Strap on your vortex manipulator and clear your Saturday nights—a new Doctor is coming back!
For the uninitiated, The Doctor is the title character in the long-running BBC series, “Doctor Who,” about a renegade Time Lord from the world Gallifrey, who, with his (most often) human companions, travels through time and space to defend the universe. (See our nifty infographics to learn more.)
This series, which began 50 years ago in the U.K, has an irresistible combination of adventure, humor and thrills and has captured imaginations to become the world’s most-watched television series. Author Douglas Adams (Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy) was a story editor for several years. Neil Gaiman (Coraline, The Ocean At The End of The Lane) wrote an episode that won a Hugo Award. Casual references in the U.K. to the TARDIS or other references are immediately understood.
The actors cast as the Doctor and as his companions become instant celebrities, and are mobbed at Comic-Con and other conventions by fans by cosplayers dressed as any one of the Doctors or companions. Fans flock to Cardiff, Wales, where the current series is filmed, to attend the Doctor Who Experience, a walk-through adventure with a breathtaking costume/props exhibit at the end.
The 50th Anniversary episode was so anticipated that it had an unprecedented simultaneous broadcast to prevent eager fans from taking to social media to share “spoilers.” The all-but-confirmed rumor that Jenna Coleman, who plays the current companion, Clara Oswald, is leaving some time this season, spread almost instantly.
Part of the longevity of the series is thanks to the ability to “regenerate” into a new body that has allowed the Doctor to live 2,000 years (and allowed producers to cast completely new actors as the same character). When season 8 of “Doctor Who” debuts, the Time Lord will have a new, more mature face, and a Scottish accent.
Enter to win a copy of this Dr. Who infographic by artist Risa Rodil.
So, who will he be? After all, Time Lords only have 12 regenerations, and the Doctor has already cheated death by being granted another 12-life regeneration cycle by the Time Lords. But will he use them? When veteran British actor Peter Capaldi appears on our broadcast monitors, we may be seeing the final Doctor.
Every regeneration brings us a different man. But this one is special. He will be the one to find the key to restoring balance to the universe and freeing his home planet of Gallifrey from its protective pocket universe. We don’t know much about him yet, but what if he were a combination of all Doctors before him? Peter Capaldi, a seasoned performer with a love for the Doctor will bring us a memorable, wonderful Doctor. But wouldn’t it be nice to see occasional glimpses of all those former selves?
Imagine: The twinkling eye and bold cleverness of the original Doctor, the whimsy of #2, the suave sophistication of #3, the wiliness and humor of #4, the kindness of #5, the passion of #6, the depth of #7, the steely resolve of #8, the madcap frivolity of #9, the proud defiance of #10, and the exuberance of #11. And, what they all share, that danger is a puzzle to be solved, and a fearlessness about stepping into the unknown. That would be an awesome Doctor!
But, whoever he is, we can’t wait for him to take us on a new series of adventures in saving England, the world, and the universe.
Doctor Who resumes August 23 at 8pm EDT on BBCA.
Join friends of BookTrib, Kyle Walters and Shawn deLoache, (The New Adventures of Peter and Wendy), each Friday on their YouTube channel, EpicRobotTV, for weekly Doctor Who recaps.