It Shouldn’t Matter Who the Next Doctor Is

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Guest contributor James Bishop gives his thoughts.


I am going to start with the following just to get it out there: I see the Doctor as a white male.

That is not me trying to be sexist or racist but the image that comes into my head when thinking of the Doctor is that of a white male. Why? Because all eleven Doctor’s so far have been white males.

But then I start to think about it and say to myself: Why does the Doctor have to be a white male? And the answer is that the Doctor can be anything that he – or she – wants to be.

The Doctor isn’t human. He’s a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey. He’s an alien. When I think of aliens I think of Klingons, Wookies, Sontarans. I think of prosthetic makeup that gives us something from another world. the Doctor is from another world and shouldn’t be confined in his appearance based on what has come before.

Let’s look at what the regeneration process means. When a Time Lord regenerates they go through a complete transformation. Their physical appearance alters as does their personality. This is because every cell in their body undergoes this change. So who is to say that the Doctor’s next incarnation has to be white or male? Anything is a possibility.

There is both a precedent for a change in gender and change in skin colour. In his opening moments during The End of Time, the Eleventh Doctor thought for a moment his gender had changed (“I’m a girl!”) and a reference has been made to the Corsair changing from a Time Lord into a Time Lady. In Let’s Kill Hitler we witnessed Mels change her skin colour as she regenerated into River.

For me, this means anything can happen when it comes to regeneration and the possibility of the first black Doctor or the first female Doctor is very real. I think Lara Pulver would be an excellent candidate for a female Doctor and David Harewood would be a fine choice to be the first black Doctor.

Ultimately the role of the Twelfth Doctor needs to go to the right candidate regardless of skin colour or gender and we as fans need to toss our preconceptions aside and be behind that choice whether they are black, white, man or woman. Sure, we’ll all have doubts over the choice. How many people were unsure of Matt Smith when he was cast? But just like Matt the person who lands the role as the next incarnation of the Doctor will prove they are more than up to the task.

Welcome to the Tardis, Twelfth Doctor. You’re in for one hell of a ride.