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Tomorrow (Sunday) the world's going to find out who the next Doctor will be.  And with that, a spirited debate that's been going on in fandom will probably wind down for a while:

 "Should we allow for the possibility that the next Doctor could be a woman?"

 At this point, almost every aspect of that question has been talked to death elsewhere (including other parts of my own DA page), and I don't want to retread it here (too much).  But here's one of the most interesting (and increasingly common) arguments for why it shouldn't happen, and I want to focus on it for a few minutes.  I'll quote it the way it was said by one commentator here:

 "If you make him a woman you're taking away an amazing role model for young boys.  There have always been great female role models in the form of the companions, but the doctor is one of the only role models boys have who uses his wits and heart to get through a situation, not his fists."

 I've seen that stated quite a bit lately, almost to the point of becoming a meme.  It's the most compelling argument I've seen for keeping the Doctor male- and I totally agree w/ the sentiment of what the Doctor can represent to boys.   For a few seconds, I thought- "Well at least that's a constructive point."  As opposed to some of the facepalm-worthy reasons some have expressed ("female actors can't be funny" or "women can't be Doctors- he'd have to be The Nurse"  I shit you not, a real human being said that).  But the more I thought about it... this better-sounding argument is just as biased.  And when I mentioned it to my girlfriend, she didn't need a few seconds to come up with the obvious response:

 "Oh, and girls DO have those role models?  Really?"

 If we're going to "think of the children" (the same rallying cry that.. sorry... holds marriage equality back, and so many other gender and sexuality issues) let's think of the other 50% as well, and not just dismiss them with a wave of the hand.  What kind of role models are the companions for young girls?  They're great, admirable, and mostly women- but they aren't the lead.  They're second fiddle.   Worse- disposable second fiddles who get to play for (at best) three years.  They don't get to achieve the rich characterization that comes with 50 years of history.   They don't get announced on live transatlantic telecasts.  There's no "All the Companions Ever" action figure box set (in fact, the toymakers will drop the adage on you that most companions are "weak" in sales numbers, and thus will never be made at all).    Many just become forgotten footnotes (some younger fans probably hear of "Vicki" and "Victoria" and assume it's the same person).   

 Little girls just might make an unfortunate conclusion from watching Doctor Who... and it might grow more quietly soul-deflating with each new companion: "The best you can do is grow up to support a brilliant man and keep him sane- and maybe get to solve smaller problems while he's busy with the big ones.  But at the end of the day, you're expendable."   Or as the all-too-short-lived Liz Shaw herself once put it... all the Doctor needs is someone to pass him the test tubes and tell him how brilliant he is.  Harsh (and probably unfair) assessment, but who can blame Liz for having a short temper and taking off after one season.  She was the lead scientific advisor to UNIT (a "Doctor" in her own right even) before the Doctor stole her job and demoted her to playing "assistant".  There's probably some alternate universe where she was the star of her own DOOMWATCH type series , with the Brigadier playing sidekick as they saved the world from Autons and Silurians.  Except they wouldn't have- they all would've ended up dead (or mostly dead- give the Big Finish audio story SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL a listen to find out how badly the world would have done without the Doctor to save it- or watch TURN LEFT for a more modern take).  Apparently only the Doctor is brilliant and powerful enough to stop most alien menaces, no matter how much heart the companions have.

Yes, a few went on to world-saving careers of their own, but the only one that really graduated to being something truly like the Doctor in her own right was Romana.  And at the moment she fully achieved that, she disappeared from the series, never to be seen again.   Sarah Jane got a spinoff, but it never had a fraction of Doctor Who's budget or promotion.  And when the admittedly irreplaceable Lis Sladen died, the show sadly went away.   Apparently Sarah was a special case, not to be repeated- and no one questioned the only reason the show happened in the first place was the success of the "parent show". 

