Moffat: Handsome Actors don’t suit the Doctor
Steven Moffat has said that none of the actors to take on the role of the Doctor are “conventionally attractive” and that is part of the appeal.
In a Radio Times interview explaining Peter Capaldi’s casting, Moffat said: “When you choose a Doctor, you want somebody who is utterly compelling, attractive in a very odd way. None of the Doctors are conventionally attractive, but they’re all arresting. Handsome men don’t quite suit. Matt Smith’s a young, good-looking bloke from one angle but is actually the strangest looking man from another. You need that oddity; you need somebody who is carved out of solid star, really.”
Moffat adds that Capaldi was chosen because “there is something about [his] demeanour, his eyes, his attitude – he’s tremendously bright and that comes out on screen.”
Comparing Smith and Capaldi, he says: “I always thought Matt, while a very young man, had something of the demeanour of a much older man, whereas Peter is a man in his 50s but is terribly boyish and young at times.
“I like the Doctors to have mixed messages about what age they are – you can’t really pin them down. The Doctors are all the same Doctor really, at the end of the day, but you can slide the faders up and down. And to emphasise the senior consultant over the medical student for once reminds people that he’s actually a terrifying old beast. Typically, Matt’s method would do that, too: occasionally just turn cold and you’d think, ‘You’re not really a puppy are you?’ Just like Peter Capaldi’s Doctor will sometimes remind me he’s a big kid at heart.“
In addition, Moffat said the time for flirting is over. This Doctor “goes back to being the trickier version of the Doctor, the fiercer alien wanderer”.
“He’s not a human being, however much he larks around pretending he is. He is different and it’s time to stop play-acting. He’s not apologising, he’s not flirting with you – that’s over.”