Former Doctor Who companion calls the casting of Jodie Whittaker in the title role “genius.” There’s been a lot of talk about what sort of Doctor Whittaker will be now that she’s taking over the lead role. And fans are looking forward to seeing what Whittaker brings to the role.
One person who’s definitely looking forward to the new Doctor is the aforementioned Jenna Coleman. In fact, she has one thing in particular that she’s looking forward to once Whittaker hits the screen as the latest incarnation of the Doctor.
Appearing via satellite at the Television Critics Association press tour in Beverly Hills, Coleman was promoting her new PBS Masterpiece drama Victoria where she will play Queen Victoria of England. Of course, Doctor Who alums often find themselves fielding questions and talking about the show even after they’ve moved on; in this case, the issue of Whittaker’s casting came up. Coleman made her opinion on the casting choice clear:
“Oh, I love it. I think it’s genius. I think she is brilliant and lovely, and I can’t wait to hear her speak. I want to hear the voice. I think it’s very exciting times.”
It’s interesting that Coleman mentioned wanting to hear Whittaker’s voice as the Doctor, since one of the biggest things that many fans have looked forward to is seeing what her costume would be like. It’s been confirmed that the outfit she wore in the casting reveal video isn’t her final costume as the Doctor, and the changes in style from one Doctor to the next is one of the big defining characteristics of each incarnation’s personality. The Doctor’s voice and speech patterns play a large part in differentiating one incarnation of the character from the others, though, so it makes sense that Coleman might be looking forward to seeing how a woman handles the task of bringing the character to life in a new body.
Of course, Coleman would know better than many how much of a difference the Doctor’s voice can make. She joined the show as Clara while Matt Smith was still the Doctor, and continued on once Peter Capaldi took over the role. The two incarnations had strikingly different looks and mannerisms, but their voices were some of the most obvious clues to their personalities. Smith’s voice in the role was generally goofy and lighthearted, while Capaldi used much more serious tones. Smith definitely had his dark moments, however, just as Capaldi had his light.
Some fans likely don’t care what she sounds like, or looks like either; they aren’t a fan of a female Doctor, regardless of the reason for the casting choice. Departing showrunner Steven Moffat claims that this is a minority of fans, however, saying that the choice had an “80% approval on social media” at Comic-Con. Regardless of the accuracy of Moffat’s figures, it will be interesting to see how the fandom at large accepts Whittaker once she takes over the role completely next season.
Doctor Who returns in December for the Christmas special ‘Twice Upon a Time’.
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