Think about it this way.  Name a LEADING part for a woman in "genre" fiction in recent sci-fi/ fantasy TV and film.  Here's the list I came up with off the top of my head: Buffy Summers; Ellen Ripley; Sarah Connor; Lara Croft; Kate Beckinsale in UNDERWORLD; Milla Jovovich in RESIDENT EVIL...  See the trend?  All have to solve problems with violence.  It's also worth noting that most of the above heroines are aimed at an age group well above that of the hypothetical children we're worried about here.  It's conspicuous in many supporting characters too: Starbuck (herself a case of gender recasting); River from FIREFLY; and even River from Who (who, for all the "There's your female Time Lord" arguments, is noticeably more at ease with violence than the Doctor).   And even one of those leading parts, Sarah Connor, ultimately is there just to protect precious little John Connor, the "true" savior of the human race (you ask me, Sarah did all the hard work- but the series ultimately regulates her to a supporting role in saving the world- and even killed her off and carried on).  Not to mention  it's always a "family unit" where Sarah is never the biggest ass-kicker- there's always a Kyle Reese, Ah-Nuld, or Cameron (an android girl, not a real one) to do the hardest hitting.  Even Buffy and (in her most memorable outing) Ripley have a family unit of sorts to protect.  Don't get me wrong- women kicking ass is awesome.  Fierce "mama bears" rule.  But girls never get to run off and see the Universe on their own, following their heart, doing whatever they please, being brilliant, and having a better way than violence.  Why?  I don't know for sure.   It's a question worth asking, I think.    

When I put the question to one fan (a woman, interestingly) who was using the same "boys role model"  argument, all she could come up with was Hermione Granger (I didn't have the heart to remind her that the series is called HARRY POTTER).  But she went on to say that there were plenty of other women role models outside of sci-fi and fantasy... which is when I really got sad for the whole thing.  And while she said those role models were "countless", the two she cited were Jane Eyre and Maria Von Trapp- two women who, however strong, independent, and admirable they might be... "win" their story by ending up as married mothers.  Again- that's great for them.  But we're back to the same kind of problem- women don't get the options male characters do- it almost always ends with settling down.  Running off in their own TARDIS (even the Jackson Lake hot air balloon kind) would be unthinkably selfish.  It's also worth noting that the two names the woman picked out of a hat are definitely not modern examples.  The only exception  I can think of in recent times is Merida in BRAVE.  So that's one (thank god).  But as far as sci-fi goes, the closest person I could think of is Captain Janeway in STAR TREK: VOYAGER.  But even there, Janeway was ultimately just the top component of a crew- she has to rely on Tuvok, Torres, Tom Paris, etc to get things done.  And again, she's tied to a family (in multiple senses)- she doesn't get to fly off in Voyager on her own and have fun like the Doctor (as in Who, not the hologram) does.  And in the JJ Abrams age, that universe has been rebooted with a "regenerated" James T. Kirk, where essentially only 4 women got to appear in significant speaking roles over the course of two films.  And as many other folks pointed out, 3 of them had to appear in their underwear for no discernible storytelling purpose, two didn't survive the first film (google "women in refrigerators" for more on that phenomenon), and all four were defined primarily by their sexual or familial relationship to a more important male cast member (seriously- what the hell?).

But credit to non-Abrams Star Trek for putting a powerful woman in the driver's seat in 1995, while it's still being hotly debated as even a possibility in Who.  Trek also was way ahead on the gender-swapping alien issue, with Dax in DS9.  Why did they do either?  Were they being "progressive"?  "Socially relevant"?  Or (as some detractors call such moves) "politically correct" and "pandering"?  Maybe any of those.  But maybe it was also just because, after 30 years, the showrunners wanted to try something that was a little new.  Because good storytellers don't tell the same story forever.

