Sunday, February 10, 2013

The 12th Doctor?

Sunday February 10, 3:09 p.m.

Well, two days after the storm of the season, I think Torontonians are still trying to dig out of the 25 cm or so of snow that has befallen them. Even in my neighbourhood which has a major street alongside, a large segment of the sidewalk is still totally covered in the white stuff. But I have to say unlike a lot of aftermath days following a major snowstorm, it's been very pleasantly sunny out there, which gives an appealing glisten to the still largely untouched snow.

Anyways, onto something far more whimsical and geeky. Of course, any Whovians looking at this blog know that this year is the 50th anniversary of our favourite series, "Doctor Who", and there are plenty of events in store on the BBC and everywhere to commemorate the occasion.

Courtesy of Darth Ray
from Flickr
But my main question bouncing off the walls of my ever-fragile cranium is who will follow the 11th Doctor, thespian and character-wise. I realize it's probably quite too early for anyone but the most far forward-looking fan to consider THE most important question that Great Britain must ponder next to the question of who the next 007 will be or when Prince Charles will finally ascend to the throne. Still, the question begs to be contemplated if not answered immediately.
courtesy of Naomi Roper
from Flickr
I have come across a page that had people trying to answer that question with their own thespian choices and even right down to the type of costume. Apparently, Benedict Cumberbatch may be a busy man for the next several years if the 'Beeb' actually heeds the viewers' opinions. He's already a popular man because of the UK version of the current Sherlock Holmes program, and he's up-and-coming as the main villain on the next "Star Trek"movie. I figure if he's a lock for "Doctor Who", he only needs to score a role as a Jedi to reach ultimate sci-fi legendry.

And Cumberbatch does fulfill at least one of my conditions to become a Who: he's older. I think the Twelfth Doctor has to be someone in his late 30 or 40s, and not an obviously youthful-looking 30s or 40s either. There has been a de-aging of sorts of the Time Lord after Chris Eccleston's regeneration into David Tennant which should stop, lest we start getting the next Harry Potter or Encyclopedia Brown as the next Gallifreyan. Also, it should be someone who looks less geeky and more seasoned, someone along the lines of Eccleston or his predecessor, Paul McGann, although he shouldn't be quite as intimidatingly manic or angry as the former. The basic Doctor personality should be intact: curious and whimsical if a bit tetchy but a being who won't suffer fools gladly and can stand up for a fallen universe.

As for the new Doctor costume, again let's be away from the obviously geeky sartorial references such as bow ties, specs and suspenders The First Doctor went for Victorian; well, perhaps, the next guy can go for something more Edwardian. I think David Bowie and his besuited style immediately struck me as a Who-type when he made his dramatic entrance in the movie "The Prestige"as Nikola Tesla. I think there needs to be a certain conservatism in the next guy since the Doctor is approaching the end of his lives, and I'm also considering that situation with the Valeyard in "The Trial of a Time Lord" back during the Sixth Doctor's reign. The final 13th Doctor can deal contentedly with lives well lived, but the 12th Doctor will have to finally confront his sins and those of others before that final regeneration.

As for names, I can only think of the worldwide well-known British thespians such as Jude Law or Colin Firth, and most likely the BBC will usually eschew them for the more obscure or up-and-coming actors, so I really can't say. But one thing I can say is that when Matt Smith decides to hang up his tweed jacket for good, whether it's next year or a few years down the line, the 12th Doctor Sweepstakes will burn through the wires like no other entertainment news story.