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  • Bryan W. Alaspa

Let's Talk the New Doctor

So, that beautiful young woman there is the actress Jodie Whittaker. I became a fan when I was watching the first season of the BBC show Broadchurch. She played the mother of a young boy who was found dead on a beach and she did so amazingly. It was a performance that I never forgot, showing the grief and then outrage as the killer was revealed. That series was created by a guy named Chris Chibnall and he is now the new showrunner of my all-time favorite TV show: Doctor Who. He has cast Jodie as the new Doctor for the new season.

What? How can that be?

For those of you who are not lifelong Doctor Who fans, let me run it down for you. The Doctor is an alien from a race called Time Lords. The Time Lords are ancient and have mastered travel in time and space. They have two hearts and other cool physical features - but they have also mastered time to the point they can cheat death. If a Time Lord is wounded so seriously he or she will die, they can "regenerate." This was a trick created by the show when the actor playing the first Doctor got too sick to keep playing him so they got a new actor and created this ability to regenerate.

There have been 12 previous regenerations and, in each case, it was a man. However, it was established a long time ago Time Lords, when they regenerate can change genders and races. Within the mythology of the show, they could even become other alien species if they wanted. In recent years, the evil Time Lord the Master regenerated into a woman known as Missy (from The Mistress) and was played by actress Michelle Gomez and was one of the best iterations of that character so far.

For fans like me there are two things we'd like the Doctor to become: a woman and a red-head. So far, still no ginger, but I jumped up and down in excitement to hear that the 13th version of the Doctor would be a woman and would be played by Jodie. I say, it's about time. In theory, any Time Lord the age the Doctor is should have been a woman at least 50% of the time just based on random chance as it is. It's long overdue, and I think an exciting development for the character, the show and the stories to come. I cannot wait to see the female Doctor face off against the Daleks, the Cybermen, Weeping Angels and other enemies that threaten the universe. I cannot wait to see the new Doctor's costume and personality and what companions she will have.

Of course, because we live in a world of assholes and butt-hurt men who feel that women-folk oughta just be in the kitchen makin' sammiches and babies, they started crying like the sensitive little snowflakes that they are. If your masculinity is threatened by a 50+ year old sci-fi show, turn in your freakin' man card right now.

One of the most recent criticisms I have seen is that it is PC or "contrived." Contrived, by definition means: deliberately created rather than arising naturally or spontaneously. Except - as just mentioned above, is anything but that. It was established a long time ago, within the show, that Time Lords do not stick to one gender from one regeneration to the next. The Doctor just spent centuries during his current regeneration with Missy (formerly The Master) and given his regeneration now, that might be foremost on his mind. They have been setting up this possible transition, and fans have been clamoring for it, since David Tennant took over the roll years ago. Each new regeneration, there have been calls that a female Doctor is overdue. So, this is the opposite of "contrived." This is, if anything, late.

I, as a fan of this character and show going back to the 80s, cannot wait to see where it goes. I think this is truly exciting and will bring about new stories, now personality traits, new adventures, and new ways of looking at the character. It's going to be a blast.

So, if you are a butt-hurt male who cannot fathom a female Doctor - fine, don't watch. There are thousands of girls and women who will tune in now. Just look at the box office for Wonder Woman (one of the best superhero movies ever made) for how much the world is craving strong female characters. I'll sure be there watching. With my own plastic sonic screwdriver in hand!


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