And that's the thing.  For me, the many "political" benefits of a woman in the part of the Doctor are just icing on the cake. The real reason to potentially do it is to tell some new stories (hard to do, after 800 episodes).  Time Lords can swap gender- it's canon. The Doctor's only alive now b/c he absorbed all of River's regeneration energy- that's canon.  So there's a perfectly good reason for the possibility of it "within universe".  But the truth is that a good writer could think of a million reasons to change fundamental aspects of the show for the sake of trying something new (regeneration, the concept of Time Lords, the UNIT era, and Doctor-y romance of any kind were all potential shark jumps in their time- now they're part of the show's DNA).  That's probably why Matt Smith, Paul Cornell, Neil Gaiman, Jessica Hynes, Russell T. Davies and a lot of other Who alumni have said a female Doctor should at least be allowed as a possibility. Moff himself has spoken favorably of the idea (he even asked for a show of hands once at a Q&A session as to who thought it was a good idea- you know on some level, he's at least considered it).  It's probably going to happen sooner or later. The talk about it gets stronger with each recasting- I don't remember anything even remotely like the pitch of this debate when Tennant was leaving.  Interestingly, at that point the big question was COULD the Doctor be black- and even though it didn't come to pass (for the Doctor at least), that already seems a laughably quaint question now.

Tomorrow the debate will be moot again, one way or the other.  And as much as I like the idea of Ruth Wilson or Sophie Okonedo as the Doctor, I'll be punching the air if it's an actor like Peter Capaldi- because he's a badass and he'll be friggin' amazing.  Tomorrow there's a real possibility that anyone could step out on that stage, and that makes this the most exciting new Doctor ever. 

But next time, if someone's saying this series that can go anywhere and do anything is only allowed to go one way, forever... making every casting announcement 50% less exciting... never even allowing for the possibility...  ask why.  And when you do... think of the children. ;)

 

Ruth Wilson as The Doctor by PaulHanley

 

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:iconheretofour:
Heretofour Featured By Owner Aug 15, 2013
What a great article. Thanks for giving a sensible answer and a something for me to look out for in my sci-fi/fantasy choices. I also think it's important for boys to see that women can be strong too without throwing punches or welding guns around. Too many I've seen are the typical damsel-in-distress or craving a family. Thank goodness for Merida, who they adore. 
Anyway, I'll eagerly wait for the day the Doctor gets bored of being a bloke and fancies a change. It could be fun. :)
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:iconfarsh-nuke:
farsh-nuke Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I agree one hundred percent with what you've said and I regret that in the past when I thought the world was more equal that I sidelined women in my fiction. 
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 9, 2013  Professional
It's not an easily-solved subject.  I think every writer on the face of the Earth- whatever race, gender, religion, or economic background- comes to a piece of writing with some degree of bias.  The trick is trying to be aware of that as possible.  :)
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:icontheevilnae:
TheEvilNae Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
An excellent and well written observation. This really is a HUGE and unfortunate deficit in the realm of fiction (scifi, fantasy, or other). That a female character's ability to be strong and free equals violent. Thank you for getting me thinking in a direction I had not thought to go before. Also, you totally called it on Capaldi and that makes me happy. While a woman would have been incredibly cool... in the end it comes down to finding the doctor, whatever gender, race, or hair color, and I definitely feel Mr. Capaldi is it. 
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 9, 2013  Professional
Thanks. What's kinda unsettling is I had that "Hey- all the strong women in genre stuff are really freakin' violent!" epiphany right as I'm in the middle of working on a comic that (you guessed it) features a good number of strong-yet-violent women. That kinda rattled me a bit. Then again, it's kind of a "punching things in general" book for male AND female characters- and it's also big on the message of "most of these people probably aren't great role models" (it's DEFINITELY not for kids). And at least one woman in it is more about solving problems with brains than brawn, and another one's whole thing is about being very much an anti-violence, situation-defusing type. So at least it's not just some across-the-boards tropery going on. But it does make me go, "Hmmm... maybe next time I can do a little better on this sort of thing..."

