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Published on March 22nd, 2010 | by Christian Cawley

Uncle Sam-ic Screwdriver?

Paul McGann as the Eighth DoctorHiding away in some delightful banter between Eleventh Doctor Matt Smith and lovely Karen Gillan in the Mirror over the weekend was the return of the horrific
rumour of a US version of Doctor Who.

I cannot state clearly enough how absolutely wrong this would be. America had its chance with Doctor Who in 1996 – there is simply no way they could possibly do the series justice.

Apparently, a source told the Sunday Mirror:

“The countdown is on for an American Time Lord to take over the Tardis. Doctor Who is as British as tea and toast or fish and chips. So there will be a few ruffled feathers at the thought of such a British institution being given a Hollywood makeover.

“This is going to be an all-American Doctor. Think Uncle Sam with a Sonic Screwdriver.”

I’d rather not, frankly. Americanizing Torchwood is one thing – the format lends itself to a band of alien hunters from anywhere in the world.

While Doctor Who can take us anywhere in the world, an American version of the series can only succeed in making the same mistakes of the past, whether they be the “missing the point” failures of the TV Movie (which we at Kasterborous are fans of for two reasons – Paul McGann, above, and Daphne Ashbrook) or those since replicated on shows like Life on Mars.

Let’s keep Doctor Who British, people.


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About the Author


A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

3 Responses to Uncle Sam-ic Screwdriver?

  1. avatar MalenyGail says:

    I think an american Doctor Who should be prohibited. Thats like the USA deciding they want our Queen it just would’nt be right. They will just have to settle for the British Doctor Who.

  2. avatar bluebox444 says:

    I heartily agree. Keep the Doctor British. I’m an American, and I don’t despise my country like a lot of other people do, but I just know that Doctor Who wouldn’t work in an Americanized format.

  3. avatar Rengel says:

    I am an American and this is the most daft idea I ever heard. The Doctor is beyond British and the Hollywood suits would screw up everything that makes the Doctor unique.

    A better idea would be for Moff and Smith to follow RTD to the US and shoot a season over here. The companion (if Gillan does follow) could be American as most of the supporting players. Then the show could play off UK-US differences with a twist.

    Maybe the Doctor could reunite with UNIT, with his worldwide HQ located at Cheyenne Mountain, at the foot of the Rockies. (Go watch the film War Games to see what I mean.) The idea of the Doctor meeting such historical figures as Bejamin Franklin, Buffalo Bill Cody and, of course, Edgar Allen Poe would make for some interesting episodes.

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