July 25, 2005

New Doctor Who revealed

Well, not exactly. Everyone who cares already knows that David Tennant is to replace Christopher Eccleston in the second season of New Who, because we've already seen the hilarious "Barcelona" bit.

What we didn't know until now, though, is what the new Doctor was going to look like. Traditionally the Doctor has always sported a unique and outrageous costume: Tom Baker's infinite scarf, Jon Pertwee's ruffles and smoking jacket, Colin Baker's whatever-that-was. With the revival of the series in 2005, the producers decided that it was time for a change, and so Eccleston's costume was a completely inconspicuous leather jacket and pullover sweater. (This didn't stop Charles Dickens from saying he looked like a "navvy" or a fellow time-traveller to taunt him with "U-boat captain.")

Now the BBC has released new publicity photos for Tennant's run as the Tenth Doctor. It looks like this time they've taken a halfway approach: a brown trenchcoat and pinstriped suit that look like they came out of a gangster movie set in the 40s. (Oddly enough this was an idea I had for a new Doctor's costume back in about 1990 when I dabbled for a while writing some fan fiction, only I preferred greys to browns.)

Tennant says:

I think we've come up with something distinctive that's both timeless and modern, with a bit of geek chic and of course, a dash of Time Lord! Most importantly Billie [Piper] tells me she likes it - after all she's the one who has to see me in it for the next nine months!

[Full Story]

Filming of the second season also started today. Only 4 months to Christmas!

Incidentally, I haven't had anything to say about the new Who series, although I meant to. Don't take my silence as indifference. It isn't. It's great! I'm thrilled to see Doctor Who back on the air again as it was such an important part of my childhood.

Sign I'm Getting Old #1,483: Tennant is the first actor to play the Doctor who is younger than me. [shudder]

In fact, I've been so impressed with Christopher Eccleston's performance as the Doctor that I've started looking into other things that he's done: most recently, 28 Days Later and Jude. Incidentally, the latter also includes a bit part by Tennant as a "Drunk Undergraduate," which got me thinking: Is this the first time that two actors who played the Doctor have ever appeared together in a non-Doctor Who-related production? And the answer is no. In fact, the first two Doctors, William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton both appeared in a movie called Escape in 1948, fully 15 years before Doctor Who went on the air. Hartnell later appeared with the third Doctor, Jon Pertwee, in 1953's Will Any Gentleman...?. Finally, in 1993, Jon Pertwee, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, and Sylvester McCoy all appeared (with a few other Dr. Who alumni) in a TV movie titled The Airzone Solution, but frankly there are so many of them in one production that I doubt it was coincidental.