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Capaldi’s Doctor More Alien, Less “human-friendly”

capaldi-empire-2014-thumbPeter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman are interviewed in the upcoming issue of Empire and provide some thoughts on the new Doctor.

Capaldi said: “It can become a kind of franchise where it’s not a real character at all, but just an amalgam of elements that people think are Doctor Who: a scarf, a bow tie… I wanted to be the actual Doctor Who.”

Expanding on his Doctor: “He’s more alien than he’s been for a while. He doesn’t quite understand human beings or really care very much about their approval.”

Jenna Coleman adds: “With Matt’s Doctor [Clara] felt quite safe, really. She knew she’d be caught if she was in danger, but this guy is a lot less human-friendly and a lot less patient. He’s more removed and accessible. You can’t quite access him in the same way.”

empire-capaldi-coleman-2014

Empire is out on Thursday.

Step back in time...

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253 comments
GrantBattersby
GrantBattersby

I like that Capaldi is annoying people with what he's saying, an actor who says what he thinks without being coached, nothing wrong with that. This is the ONLY time I've ever been excited for the series to come back since 2004 when it was first announced. People on here seem to have a real problem with it becoming "Darker". If your a fan, look at the 50 years, the point is that it changes. If you don't like change this is like the worst series you could watch. 


LucasW
LucasW

I can see what he means about a string of elements, for example Matt Smith becoming a string of comical clothing, comical catchphrases and comical culinary choices (sorry, I ran out of alliteration but felt compelled to continue. Is comical cuisine better?) but I do think that every Doctor needs to have a "thing". Every single person has something they absolutely adore, so I don't think suddenly discovering an addiction to quavers or some such would make him any less an actual Doctor.

And actually, what does he mean by the "actual Doctor Who"? I'm a little confused... Plus, as we all know, the character is not called Doctor Who any more than he is called the Twelfth Doctor. (Moffat!)

NB: Despite the fact that his mannerisms and tropes got wheeled out practically every episode, I do still love the eleventh Doctor, just in case you thought I was hating.

LucasW
LucasW

I don't think Doctor Who should be taken too seriously... We don't want another all-pervadingly grim po-faced drama on the telly do we? I always imagined that what set Doctor Who apart from most other TV dramas is it's perfect blend of heart, humour and horror.

9101112
9101112

The thing is the Doctor's costume is just as much a part of the Doctor ad the actor portraying him, it's part of his personalityof how he sees himself after his regeneration, so yes a part of it can become gimmicky for us the Fans but that is how we The Fans relate and have a part of the Doctor. ... so for Peter I'm guessing his Dock Martins are going to be what we see as iconic for him unless like Matt he changes his costume every season, but I think he will keep the shoes. I'm looking forward to Peter's debut and I hippie is in a theater near me so I can go see it at the cinema.

sgerto
sgerto

I'm looking at the spread and they symbolism.  Clara gives the impression that she is clinging for her life by the chain and all the Doctor does is sit idly by facing away from her.  As if to give the impression that he wants the humans to figure it out for themselves.

Rani Nose
Rani Nose

A lot of this "more gruff, more alien" Doctor talk is basic marketing to set audience expectations.  If they were to pitch Capaldi's Doctor as being a continuation of Smith's and he turns out much different the show effectively pushes the audience, especially the casual viewer (it is no coincidence that these two recent articles are in general interest magazines), away.  However if they promote Capaldi as being a lot harsher and alien and he does not turning out to be as harsh an alien as the audience expects there is a collective "he's not so bad" sigh of relief and the new Doctor is much more acceptable.

Mercy Reborn2
Mercy Reborn2

I dont think he meant any harm or to be arrogant or put down other doctors, maybe its because he i a real fan not just an actor paid to do a job and he is looking really good

GRANDMARSHALL
GRANDMARSHALL

Peter capaldi Just says all the right things !

MikeFalino
MikeFalino

This is going to be so great! Can't wait for all the flimsies to loose their minds over this Doctor!

SueKlaus
SueKlaus

The only thing I am missing in the teasers is any humor. The only teaser with the barest hint of Capaldi ' s wonderful humor and smile is the one by John Smith.

Looking forward to seeing this soon....

Polyphase
Polyphase

  "I wanted to be the actual Doctor Who.”

