Sunday, January 4, 2009
I MUST admit I was rooting for Paterson Joseph to be the next Doctor - mainly because he's a fine and charismatic actor but also because it would have really pissed off loads of twits on Outpost Gallifrey who seemed disgusted at the very notion of a black man playing their beloved Time Lord.
I was therefore a little knocked sideways when it was announced relative unknown Matt Smith (above) had got the nod instead and my first reaction was that he was really just David Tennant-lite. I thought the BBC had played it far too safe in casting another young, "attractive", stick-thin bloke.
But then I had another look at the Doctor Who Confidential episode in which Matt's casting was made official and reckon he's going to be a terrific Doctor. He has an off-kilter quality about him that is strangely charismatic but also quite unsettling. It's there in his looks (Dougie Howser MD channelling Lord Byron), it's there in his manner, it's there in that ridiculous ruddy haircut of his. Smith is a bit other-wordly and what could be better for the actor playing a 900-year-old alien super-being than that?
Unsurprisingly, there's already a backlash against 26-year-old Smith over at OG saying he's too young and inexperienced for the role and that, really, his casting is just a cynical attempt at appealing to teenage fangirls. It's patent nonsense, of course. If Who's new showrunner Steven Moffat's only goal had been to cast someone young and sexy he'd have gone for a kid off Hollyoaks or Skins, he certainly wouldn't have picked an actor with Smith's somewhat unconventional looks (unkind posters on certain forums are already calling him "Tefal Head").
I think it's a really exciting, bold bit of casting and I can't wait to see him fire up the TARDIS and get cracking. Alonsy!