And Then I Saw Her Face: A Doctor Who Opinion

Several months ago, it was announced that the new Doctor would be a woman. As a woman (and a human being) my first instinct was a deep and dissatisfied groan. I was not happy, because the Doctor’s personality had always seemed decidedly male to me. His loves were women, his ideals were that of a masculine protector of the universe, and he just seemed like a man! I hated the idea of them shoving one of my favorite characters into a woman’s body because everyone else was doing it. It didn’t work in the Thor comics, the Mummy, or the new Ghost Busters. Historically, writers just don’t make the swap correctly. Very few authors know how to write a powerful woman without making her a jerk. Then I found out that Moffat wasn’t even going to direct it anymore! What?? No Moffat, and no male Doctor for me to pine over?! Oh no, no, no. This was not fair.

And then, I saw her.

Somehow, when Jodie Whittaker took off her hoodie, and she gazed at the TARDIS, I felt like she was perfect. I could see the Doctor’s sense of adventure in her eyes. I could see everything that the Doctor stood for, and I cannot explain why. Now, I’m thrilled and ecstatic. Frankly, I’m pushing Capaldi out the door already. He was so cool, but I’ve never had an instant connection with a Doctor like this before. I was skeptical every time a new actor arrived to assume the roll. Even when David Tennant first appeared, I did NOT want him to replace the man I had come to know as my Doctor, and I have fallen in love with each Doctor in different ways and for different reasons since. She will be no different.

There’s no denying Jodie Whittaker’s abilities as an actress. She’s been absolutely stellar in everything that has been lucky enough to receive her. Even the best actor or actress can flop in a badly written film (see Johnny Depp in the new Willy Wonka). In previous roles, she’s played more background or less intimidating characters. She’ll have to become someone everyone simultaneously loves and fears. The Doctor has always had a dark side, a side that only crawls out when he’s been royally pissed off, and I’ll be interested to see how she manages to frighten entire species. She’s undoubtedly a great actress, but can she become a legend? Eccelston was fiery, Tennant was a balance of both sides, Smith was a nice guy who flipped like a coin, and Capaldi was a freaking rock star. I wonder what take she will have on the famous oncoming storm. In the final episodes of Capaldi, the writers have made zero effort to conceal their attempts to open the stage for a female Doctor, and I was unsure (angry, even) about this change until the very last second.

And then I saw her face. Now I’m a believer.

Really, though. I’m stoked. But, there’s still a big chance that they could blow this. Not because of the actress, but because of the new show runner, Chris Chibnall. I mean, have you seen Broadchurch? It was brilliant. But. So. Slow. The camera angles were painstakingly artistic, and everything took so long to happen that I nearly fell asleep. Doctor Who is fast paced, ridiculous, and magical all at the same time, and based on this director’s previous work, I just don’t see that carrying over. He also tried a more mature version of the King Arthur story, and that show bombed horribly. I have absolutely no faith in Chibnall’s abilities as a director, nor as a showrunner for such a prestigious and long-standing epic. However, although I’m pretty positive that he can’t pull it off, I can always hope to be pleasantly surprised. Few television shows or movies have done that for me, but Doctor Who has always been a magical and beautiful exception.

So, thank you Jodie Whittaker, for making me believe that a female Doctor was something to look forward to. The only thing that could make this better, is if Joss Whedon was directing it.

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(¸.•´ (¸.*´ ¸.•´
`•-* ~*Andrea*~

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