Matt Smith: The Eleventh Doctor

It’s been a day since the announcement, so I thought I’d bore you all with my thoughts on Matt Smith as the eleventh Doctor.

When I first heard the news I though “who?”, like most people, but then I looked him up on the web and realised that I knew who he was.

Yes, he’s young. But I don’t see that as an insurmountable obstacle. His work in things like “Party Animals” and the Sally Lockhart dramas prove that he’s a capable young actor. And I trust Stephen Moffat to do the right thing. So, all in all, my response is “This could work. Let’s wait and see”.

One of the interesting things about this announcement is how far in advance it has been made. I know it made sense for David Tennant to announce that he was leaving the show along with Russell T Davies, but did we really need to know who was going to be the next Doctor a year before he appears on screen? And that appearance is likely to be no more than thirty seconds of blinking and gurning. It’s likely to be fifteen months before we really see how he works in the part.

I can remember all of the new Doctor announcements back to Tom Baker. And I’m sure we’ve never known who the new Doctor is so far in advance. Usually, I think it’s more like four or six months. David Tennant was announced in April 2005 and appeared on screen briefly in July. His first full episode was in December – eight months after the announcement. With Smith, we’ll have to wait almost twice as long. I realise that the production team wanted to put and end to all of the speculation and that they really didn’t want to keep the secret once filming starts later this year, but surely building up the anticipation for this long has a high chance of backfiring on them. It also has a chance of rather overshadowing David Tennant’s last appearances as the Doctor – which would be a shame.

Of course, this is pretty much all guesswork. Anything could happen in the next fifteen months. As I said above – the best approach is just to wait and see and to not engage in pointless speculation.

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