Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Five "Potential" Twelfth Doctors Everyone Needs to Stop Talking About

Part of the reason that I'm not posting much anymore is that all that people want to talk about in Doctor Who fandom right now is who they think is going to be the next Doctor.  I think that all of that speculation is ridiculous.  None of us have any idea who the next Doctor is going to be.  But, while all of this speculation is silly, I'm going to talk about the names people are throwing around as possible 12th Doctors that are absolutely ridiculous and who will never become the Doctor.

5.  Benedict Cumberbatch

Much like with David Tennant, it's very hard to pick out the sexiest picture
of Benedict Cumberbatch on the Internet.
People have been talking about Cumberbatch as the Doctor since his first episode of Sherlock.  First of all, it's bad enough that we have the show runner splitting his attention between Doctor Who and Sherlock without the star doing the same thing.  Having two big hit shows on the BBC with the same head writer and star would be, at the very least...a bit weird.

But here's the biggest problem with Cumberbatch:  Have you ever seen him play a lighthearted, good, happy character?  His version of Sherlock Holmes makes Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's look like a happy little wood nymph.  There's a certain way in which the original Holmes was a bit of a dark loner and a pompous ass, but Cumberbatch's portrayal takes it to a truly darker level.  It's all summed up in some of his final lines from the last episode, "The Reichenbach Fall":  "Oh, I may be on the side of the angels, but don't think for one second that I am one of them"

The only time I saw Cumberbatch as a potential Doctor was from this past week's episode of Top Gear when Cumberbatch was their Star in the Reasonably Priced Car.  Cumberbatch, in his interview, was laid back, friendly, and personable.  But I've yet to see him put that forward in any of his characters.  They're always dark, cold, and distant.  Those are things the Doctor absolutely cannot be.

The main point, though, is that he can't be Sherlock and the Doctor at the same time.  And playing the Doctor, Sherlock Holmes, and Khan Noonien Singh might be too much awesome for any one person's career.  But most importantly...he'd make a much better Master!

4.  Dame Helen Mirren

Sexiest woman over 60 in the world!
I've given my opinions on the idea of a female Doctor in a previous blog.  And I agree with people who say that Mirren might very well be the only actress who could pull off the Doctor's first gender transition.  But there are two things standing in the way:  the fans don't want a woman, and she doesn't want to do it.  Those are fairly big hurdles to overcome before she could become the Doctor.

The simple fact is that a lot of people don't want to see a female Doctor.  Moffat ran a poll at a conference and everyone said they'd stop watching.  No, I don't think all of the people who say they don't want a female Doctor are sexist.  Some of them are, but some of them just don't think that Time Lords should be able to change genders between regenerations.  There's not a clear example of it happening in canon.

Helen Mirren stated pretty unequivocally that she doesn't want to do it.  She did say, however, that she wanted a "gay, black, woman Doctor."  I understand the desire to see either a black or female Doctor, but can the show, at this point, really said to be lacking in LGBT advocacy?  So yes, I think it would be absolutely fascinating to see Helen Mirren in the role, but you will never, ever see it.

3.  Russell Tovey

Oh come on, if you were searching Google Images for a picture of
Russell Tovey and this came up, you'd choose this one too.
Are you kidding me?!  If Cumberbatch has been typecast as cold and dark, Tovey only plays shy and awkward.  His performance in Being Human is brilliant because the whole idea is: "what if the most socially awkward and kind person in the world became a werewolf and had to deal with all of the emotional baggage that comes with being a supernatural killer?"  His role as Midshipman Alonzo Frame in "Voyage of the Damned" (and briefly again in "The End of Time (Part 2)") was endearing because he was so meek, but put aside that meekness to show his bravery when it was absolutely necessary.  Even his character in the Sherlock episode, "The Hounds of Baskerville," was shy and skiddish.

I know every actor has to have range, but I haven't seen it yet from Russell Tovey, and I've probably seen more of his work than I've seen of the work of anyone else I've put on this list.  He's kind of like a British version of Michael Cerra:  they both play the same "adorably" shy character in every role they're cast in.  I can't imagine Russell Tovey bouncing around the TARDIS with a big smile on his face, or threatening the Daleks with a steely stare.  Maybe he could surprise me, but he hasn't shown me enough to believe that he could be the Doctor.

2.  Rupert Grint

This is not remotely a metaphor for impotence.
I'm not even going to dignify this one with a response.

...okay, it seems like you're going to make me.  Ron Weasley cannot be the Doctor.  Period.  I'd love to see Rupert Grint branch out into other roles that are really different from what he did in Harry Potter, but there's no way he's going to be allowed to do it as the Doctor.  He's too recognizable in one role right now.  He needs to become established in more diverse roles before he'd even be considered for another big, iconic role.  Furthermore, Doctor Who is not really new territory for Rupert Grint.  He'd just be moving from a fantasy franchise to a science-fiction franchise which, if it didn't have its very, very thin scientific rationales, would pretty much be a fantasy franchise.  It would be a bad decision for both Doctor Who and for Grint's career.

1.  David Tennant

I'm going to stab the next fangirl who asks me to come back.
One month ago I read a report that said that Skybet had placed 50/1 odds on David Tennant coming back.  I can't find any such bets on Skybet at the moment.  Hopefully, someone realized that it was a ridiculous thing to bet on because every single person would lose as nobody has any idea who is going to be the next Doctor.

But I would bet everything I own (which, admittedly, isn't much) that David Tennant will never, ever return to the role full time.  Doctors don't come back.  No actor ever has, ever will, or ever should become the Doctor.  Nobody is going to Grover Cleveland this thing.  Doctor Who is a show about time travel.  Much like time travel, it's a show that has to move both forwards and backwards at the same time.  It can bring back past enemies and past monsters, but it absolutely cannot move back to a previous regeneration of the Doctor.  It would be a cheap ploy that any true fan would reject, leaving nothing but a fan base of 13 year old girls.

It simply will never happen.  Get over it.

1 comment:

  1. "some of them just don't think that Time Lords should be able to change genders between regenerations. There's not a clear example of it happening in canon." - I was under the impression it was dropped into The Doctor's Wife in conversation about the Corsair, almost in a shoehorny "we'll need this to be canon for later" way.