And yeah, as much as I wanted a woman Doctor this time out, Capaldi's gonna be amazing. I can't wait to see what he does with it. Neil Gaiman had some interesting comments on this and the female Doctor "controversy": www.digitalspy.com/british-tv/… It's interesting that he says that while he wouldn't have suceeded SMith with a woman, he absolutely would plan to do it for the one after Capaldi. So I guess all we need to do now is make sure Gaiman gets the showrunner gig after Moff. :D
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:icondori411:
dori411 Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I remember reading in my Doctor ho book The Eighties that they were playing with the idea for a female Doctor throughout Baker to Sylvesters era. They never went through with it because "They didn't wan to create a Wonderwoman." Because you know, women can't possibly do what the Doctor does...ug...
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2013  Professional
Yeah- disappointing.  Though given the problems JNT's show had behind the scenes, it may not have come off well (though I'm not sure that's a good reason for never doing it- once the barrier's broken, it's broken- and the next team can come come along and do it better).  I think probably the only showrunner we've had in the last 30 years who could do it well was Davies (allegedly he thought about casting Judi Dench as #9).
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:icondori411:
dori411 Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
That would have been interesting. However I am worried they would over sexualize a female Doctor. As of late the BBC has this thing about making "naughty girls" as heroines. Everyone has to hit on everyone. In reality you would be slapped with sexual harassment for that kind of behaviour. Now I am not saying lets go back to the Victorian era. That would be ludicrous. Sure you can have a few characters act that way…but how come no one says “Put it back in your trousers!” “You’re making me feel uncomfortable.” or “Sorry I’m just not that into you!” We seem to have entered an age that believes this new over sexualised behaviour is enlightened. They just have no idea how to write proper strong female characters. Clara is just another Amy…they may be smart but for the most part they are sexy and disposable.
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:icondori411:
dori411 Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
In addition, I think a female Doctor would be great, but they would make her "naughty" because that seems to be the BBC stance on what makes a strong woman nowadays. Because the over sexualisation of women is oh so progressive.
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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013
EPIC WIN
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Professional
Totally thrilled.  Like I said already above, Capaldi will be amazing.  And thank god it's not Daniel Rigby or Rupert Grint- it saves the "That's a change, ginger!" jokes for when Ruth Wilson takes over. ;)
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:icongnogal:
GNogal Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Peter Capaldi
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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013
Well, assuming the picture on the BBC website with its face hidden is actually the new actor and not just a placeholder the 12th Doctor is male: img.photobucket.com/albums/v83…
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:iconlegion626:
legion626 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Student General Artist
ohmph sorry you had to read that or for any one who had or tried to read it nut the main ideas are still there and I thought they were at least pretty good.
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:iconlegion626:
legion626 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Student General Artist
frack my keyboard.
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:iconlegion626:
legion626 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Student General Artist
no female doctor. no gender bending, if they want a new show about a female time lady, go ahead. But do not change male doctor to female it is like changing the characters ideals. Some things shouldn't be messed with its like me taking James bond and making him an American. a few things should be held sacred for the characters sake and that is gender, self ideals and the basis of what that character was meant to do here's an idea why don't we make batman an actual bat who uses guns, kills fights the gcpd and where's bright purple and red. That's a cool idea just like a show about a time lady but its not BATMAN. david tenant was my doctor and even though the doctor is suppose to be the same there not iv relaised the best thing to explain the character of the doctor is an ideal the doctor is an ideal and it has an actor to potray those ideals its kinda like having a big bible with the chapter names of the actor who played the doctor an the protrail of it in fact when I think about it its like somedody who has there own ideal of what the book was trying to say nine took the idea as the doctor is there to protect and serve the basic meaning but it wasmt about being kind to all people 10 was about compassion and of course the doctors there to help but just like nine not to intervene and eleven personified the notion of being the doctor as some one who helps others but also them selfs even if they had to intervene an example of this would b the angles episode and the doomsday episodes 1en loses rose but doesn't shatter the universe to get to her but eleven in the angles was willing to desteoy evey=r thing I he possibly could to semmingliy get back the pond s iactually had a bultiful example ofthis theorie but I acant keep up with my own pace because im running out of room and icant even see what im writing any more the point is all the doctors hold the idea of the doctor the promise of who that person is but like each writer is different so is the actor and how they belive the doctor should be portrayed they all bring their own thinking of what the doctor stands for and in a way the identie of the doctor and idea of the doctor is a  teaching sort of like the way of the doctor. Writing all this even with many mistakes iv proven my own point for hate in afemale doctor is arrogant ecpessialy when I understand the doctor in the end is a way of a moral compass kind of like religion but to me the teacher is at least always the same gender and iguess that is why not only I but many hate the idea of a female doctor because we know they are the same in idea but there also very different and at this  point changing the gender would just make the premise to forign even though it with holds the ideas in the end I guess it would be me growing up all my life being told jesus was white but then I see a picture of him as a black man like your preconceived notion has been shattered I hoped you read this and forgive me of not being able to correct my many grammer and spelling mistakes im really sorry but I cant even see what im writing and if its wrong or not.
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Professional

I'll be honest- I didn't read your post.  Too many words for no punctuation, capitalization, or paragraph breaks.  Sorry.

