By: Twitter Buttons

Friday, 19 December 2008

Doctor, I Have a Problem....

As David Tennant is set to leave the role of Doctor Who, there is much talk over who is going to be the next controller of the Tardis. Personally, I rarely watch the programme; old people falling over and cats fighting their mirror reflections on You’ve Been Framed always seemed to grab my attention on the other side. However, in the year of ‘black firsts’, many have predicted the coming of an ethnic doctor, no not Dr Raj from your local GP, but a black or Asian actor to play the most iconic timelord of all….well, time. Patterson Joseph and Colin Salmon have been name dropped – although I think Salmon should hold out for James Bond status. Meera Syal has also found her way on to the list as potentially the first female Dr Who.

To me an ethnic Doctor Who would be a positive development in an industry which has been labelled institutionally racist at times. Nevertherless, I also strongly believe that the concentration should be on finding the best actor for the job- if that person happens to be of ethnic orgin, then hip hip hooray. I don’t think precious Doctor Who fans will be too pleased with the media hype and fenzy overshadowing the show. Studio bosses making decisions with the primary concern of creating publicitiy and impact will only draw critisim and unfair scrutiny if an ethnic actor is in fact cast. You just know that certain people are waiting for Obama to slip up, anticipating even, in the hope that they can turn around and say “ha ha told you so”. If ratings of DW fall, you know the line will be “too much change…it alienated viewers” and the new doctor will be swiftly aneathetised.

I guess we’ll see what happens when they announce the new recruit. My money is on Patterson Joseph; with his typical English accent and theatrical/Shakespearean background, I can see him being a great Doctor. However, I can’t wait for the day when the phrase ‘the first black (insert high profile position here)’ is the first time it isn’t used.


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