March 29, 2017

Doctor Who: Matt Smith as the Doctor

By the time Matt Smith had been chosen to become the eleventh Doctor for the television Science Fiction series Doctor Who, this beloved Gallifreyan Time Lord character had regenerated ten times. All long-term viewers by 2009, like me, had their favorite Doctors. The majority of these were comfortable with David Tennant as the tenth Doctor. He was very skillful in this role. David Tennant was excellent as the Doctor.

Russell T. Davies, the Executive Producer and writer 2005 – 2009 of  Doctor Who, leaked Matt Smith was younger than when Peter Davison was cast at the age of twenty-six as the fifth Doctor in 1981 on the Doctor Who: The End of Time – Parts 1 & 2 DVDs’ “Special Features” section. I watch this section on the Doctor Who DVDs because of the interesting information the Doctor Who Production Team shares. Admittedly, I caught myself doubting the casting of a person younger than twenty-six as a wise decision by the Doctor Who Production Team.

I was opposed to the eleventh regeneration; felt it was too soon. When David Tennant became the Doctor, he was an actor I already liked. He was the first Doctor to be a known actor by me. The first through ninth Doctors, I had never heard of these actors before seeing them as the Doctor. I was happy to have a well-known actor finally be the Doctor on Doctor Who. I knew others who felt the same.

I was wrong to doubt the Doctor Who Production Team’s decision. Those involved chose David Tennant’s replacement well. Matt Smith at the age of twenty-four became the youngest actor to play the Doctor. He surprised me. At the end of The End of Time – Part 2, Matt Smith proved he could act as skillfully as his predecessors. He portrayed a newly regenerated Doctor perfectly. I admired Matt Smith’s superb acting skills.

Matt Smith’s portrayal of the Gallifreyan Time Lord erased my trepidations about him being the newest and youngest Doctor in his first full-length episode as the Doctor titled The Eleventh Hour written by Steven Moffat. By the end of this transitional episode, my admiration for Matt Smith’s acting ability had augmented. He was superb. I was hooked.

The Doctor’s new female companion Amy Pond (Karen Gillan) is relatable. Amy is a complex character. She is independent. Her decisions are understandable; many would decide similar in the same situation. I liked this character almost as much as Sarah Jane Smith (Elisabeth Sladen) and Romanadvoratrelundar (played by Mary Tamm in 1978 – 1979 and Lalla Ward in 1979 – 1981), my two favorite companions of the Doctor’s.

Rory Williams (Arthur Darvill) was accepted as another companion of the Doctor’s at the end of The Vampires of Venice episode. This brought an endearing couple into the TARDIS and the Doctor’s life. Two companions traveling with the Doctor is a program tradition from this TV serial’s past. What a delight to have it renewed!

Bringing back the character River Song (Alex Kingston) plus having her and the Doctor’s established relationship as a subplot that explores an out-of-sequence timeline type was well worth River’s reintroduction into Doctor Who for Series 5, Matt Smith’s first season. It was nice having her consistently in the episodes where we could witness the out-of-sequence effect and its pitfalls. River Song shall be returning in the Series 6 episodes per Steven Moffat, Piers Wenger and Beth Willis (Special Features, Doctor Who, Series 5, DVDs).

Matt Smith’s first season in 2010 as the Doctor was top-notch! Series 5 expertly shared classy Science Fiction fun. I am looking forward to Matt Smith’s second season as the Doctor. BBC has a video trailer on their official Doctor Who website. Series 6 is planned for release sometime in 2011. BBC encourages checking periodically on this site for updates.

Doctor Who is well worth its average of 52 minutes per episode. BBC regards this series as a “family program.” There are episodes from 1963 – 2010 on DVD. Recommend these Doctor Who DVDs for those who would like to catch up, collect them or want to view the first through tenth Doctors’ seasons plus the eleventh Doctor’s first season. They are available online or in local video stores for purchasing and renting.

Highly recommend watching. This long-running television series does make a great quality family past-time. Each episode is as good in comparison to its predecessor; some better. Doctor Who is definitely for those who love the Science Fiction genre and want their science believable as well as accurate.

Enjoy!

 

RELATED ARTICLES by Alicia Rose:

Doctor Who: Planet of the Dead

Doctor Who: The Waters of Mars, the second 2009 special

Doctor Who: The End of Time – Parts 1 & 2

Sources:

Alicia Rose, personal television viewing of Doctor Who, PBS and BBC America 1978 – 2011

Doctor Who: Planet of the Dead, DVD, special episode 1, BBC, 2009

Doctor Who: The Waters of Mars, DVD, special episode 2, BBC, 2009

Doctor Who: The End of Time – Parts 1 & 2, special episodes 3 & 4, two DVDs, BBC, 2009

Doctor Who: Series 5 (aka Season 5), five DVDs, BBC, 2010

BBC’s official Doctor Who website

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Copyright©2011 Alicia Rose

Comments

  1. Dr Who? Just kidding! I watched this series every day in the early 1980s. My favorite Dr is Tom Baker, the guy with the scarf. I remember thinking the series was at first intended for very small children, when I saw re-runs of the first Dr. by the 4th Dr, Tom Baker, they were definitely aiming at a family audience. I was not really aware that the series was still on, to tell the truth. Maybe I will check it out on DVD.

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