Doctor Who: How do you transition from David Tenant to Matt Smith?

DudeistBelieve

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So I finished Season 4, and just watched Episode 1 of Season 5.

I'm not one for the "They changed it, so it sucks" argument but Jesus fucking Christ. So much change, it's like they rebooted the entire series. New Doctor, new tarted up companion, new TARDIS, new sonic fucking screw driver? Did everything from the first 4 seasons have to be kicked to the curb?

Maybe I didn't mind the transition from the 9th to the 10th, because when 9 goes he leaves at relative peace with what's he's accomplished. He's in a coma when he comes back and his regeneration is treated as such a big deal, and he comes back and it's a natural arch for the character. He went from being angsty and rage-filled back to being lighthearted and filled with compassion. It felt like the character grew in that short amount of time, but still maintaining some elements of 9 ("No second chances, I'm that kind of a man.")

But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.

Someone tell me, does it stay like this? Does 11 just exist in his own little bubble world from here on out?
 

madwarper

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Pretty much... yes. Smith's Doctor suffers from the same thing that Davison's (#5) Doctor suffered from, trying to fill impossibly large shoes left by their preceding Doctor, Tennant and Baker respectively.
 

Albino Boo

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SaneAmongInsane said:
So I finished Season 4, and just watched Episode 1 of Season 5.

I'm not one for the "They changed it, so it sucks" argument but Jesus fucking Christ. So much change, it's like they rebooted the entire series. New Doctor, new tarted up companion, new TARDIS, new sonic fucking screw driver? Did everything from the first 4 seasons have to be kicked to the curb?

Maybe I didn't mind the transition from the 9th to the 10th, because when 9 goes he leaves at relative peace with what's he's accomplished. He's in a coma when he comes back and his regeneration is treated as such a big deal, and he comes back and it's a natural arch for the character. He went from being angsty and rage-filled back to being lighthearted and filled with compassion. It felt like the character grew in that short amount of time, but still maintaining some elements of 9 ("No second chances, I'm that kind of a man.")

But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.

Someone tell me, does it stay like this? Does 11 just exist in his own little bubble world from here on out?
If you want a show with internal consistency you watching the wrong program. Th Doctor's character has always changed radically with each regeneration. The first regeneration I remember was from Tom Baker to Peter Davidson. Tom's Doctor was larger than life and pretty much insane whereas Davidson's Dr was quite and wistful. Colin Baker's Dr was shouty and angry, Sylvester Mccoy's was slightly menacing and the rest you have seen. Fundamentally with each new Dr it's new character that bears no relation to the previous one. The writers have always felt free to ignore previous lore and change the rules to what suits them dramatically as to what the Dr can and can't do. The fact that the show isn't internal consistent is why its going to have its 50th birthday this year.
 

DudeistBelieve

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albino boo said:
SaneAmongInsane said:
So I finished Season 4, and just watched Episode 1 of Season 5.

I'm not one for the "They changed it, so it sucks" argument but Jesus fucking Christ. So much change, it's like they rebooted the entire series. New Doctor, new tarted up companion, new TARDIS, new sonic fucking screw driver? Did everything from the first 4 seasons have to be kicked to the curb?

Maybe I didn't mind the transition from the 9th to the 10th, because when 9 goes he leaves at relative peace with what's he's accomplished. He's in a coma when he comes back and his regeneration is treated as such a big deal, and he comes back and it's a natural arch for the character. He went from being angsty and rage-filled back to being lighthearted and filled with compassion. It felt like the character grew in that short amount of time, but still maintaining some elements of 9 ("No second chances, I'm that kind of a man.")

But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.

Someone tell me, does it stay like this? Does 11 just exist in his own little bubble world from here on out?
If you want a show with internal consistency you watching the wrong program. Th Doctor's character has always changed radically with each regeneration. The first regeneration I remember was from Tom Baker to Peter Davidson. Tom's Doctor was larger than life and pretty much insane whereas Davidson's Dr was quite and wistful. Colin Baker's Dr was shouty and angry, Sylvester Mccoy's was slightly menacing and the rest you have seen. Fundamentally with each new Dr it's new character that bears no relation to the previous one. The writers have always felt free to ignore previous lore and change the rules to what suits them dramatically as to what the Dr can and can't do. The fact that the show isn't internal consistent is why its going to have its 50th birthday this year.
Aug.... it is my fault being a Doctor Who newbie.

