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Ncuti Gatwa’s solutions suggest that Doctor Who Russell T. Davies is looking to the future

The next Doctor is Ncuti Gatwa.

The cast was a surprise and was announced on social media ahead of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards. In a way, this might suggest that the profile is reduced doctor Who is in contemporary pop culture. Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi appeared in a TV special, and Jodie Whittaker was given a stylized promotional video. There is a lack of ceremony for announcing the solution through tweet.

Gatwa confirmed he was not selected until february, suggesting that Russell T. Davies did not mind Gatwa for the role when it was announced that he was returning to the show in September 2021. Although Jodie Whittaker confirmed that they did not release both parts of his renaissance, Gatwa even in the game. cast when Whittaker shot his final scene in October. The stretched casting seems to be thin, as is Davies’ version of it doctor Who went into production in March.

For comparison, Matt Smith’s solutions were announced in January 2009, six months before the fifth series went into production in July 2009. Peter Capaldi’s solutions were announced in August 2013, five months before the fifth series was due. the eighth series began shooting in January 2014. Jodie Whittaker was announced to inherit the role in July 2017, about four months before filming of the twelfth series began in November.

Gatwa’s choice is interesting for a variety of reasons. He is the first handsome man to take on the role of Doctor as an accredited leader on television, continuing the pursuit of diversity doctor Who really started with Davies’ revival of the show and continued through the seasons under the supervision of his successors Steven Moffat and Chris Chibnall. In fact, Chibnall signed Jo Martin for a recurring role as a previously hidden incarnation of the character. Gatwa is also the fourth Scottish actor to take on the role, after Sylvester McCoy, David Tennant and Peter Capaldi.

Surprisingly, Gatwa is a break from the latest trend in the lead role in the series. The two previous actors portrayed by the Doctor are established performers. Peter Capaldi is a British film and television institution and remains the only Doctor to hold an Oscar. Jodie Whittaker is also a partner of the acclaimed British television and independent film, breaking into Peter O’Toole in Venus in 2006 and played a key role in the television phenomenon Wide church.

Gatwa has much shorter filming. He played the most notable role as Eric Effiong for three seasons on Netflix comedy sex education, which earned him three consecutive BAFTA nominations. Needless to say how great Gatwa is in his young, fresh talent, because Matt Smith was younger and less famous when he took on the role. Perhaps a better point of comparison is Peter Davison, an actor cast at the age of 29 with a TV comedy about his belt.

There was early speculation that Davies could recruit an older performer like Hugh Grant, or even lure David Tennant back into the role. Davies has since suggested that he may have inspired those casting rumors himself to draw attention to candidates like Gatwa. However, these solution suggestions are not outlier. Every cycle of speculation about the “next Doctor” seems to return to British film and television veterans like Kris Marshall or Paterson Joseph.

In practical terms, it makes sense to hire a younger actor. Doctor Who It’s one of the toughest jobs on TV. Three of the last four actors to take on the title role – Tennant, Smith and Capaldi – had to undergo surgery during their time on the series. Whittaker managed to avoid such disasters, much to the credit of exhibition director Chris Chibnall’s logistical handling of the show. However, it looks like Davies will be producing the series at a faster pace.

Ncuti Gatwa's solutions suggest that Doctor Who Russell T. Davies is looking to the future

While casting speculation spread to younger celebrities like Olly Alexander and Lydia West, apparently based on the fact that they both worked with Davies on. It is a sin, there may be something to be said about the setting of the Internet on older and more established celebrities. It speaks to a certain vision of what it is Doctor Who. More than that, it may provide assumptions as to who should do it an Doc Cé.

Actors like Capaldi and Whittaker naturally appeal to an older demographic. It’s hard to imagine that many teenagers are excited about a silly political movement It’s Thick or relax with somber vibes of Wide church. These actors are among the best of their generation, but they are most appealing to the adult audience. In fact, Whittaker’s appointment, following his collaboration with Chibnall on Wide churchit may be an example of “prestige” Doctor Who.

There is nothing fundamentally wrong with this. In fact, Capaldi is arguably the best actor to ever play the title role, with show director Steven Moffat arguing that Capaldi’s work on “Heaven Sent”best individual performance in the roleMore than that, Moffat acted as an older actor as a plot point during his tenure and often used Capaldi’s tenure to draw a line about his predecessors, redefining and recreating the Davies – coded templates. .

Whittaker is also an extremely talented performer, but his struggle with content is weaker. Like many modern sci-fi franchises, Chibnall seems to have written time to appeal to older fans. Chibnall’s plot seems to be often written to evoke writers like Terry Nation from the 1960s. Central mythology of the Chibnall era, the idea that the Doctor has a hidden set of regenerations, has its roots in an overlap of two fan theories dating back to the 1970s and 1980s.

Ncuti Gatwa's solutions suggest that Doctor Who Russell T. Davies is looking to the future

More than that, Chibnall seemed to be going strong after fans of the previous period as a Davies producer, who started in 2005. Whittaker often wrote in a way that David Tennant portrayed. Chibnall returned from the back of the cradle from the Davies era, Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman) and Davies-era animals such as the Judoons and Weeping Angels. It re-established elements of the status quo from the Davies era, such as the destruction of Gallifrey and hints of a romantic companion.

It makes sense that the Davies vintage would be a touchstone for Chibnall. Davies managed to take a canceled culture TV show and make it the most watched show on British television. However, one of the biggest problems with Chibnall’s approach is doctor Who assumed that the series could attract exactly the same audience by using the same narrative tricks and hitting the exact same notes.

A 12-year-old girl who starred in “Rose” in March 2005 25 when Jodie Whittaker directed “The Woman Who Fell to Earth” and will be the same age as Ncuti Gatwa when she again in the role later this year. .. Chibnall seemed to be directing the series on fans. doctor though more than a decade earlier, trying to lure them back to the return of the aliens and pull them back to their maturity with prime-time entertainment star castings.

This is probably the most recent and exciting thing about Ncuti Gatwa solutions. It is not primarily aimed at older audiences who would be drawn to a team like Hugh Grant or Kris Marshall. Instead, it focuses on modern-day teenagers who are watching sex education on Netflix and helped turn that series into an amazing (and growing) beat for the streaming service. It suggests that Davies is interested in appealing to that audience, rather than prioritizing appeals to older fans.

Ncuti Gatwa's solutions suggest that Doctor Who Russell T. Davies is looking to the future

Anecdotally, it might work. While it’s hard to quantify these things, I received a text from my little sister taking screenshots of the casting announcement tweet and declaring, in all caps and exclamation points, “YES ALL !!!” It’s the smallest possible example, but it’s like someone who often forgets that Peter Capaldi is there and who has trouble remembering Jodie Whittaker. It’s hard to believe that she’s the only person in her generation who has that reaction.

davies resurrection to the doctor Who helps the series go beyond its established fan base. While not ignoring older fans, he focused on building a show that would welcome new and casual audiences, especially the younger ones. It has not always been an elegant approach, as evidenced by foreign farts, but populist decisions for young people, such as the employment of pop star Billie Piper and the inclusion of references to Big brotherThey ended up carrying fruit.

Chibnall has spent the last four years trying to recapture the magic of Davies’ original tenure by drawing on the fans who grew up with him. Ncuti Gatwa’s choice suggests that Davies could recreate his past achievements by trying to nurture a new generation of fans. doctor Quiet. The TARDIS could be pushing into the future for the first time in years.


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