Jodie Whittaker

Humanising a Time Lord

There has been lots written about this, so I thought why not dust off the ol blog and chime in. Firstly a few things to point out. This is not a anti BBC rant, I quite like the BBC and you only have to look at broadcasters around the world to realise that the BBC is unique and we need to value that. I am almost part of the “Wholess” generation. The original show ended when I was 9 so I can barely recall. I have however watched classic who since, and every episode of the reboot. I am not really a sci-fi guy. Quantum Leap, Red Dwarf and The Orville aside, so live long and use the force as Captain Skywalker Picard said.. or something. I love Stephen Moffat, pretty much everything the guy has written has been good stuff from Press Gang through to Coupling and latterly Dracula.

So Doctor Who. It’s just a TV show right, and people are dying, why am I pissed off. Well, the Doctor was event television for me. The thing to look forward to on Xmas day or whenever it aired, the thing you spoke to friends about. A speech you remembered, a monster who you can recall, a touching and yes tear jerking moment, an escape from everyday life to spend 45 minutes with a being who cared about your planet and its inhabitants probably more than you did. A being who reminded us that despite all our faults, human beings are kind, generous, caring, determined and pretty damned amazing.

We didn’t know where this being came from, we didn’t much care. To me it was a genderless, raceless being. Nothing was ever mentioned about sex or sexual preference. Nothing was ever mentioned about race, those are human issues. The doctor is not human, and having seen species from across time and space, those issues were trivial and boring. Because lets face it, racism and sexism are boring. Any ism. Judge people on their actions, this is what the Doctor did and actively encouraged us all to do the same.

The Doctor was intellectually the smartest being in any room, the companions however strong enough to keep the time lord in check when they got carried away. The doctor knew he could and should continue to learn from the guests in the TARDIS. Arrogant, at times, but always held accountable and always valued life, despite being surrounded by death and peril.

Not so now.

The Doctor now says “I don’t know” more than ever. They are uncaring about their “fam” short for family by the way. The Doctor will remind us how terrible we all are and how pointless it all is, be overtly sexist “I’ve had an upgrade!” Show utter cowardice, judge people on their appearance alone. The Doctor has become far more human than ever, less wise, more insular less full of wonder of the universe, more concerned with what is between someone’s legs than the general situation. Why?

Jodie Whittaker, fine actress, when given something within her range. Openly admits not knowing anything about the show, despite openly declaring it has been told from “one viewpoint” how do you know Jodie? It was an interesting idea to make the doctor female. This could have been explored in a great way, an otherworldly way. Instead this was pushed aside to highlight the “Human” issues.

Chris Chibnall. A humourless writer, we all have points to make, we all wish to right wrongs. But you are writing to entertain. Do that and you can make all the points you want, social commentary abound. Quantum Leap was a show with a huge moral backdrop, covered all the isms, whilst keeping it entertaining. Do you not have the talent? Chibs, you changed everything and yes whilst shows need to evolve and you needed to address the regeneration issue, did you have to do it whilst ruining 50+ years of wonder, 50+ years of exploration and fun.

I no longer care about the Doctor and her fam. But then being white, male and already accepting of people unless they are you know, an arse. The show isn’t aimed at me.

Good luck on your crusade against a problem that Doctor Who used to ride majestically above, Chibs, Jodie. Looking at the viewing figures you are probably gonna need it.

Doctor Who Experience“Doctor Who Experience” by FrancoisLeger is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0