Kills me though, such a jarring tone from End Of Time to The Eleventh Hour.
 

Thaluikhain

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albino boo said:
If you want a show with internal consistency you watching the wrong program. Th Doctor's character has always changed radically with each regeneration. The first regeneration I remember was from Tom Baker to Peter Davidson. Tom's Doctor was larger than life and pretty much insane whereas Davidson's Dr was quite and wistful. Colin Baker's Dr was shouty and angry, Sylvester Mccoy's was slightly menacing and the rest you have seen. Fundamentally with each new Dr it's new character that bears no relation to the previous one. The writers have always felt free to ignore previous lore and change the rules to what suits them dramatically as to what the Dr can and can't do. The fact that the show isn't internal consistent is why its going to have its 50th birthday this year.
While that's true, the only time they had such a big break was (IMHO), Troughton to Pertwee. New Doctor, new companion (The Brigadier had been in two stories before, and Benton turned up again a bit alter, who had been in one of them), stuck on Earth, works with UNIT, now in colour.

The other Doctors at least kept companions, usually production team and something of the format.

If, Matt Smith had run off with Wilf in the same Tardis with the same screwdriver, written by RTD and changed those things one at a time it wouldn't have been so jarring.
 

Dryk

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SaneAmongInsane said:
But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.
One of these men is acting like The Doctor... the one that's whinging about sacrificing himself to save a friend for the third time isn't him
 

Albino Boo

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thaluikhain said:
While that's true, the only time they had such a big break was (IMHO), Troughton to Pertwee. New Doctor, new companion (The Brigadier had been in two stories before, and Benton turned up again a bit alter, who had been in one of them), stuck on Earth, works with UNIT, now in colour.

The other Doctors at least kept companions, usually production team and something of the format.

If, Matt Smith had run off with Wilf in the same Tardis with the same screwdriver, written by RTD and changed those things one at a time it wouldn't have been so jarring.

Personally, not a fan of the RTD years. I only really liked the Empty Child and the Next Dr Episodes, but its hard to please everyone between 7-60. So I wasn't upset by the change in tone at all. Please don't get me wrong, I didn't hate the RTD era but it just didn't work for me. The show isn't particularly aimed at a middle age man like me, I imagine that if you where 12 it would have been great.

I like Matt Smith because it feels like the show has gone back to the Tom Baker/Troughton Dr's which is the era which I have nostalgia for.

Captchas: peter out
everyone is a critic!
 

Silvanus

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To be frank, I never liked David Tennant's doctor. He was a really young guy in a role that should be for an older guy; that's how its been written, that's the dynamic I enjoyed. Tennant seemed tailor-made for the legions of teenage girl fans, a choice to transform the show into something else. Something I never wanted it to be.


Tennant lacked any kind of gravitas, that's the main problem. He put on his best 'shocked' expression every other damn episode, and it lost all meaning. He was not a doctor I could respect.

Matt Smith is an improvement, but he falls into most of the same traps. This is not a role for a handsome young teenage-girls-love-me-so-damn-much-omg-so-hawt bloke. (Note: I do not find Mr. Tennant attractive myself, but during his tenure, this is the kind of stuff Facebook was plastered with. It was inescapable).


Christopher Eccleston won me to the New Who, but most of what he represented was wiped away by Tennant, not Smith.
 

DudeistBelieve

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Dryk said:
SaneAmongInsane said:
But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.
One of these men is acting like The Doctor... the one that's whinging about sacrificing himself to save a friend for the third time isn't him
Excuse me, whining?

He had been outwardly DREADING his inevitable fate. He finally goes ahead and save the world again, beats the bad guys and unlike all the other times he did it with the fear in the back of his mind that he'd hear those 4 knocks and be killed, and he wasn't thinking regeneration mind you, he was thinking straight up dead. They leave and for one precious second he thinks he's beaten the per-destination, and he's overjoyed...

