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New Doctor!

The news has certainly been out long enough that I don't need to hide this behind a cut. Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor. I've always said that as long as the writing is good and the actor chosen fulfills the showrunner's vision of the Doctor, I'll be happy with it, so until we see the first episode of Series 11, I can't really form a firm opinion, but for now, I'm pretty pleased.

The only opinion I can formulate at the moment must be based on what I've seen of Ms. Whittaker's work, which is playing Beth Latimer on Broadchurch, which, if you haven't guessed, I'm quite the fan of. Beth in particular is one of my favorite characters: she's a slight, willowy woman with a happy life, marriage, and family who is subjected to the worst nightmare a mother has - the violent death of her child - at the same time she discovers that her husband has cheated on her. She initially falls apart, as anyone would do, then picks up the pieces of her life, keeping her family together through the crisis and then through the trial of her child's murderer. I won't spoil the third series, as I know it is still being aired for the first time in the U.S., but she's amazing in it as well. Her tragedies change her and she never is able to return to a normal life - and yes, she makes mistakes like everyone else, especially blaming Ellie for her husband's actions - but she comes out the stronger person.

Do I want Ms. Whittaker's Doctor to be like Beth Latimer? No, I want her to be her Doctor, whoever that is. But she's convinced me that she can play and develop a well-drawn character, and I'm looking forward to her performance. The real question, the one that will make or break the show, is whether or not the writing and vision will support her, and as I've been pleased with Chris Chibnall's work on DW previously, I'm optimistic on that front.

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Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
tkel_paris
Jul. 17th, 2017 05:33 am (UTC)
I agree with everything you said. I want this to be for the right reasons - in other words, not because "it's high time for a woman Doctor" but because the character was best played by Jodie Whittaker and she outshone all other actors (male or female) for it - and to see great scripts.

Part of me wonders... if any Doctor would go back and fix what happened to Donna, will it be this one? The plot bunnies are already gathering and multiplying. And I haven't seen ANY of Series 10 yet. o.O
dm12
Jul. 17th, 2017 12:54 pm (UTC)
Now there's a thought... Ten was too panicky to think of anything, Eleven just wanted to totally ignore it, Twelve at least started to think about her in less panicked terms, tried to think of what she taught him, chose his face because of her. Will Thirteen be the one to actually do something about it? We can hope... or our authors here can do something about it. What would Donna's reaction be to a female Doctor? I think, after the initial shock and anger of the Doctor leaving her behind, she'd start making fun, then realize she could help this one with wardrobe choices (like a good supportive bra for all the running!). Donna, being the shopper that she is, would take the Doctor shopping to get all the things she needs, even if the wardrobe has things. That would cement the friendship again and they could travel again. Maybe they would find Jenny now (finally!) or Jenny would find them. How would it be if a pack of females were traveling space and time together?
flowsoffire
Jul. 17th, 2017 07:11 pm (UTC)
I also heard that Jodie Whittaker's record on Broadchurch is certainly a great sign :D Can't wait to see what she does with the part, and what Chibnall!Who will turn out like!
bas_math_girl
Jul. 17th, 2017 07:39 pm (UTC)
You might find this interview/clip interesting:

National Theatre's "Antigone"
alumfelga
Jul. 18th, 2017 07:42 pm (UTC)
I think cooperation between the head writer and the actor/actress who play the Doctor is essential. They need to understand each other and have one, strong image of where they are going in their heads. I'm not surprised Chibnall wanted to work with someone he's successfully worked before. It means they communicate very well and there's a big chance they'll create another well-drawn character (100% agree) together.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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