Today we have proof that internet rumors and the tracking of London gambling establishments are nothing to go by, as the BBC has announced the identity of the actor who will play the Doctor in the legendary sci-fi series Doctor Who going forward. And in news that will surely be painful to the ears of men’s rights activists everywhere, the 13th Doctor will have to cope with not just not being a ginger, but being a woman. For the first time in franchise history, the Doctor will be played by a lady, Jodie Whittaker.
Here’s the announcement trailer released today by the BBC:
Whovians have been going back and forth for years over the lack of diversity for the character and the rumors that a woman might play the Doctor moving forward have been off and on since the show came back to the airwaves in 2005. Steven Moffat said on numerous occasions that there was no way a woman would take on the role, but it’s important to know that Moffat lies (just like the Doctor). Now that it has finally been confirmed who will be playing the 13th incarnation of the Doctor on BBC’s immensely successful science fiction series, those rumors have been confirmed.
What will the Doctor be like as a woman? The Master came back as Missy, played by Michelle Gomez in the previous three seasons of the show, so the introduction of a female Doctor only grew as a possibility from there.
Casting a woman as The Doctor isn’t the only change coming to the beloved series, Moffatt will finally stepping down as the showrunner after seven years and will be handing over the reigns to Chris Chibnall, creator of Broadchurch, which also happens to be where most fans have recently seen Jodie Whittaker who played Beth Latimer in all three seasons of the series.
The casting announcement came after the men’s final match at Wimbledon. Former Time Lord David Tennant, another star from Broadchurch was on hand during the announcement and the internet has gone crazy with the announcement. The new Doctor had something to say about her being cast in the role:
“I’m beyond excited to begin this epic journey — with Chris and with every Whovian on this planet. It’s more than an honor to play the Doctor. It means remembering everyone I used to be, while stepping forward to embrace everything the Doctor stands for: hope. I can’t wait.”
The announcement of any Doctor Who casting is always a huge event online and now that the new Doctor will be played by a woman, it’s only increased that announcement to epic proportions. Chibnall spoke about the casting at the announcement saying:
“After months of lists, conversations, auditions, recalls, and a lot of secret-keeping, we’re excited to welcome Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor. I always knew I wanted the Thirteenth Doctor to be a woman and we’re thrilled to have secured our number one choice. Her audition for The Doctor simply blew us all away. Jodie is an in-demand, funny, inspiring, super-smart force of nature and will bring loads of wit, strength and warmth to the role. The Thirteenth Doctor is on her way.”
When asked about being the first woman to play the Doctor, Whittaker said:
“It feels completely overwhelming, as a feminist, as a woman, as an actor, as a human, as someone who wants to continually push themselves and challenge themselves, and not be boxed in by what you’re told you can and can’t be. It feels incredible.”
She further went on to tell fans not to worry about the gender-swap for the Doctor.
“This is a really exciting time, and Doctor Who represents everything that’s about to change. The fans have lived through so many changes, and this is only a new, different one, not a fearful one.”
Peter Capaldi announced that he would be departing as the 12th Doctor in January of this year, which has left months of speculation as to who would be taking on the role. Capaldi has called Whittaker…
“A wonderful actress of great individuality and charm. She has above all the huge heart to play this most special part. She’s going to be a fantastic Doctor.”
Fans have a love/hate relationship with the ever-changing character. They love the Doctor until it’s time for another actor (and now actress) to take on the role, then they hate the new choice, but come to love the new Doctor before going right back to the beginning of the cycle. Expect some vitriol at the casting announcement, and for the loss of Capaldi as well as the introduction of a female Doctor. Regardless of what fans are going to say online, expect another exceptional season of Doctor Who to premiere in 2018 following Capaldi’s last adventure as the titular hero in this year’s Christmas Special.