Saturday, January 03, 2009

Mr. Smith goes to Who-fandom

Right. So. The New Doctor, meaning the guy who's going to be The Doctor after David Tennant leaves for good, has now officially been announced; all of a sudden, due to some unexpected accomodating attitude from zhe Beeb, which made me all happy-go-lucky and gloomy at once. It came so out-of-the-blue I didn't have time to prepare myself properly, to say the least, and I was taken even more aback by the fact that I had absolutely no friggin' idea who the guy is. Good news is, neither did anyone else. For it wasn't anyone we'd heard mentioned, and it sure wasn't one of the safe bets; Patterson Joseph, Chiwetel Eijofor, Bill Nighy, David Morrissey, oh no. It was a downright unfamiliar face, and hence a major shock in itself. Having tried to digest it a bit, and come to terms with the harsh truth and inevitable change of my fav TV programme, though, I'll hereby try to submit some thoughts and reflections on the recent revelation. Let's do the photo check first, so - here he is:

First and foremost, his name is Matt Smith, he's 26 (!) and he's from Northampton. Needless to say, he's British. And he's rather cute, come to think of it. Having checked out his imdb-profile (first thing), I might also add that he's got quite a bit of experience and that I've actually seen him in a film or two already, which is a welcome change from the previous two renewal-occasions where the actors' abilities and looks and general existence came very much as a surprise to me. I didn't know either of them (Eccleston or Tennant) from before, nor their talents or handsome awesomeness, and now they're among my very limited and exclusive number of überfavourite actors. How it's going to be with new man Matt, I have absolutely no idea, but my initial response was astoundingly positive and remarkably...calm. Even content. Which mightn't be the best sign ever, since I'm used to more active adjustment, and considering how I went from extreme hatred to extreme love for Tennant - how my entire impression of him transformed itself (throught and throughout "The Christmas Invasion") from really really bad; I mean, poor thing, I loathed him vehemently; to, thereafter, exceptional commitment and adoration. Chris also needed an episode or two to really grow on me. However, with the latter, I felt an instant appeal and admiration and, eeeh, attraction (...) that made me bond with him and the show in the first place, and which I still don't feel for the other Doctors, not even Mr. Ten, so he remains kind of special. My Doctor, as mentioned before; that's what he'll always be to me. Matt doesn't immediately strike me as the sort of man I'll come to love with all my might, like so, although - somehow - he's got more of an instant appeal than Tennant did. Or less of the contrary. I can't elaborate, cos I can't explain, and maybe I shouldn't, because I sincerely adore Tennant now, but this Matt person seems more...innocent and harmless and bare, I guess; which isn't necessarily a good thing, in any case. To me, he comes across as the ultimate incarnation of fresh, young, British; up and coming starlet, stage youngster; talented, unspoilt, not entirely inexperienced, but not having-lived-life-and-feeling-spent either. Slightly emo. Extremely sweet. And very little else. As you can tell, I'm already pretty predisposed and I've got lots of prejudice to kill, which (again) may be due only to my - actually - having watched him in "Secret Diary of a Call Girl" and the two Sally Lockhart-series, all of which starred Billie Piper; no wonder how they came to hire him, then, or at least a decent indication - seeing that he's part of the proximity circles and connected to the show thereby. Or however else I should put it. He's part of the Who-"folks"! And it will be seriously odd to imagine him, lest to say watch him, snog and sleep and saunter about with Billie, aka Belle, with her distinctive looks and thus very much reminiscent of her previous characters, on "Secret Diary" - and then to watch him mourn the loss of Billie, aka Rose, i.e. that same girl, on "Doctor Who"; in a completely different context. Haha. Fandoms collide, big time. Would've been much better to have lived in blissful ignorance and believed I hadn't seen him anywhere at all, and anticipated his Who-reign with an unblemished mind. But, knowing what I know, now, I still look forward to seeing him in this very different, very exciting new world of Stephen Moffat's Who, which will be an entirely different affair - I strongly suspect - from the RTD/Tennant version. Which also means it'll be great to have another man in the main role, to give the series a whole new face and attitude. Only problems are, he is - obviously - a little (too) young to play a 903 old alien; he's already been dubbed "Benjamin Button" by the LJ community, and we're all a bit confused (= anxious) about the fact that the Doctors keep getting younger by the actor. Second, he looks very young too, and immature; his age wouldn't be an issue if he was a more coarse and dark-looking man, but this is merely a boy as it were. Thirdly, he's got the most boring name ever, which is in no way his fault, but then again - it doesn't exactly help. He's a bloke from Northampton called Smith. Playing a man from Gallifrey who tends to call himself Smith in order to blend in and be invisible. Oh well. On the bright side, that's an excellent co-incidence to co-incide with the usual name-connections, like Chris's surname holding nine letters, (super-fanboy) TENnant being TEN, etc. On the dark side, Smith is probably the most common, least striking, least memorable surname in the history of acting. Sorry, Matt, but they're gonna analyze and disassemble and disrupt your career and persona soon enough; one might as well start with the no-fear-trivia. I don't believe for a second they'll leave the poor man in peace, and he shall have to put up with a lot of nonsense in the next couple of months and for years to come. Just hope he's strong enough to handle it and handle it well. And I want to believe in the choice that's been made, I want to believe this can work, that this is nowhere near the end of the DW brilliance but merely the beginning of a new era. Or an alteration of the old one. My conclusion is, hence, that this is rather nice altogether. And maybe, just maybe, it'll be nice too to have a Doctor who's a little less dear to me (!?), to whom I am a little less attached, and, more importantly, about whom I don't worry so much all the goddamn time - which I have, so far, when it came to Chris and David, because their interpretations of the character made them almost too lovable, too indispensable, too...unique. Unbearable, even. The Doctor's companions may have a tendency of breaking his heart(s), but he sure knows how to break mine as well. So, Matt Smith might just happen to come to the rescue and provide an easy-going, charming and slightly less complicated approach, and more distance to the role; for himself and for his fan(girl)s. In any case, I'm sure we have some fabulous new adventures in store, and wish him the best of luck; firstly, with the Tabloids and the enormous media coverage, therenext with the massive feedback from fans and all those opinions he'll have to deal with - my own included. I'm sure many other and more high profile actors would and have hesitated to commit themselves to such a 24/7 work routine - and I honour his bravery, his guts, to take on this immense task and become our new eleven. Congrats on this biggest career boost ever, which also is a leap of faith, and I hope he'll do great. Yes, last but not least, I hope he'll be a wonderful Doctor and - more than anything - that he'll enjoy his new job. Not as much as his predecessor, perhaps, and not as infamously popular as Tennant - I mean, Ten's legendary - but good and clever nonetheless. Fingers crossed, thumbs up, and very very nervous now.

1 comment:

elgen said...

:-/ jeg elsker jo David!!!!!!!


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