In this part, I’d like to explain a few bits. You already know Eccleston is my favourite Doctor, but what are my thoughts on the other two? To put it bluntly: Tennant will always be a powerful Doctor and Smith has the potential to be something amazing. I think I’d like to explain myself in the best of terms, in that, each Doctor is entitled to their own piece of ‘the Doctor’. Eccleston is more reserved, he keeps that pain and deathwish inside of him until he switches faces. Tennant goes from a soppy moaning guy into a ‘Timelord Victorious’, evil and bits. Smith, however, is just outright silly and feels the oldest, he’s contempt now with what’s happened and he’s wanting to move forward.
I’d like to outline three specific scenes, one per Doctor, in which I don’t think any other actor in the role could possibly do.
Eccleston gets angry, but he’s still reserved in the way he goes about things. He’s got a plan, he’s got a mind and he knows the power he has. He’s emotional, yet not so much on the surface level. Tennant is different in that he’s so open with his feelings and his past and becomes overly emotional towards the end, for all the right reasons, it’s not until he turns into Smith that we get a Doctor who’s contempt with who he is and ready to get a bloody grip on things. We still get the odd glimpses of emotion, humanity and darkness within him but nothing that punctures every single scene. He’s a silly bloke.
Rose – The working class girl who turns a timelord into a human being. I liked Rose, I cried when she left, she was consistent and willing to see what would happen. The way she opens up the Doctor is very clever too, although her effect is somewhat retconned by the fact Davies had to bring her back in Series Four to appease the fanboys. Thankfully he learnt his lessons in Torchwood.
Martha – Freema’s acting is so flimsy at times it’s hard to believe who she is and I’m not sure whether or not her casting was to suit a racial quota. The latter half of Series 3 is where she truly shines, but afterwards she returns to an empty-headed vessel. Shame really.
Donna – My favourite companion, she doesn’t want the Doctor’s wobbly bits and is happily dopey. She opens him up but in the friendly kind of way and the chemistry between her and Tennant makes every episode worthwhile.
Amy – One of the reasons why I dislike Series 5, she’s a plot device, not a companion but a shapeshifting character who’s smart when the plot demands it and dumb when the drama wants it. I don’t hate the performance, Little Miss Gorgeous Karen Gillan is working with some dire material however.
What’s sad is seeing some of the greatest villains in television squandered into this repetitive definition of “Epicly epic” to which they’re inserted into every episode for the sake of “Epicly epic.” The Series One episode Dalek is a tremendous feat of drama yet it’s somewhat ruined by the fact there’s TRILLIONS of Daleks in every season finale ever. It’s such a great big shame to have these potentially frightening and clever villains turned into clichés. The same goes for the Cybermen, who’ve never been that strong really, even in the Series Two finale.
The Series Two finale is the best Who finale of all time and it just so happens to have Cybermen and Daleks together. I really like it, but when it goes on to A BILLION DALEKS EVERYWHERE, CYBERMEN EVERYWHERE it gets on your nerves. I think after that it just got to the point where you expected, and got, Daleks or Cybermen every season ever. In Series 6 the Daleks are taking a break, but the Cybermen will come back with the same horrible design. The NewNewDalek design makes them look like giant cookie jars on wheels, I don’t like it. The NewNewCybermen design just takes away the Cybus logo, an improvement I guess but only marginally.
Tomorrow: Torchwood, Series Six and Final Thoughts