Oh yes, I'm developing a real man crush here, I haven't looked forward to series this much before

Love that photo, It's now my desktop which is another first :)

Andrew_Swallow
Andrew_Swallow

Clara seems to have given up wearing red dresses.

SephoraNeedSeries8
SephoraNeedSeries8

 “It can become a kind of franchise where it’s not a real character at all, but just an amalgam of elements that people think are Doctor Who: a scarf, a bow tie… I wanted to be the actual Doctor Who.” 


Touchy subject but I think that is my main problem with The Movie (1996). Disclaimer : I like Paul McGann very much. Actually if it wasn't for him I would remove The Movie from my personal canon. But I think the producers made a lot of mistakes with The Doctor's characterization. I hate that scene with the seventh Doctor drinking tea and reading The Time Machine with all my soul. He's not a stereotypical English bloke, he's an alien !  Lots of other examples : the Doctor stealing clothe in a hospital, considering wearing the scarf, being fond of jelly babies...


We've already had 12 different incarnations of the Doctor so I think it's very important to keep on doing new things instead of relying on the past. Another good point for M. Capaldi! 






Mercy Reborn2
Mercy Reborn2

I did like the fourth doctors scarf and the jelly babies but I guess having that kind of gimmick all the time  would get boring

Mercy Reborn2
Mercy Reborn2

I think if they want us to watch the new series they have to make an effort, and look at these really nice photos that have come out lately,  and Peters interviews its got people talking. I dont think Peter is tryng to save the show, but sometimes when people are really passionate about a show they get carried away sometimes

Big_Bird96
Big_Bird96

I'm sensing a mix of Eccleston and Hartnell which is good

AztecsDaleksAndCavemen
AztecsDaleksAndCavemen

“It can become a kind of franchise where it’s not a real character at all, but just an amalgam of elements that people think are Doctor Who: a scarf, a bow tie… I wanted to be the actual Doctor Who.”

I like the scarf, but I do think that Tom Baker didn't need it to show us who the character was. It did help in forming the character of the programme though as many people see it as one of the most iconic elements in the history of Doctor Who.

CraigInOregon
CraigInOregon

I'm expecting good things. Rooting for you, Mr. Capaldi.

TheNightmareChild sees into your soul!
TheNightmareChild sees into your soul!

It does raise the question of how the Doctor becomes more and less human.  I mean, the Doctor has spent so much of his life around humans that he would naturally pick up on our sensibilities and whatnot.  But how can the Doctor, say, be really human in Five and Ten, and then be less human, less understanding of us and our ways, as Six and Eleven?  I'm sure the answer is stupidly simple and related to regeneration rewriting parts of his brain or whatever, but still, interesting point of discussion I find.


edoe101
edoe101

He sounds like he's gonna be more of a classic series Doctor. I like that :D

Mercy Reborn2
Mercy Reborn2

i dont mind a more serious doctor and i think he will be amazing

CyberSmith
CyberSmith

Getting a bit freked out now because it sounds very similar to The Sixth Doctor.........

LucasW
LucasW

Like fezzes, bow ties, jammie dodgers, and fish fingers and custard you mean? :)

Liana21
Liana21

The scarf, the bow tie or the rainbow coat aren't Doctor Who, but are part of its mythology, as the Doc Martens maybe become one day. I think he wanted to mean that he wants create his own image as the Doctor, like Tom, Matt or Colin have their own respective. Not just be the one who substituted the one with the bow tie.

Planet of the Deaf
Planet of the Deaf

@AztecsDaleksAndCavemen But then the scarf became iconic because Tom Baker's Doctor was so good (and around for so long). Nobody outside of hardcore Who fans thinks of celery the same way! 

And of course David Tennant's Doctor became probably the most popular since Tom, without any quirky gimmick, his outfit, hair and sideburns looked like the sort of clothes a cool stylish man would wear


KaylaMcLain
KaylaMcLain

@TheNightmareChild sees into your soul! The answer isn't exactly simple but it goes back to what 10 said when he first regenerated. "I don't know what kind of man I am." While they are regenerations of the same Time Lord, they are all different and all have their own personalities and belief system. Things like that. At least that's how I see it. 

Ottoman14
Ottoman14

One must factor in Trenzalore. After 900 years of defending a human colony, perhaps 12 resents us as a species for not being strong enough or capable enough to defend ourselves. Perhaps he feels we robbed him off his previous incarnation? It doesn't mean he dislikes humans but it would explain why he feels very distant to us in the way 3, 4, 6, 9 etc did.

