12th Doctor revealed

dwDOCTOR WHO. It’s an iconic TV show, and the iconic role has always been met with fanatical media attention. Today’s reveal was no exception.

Fans were treated an over-half-an-hour unprecedented special in typical over-the-top BBC style. Featuring interviews with Doctor Who fans (including Stephen Hawking and Brian Cox) and cast members past and present, it was a celebration of the last 50 years and what is yet to come.

This comes after the announcement in June this year that Matt Smith would be leaving the role after 4 years portraying the 11th incarnation of the Doctor.

Speculation reached an all-time high following the announcement, with calls for the first female doctor (even supported by Smith) and criticism of Moffat’s lack of diversity. Candidates from Helen Mirren to Hugh Laurie were suggested; however Quantum of Solace actor Rory Kinnear and Peter Capaldi remained the bookies’ favourite.

The successor was kept well under wraps so it could be revealed on the show organisers’ own terms. The half-hour special opened with a montage of famous cast and characters who have appeared through previous incarnations and series, going on to interview famous fans such as Rufus Hound, Outnumbered’s Daniel Roche and Liza Tarbuck, among others.

Matt Smith was the first to reveal the new Doctor was to be male; saying that he was exactly who he’d have chosen, given the opportunity. He also sent a message to the new Doctor, wishing him luck: “I just want to wish my successor all the best and just say good luck and good on you for getting it”.

After 25 minutes of what can only be described as ‘amble’, Zoe Ball announced it was time for the new Doctor to reveal himself. A dramatic lift-and-smoke sequence later, and he stepped out, grinning. It was, as the bookies had predicted, Peter Capaldi.

Capaldi, who is best known for his work as the sharp-witted and foul-mouthed Malcolm Tucker from the Thick of It, revealed in an interview with Ball after that he had always been a Doctor Who fan. He has also appeared in Doctor Who before, playing a Roman merchant called Caecilius in a 2008 episode called “The Fires of Pompeii”, and the role of John Frobisher in season 3 of Torchwood.

He has previously won a BAFTA and British Comedy Award for his portrayal of Malcolm Tucker, as well as an Academy Award for Live Action Short Film for Frank Kafka’s It’s Wonderful Life in 1995.

Peter admitted to Zoe Ball he is a lifelong Doctor Who Fan, admitted that he used to play it since he was nine, and seemed thrilled that he has been given the opportunity to play it as an adult.

Charlotte Moore, Controller BBC One, said that Peter Capaldi has “all the genius and versatility needed to take on the mantel of the great Time Lord and make the role his own.”

“He’ll bring his own particular wisdom, charisma and wit to the Twelfth Doctor and take the show into an exciting new era”.

Executive producer and head writer Stephen Moffat said “We got the 12th person around and made a home video of him being the Doctor and showed it to the relevant people, and everyone said “Yes, that’s the Doctor.”

“It’s an incendiary combination: one of the most talented actors of his generation is about to play the best part on television. Peter Capaldi is in the TARDIS!”

Matt, who joined the show in 2010, will appear in his last scenes in the Christmas Special, with Peter appearing in 2014. He will join current assistant Jenna Coleman, who plays Clara.

Doctor Who‘s 50th anniversary special is to air in November, exactly 50 years after the first episode was broadcast. It will feature Matt and Jenna, as well as stars of previous series including David Tennant, Billie Piper and John Hurt.