With Doctor Who fans everywhere waiting eagerly for the 12th Time Lord, Peter Capaldi’s, full debut, Unreality TV thought we would explore some of the main differences we expect to see between him, and his predecessor Matt Smith.
Smith announced his decision to leave the hugely popular BBC family sci-fi series back in June last year, and thus began the traditional gossip merry-go-round regarding who would replace him.
This new regeneration caused more of a stir than most, as fans everywhere called for this next chapter in the 50 year old series to make a big change and asked that bosses cast either a female or black actor in the role.
Whilst the planet threw names ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous into the ring, show runner Steven Moffat, as he later revealed, sat back and chuckled as he only ever had one man in mind for the role.
When it was announced in September that Scottish The Thick Of It star, Peter Capaldi, was the only person who was invited to audition for the part of the 12th Doctor Who, the world clapped and accepted this decision like we had all made it together.
There is your first main difference – Expectation!
Matt Smith is arguably one of the best loved Time Lord’s in the history of the show. But cast your mind back to when his predecessor, David Tennant, announced his decision to leave, and the same speculation over who would take over began. Matt Smith was by far no one’s first choice, and many, if not most people wrote him off before he filmed his first scene.
This probably felt more than a little daunting for the actor, but at least he knew he couldn’t be any worse than predicted.
In direct contrast, poor Capaldi has the world’s eyes on him, with expectations raised higher than the roof of St Pauls, which means that the pressure is on in a totally different way.
And it isn’t like he can just slip in and hope no one notices, as one of the other big differences is the age of both actors!
At only 26 years of age, Matt Smith was the youngest ever actor to be cast in the infamous role, one of the main reasons people expected it not to work.
Capaldi is bringing the Doctor back to middle-ages, a move that is satisfactory to most fans, but with other changes of character already announced by the show’s producers it has caused the question of age to be thrown into the ring somewhat.
When it was revealed earlier this year that Capaldi’s Doctor would be madder than Smith’s, and would not be linked romantically to his companion, Jenna Coleman as Smith was, fans started lambasting the decision as ageist – But is it?
Over the years there have been many Doctors, and many companions, but not all of them had romantic links to each other, so surely that would make Smith’s relationship with Clara more ageist, throwing together two young and attractive people purely for audience approval.
As for the characteristics of Capaldi, being madder and sterner than Smith, surely the point of every new Doctor to bring something new to the party, to expose another of the many sides to the infamous Time Lord!
Ben Wheatley confirmed this week that Capaldi’s era as the titular Time Lord will hark back to the ‘Classic Who’ period, bringing the show very much back to it’s roots.
In conclusion Peter Capaldi should be very different to Matt Smith, otherwise it’s less of a regeneration, and more of a recasting!
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