Thursday, April 29, 2010

Why David Tennant is My 'First' Doctor

BEDA: April 29, 2010

So, yesterday I posted a blog about how I started watching Doctor Who a couple months ago under the "pusher" influence of Megan. And by the ending of the second episode, I had grown to like Christopher Eccleston's Ninth Doctor. His performance was pretty over the top at times but his childlike wonder and enthusiasm grew on me rather quickly. Not to mention, when he got angry he created an incredibly powerful performance.

Take for instance (IMO) the best exchange of the season:

“We Have Your Associate. You Will Obey Or She Will Be Exterminated!”
“Explain Yourself!”
“I said no.”
“What Is The Meaning Of This Negative!?”
“It means no.”
“But She Will Be Destroyed!”
“NO! ‘Cause this is what I’m going to do. I’m going to rescue her. I’m going to save Rose Tyler from the middle of the Dalek fleet! And then I’m going to save the Earth. And then, just to finish off, I’M GOING TO WIPE EVERY LAST STINKING DALEK OUT OF THE SKY!"
“But You Have No Weapons! No Defences! No Plan!”
“Yeah. And doesn’t that scare you to death!? Rose?”
“Yes, Doctor?”
“I’m coming to get you.”

Oohh, shivers. That part is purely epic.

Then, I heard that people were all "OMG DAVID TENNANT IS JAWSUM" but to be honest, when he regenerated into David Tennant, most of the entire Christmas special was rather lame. It wasn't enough that I was missing Eccleston's Doctor but that the new Doctor was comatose throughout nearly the entire thing.

I know, I know, it was necessary for 1) regeneration, 2) the storyline, and 3) the epic ending, but it was already giving me a bad taste for David Tennant.

Obviously, I think differently now. David Tennant has acting ability the likes of which I have not seen in any sort of actor, really, ever. The episode on Midnight is one of David Tennant's most powerful roles as The Doctor, pulling split-second emotional changes from talkative and cheeky, witty and easy-going, to being betrayed and then having an unstoppable sense when facing his enemies but then back to being light-hearted when someone says the right thing. Unlike the Ninth Doctor, who showed off his vengeful, rage-filled dark side when up against the Daleks, the Tenth Doctor displayed a more confident, self-assured side, but did not hesitate to taunt them. Tennant's acting is just a roller-coaster of theatrical wonder.

As I finished Doctor Who and awaited Matt Smith's incarnation, I thought the same thing with Eccleston's regeneration to Tennant. I was losing a character I had gotten attached to and had to make room to watch another character, one who I hadn't grown with.

And that's when it happened. I realized that Tennant was my Doctor.

It was that residual feeling of his saga being over but having to 'simmer' in it for a while, awaiting the change in actors ahead, still not comfortable with the idea but not wanting to judge Smith on an acting job I had yet to see. Now, after seeing a number of episodes this season, I can actually say, Mister Matt Smith, you are doing a fine job. I am super excited for the future of Doctor Who.

But David Tennant will always be my 'first' Doctor.


  1. Excellent, Travis! He will always be my "first", too. :)

  2. I agree. I was really upset that 9 didn't have a longer run (even though that's all he wanted) and would have liked to hold on to that incarnation, but the changes from one Doctor to another are what I think have helped make the show the longest-lived sci-fi series.

    I still have trouble calling Tennant "my Doctor" though b/c I think Eccleston could have earned that for me if we'd seen more of him. He also played a character in another of my favorite shows: Heroes.

    And if it weren't for Megan I wouldn't also be going through the original series, so that I can see what the other incarnations were like.

  3. As much as I love David Tennant as an actor and as the Doctor he will never be "my doctor." I have to agree with David himself on his choice of Doctor... Peter Davison. I feel like I've been unfairly biased by my name but I still love Peter's Doctor.

  4. Tell me "Jawsum" wasn't a reference to Street Sharks.

  5. I could not agree with you more. I will always love Chris Eccleston, but David Tennant was my first Doctor.

    I am enjoying Matt Smith quite a bit, too.

  6. hey travis you are soooo cool i have seen all your videos on youtube but yeah tennant will always be my first doctor as well