How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Ever-Changing Doctor
written by Trisha F. (@LatentBlonde)
I am resistant to change. Change is scary-- it takes away the warm comfort of what you know and thrusts you into the cold unknown. I’ve known that I am change-adverse ever since I was a small child, so you might be surprised to learn I am a Whovian, or a fan of BBC’s Doctor Who. Doctor Who (for the sad and small percentage of the population who don’t know) is about a time travelling alien referred to only as “the Doctor,” he is the last of the Time Lords, an advanced and intelligent race of humanoids that can see and travel through time and space. They live for centuries, and to aid this long life they use a process called “regeneration,” which changes every cell in the Time Lord’s body. Imagine new face, new hair, new teeth. They retain their memories and ultimately are the same person (save for a few personality traits the differ from Doctor to Doctor), but with cells come slight changes, especially in fashion sense. Celery, anyone? As a fan, this change in the Doctor can be surprising, upsetting, and even spur a backlash of Doctor-on-Doctor hate (regenerations are often referred to in chronological order, so you’ll see a lot of 10 > 11 and the like). Losing the Doctor is devastating, but if I was going to be able to hang in this subculture, I was going to have to adapt. How does one so resistant to the unknown break old habits and embrace each new Doctor? For me, the answer was “slowly, and in small doses.”
"When we lost the 9th incarnation of the Doctor for the 10th... the combination of excitement about Rose finally getting to kiss the Doctor and a single season with Eccleston made it a lot easier to move on"
When we lost the 9th incarnation of the Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) for the 10th (David Tennant), I think the combination of excitement about Rose finally getting to kiss the Doctor and a single season with Eccleston made it a lot easier to move on. I empathized with Rose—so much was going on in addition to the regeneration, it was hard to concentrate on the loss of 9. Tennant was very easy to love, as well. Going from a surly, leather-wearing Doctor to a happy-go-lucky flirt like Ten wasn’t hard, and so I got used to him quickly. Unfortunately, the very reason it was easy to get used to Ten made losing him even more terrible. His final line? “I don’t want to go.” Talk about tear-jerker!
"the very reason it was easy to get used to Ten made losing him even more terrible"
Post Ten, I took a break from Doctor Who. I couldn’t wrap my mind around watching another Doctor jaunt around the universe. How could I move on after losing two fabulous Doctors? I moped about for some time. Trolling Instagram and YouTube led to me stumbling across scenes with Matt Smith, the 11th incarnation of the Doctor. It took longer to get used to the idea than the time after Nine. Smith isn’t what you’d call classically handsome. Friends insisted that if I gave Eleven a chance, I would learn to love his geeky, clumsy charm. I wasn’t so sure. I missed the Doctor, though. I longed to lose myself in timey wimey insanity and to watch that blue police box hurtling through the stars. After watching many a scene and interview, Matt Smith found a place in my heart.
"[Matt] Smith isn’t what you’d call classically handsome. Friends insisted that if I gave Eleven a chance, I would learn to love his geeky, clumsy charm"
Finally, I think it was the mix of nostalgia and gradual acceptance of the Doctor that forced me back into the Who-niverse. Matt Smith’s recent announcement about his departure from Doctor Who will undoubtedly fling me right back where I started, but even a die-hard change-hating girl like me knows that eventually the new Doctor will find me. When he invites me to see the stars, I won’t think twice about following him into that mysterious blue box again.
ED Note: check out this cool clip showing all the regenerations from One all the way to when Ten became Eleven -PRINCE
Trisha is a true geek at heart and a die hard Whovian. Also very active in the Yelp community as a member of Seattle's Elite squad with Justin Prince, check out her Yelp feed and also follow her Instagram and Twitter. She brings a fresh perspective to geekdom, look to more contributions from this absolute Lifted Geek.