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Dr Who On Earth? The Quietus Aren't Convinced
The Quietus , January 6th, 2009 06:46

On Saturday it was announced that the actor to play the eleventh Doctor was none other than Matt Smith. "Who?" asked people entirely appropriately.

Smith was born in 1982 and has a CV of sorts that includes appearing with Christian Slater in the film Swimming With Sharks from 2003 and appearances in the TV shows Party Animals and The Ruby In The Smoke as well as some stage work.

The announcement ended months of feverish speculation that had seen the likes of Paterson Joseph, David Morrissey, Sean Pertwee, James Nesbitt, Russell Tovey, Catherine Zeta Jones, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Billie Piper apparently considered for the role. However for many (some at the Quietus included), the matter hasn't been concluded in an entirely satisfactory manner.

The Quietus' Whovian expert Mr Joseph Stannard (who himself looks more and more like a cross between the Master and a Diego Velazquez self-portrait with each passing day) had the following to say: "If I were a suspicious type, I might conjecture that the selection of 26 year old Mat Smith to take over from David Tennant in the lead role of Doctor Who was designed to alienate long-time fans of the series. Of the curmudgeons among us, who would be willing to accept sermons on cosmic harmony from their too-pretty younger nephew?

"Of course we must reserve judgement of our new Doctor until we've seen him in action, but many of us were hoping for an actor with a little more avuncular authority following the rake-thin foppishness of David Tennant. Smith has impeccable thespian credentials, his brief career grounded firmly in theatre, but this could mean one of two things: charitably, he could display a formidable emotional range, encompassing some of the alien darkness too-often absent from the Tennant era. Less optimistically, it could signal an unwelcome dip into excessively expressive luvvie hell - and Smith does, after all, have one of those faces seemingly made for chewing scenery.

"Without a doubt, Smith has a rough journey ahead of him. For all Tennant's flaws, no Doctor since Tom Baker has become so identified with the role, and so beloved as a result. If Smith proves unpopular with the public - a major concern when the show in question is one of the BBC's biggest audience pullers in recent history - will he be swiftly yanked from the series, hastily regenerated, or will the producers stand by their decision? Perhaps if their choice of eleventh Doctor does backfire, they will remember Paterson Joseph, the excellent black actor who looked like he had it in the bag at the end of last year, and offer him the job many believed was rightfully his."

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