Doctor Who fandom is in shock over the official announcement that Matt Smith, the Eleventh Doctor, will leave the role at the end of the 2013 Christmas episode. It is an equally sad and exciting time for fans as we prepare to bid farewell to Matt’s version and welcome The Doctor’s next incarnation.
I had originally planned a review of the Fist Doctor for today’s post but am, instead, holding this for later since news has just broke about the above.
The Eleventh Hour
Matt Smith was named as the successor to David Tennant’s Tenth Doctor months before his first appearance. I know I wondered at the time how this younger actor – the youngest to ever play the role – would do. Would he be good? Would he be The Doctor when David’s Doctor was one of the most beloved versions? Then, on January 01, 2010, Matt Smith’s Eleventh made his début in the final minutes of The End of Time, Part II.
The new season began later in the Spring of 2010 with the episode, appropriately titled, The Eleventh Hour. And, to be quite honest, I wasn’t immediately captivated by this version. The music had changed. The companions had changed. The intro had changed. The TARDIS had changed. The Doctor had changed.
The Fall of the Eleventh
My hesitation quickly gave way to enjoyment as Matt Smith created an incarnation which amalgamated several of his predecessors – most notable in my opinion – the Second and some of the Sixth. As the seasons passed, Matt proved his worth by showing that he could appear amazingly childish one second and incredibly ancient the next. He has given fandom three fantastic years of adventures.
The fall of the Eleventh was mentioned at the conclusion of The Wedding of River Song but we all assumed the fall would be at the end of the 2014 season. Now, knowing that is not the case, we have the 50th anniversary episode on November 23, 2013 and then the Christmas episode for the regeneration.
I am quite certain, as it was when David departed, tears will be shed when the Doctor regenerates.
Who is Twelve?
Speculation has begun full-force as to who will replace Matt and become the Twelfth Doctor. Showrunner and Head Writer Steven Moffat quoted in the BBC report as saying:
“Somewhere out there right now – all unknowing, just going about their business – is someone who’s about to become the Doctor,” Moffat hinted. “A life is going to change, and Doctor Who will be born all over again. After 50 years, that’s still so exciting.”