Who gets the TARDIS next?

2 January, 2009

BBC News reports that David Tennant’s replacement will be announced tomorrow, which means that after Tennant’s body expires and regenerates into the next actor, the Doctor will only have two regenerations left in him, and inasmuch as Doctor Who has become such a national treasure for the UK, it’s actually going to mean something when the show finally has to end. That is unless the general public starts to lose interest again, which is always possible.

I have to confess, I am hardly an expert on Doctor Who, but I have seen all 10 Doctors in action at least once. My favorites unquestionably are Tom Baker, Christopher Eccleston and Jon Pertwee in that order. Eccleston came very close to dethroning Mr. Baker for me but of course his tenure as the Doctor was tragically short. Those three actors have everything I look for in the character: He is a mad genius who tackles his obstacles like a game of chess. To call him eccentric is putting it mildly.

David Tennant is a fine actor but I always felt he was slightly lacking in the mad genius department. It’s not entirely his fault, mind you. I don’t think anyone realized that Tennant was going to become the first sexually desirable Doctor, and I feel that after the enormous success of series two, the writing started to pander to lowest-common-denominator audiences more than it already had with its sentimentality and corny jokes. In this episode of Screenwipe, Charlie Brooker identified a lot of the problems with the first Tennant series (Even though he later went on record saying that Tennant is the best Doctor ever.)

Now let’s be clear about this: There is no definitive Doctor because all the actors took a different spin on the character. After complaining about the blind snobbery of James Bond fans who can’t bear to see the series change course after 40 years of the same old song, it would be hypocritical of me to suggest that my perception of a good Doctor is the right one. That said, now that we’ve had a Doctor who appeals to a mass audience, it would be nice for the 11th Doctor to be more of a Tom Baker-type and less of a David Tennant-type, if only in the interest of variety.

I have no idea who it’s going to be but I’ve come up with three actors whom I think might be mad enough to play the kind of Doctor I want to see but cool enough to keep the character from going backwards in time (No pun intended.) Tell me what you think.

James Nesbitt: First off, I just think it would be cool to see an Irish Doctor. But James Nesbitt has been one of my favorite actors for quite some time precisely because of the kind of energy and sincerity he brings to his roles. He was by far the best thing about Match Point and seeing him try to crack the case based on his gut alone instantly made me think, “That’s the next Doctor.” Imagine that same character with centuries of life experience behind him and a nifty bag of tricks, and you have one hell of a replacement.

Ewen Bremner: Nesbitt’s co-star in Match Point but I think it’s his performance as the unhinged speed-craving Spud in Trainspotting that makes him an ideal choice for the role. Unfortunately, Spud’s lack of a brain unlike the street-smart Sick Boy may rub Doctor Who fans the wrong way, that and the fact that he has spent most of his career playing supporting characters whose only purpose is to be shot at or smacked around. But people forget that Bremner starred in a stage adaptation of Trainspotting before the film was released…and he played Renton! It’s time to see this dynamic actor take on a role of infinite intelligence, since we’ve already seen him play oddballs perfectly.

Bernard Hill: Okay I know I’m ratcheting up a few years but anyone who saw Peter Greenaway’s masterpiece Drowning by Numbers has to see Doctor Who potential in this man. In games-enthusiast Madgett, he perfected the role of an outsider who sees the world differently from everyone else but always with a sense of wit and optimism. We’ve also seen him command an ocean liner in Titanic and an entire kingdom in Lord of the Rings so I think it’s about time we saw him a glint in his eye once again.

Whoever they choose, I’m sure it will be a fascinating and inspired choice, and I look forward to seeing which actor gets to take over the TARDIS next.

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2 Responses to “Who gets the TARDIS next?”

  1. DaddyBernard said

    Bernard Hill is so sexy. He was a really handsome daddy bear when he acted as the captain in Titanic.

  2. rafita said

    I agree, He is so damn sexy, that white beard looked incredible, far too many kisses to Bernard Hill

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