Jodie Whittaker: What I think of the Thirteenth Doctor
I’m considerably late to the conversation, but never the less I will give my opinion on Jodie Whittaker in her role as the new Doctor.
To say there has been a lot of controversy surrounding the appointment of a female actor to play The Doctor would be a bit of an understatement. I personally believe it was a great idea. There has been much friction within the community over whether or not it is actually plausible within the series’ universe for The Doctor to become a woman. Having been a fan of the show for the vast majority of my life, I can say with confidence that there is no logical reason why the character cannot become ‘female.’ Time lord’s do not generally work by the same gender laws that humans do, seeing as they can regenerate into male or female bodies. For those who are still doubtful, the evidence is scattered throughout the show. Matt Smith’s Doctor talks about Corsair, a Time Lord who had the same tattoo inked upon “his, or her” body every time they regenerated. After David Tennant’s regeneration, upon feeling his mass of new hair, he cried “Hair? I’m a girl?” There was also a moment in series 9 where The Doctor shot a ‘male’ Gallifreyan general, who then regenerated into a female body. Perhaps the biggest piece of evidence for The Doctor morphing into a female body being completely canon is Missy, who is the female reincarnation of The Master.
So, having addressed that, how do I feel about Jodie Whittaker as The Doctor? Honestly? I adore her. Over the past couple of years, I gradually drifted away from the series, as it would appear many others did too (The 2016 Christmas special had a mere 6.1 million views, paling in comparison to the 15.2 million who tuned in for Tennant’s 2007 Christmas special). I would no longer watch episodes religiously when they were released or really take that much interest in the current series at all. Whiticker changed that. I was excited at the prospect of having a female Doctor, and she did not disappoint. Whitaker reignited my burning passion for the show. Admittedly, the writing isn’t the best, but has it really been great since Russel T Davies left? Despite the somewhat bland narrative and repetitive, single episode plots, Jodie Whittaker kept me coming back week after week. I’ve fallen in love with her as The Doctor, and ‘team tardis’ too. She’s refreshing, echoing the eccentricities of both Eleven and Ten but putting her own unique spin on the character. She’s lively, passionate, caring yet strong. The only regret is that she hasn’t really been given the chance to show The Doctor’s darker side; the anger that makes The Doctor such a formidable enemy to monster’s like the Dalek’s, who have destroyed her home and those she has loved.
It’s refreshing to see a female lead in such a mainstream series. Whether the producers did it to make a point or not, I think the choice to cast a woman as the Doctor was a fantastic one. As someone who grew up watching the series every week, it is great to think that little girls can now relate to and identify with such an amazing character on a more intimate level.
The writing may be shoddy, but Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor is in my opinion, absolutely fantastic.