This week started on a huge piece of news: Jodie Whittaker has been chosen to be the new Doctor!!!
A new doctor is, as always, a big announcement: “Doctor Who” has been running for almost 55 years (with a break in the 80-90’s) and is followed by an immense fandom, including us, of course.
As far as I can remember, the new Doctors have never made the unanimity in the fandom, so imagine the shock when it was revealed that the next time lord would be a woman! The whovian community is basically split into 2 right now.
On one side, those who disapprove:
- The Role of the Doctor can’t be given to a woman : imagine they do the same with James Bond?
- This will ruin the show
- “No way I will watch from now on”
- The dynamic doctor-companion will suffer
- And after all, why change when it has been working for more than 50 years with a male as the lead?
- This is political correctness gone wrong
- And I even read: “little boys who are fans of the show will be disturbed”
On the other side, those who welcome this change:
- Jodie was wonderful in Broadchurch
- This gives the chance to millions of little girls to identify with a strong hero
- It was always said that the Doctor could regenerate to another gender (see Missy, for example)
- “You haven’t even seen an episode, how can you know she is not fitted to the role?”
- And the always popular: “you are just a male chauvinist pig!”
The fun thing is that, both camps are composed of males and females. If you can easily imagine that the guys would “fight for one of their own”, the ladies’ position is a bit more difficult to analyse. I would risk a wild guess and say that either they are attached to tradition/established things, or they see the Doctor as a kind of Father figure/sex symbol that is removed from them.
Having said that, I think that Jodie Whittaker is a welcome breath of fresh air. I’ve never seen her in Broadchurch, but she has been highly praised for her natural acting, sense of humour and she seems very capable of giving a new life to the character.
The morning after the announcement (due to the time difference we learned about the New Doctor around midnight), Reggie told me “boy or girl, as long as the design of the sonic screwdriver is good, I have no problem!”. I was happy he was so accepting!
So, will it be weird to see a character we have known as a male for ages turn into a female? Yes, most probably at first. Then we will get over it. It’s not like we didn’t know he could regenerate into a woman: when Matt Smith regenerated, he touched his long-ish hair and exclaimed “I’m a girl!”. The Master already regenerated into Missy. And this Timelord general also regenerated into a woman. It was just a matter of time before the Doctor himself would.
And, will we still feel connected to the character? Believe it or not, yes. We have a connection when we watch Princess Leia strangle Jabba. We have a connection when we see Rey fighting Kylo Ren, or when Jyn Erso grabs the plans of the Death Star…
So, let’s celebrate the new Doctor. I’m sure she will be wonderful. And, to be honest, I’m happy we got to see, in our lifetime, a first, à revolutionary change in one of our Favourite series.