The personalities of each Doctor can somewhat we explained by the nature of their previous incarnation's death. The human loving 5th Doctor died because of his human companion, which may explain 6's mistrust of us. 10 died saving a human which may explain why 11 understood us less.

VictorWong1
VictorWong1

Other thing to remember: society evolves very quickly, both in terms of technology and accepted social norms (definitions of family, acceptable employment, population, demographics, etc.) Since the Doctor rarely stays on Earth for longer than a few weeks at a time (not counting the Pertwee Exile), he can't really be expected to catch up to contemporary society.

LaraHarris
LaraHarris

As 10 said, everything he is dies and "A new man walks away". He may well keep the memories but his ways of responding to them would be different. What makes some people sad, doesn't affect others. The memories are just that, there is nothing to indicate the emotions associate with them transfer too.

mwanderson
mwanderson

@TheNightmareChild sees into your soul! In a way Capaldi sounds as if he's channeling Hartnell's Doctor. He never had much time for humans although as he progressed he grew fonder of his companions. As you say, I think it's a case of his brain rewriting itself and pushing certain aspects of his past incarnations to the forefront, and suppressing those from recent ones, hence why the seventh Doctor said regeneration was a lottery and one never knew what one would end up with. The Doctor is always the Doctor when all is said and done, it's just he's literally the sum of all his parts to varying degrees. Hope that helps in some way...

ChrisPine1
ChrisPine1

@TheNightmareChild sees into your soul! As 9 explained, with each regeneration, he is a totally new person, he just remembers being all the others that he was. Every incarnation has had different feelings toward humans, admittedly they do seem to care for them an extraordinary amount, but everything changes. Remember that after  Pond died 11 went kinda crazy for a thousand years or so...

teddybowties
teddybowties

@CyberSmith Six had the stones to do what must be done, and made no Sawbones about it. bada TSSS.



Liana21
Liana21

I like Colin Baker, he can be a pain in the ass but it's clear in his run that he put all his skills in his Doctor, even when few of the stories aren't over average.

gwylock1
gwylock1

@CyberSmith And why would that be a bad thing? Colin baker is my favourite Doctor!

NumberNine
NumberNine

An iconic doctor (Tom/David), followed by another great doctor who gives his former a run for his money (Matt/Peter D), followed by an actor who has played a part in the show before, and promises change, including no more fussing about and a darker tone (Colin/Peter C). Yep, history seems to be repeating itself. But I will reserve judgement. I'm sure it's just coincidence.

Rani Nose
Rani Nose

@teddybowties @Rani Nose Note how in the SciFi magazine article DWTV just posted Capaldi reassures sci-fi fans, not the general audience, that the character is still "The Doctor".  Unlike casual viewers, fans understand The Doctor's personality changes, sometimes quite a bit, with regeneration.  Our expectations don't have to be set for the personality change, but for whether or not Capaldi captures the "Doctorness" of the character.  

Planet of the Deaf
Planet of the Deaf

@Ottoman14 He wasn't just there to defend a human colony, he was there to stop the Timelords  coming through and starting the Time War again!

Amy says Peter Davison is the Thirteenth Doctor!
Amy says Peter Davison is the Thirteenth Doctor!

"perhaps 12 resents us as a species for not being strong enough or capable enough to defend ourselves" -That would be rather strange, considering that humans also helped him hold the line at Trenzalore, which is support that he certainly would have lost without... and that one human in particular is the only reason why Twelve exists in the first place...





Ottoman14
Ottoman14

The key thing missing from that analysis is the influence of the BBC. The establishment did for Colin Baker, not the script writers or himself

teddybowties
teddybowties

@Planet of the Deaf @Ottoman14 no, it was more than that- it was him defendign the universe from the time Lrods returning and all those enemies and what their return right then would mean, him realizing that staying can mean necessary experiences and good things, him defending the Time Lords from being destroyed by all of their amassed enemies, and him going over the cliff of change. It's a heady psychological leap for ANYBODY, let alone a being as complex as the Doctor. ;)

LucasW
LucasW

How do you give a good portrayal of throttling your companion or generally being a self-obsessed grandiloquent egotist? I've you've ever heard his Big Finish work, you'll see (well, hear) how fantastic a Doctor he is with good material.