When it was originally announced that Peter Capaldi would become the Twelfth Doctor taking over for Matt Smith in 2014, there were those that raised more than a few eyebrows. Many of those who wondered whether or not this was the right choice only knew Capaldi from his more recent roles in either The Hour or as Malcolm Tucker, the rather ‘abrasive’ spin-doctor in The Thick of It. There were also those that had only watched Doctor Who since its reboot 10 years ago and their only Doctor frame of reference was Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant and/or Matt Smith. They wondered out loud as to how someone that was visibly so much older than The Doctor’s companion could work. There was no memory of William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, Jon Pertwee or, even, Tom Baker. Boy, were they totally wrong. Capaldi is a brilliant Doctor.
First off, much like current series show-runner, Steven Moffat, Peter Capaldi is a lifelong fan of the series. And, he’s a brilliant actor. His understanding of the magnitude of the half-century cultural phenomenon that is Doctor Who is clear. He treated his 2013 selection to be the Twelfth Doctor with the reverence it deserves rather than going in to it worrying about how many series he should do for fear of being forever labeled as ‘The Doctor’.
Capaldi’s lifetime devotion to all-things Doctor Who is no better evidenced than by a seemingly innocent fan letter sent in by a then 15-year old fan of Doctor Who from Glasgow named Peter. The letter, published in the Radio Times back in 1973, praised the publication for its special 15th anniversary edition and their Dalek construction plans was written by, you guessed it…a 15 year-old Peter Capaldi. Click on the image to read the letter marked “Dalek-builders” and make note that the first letter in the graphic is written by the then heavyweight boxing champion of the world, Muhammad Ali.
If you need any further proof of the fact that Peter Capaldi was absolutely the right choice, check out this video of Capaldi answering children’s questions in character as the Time Lord that was filmed at the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff for Nu-Who’s 10th birthday. It is priceless.
Series 9 of Doctor Who is currently in production with a target Autumn 2015 premiere date on BBC and BBC America. While little is known so far given the series’ traditional closed set/tight-lipped efforts, the BBC and producers have confirmed that the series will kick off with Missy, a.k.a. The Master, played by Michelle Gomez, playing a vital role in the opening 2-part episode.