 

Moff's explicitly pro-woman Doctor comments from today are really all the "final word" needed for the moment.  And Peter Capaldi's casting has now proven that what a lot of fans think are the possible parameters for a new Doctor may be a lot more narrow then what the writers have in mind. :)

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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013
How and why should the Doctor confined to "an ideal"? He's been an old man, a young man, overweight, skinny, tall, short, blond, brunette (but not ginger!). Hell, Tom Baker is half-Jewish and Sylvester McCoy is some sort of Irish/Scottish Celtic mashup hybrid. Doctor Who tells small stories, big stories, stories in the past, stories in the future, alien stories, parallel stories. By its nature the show's format is hugely more flexible than most other fictional universes. You can't have that sort of variation with characters like Batman, who is much more narrowly confined and defined. The only ideal for casting the Doctor should be "that indefinable magic".
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:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Um... Yeah. Punctuation was totally invented for a reason. Just sayin'.
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:icondaleksoralth:
DalekSoralth Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Question. Is tomorrow the 50th Anniversery? If so I'm gonna miss it but hey I can't argue. I'm in Florida. 
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:iconsonikkuruzu:
sonikkuruzu Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
The 50th Anniversary is the 23rd of November. Tomorrow is when the Twelfth Doctor will be announced
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:icondaleksoralth:
DalekSoralth Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ah thanks k
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:iconsonikkuruzu:
sonikkuruzu Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
You're welcome
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:icondaleksoralth:
DalekSoralth Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've only seen the newest four but I was watching one of the older episodes and seven I think grew on me. Any idea what Ace's backstory is? I tried to look it up but I couldn't find why she has all the space shuttle patches. 
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:iconsonikkuruzu:
sonikkuruzu Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
The TARDIS wiki doesn't really explain much but still had more information than most other sites tardis.wikia.com/wiki/Ace
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:iconzender3162:
zender3162 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013
Don't want a female Doctor. Won't the 12th is a woman as long as she is a good actress. Going to try to go black on who the new Doctor is. Wish me luck.
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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I am okay with the possibility of a Female, I just think now's not the right time for it.
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional

I agree that the timing isn't great, with Moff at the wheel.  But how often do progressive things happen under ideal conditions?  They usually happen in spite of them.  You could wait a lifetime waiting for "the right time" (the idea of a female Doctor's been discussed since 1980).  My one hope is that, if it did happen, Moff's undeniable lifelong fandom would override his usual instincts for writing women, and we'd get someone written pretty much the same way as Matt Smith, with only some subtle changes. But like I say, that's a HOPE.

 

But I'd rather see a season of mediocre writing with the Jackie Robinson of Female Doctors than Here's Another Guy Like Matt Smith in the same.  I think as long as the performance is strong enough, that's gonna override most other considerations. And one thing I can guarantee is that IF they cast a woman, she's going to be a truly formidable actress who destroyed in the audition. The production team wouldn't risk it otherwise. 

 

That said, I don't think we'll get a female Doctor later today.  But there's more hope for it than ever before.

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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I am open to it, But at the same time I am hesitant. I would hate to see the Actress getting screwed with other fans not being acceptance of it. But I agree with you that it Probably wont happen for a while, If ever. We can't predict the future of how long this Era of Who will last, I mean look at the last one 63 - 89. 26 years, I am hoping it lasts a long time but I dunno if it will make it to another 26 year run.
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional
I disagree on the "if ever" part.  It's gonna happen at some point- either through courage, desperation, or just plain boredom on the point of the showrunner.  The noise about it only gets louder every time the part is recast, and if it doesn't happen in this iteration of the show, it'll be in the next.  The show's like James Bond and Sherlock Holmes now- it's a Britsh institution that isn't ever going to go away permanently.
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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013
Let's not forget either that it HAS happened in spinoff media. The novels and audios have proven to be a reasonable bellwether of where the series itself will go in five to ten years. For me I think the biggest narrative issue to there being a female Doctor is why, if Time Lords can change gender, the Doctor has spent centuries and most of his incarnations* apparently avoiding doing so. 

