Doctor Who Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor Who

Published on November 3rd, 2012 | by Christian Cawley

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Matt Smith: McGann “a great Doctor”

Matt Smith’s birthday weekend appearance at the London Comic Con last week saw the fielding of an interesting question – has he seen the Paul McGann-starring TV movie from 1996?

Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor Who

We’re big fans of Paul McGann here at Kasterborous, and not just because of his astonishing performance in what was a lacklustre piece of Doctor Who. It takes something special to be able to instantly impress on the viewer that you’re the new star of the show (despite the lack of a follow up…) when you’re hampered by the presence of your predecessor.

So what did Matt think of it?

“I have seen it, and it’s good, but I kind of think the Doctor isn’t a guy who goes and drinks cocktails at parties. If he did, then he’d go and he’d drop all the cocktails and he’d find that in the olive there was something that was about to explode and kill everyone!

“Paul is a great Doctor, actually; but I don’t think it was the most Doctor-y of stories.”

As Big Finish have proved, Paul is a great Doctor who can be outstanding in the right story. It’s one of those great “couldhavebeens”, isn’t it?

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About the Author

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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+.




11 Responses to Matt Smith: McGann “a great Doctor”

  1. avatar BOJAY says:

    Thank God for Big Finish, and thank Paul for being willing to carry on with the role. He has indeed had many audio stories that have been every bit as good as anything seen on television, and many times even better. I still do hope to see him get at least one more appearance on television though, whether it’s a fifthieth anniversary special or in the context of another episode. He’s one of the few older Doctors who could still physically believably carry off an appearance.

    • avatar Chris says:

      Could not agree more. McGann was the highlight of the TVM for sure.


      • I’ve often said that the one thing the TV movie got absolutely right was Paul McGann. I love the TVM in spite of itself, but mostly because he was such fun to watch, and had the spirit of the part spot on in a production that was otherwise wildly off the rails. I’m forever grateful to Big Finish for giving the Eighth Doctor a chance to really shine.

  2. avatar Krumstets says:

    “I have seen it, and it’s good, but I kind of think the Doctor isn’t a guy who goes and drinks cocktails at parties ”

    Maybe his incarnation of the Doctor wouldn’t do that, but others would most certainly have.

    Doctor Pertwee liked wine and cheese and the Hartnells Doctor liked to smoke a pipe.

    Lets have a future Doctor that isn’t so bloody puritanical and earnest and knows how to let his hair down in a party atmosphere that involves having a drink or two.

  3. avatar BOJAY says:

    I’m with you, Krumstets. And didn’t our Tenth Doctor indulge a few times in a little revelry? The Sixth Doctor recalled getting up to some drunken (apparently while in his Fourth incarnation) hijinks with his old friend and fellow Time Lord, Azmael. I think the Doctor’s indulgences vary from incarnation to incarnation. And let’s not forget The Corsair, as the Eleventh Doctor had some wild memories of times spent with him/her. And the Fourth Doctor, come to think of it, certainly acted like he drank a lot.


    • And the Fourth Doctor, come to think of it, certainly acted like he drank a lot.

      Ginger beer, of course!

    • avatar Andrew says:

      That may have been because Tom had a few drinks at the BBC bar in-between scenes.

  4. avatar BOJAY says:

    But, of course………..

  5. avatar BOJAY says:

    Yeah, but I think Christian might have been safeguarding the “comments” section for the sake of this “children’s show”. Tom was great with the kids by all accounts, and even refrained from smoking in public view. But there’s too much in evidence to support my initial comment. There’s “Alien”, which Tom did magnificently, and “drank a lot” which also explains a great deal of the Graham Williams seasons.

  6. avatar BOJAY says:

    And , “But, of course” came before “Ginger beer, of course” originally.

  7. avatar BOJAY says:

    At least in my intentions…………

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