6 Top Picks For The New Doctor

With Matt Smith’s announcement that he’s leaving Doctor Who after this year’s Christmas episode still fresh in Whovians’ minds, The Twelfth Doctor has reportedly already been cast. But that hasn’t stopped every Who fan – this one included –from casting his or her vote as to who should pilot the TARDIS next. Here are my top six picks for the next Doctor (and the reasons why we’ll probably see someone entirely different).

Rupert GrintRupert Grint

He’d be awesome as The Doctor because: Rupert Grint is my own personal top pick for the new face of The Doctor. We already know that The Doctor’s been hankering for a ginger regeneration, and throughout the Harry Potter films, Grint proved that he could balance heart and guts perfectly. And if those aren’t the two main components of The Doctor, what are? He’s got a great sense of comedic timing, too; Doctor Who might not be a comedy, but it has its fair share of hilarious one-liners, which I say Grint could easily pull off. Plus, the fact that Grint’s pilot, Super Clyde, didn’t get picked up means that he could be available for this.

It’ll never happen because: Though the incarnations of The Doctor have been getting younger and younger in the new Who series, Grint is only 24 years old, three years younger than Matt Smith was when he donned his first fez and bowtie. Grint might be a bit too fresh-faced.

Russell ToveyRussell Tovey

He’d be awesome as The Doctor because: Best known for his turn as George Sands on Being Human, Tovey is the only actor on this list who has already stepped into the Whoverse. He had parts in two episodes, “The End of Time: Part One” and “Voyage of the Damned,” during David Tennant’s time as The Doctor. As George Sands, he played a werewolf who always felt alone because he thought that no one could relate to him. Sound like a certain Gallifreyan? Now, I know The Doctor doesn’t possess any of the self-loathing or resentment that George does, but there’s still a certain constant lonely sadness to his existence. Tovey could evoke that masterfully.

It’ll never happen because: If the Powers That Be are looking for someone completely new to Doctor Who, Tovey doesn’t fill that part. Plus, in my own personal opinion, I don’t think Tovey has the leading man charisma and charm necessary to The Doctor.

James CallisJames Callis

He’d be awesome as The Doctor because: The reboot of Battlestar Galactica was fantastic for many different reasons, and Callis’ dynamic performance as Gaius Baltar was one of the most prominent. Gaius adapted to whatever situation into which he was thrown. He was, at varying parts of the series, a scientist, a prisoner, a president, a cult leader. He was a survivor till the end. Callis took a character that could have been the guy everyone hated, and he somehow made him sympathetic. The Doctor is a two-hearted alien who sometimes doesn’t understand humanity and its relationships…an actor who makes you feel for him is essential. Callis could do that easily.

It’ll never happen because: Gaius Baltar was never really a “good” guy through and through. Basically, Callis made a name for himself by playing a creep whose moral code was, at best, grey. And that’s a far, far cry from The Doctor’s perpetually north-pointing compass.

Chiwetel EjioforChiwetel Ejiofor

He’d be awesome as The Doctor because: For nearly fifty years, The Doctor has always been an English white guy. Now I’d never, ever be blasphemous and suggest an American Doctor…but this is, after all, the character who said, “There’s something that doesn’t make sense. Let’s go and poke it with a stick.” Curiosity is part of his innate nature…would it really make sense for him to stick with the same basic form throughout eleven regenerations? Ejiofor would mix up the formula, and he’s no stranger to the high concept sci-fi world, as shown by his turn as The Operative in Serenity. (And isn’t it about time that a link was formed between the two nerdy nirvana of the Whoverse and the Whedonverse?)

It’ll never happen because: As one of the most talented actors working today, Ejiofor’s got a lot on his plate, and a telvision show would seriously tie up his schedule.

Emma WatsonEmma Watson

She’d be awesome as The Doctor because: The idea of a Time Lady instead of a Time Lord might seem sacrilegious to the purist Whovians. I say it’s high time that a woman was the one captaining the TARDIS, rather than just relegated to a Companion’s role. When Neil Gaiman added a throwaway line in his superb episode “The Doctor’s Wife” about The Corsair, a Gallifreyan who was known to switch genders between regenerations, it seemed inevitable it would fan the flames of fan who’ve been clamoring for a female Doctor for years. I say that Watson, arguably one of the finest actresses of her generation, would take to having two hearts just as well as she took to wearing Hogwarts robes. (And if this were to happen, can you imagine how amazing it would be to have Rupert Grint as her Companion?! Stephen Moffat, please make this happen.)

It’ll never happen because: Even with Hermione Granger aside, Watson is a bona fide movie star with award-worthy turns in The Perks of Being a Wallflower and the buzzworthy The Bling Ring. Stepping onto the silver screen could be seen as a step backwards in her career. And just like Rupert Grint, many may consider her too young to pilot the TARDIS.

Helen Mirren

Helen Mirren

She’d be awesome as The Doctor because: It’s Helen Mirren! Why wouldn’t she make an awesome Doctor? She’s witty, poised, and eloquent with just enough of the self-aware snark that makes The Doctor such a capable bantering partner. With her performance in RED, she proved that she can keep up just fine with the awful lot of running that being The Doctor entails. Then there’s the fact that she’s gone on record saying that she’d love to be the first female Doctor regeneration. Just give the woman a sonic screwdriver and the keys to the TARDIS, already.

It’ll never happen because: It’s that whole “The Doctor can’t have an XX chromosome” argument again.

Then there’s another option altogether:

Forgo all of the lists and cast a complete unknown. Part of me thinks that this is the best option, because it ensures a completely fresh face to The Doctor, without any previous works to color viewers’ impressions. Get a rookie to pilot the TARDIS; then we’d really be in for a ride.


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Author: Alexandra Brueckner View all posts by
Geek extraordinaire, W&J alum, Muser, Whedonite, Whovian, ice cream connoisseur, bibliophile, ink enthusiast, amateur yogini, professional globetrotter. Living in Aomori, Japan. Blogs at theglobetrottinggeek.wordpress.com and tweets from @halloitsalex.

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