For Doctor Who fans, welcoming a new Doctor is like a rite of passage. In the days following the Doctor’s announcement of departure, you become overly emotional, sad to the point where you’re consistently contemplating and succeeding in writing long-form Facebook posts declaring your everlasting, incomparable love for the British actor and his portrayal. After that, a catastrophic wave of anger descends, causing you to vow to dislike any and all who will take on the role in the future. “There will never be a better Doctor,” you say. “He can’t leave!” you shout. “Nothing will ever be the same.” Though, this way of thinking is only temporary, the after effects linger until you’ve, at least, watched the aforementioned doctor’s entire back catalogue of episodes.
Acceptance narrowly arrives when you realize you only want what’s best for him, when you recognize that it actually might be a good thing. Moments later, you’re excited. You debate and ponder for what seems like months, tracking down every article, every spoiler that might hint to the new Doctor’s identity.
When the announcement is finally made, you’re overcome with a nervous anticipation. Who will it be? What kind of Doctor will he make? Why, oh why, do we have to wait so long to find out?
However, when a heartwarming montage dedicated to the previous Doctor appears, you break. The cycle begins again, repeating over and over. It’s like a punch to the gut. You’re instantly hit with a myriad of emotions and feelings you thought you’d left behind. This time, though, acceptance is much harder to discover. That is, until the third episode of the new series, where obsession and love violently take over.
What? That’s how it happens in the Whoverse.
Those who’ve experienced the transition before know what to expect, they know how to plan and prepare. Although, most still find it extremely difficult to deal with it. Including, yours truly. This time around, I’m finding it impossibly distressing to let go and move forward. The 12th Doctor announcement hadn’t even been made yet and I was internally stomping my foot and resisting.
Think about it. This is a relationship you’ve been in for years! You’ve made plans. You’ve given your heart to them. You’ve bought hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise. Now, you’re expected to just drop them at the tip of a hat?
Sure, I’ve all been through it before. It was only three years ago that I was vehemently expressing my nerd-love for 10th Doctor, David Tennant. I thought no one could live up to his delightful awesomeness. Much to my surprise, it was merely weeks later, after having met Matt Smith’s Doctor for the first time, I started to change my tune, unable to resist Lady Fate.
With his spot-on comedic timing and strange, yet fascinating physicality, Smith brought something new to the infamously quirky character. Just thinking about those intricately detailed, speedily delivered mishmash of mumbled-jumbled dialogue has me breaking out in goose pimples. Honestly, I will be forever grateful for the Doctor who was able to make my extremely non-fangirl-like mother randomly quote Doctor Who in regular, everyday conversation.
Ultimately, I know I will fall victim, like before, to the charms of the next Doctor. Steven Moffat is an evil genius who will make sure I do so. That’s just the way it works. Doesn’t mean I have to like it, though.
So, please, tell me. ‘Cause I have no idea. How? How am I supposed to say goodbye to that kooky, floppy haired, blue-eyed, lanky madman with a box and a bow tie? He is MY doctor. Mine. My number four on my list of fictional character boyfriends. Do you really expect me to give him up so easily, Moffat? Am I seriously not allowed to keep him? Do I truly have to go through the never-ending cycle of Who torment? Matt Smith has irrevocably changed the way I see the Doctor and his ever-changing universe. Breaking up is hard to do, especially when you want me to break up with the 11th Doctor.
For the record, that is Never. Gonna. Happen.
Are you sad to see Matt go? Was he your Doctor? What was your favorite 11th Doctor episode? What do you think about the casting of Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor? Have you seen his other work? Have you already gone through or are you still going through the emotional stages of the Doctor Who transition? How do you think the 11th Doctor’s exit will happen? Are you excited for the 50th Anniversary special? Tell me in the comments!