Knock. Knock. Knock. Knock. God damn it Wilf!!!!

Seriously? His anger, frustration isn't validated in that moment?

Bitter Hobbit said:
SaneAmongInsane said:
So I finished Season 4, and just watched Episode 1 of Season 5.


But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.

Someone tell me, does it stay like this? Does 11 just exist in his own little bubble world from here on out?

I really don't like 10's regeneration, I didn't mind the anger at first because we knew he'd save Wilf, and he did it not quite with a smile, but he was (or seemed) to be at peace with it. But then we had the long over drawn good buys (that we had in the previous seasons finale) and his "I don't want to go." line was horrid.

I think it's good that Smith's Doctor didn't acknowledge any of that, it wouldn't of been fair to him as he should of (and he did) just made the role his own, just like Tennent and Eccleston did.


Now season 5 does seem like a bit of a reboot but I think it's mainly due to the amount of changes behind the scenes that happened too. Not only did Tennent leave but show runner Russell T Davis (who brought the show back) and several of the producers left too. So when Moffat took over he had new people too work with so I guess they decided to start from scratch, which I'm glad they did, it keeps things fresh, but it can seem jarring and it's a major reason I think why some people don't like Matt Smith

As for Matt Smith, yea he's like that all the way through (but he does have his darker moments) he's a completely different Doctor to Tennent so it might take a while to get used to him, but you should stick with it because there are some fantastic episodes coming up.
No I have to disagree. It made 10 so incredibly humble and human, and made perfect sense considering the core sadness that character had been dragging around for so long. It wouldn't of made any sense for him to face not only death, but death at the hands of a situation he couldn't outsmart or outwit, with a reaction like that... And it's also very telling that despite making all his goodbyes, he leaves completely alone.

And it's like 9 was done, he regenerates, and 10's like "Okay-ack! New teeth, that's weird.... SO! BARCELONA RIGHT!" he was the same Doctor just different. 11 just feels like a complete blank slate, which is now how I'm trying to view him because trying to think the character went 9-10 -> 11 will just frustrate me to no end.

11 had some good moments in the 2nd episode though so I'll keep trudging along... I just gotta wait for moments where he goes super serious badass, I suppose.
 

PedroSteckecilo

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I dunno, the first season of Matt Smiths' Doctor is pretty damn awesome and I loved him pretty much immediately because he reminded me a lot of Doctor #4, who is another personal favorite. But then again I like pretty much every doctor except for Colin Baker and Paul McGann, not that McGann ever had a chance to "really" be the Doctor on TV... though I hear he's got quite an Audio Drama following... still those are hard to get ahold of in North America so... yeah... kind of irrelevant.
 

Dangit2019

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SaneAmongInsane said:
So much change, it's like they rebooted the entire series. New Doctor, new tarted up companion, new TARDIS, new sonic fucking screw driver? Did everything from the first 4 seasons have to be kicked to the curb?

Someone tell me, does it stay like this? Does 11 just exist in his own little bubble world from here on out?
Steven Moffat actually wanted a total reboot, but BBC turned him down. So...this is pretty much him making up for that by changing everything anyway. I would ask that you stick with the show though, because there's still plenty of good episodes and classic Doctor moments, but the changes are there to stay my friend.
 

Gizmo1990

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SaneAmongInsane said:
So I finished Season 4, and just watched Episode 1 of Season 5.

I'm not one for the "They changed it, so it sucks" argument but Jesus fucking Christ. So much change, it's like they rebooted the entire series. New Doctor, new tarted up companion, new TARDIS, new sonic fucking screw driver? Did everything from the first 4 seasons have to be kicked to the curb?

Maybe I didn't mind the transition from the 9th to the 10th, because when 9 goes he leaves at relative peace with what's he's accomplished. He's in a coma when he comes back and his regeneration is treated as such a big deal, and he comes back and it's a natural arch for the character. He went from being angsty and rage-filled back to being lighthearted and filled with compassion. It felt like the character grew in that short amount of time, but still maintaining some elements of 9 ("No second chances, I'm that kind of a man.")

