This past Sunday, millions of Whovians around the world were forced to watch a sport in order to find out who would take over the TARDIS this Christmas as the Thirteenth Doctor. As for myself, I was at my church, getting ready for praise band warm ups while I constantly refreshed my Twitter feed, waiting ever more impatiently for the announcement. Then it hit, and it wasn’t a simple picture or a headline, but a well produced one minute clip that would forever change the course of my very favorite TV show ever. As a hooded figure made there way through the woods, we saw their hand open and the TARDIS key appear in it. Then we saw their eyes, almost surely a woman’s eyes. And then the final reveal, the figure took their hood down to reveal beautiful, shoulder length blonde hair and the face of none other than Jodie Whittaker! History made. The Doctor is now a woman.
If I’m being completely honest, I was about 90% sure a woman would be cast and I am completely fine with it. I know that one part of the internet is up in arms over it and is raging out, saying that the show is ruined and they’ll never watch again and the another part of the internet is pointing and laughing and mocking this first half. And to both of these groups, I say shut the fuck up. The first group are sexist assholes who probably weren’t “True Fans” anyway (however you define that) and the second group is only exacerbating the problem by giving validity to the first groups outcry by giving it any kind of response at all. For me, I had prepared myself for this change, as it grew increasingly clear that this would be the direction the show and character would be heading but for many many others, the character that they know and love has undergone a drastic change, a change that is drastic even for a show that revolves around a constantly rotating cast (yes, I am fully aware that this entire situation is dripping with irony) and for those people, it will take some time to get used to the fact that a character that has been male (or at least portrayed and characterized as a male) for 53 years, will now be played by a woman. Give the people that are unsure of this some time to understand it and see how this change plays out in the show we all love.
For the people that are ecstatic and over-the-Lost-Moon-of-Poosh over this casting, celebrate it. Shout it from the roof tops, post about it incessantly, write articles about it, talk about it, come back to the show if you left previously, buy the merchandise when it hits, read the books and comic books, listen to the audio dramas. Love the Thirteenth Doctor and but unashamed and unmitigated in that love. I love this show for many reasons and one of those many reasons is the lore and history this show carries with it everywhere and for me, this is a chance to ease the pain of saying goodbye to one of my favorite Doctors and hopefully say hello to a new favorite. There has been and will be a lot of talk about representation and for good reason. This summer has seen the release of Wonder Woman, a movie based on the single most recognizable and iconic female super hero and it has changed the landscape of Hollywood and helped people understand the need for representation and being able to see yourself reflected in the movies, TV, and books we consume on a daily basis. I had the distinct pleasure of seeing Wonder Woman twice, once taking my mom and once taking my wife and in a few years, when she’s old enough, I will be able to sit down with a big bowl of popcorn and watch Wonder Woman again with my daughter and hope that she sees something of herself or something she could be on the screen. And right along side that, I can show my daughter what will presumably be her favorite Doctor, one Jodie Whittaker (or maybe she’ll love the 14th Doctor whomever they get to play that role). So celebrate this casting and everything it means to you, and be undaunted by the haters cause we all know, haters gonna hate. Don’t give them the fight they want cause then they lose, in fact, they lost before they even began.
I am incredibly excited to get a glimpse of Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor, however brief it may be, this Christmas and even more excited to see what kind of Doctor she is when Season 11 airs next year. I’m excited to see the new costume, the new opening credits, the new TARDIS control room (if they redecorate [HA!]), the new companion, will they be male or female and how will that affect the Doctor/Companion relationship? There is so much to be excited for with a new Doctor, a new showrunner in Chris Chinball, and a brand new season of Doctor Who.
Just don’t change the new Sonic, I love that damn thing!
Until next time, Thank You for reading and…
SEE YOU AT THE CINEMA!