend on whether one accepts the awful America-friendly line in the Paul McGann movie about the Doctor being half-human (ouch). As for Leela, she's human, but (in a story I haven't seen) she leaves the Doctor to stay on Gallifrey with her newly-acquired Time Lord boyfriend. Given that she's human, however, she's probably dead by Eccleston's time anyway.

Ack - it is unwise to attempt serious analysis of a series that was written on an ad hoc basis!
strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 07:25 pm (UTC)
Ack - it is unwise to attempt serious analysis of a series that was written on an ad hoc basis!

What??? You mean to say that dedicated Whovians might actually be woefully misguided after all?

Surely no-one would go so far!
huskyteer
Apr. 16th, 2005 03:12 pm (UTC)
*mutters about other things Pertwee is welcome to explore, e.g. my pants*
poliphilo
Apr. 16th, 2005 03:34 pm (UTC)
I think the main thing about The new Dr Who is not the casting but that Russell T Davies is at the helm. I admire his writing no end.

I'm enjoying Ecclestone, but I thought Tennant was terrific in Casanova and now I'm impatient to see what he does with the Doctor.


strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 07:22 pm (UTC)
You're right about Davies. I watched the first bit of tonight's episode before my Christopher Lee programme started at 7:15, and was reminded that Davies (and / or the rest of the creative team) not only writes vivid and witty dialogue, but even inserts clever little bits of symbolism and makes his settings really work to support and enrich the script. Oh, and I thought it was a nice touch that they'd persuaded Andrew Marr to present the disaster coverage from Downing Street, too!
swisstone
Apr. 16th, 2005 04:30 pm (UTC)
Can't agree more. I really didn't want someone cast who would bugger off after a year, but clearly it was felt a Big Name was needed. And in fairness to Ecclestone, he never made any secret to the producers that he would only stay for a year. I still don't think changing lead actor so early is good for the show, and saying that it's good to introduce the audience to the concept of regeneration as soon as possible is just RTD making the best of the situation.
strange_complex
Apr. 16th, 2005 07:23 pm (UTC)
...just RTD making the best of the situation

You're probably right, but if what aletharch said above is representative of Davies' arguments, it is a pretty good line to spin from a sticky corner.
(Deleted comment)
strange_complex
Apr. 17th, 2005 10:42 am (UTC)
Yes, a selective approach is certainly being taken. A strong case can also be made for Peter Cushing, who played the Doctor in two films from the sixties: Dr. Who and the Daleks and Daleks Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D..

I'm not entirely sure what makes McGann 'canon' and Cushing not, but I think it comes down to the level of BBC involvement in the production: they were involved with both production and distribution for the McGann movie, but had no such direct link with the Cushing films that I'm aware of, apart, of course, from giving permission for the use of the character.

At the level of the story, the degree of BBC involvement shows itself in the form of direct continuity between one incarnation and the next. Hence, we saw McCoy regenerate into McGann in the 1996 film, while hints have been dropped in the new series that Ecclestone is newly-regenerated, and a flashback to the actual regeneration scene remains a possibility. However, Cushing (as for the other non-canon examples you give) seems to have stood alone - there's no reference to his regeneration from or into any of the accepted canon incarnations.

Obviously, Richard Hurndall 'counts' as the same incarnation as William Hartnell, which is the only example I know of of such an approach so far.
purple_peril
Apr. 18th, 2005 09:39 am (UTC)
I've completely missed the whole thing :(
Is anyone taping it?
strange_complex
Apr. 18th, 2005 09:41 am (UTC)
Some of my Belfast friends are, but apparently you can also download it from various places on the internet pretty much as soon as each episode is broadcast. I don't really know where, though.
( 22 comments — Leave a comment )

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