Dan and I recently started watching Doctor Who together. When the fall / winter series finally had all had their finales, we switched over to our Netflix Instant Queue and decided to finally see what all the fuss was about. We were originally going to go all the way back to the episodes from the 60’s but those original shows seem to be scattered across a million DVDs and the new re-released series is all nice and tidy and we only have to press one button. So for the time being, we started with the 2005 premier of the 9th Doctor, played by Christopher Eccleston.
At first I couldn’t watch the show without commenting on the pure cheesiness. Both Eccleston and his co-star Billie Piper seemed to be laying it on pretty thick and the whole thing felt like it was filmed in the 80’s which is clearly not a compliment. But the show grew on me and the characters grew on me and every night we’d put the kids to bed and then settle down for some Tardis Time. It was our thing. It’s still our thing except something happened. Something awful.
I’d preface that this is a spoiler alert, but honestly I think you need to know. At the end of the first (billionth?) season, our cheesy big eared Doctor regenerates into this cheesy Doctor:
Even he looks confused about the casting change
Apparently when the Doctor is basically on his death bed for whatever reason, he is able to completely regenerate in the form of an entirely new person in order to survive. Still the same Doctor, except not. Now I guess given that the previous Doctor was the 9th Doctor, I should have figured out that he wasn’t going to be sticking around forever. But in a show that has been around for 50 years or so, I’d think we’d get more than one season with him. Moreover, the whole romantic connection between Piper and Eccleston had just been (finally!) acknowledged when BAM! New guy. It’s just creepy. Don’t ever kiss a guy on television or he’ll either turn into a demon, literally change faces or die. This is what I’m beginning to learn.
I guess there have been interviews and speculations, etc. that Eccleston never intended to do more than one season because he didn’t want to become typecast or something (lame) but I have to say this was a loss for everyone. This new Doctor? I mean, he’s fine. Maybe he’ll even grow on me. Maybe they wanted someone younger so that people wouldn’t be raising their eyebrows all the time at him and Rose liking each other (though apparently she won’t be sticking around much longer either, I don’t blame her, really) but Eccleston was such an amazing Doctor Who. He has that perfect blend of silly childish humor that meets perfect comedic timing and also, frankly, you just believe. He delivers a line and you believe. I don’t get that from David Tennant yet and it’s a damned shame.
And also? I resent having to whine and complain on my blog about Doctor Who, making it vividly clear to all of you that one) I’m a giant nerd and two) I take my television shows way too seriously. But seriously! If Ellen Pompeo as Meredith Grey had done one season and then randomly morphed into Lindsey Lohan I think we can all agree that we’d collectively flip our shit, right? How can Derek just take that in stride and believe her when she says, “Trust me, I’m still the same Meredith. Look how I flap about ridiculously and then say the word “fantastic” and everything is okay again.”
It wouldn’t work – and not because Grey’s Anatomy isn’t a Sci-Fi Show, honestly they’ve pushed the limits on reality plenty with the whole Denny the Ghost Love Scenes and all. No, it wouldn’t work because audiences like to get attached to people. We can deal with change that’s been a long time coming but just f-ing with us for the sake of keeping us on our toes is plain mean.
Maybe their males in their 20’s and 30’s Demographic just don’t form the same attatchments that women (read: I) do but I just need to have it out and written here that, I am not pleased and I miss the Big Eared Goofy Doctor a lot. I had to go on Netflix and add like 7 movies he’s done outside of Who-ville that all seem to have lackluster reviews but I don’t care. I know I’ll need a fix. Even if it won’t be the same.
They say that the first Doctor tends to be people’s favorite which is a crying shame but certainly makes sense. Fans of Doctor Who, tell me – who’s your favorite Doctor and which one did you watch first?