*I absolutely guarantee the twelve regeneration limit will be going out of the window within the next couple of years.
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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I suppose that is true. We will just have to wait and see.
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:iconbowthorpe:
Bowthorpe Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013
I'm not racist or sexist but I think the Doctor will always be a white male character. Firstly the programme makers won't want to annoy the core fanboy demographic and secondly wouldn't it cause a bit of a suprise for David Campbell and Leela to find their spouses have suddenly changed sex after a regeneration?
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:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
I'm not saxcist or rextervist but I think the Doctor should always be a former Charlies' Angel or Tom Baker. Possibly, Leela (but with pants/trousers/leggings of some sort).
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional

I'm sorry, but no good statement in the English language ever started with, "I'm not (fill in form of bias/ bigotry here), but..."  That's always as ominous as a cloister bell. 

 

I'd also argue "fanboys" aren't the core demographic anymore- it's young children. You can see that just in the sales patterns of the New Series action figures, which are vastly ruled by the buying power of kids (even though older fans have more discretionary funds). And I've discovered that at cons maybe as much of the money being spent on Who merch is coming from "fangirls". In the 90s and early 2000s that was different, but the show belongs to a vastly more diverse audience now.  Also keep in mind that quite a few "fanboys" were annoyed with Matt Smith's age- what did that ever amount to?

 

As for David Campbell and Andred (two ridiculously minor bits of canon to stand in the way of hundreds of new stories)- what's the problem?  Star Trek made a whole episode out of that issue a long, long time ago: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Host…) True challenges + uncertainty = story worth telling.  Besides, the way Leela was written out was atrocious- a terrible and false ending that betrayed an otherwise strong character, and relates to a lot of my points above.  But I suspect she would've dealt with it in two ways- she'd either be able to handle it or she wouldn't, and she'd accept it in her typically understated manner.  Ditto with Campbell.  As Susan and Leela are probably dead in the wake of the Time War, it's a non-issue anyway.

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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I have made that argument that only Time Lords can Regnerate into Time lords  and Time Ladies into Time Ladies. Party because, how would one change to the other? It doesn't make sense to me, It to me would seem like a very unstable way of having things happen because a chromosome would be pretty much being destroyed and being replaced with another one. (That is assuming that Time Lords have X and Y chromosomes). But with the Male to Male regneration the chromosomes are the same just the body changes, That is just how I explained why a Woman Doctor possibly wouldn't make sense. But having said that I am open to the Idea, Just very hesitant to think how it would turn out.
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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013
You're assuming Time Lord genetics are even remotely compatible with human genetics. There are many organisms on Earth that don't use XY chromosomes to determine gender. "Chromosomes don't change but the body changes" makes no sense as the chromosomes would be responsible for patterning and maintaining that new body, and we know the Doctor can regrow limbs with only leftover regeneration energy. Gallifreyans could just as easily contain both male and female genes and thus alternate between one state and another just as easily as they alternate between being blond or brunette, or tall and short. Changing sex would be significantly easier than changing SPECIES, which we know Time Lords can do (cf. Romana's first regeneration, and the 8th Doctor explicitly stating that he could change species when he regenerated in the TV movie). 

On the other hand, we only have first-hand knowledge of one Time Lord changing sex when they regenerated - the Corsair. We don't know if this was typical or viewed as anything from eccentric to bizarre by other Time Lords (the Doctor certainly seemed to approve of the Corsair's "bad girl" persona, but he's always been a champion of the unconventional), and we don't know if this was something the Corsair simply chose to do, learned to do, or required extra intervention to arrange.

