Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat tells us why he’s not quite ready to place the sonic screwdriver in the hands of a woman
While fans across the internet continue to voice their thoughts and feelings regarding the announcement that the next incarnation of the Doctor will be played by veteran British (well, Scottish but we’ll let him off) TV actor Peter Capaldi, many people still want to know what was going on inside the mind of head Doctor Who writer Steven Moffat when he chose Capaldi for the role.
There had been a lot of speculation and discussion as to whether we would finally see a black Doctor, or even the first female time lord. Some people thought that it was time to take the show in a new direction and be bold in the casting choice, giving audiences a completely new slant on a well known and much loved character, while others argued that the writers should stick to what they know and continue to cast white male actors and not rock the boat in case they ruined the feel of the show.
Well in a recent interview, Moffat stated that the main reasons that he didn’t go for a female actor this time around were mainly because he didn’t feel that the time was right and that in his eyes, Capaldi was the only person who could next step into the driving seat of the famous blue box.
It’s absolutely narratively possible [that the Doctor could be a woman] and when it’s the right decision, maybe we’ll do it. It didn’t feel right to me, right now. I didn’t feel enough people wanted it
Moffat claims that his decision was helped by comments from fans stating that they didn’t actually want to see a woman playing the Doctor:
Oddly enough most people who said they were dead against it – and I know I’ll get into trouble for saying this – were women. [They were] saying, ‘No, no, don’t make him a woman!’
It does appear though, that despite all of the hype and speculation among fans and the media about whether we would see Moffat hand the keys to the TARDIS over to a woman, the man himself was never really unsure about who the role would go to. When asked weather he had had a ‘short list’ of possible Doctors, he replied simply:
Yes. The list went ‘Peter Capaldi’. It was a very short list. He came on the radar a fair amount of time ago. I happened to know he’s a big fan. Oddly enough, [Capaldi] briefly flicked in my mind last time, but I didn’t think he was right. This time, wow, that moment has arrived.
Moffat obviously sees something special in Capaldi, a spark that makes him the perfect man for the job this time around:
There’s something very seductive about an utterly brilliant, arresting looking leading man actor – one of the most talented actors in Britain – who you happen to know is a big fan of the show. You start to think ‘maybe we should so something about that.’
We will have to wait until some time in 2014 to see whether Moffat’s faith in Capaldi was well placed when season 8 airs on our screens. The final episode with current Doctor Matt Smith which will also be our first sight of Capaldi as the 12th Doctor comes to us this Christmas.