But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.

Someone tell me, does it stay like this? Does 11 just exist in his own little bubble world from here on out?
It takes a while to come to grips with it everything changes so suddenly. personaly while I like Matt Smith and the way he plays the Doctor I have only enjoyed 1 episode since the start of series 5, which is the one writen by Neil Gaiman. Each episode since has bored me to tears. I really did not like Amy and outright hated Rory. the less said about River BLODDY Song the better. I am basicly done with the show until Moffat stops running the show.

On a side note I cannot belive that the man who created Jack Harkness, who is great, also unleashed River Song on the world.
 

Atmos Duality

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SaneAmongInsane said:
Excuse me, whining?

He had been outwardly DREADING his inevitable fate. He finally goes ahead and save the world again, beats the bad guys and unlike all the other times he did it with the fear in the back of his mind that he'd hear those 4 knocks and be killed, and he wasn't thinking regeneration mind you, he was thinking straight up dead. They leave and for one precious second he thinks he's beaten the per-destination, and he's overjoyed...

Knock. Knock. Knock. Knock. God damn it Wilf!!!!

Seriously? His anger, frustration isn't validated in that moment?
Considering he's been killed by radiation once, and survived a fall larger in The End of Time than the one in Logopolis, I think he might have been pushing the "I'm going to die" angle a whee bit too hard.

(seriously, after watching The End of Time, my brain felt like it was kicked by a mule. So. Fucking. STUPID.)
 

Palmerama

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PedroSteckecilo said:
I dunno, the first season of Matt Smiths' Doctor is pretty damn awesome and I loved him pretty much immediately because he reminded me a lot of Doctor #4, who is another personal favorite. But then again I like pretty much every doctor except for Colin Baker and Paul McGann, not that McGann ever had a chance to "really" be the Doctor on TV... though I hear he's got quite an Audio Drama following... still those are hard to get ahold of in North America so... yeah... kind of irrelevant.
I think Colin Baker had a hard time as The Doctor. This is when the show was being largely ignored by the BBC for some reason and started the decline in quality. I did like him as the Doctor however, I thought the transition from nice guy Davidson's Doctor to hard bastard was brilliant. In the episode where he changes he actually says to his companion "I'm the new Doctor so you better get used to it". It's a shame they cancelled his run.

Same for Sylvestor McCoy. He may have started off a bit campy but the later epeisodes were very dark & compelling. When he supposedly kills the last Dalek he is rather heartless in doing so, making it pretty much kill itself!

McGann I thought was good in the film but the script wasn't the best. The audio stories are alot better. Hopefully he'll come back for the 50th anniversary (from what I've heard only Eccleston doesn't want anything to do with it).
 
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You wait a while after watching Tennant finish to begin Smith.

Believe me, I had the same problem. I have always like changed, but I think the biggest issue is the emotional whiplash.

Tennant, and in particular his last 5 episodes, has so much tragedy and feels. Smith jumps in and is instantly goofy and crazy.

I despised Smith for a while because I watched End of Time and INSTANTLY watched 11th Hour.

However, after waiting a bit I went back and now Smith is almost on par with Tennant for me. His story arcs are truly incredible.

So do that. Wait a bit, get over Tennant, accept that the show is new and move on. If you can't let go of some of the old characters like Jack Harkness, start watching Torchwood as you'll never see him again after the Tennant era. Also, consider skipping the first few Smith episodes. Eleventh Hour is important, but I found it very irritating. Beast Below is just dumb. Victory of the Daleks is slightly better, but if you want the good stuff, skip to the Weeping Angel 2-parter "The Time of Angels" and "Flesh and Stone."

Oh, and one last thing: Stop arguing with the purists. You will never convince them that Tennant is anything more than a blithering idiot.
 

Something Amyss

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SaneAmongInsane said:
But when 10 dies.... It's ssssoooooooooooooo fucking heartbreaking. He reacts so human, he doesn't want to die! His reaction to Donna's father being trapped in the box is so beautifully tragic, we see his frustration. We see him say his goodbyes. Then he dies.
It's some of the worst writing in the show, it's poor characterisation to pull at your heartstrings and the bad writing here is the main reason you're complaining in the first place.