In short - really, there's nothing in canon to suggest that Time Lords definitely *can't* change gender when they regenerate, and canon evidence to suggest they *can*, but nothing to indicate the circumstances that would lead to a Time Lord changing gender. Is it common? Is it an accident? Is it unusual, but not outside the bounds of normality? Or is it extremely rare? Of the dozens of Time Lords we've seen or heard of during the course of Doctor Who we only know of one who has changed gender, but that doesn't mean anything - if it were common it typically wouldn't be commented on any more than their eyes changing colour between incarnations would be.
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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Steven Moffat original made the Joke of Time Lords being able to regenerate into Women (Children in Need Doctor who Special from 1999 called  Doctor Who and the Curse of Fatal Death.)
In my Opinion Neil Gaiman was making a Joke/reference to that comedy skit.  I know it's not a great argument but you have to remember,  that The Time Lords influenced many SPECIES to look, and have similar attributes  as the Time Lords, so how do we know that they don't have Chromosomes?

I do accept that it might be possible for a Time Lord to become a Time Lady, And I am fine with them doing it, I just don't think at this time It is right.
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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013
Yes, I know The Curse of Fatal Death. It's not canon. And neither is the idea of Time Lords influencing the appearance of other species (IIRC that comes from the New Adventures). We don't know whether Time Lords have chromosomes or not, but as their biochemistry and internal physiology are significantly different to that of humans it's odd to assume that their genetics would be similar.
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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I know, It was just a thought. Partly because the Doctor refers to parts of the Human Anatomy that Time Lords have (other than Hearts) and I think that is a little more that just a acident, But I do agree with you. The only reason I created this argument was because I was dealing with a new fan that knew nothing of Doctor Who said that The Doctor should be a woman, for no other reason the that she is a Feminist and believes any male character could probably be better if A woman played it. 
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:iconkasterborous:
Kasterborous Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013
Ah, misandry masquerading as feminism. Sometimes stupid people need to be taught the difference, so good on you.
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:iconthowell3:
Thowell3 Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah, She doesn't talk to me much any more about Doctor Who. I really got her annoyed.
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:iconhawkmonger:
Hawkmonger Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I get what your saying....but he's a guy. Its that simple, why fix what isnt broken?
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:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
What is 'broken' about being a woman?
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:iconhawkmonger:
Hawkmonger Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Didn't mean it like that at all. I just don't see the point of trying to twist continuity just to try something different. I get what Paul is saying and that there should be more sci-fi and fantasy female leads, strong ones anyway, but The Doctor IS male*. Why change something that doesn't need to be changed?

*Yes yes, Paul's told me his arguments for why he thinks Time Lords can change gender when it come's to regeneration. I've pointed out it's purely superficial fluff from the modern series and a data book. Of cause, if The Doctor does regenerate into a women and it can be explained why, then my attitude may well change.
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:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
I guess we'll find out soon.
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:iconhawkmonger:
Hawkmonger Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
It's officialy a he according to Rankin.

www.drwho-online.co.uk/news/im…
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:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Oh my giddy aunt!
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:iconpaulhanley:
PaulHanley Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Professional

It isn't that simple- just a simplistic argument.  You clearly don't get my point, b/c it was that the show is very much broken for 50% of the audience.  Once William Hartnell left the role, "just because he's always been..." went out the window.

 

Also... I'll climb up on the High Horse here for a sec and try not to sound too pretentious...  Nowadays, Doctor Who rarely lives up to it's original mission statement as laid down by Sydney Newman: a program that educates AND entertains children.  The last time I thought the show dealt with anything approaching socially relevant material was "Vincent and the Doctor".   As much as some people moaned about RTD's "gay agenda", I think that did a lot of good for kids who saw it.   Maybe the show should actually try to aspire to creating the sort of positive change in the world that its hero stands for.  Otherwise, at the end of the day... isn't it all empty talk? 

 

Ask youself this: if the Doctor himself was writing the show, what do you think he'd do with it? 

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:iconhawkmonger:
Hawkmonger Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
In answer to your question, hell, who am I to judge that?!

Honestly, giving it some thought I am more concerned they choose a hip, tacky actress to play the role "just because" rather than the actual change in continuity (though this will upset my OCD no end!).
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