Well. There we have it! The Moff certainly knows how to set the cat amongst the pigeons. Can open. Worms everywhere: boy worms, girl worms, and worms demanding not to be defined by their gender…
Doctor Who is a progressive show, as we all know, and the current production team has made it very clear that regeneration allows a Time Lord to change both their race (Mels to River Song in Let’s Kill Hitler) and their gender (the Corsair didn’t feel himself ‘or herself’ without his or her trademark tattoo). So as Moffat says it’s ‘narratively possible’ for our beloved hero to emerge from the orange blaze of regeneration as a 1000+ year-old Adventuress. But should he/she?
Moffat believes the time is not right:
“I didn’t feel enough people wanted it. Oddly enough, most people who said they were dead against it – and I know I’ll get into trouble for saying this – were women, saying, ‘No, no, don’t make him a woman.’”
I suspect most people (including me) who have reservations about a female actor in the role, feel somehow we wouldn’t be watching the same character. But, as a self-proclaimed feminist I discussed this with asked me, ‘what does the Doctor do that a woman can’t?’ On reflection, I think I have to agree. If the character is about adventure, intelligence, justice and being a bit bonkers, why can’t that be a woman?
Some say it would change the traditional relationship with the companion. But some of the Doctor’s best friends have been fellas, like Jamie and the Brigadier (though Jamie was in a skirt…).
Steven also said he wanted an older Doctor for the Time Lord’s next incarnation because he couldn’t see anyone replacing Matt Smith’s take:
“I think it’s good that we’ve got a different age, just because I cannot imagine what somebody in their twenties would do with the Doctor after Matt showed us all how to be a twenties Doctor. I don’t know what you would do after that because he was so perfect. You’d have to be an alternative or deliberate contradiction. It wouldn’t work, I don’t think.”
So what do you think – is the Doctor first and foremost a man, or is that sexism that should be left in the last century? And how old should that 1000-and-something-year-old look?