It's almost like Davies was trying to salt the earth.

Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.
So you just praised the closure that 10 got, and are complaining that 11 doesn't just dwell on it?

The weird thing is, 11 acts more or less like 10 did after regeneration, and shows a lot of 10 in series 5.

A lot of this is nitpicking. Oh no, they changed the TARDIS. Something they've done many times in the course of the show. And while I prefer the coral version, this isn't exactly a new thing. They changed the sonic Screwdriver, something that they had intended to do for Tennant (The original version of 11's screwdriver even had a 2006 copyright on it). They don't revisit companions 10 so adamantly made his goodbyes too! Panic! Mayhem! Dogs and cats living together!

Sir Thomas Sean Connery said:
I despised Smith for a while because I watched End of Time and INSTANTLY watched 11th Hour.
Oddly enough, I hate change. I was ready to abandon Doctor Who when I found out Tennant was leaving. And Smith won me over before the End of Time even finished.

Geronimo!

Atmos Duality said:
Considering he's been killed by radiation once, and survived a fall larger in The End of Time than the one in Logopolis, I think he might have been pushing the "I'm going to die" angle a whee bit too hard.
Not to mention his fear of death was a sudden, new thing for this Doctor. Even if you consider the asspull from the end of series 4 to be a precursor, it still has barely any traction. The Doctor has risked his life like four dozen times in the course of his time in the 10th incarnation alone, and suddenly he doesn't want to die because ponies.

It also sort of screws over the character arc that had been built with the tenth Doctor.

Captcha: it is different.

Yes, yes it is.
 

Something Amyss

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Palmerama said:
McGann I thought was good in the film but the script wasn't the best. The audio stories are alot better. Hopefully he'll come back for the 50th anniversary (from what I've heard only Eccleston doesn't want anything to do with it).
McGann had a really rough deal, and he did the best with what he had. I'm torn because I wanted to see him as the Doctor, but not in anything related to that crappy pilot.

I wonder how much fan rage there would be if McGann came back for a classic-style team up, since many don't even recognise him as official.

Also, I really hope Eccleston changes his mind.
 

Bara_no_Hime

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SaneAmongInsane said:
Then BAM! Regeneration. "Still not ginger", number 11 moves on with his fucking life with out so much a glance at his past or any of the deep feelings he's had in the past couple of hours.
That's pretty much how it goes with regeneration. That's WHY 10 is so upset - he's basically going to die. Yes, the Doctor keeps going, but not the same one.

And, as noted by others, this is pretty much how all the Doctors have been. Move on, start anew. With a few exceptions, the Doctor usually gets new companions either right before or right after a regeneration. It tends to be a time when the writers clear the deck and try something different.

So yeah, so far so standard.

I actually quiet like Matt Smith. He's not the best (that would be Tom Baker) or my favorite (that would be Peter Davidson) but he does a fine job and brings some unique character traits to the Doctor.
 

Amethyst Wind

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I actually didn't like 10th's regeneration. I liked the episode (John Simms is brilliant as The Master) and I liked it up until 10 saved Wilf. The whole thing with him revisiting his past companions?

Garbage.

Especially the scene with Rose.

I consider the worst part of the show to be - "I don't want to go."

Did he really need to say those words? A silent physical demonstration of this sentiment would have been so much more evocative. The use of language really cheapened it. I'm not even a fan of how Tennant spoke the line.


Matt Smith as 11 was perfect. He was as gung-ho as new 10 but he was also shockingly, refeshingly arrogant. He knew exactly who he was and his pedigree and just brought the "Fuck you all I'm awesome" feeling of some of the earlier Doctors (including Eccleston's 9) that Tennant's 10 was loathe to do as they were trying to have him be less of an arrogant genius even if he continuously saved the day.

I was in the Moffat camp at the time as I didn't like half of Russell T. Davies' supporting cast that he introduced in an attempt to get more shows geenlit like Torchwood and Unit. After watching Moffat's 11 I still really liked it but found that my interest in a 6-year old reboot was waning.

I still haven't watched the latest Christmas special.