So, Zoë Ball announced to the world that Peter Capaldi is the new Doctor. I must admit to having been unsure about the concept of an entire TV programme just to reveal the next Time Lord and indeed on viewing it bore a strange and hastily assembled resemblance to Simba being presented to the beasts of the Serengeti.
The media circus notwithstanding, though, after getting over the stinging disappointment of being overlooked for the role AGAIN, I am joyous about this particular piece of casting. Now, Matt Smith (no, not that one) is an excellent Doctor. My second-favourite in fact, after my Lord Tennant. But I am all the way over the kissy-kissy relationships the Doctor has had with his assistants for the past few years. It just isn’t right. I’m hoping that the 12th Doctor, being played by an older actor, will have less kissing and cuddling and holding hands and more… well, Doctoring. A regular male companion that isn’t just hanging off the female companion would be nice, too.
I wish we could have seen more of Matt’s Doctor. As we saw him face his own end in “The Name Of The Doctor” we saw glimpses of what Matt could have brought to the role if the writers had fixated slightly less on the zany aspects of his character and slightly more on the tired old man the zaniness is obscuring. But time flees, as the saying goes. I am looking forward to Capaldi as an action hero. The characters I’ve seen him be are all quite cerebral, if somewhat verbal at times, but running-jumping-hitting-daleks will be an interesting departure from the acid-etched masterpiece that is Malcolm Tucker.
I want to see less ridiculous stories and overreaching plotlines though. I sick of the entirety of time and space being turned inside out at the end of every season only for the Doctor to make it right again. I’m sick of overarching storylines that are just too convoluted for their own good, I’m sick of everything being too fiddly and complicated and weird. I just want to see some bloody good stories. More of Blink, The Family Of Blood and The Doctor’s Wife. Excellent television with thrills and spills and time travel without all the flashy nonsense. More of this please.
Capaldi will excel as the Doctor. All that remains to be seen is how excellent he will be and of course, how he will make his entrance (and what his costume will be). But before that, we will meet John Hurt, the doctor that never was…