Doctor Who has been on screen for 50 years and he’s gone through some drastic changes but the fans have always been there. Until now. Now, just when the show could come to a whole new level, fans may tear it apart.
A Hole In Time and Space
After 50 years on television, it’s not surprising that things have happened that fans weren’t crazy about. They’ve sat through the Whomobile, Colin Baker’s costumes and a TV movie where the Doctor was half-human. But nothing has upset fans more than the existence of current showrunner Steven Moffat. He has been running the series since Matt Smith took over as the 11th doctor and while continue his tenure into Pete Capaldi’s time as the doctor. More fans seemed upset that Moffat was staying than that Matt Smith was leaving.
Moffat’s writing is not flawless. He’s great at one-shot episodes (he is the man who did “Blink” and “Empty Child”) but has dropped the ball on arcs and female characters (River Song, Clara Oswald). But Moffat’s writing isn’t the biggest threat the fandom faces. The biggest threat is the fandom itself.
Every episode is nit-picked apart. Some fans do it for the clues and hints about things yet to come or references to the past. Others do it to tear the show apart and that is the problem. Other shows have flaws but they are not put under the same lens that Doctor Who, and it’ s hurting the show. The fandom is forcibly dividing itself by choosing best doctor, best writer, best companion, etc. There’s nothing wrong with having a favorite but when you refuse to watch or even respect something other than what you love, your going to ruin it for everyone.
The arrival of Capaldi could bring back viewers or turn off viewers. People who were turned off by having a young doctor and young companions may be willing to give the show another try. But younger fans who were brought in by more attractive doctors may find the older Capaldi unappealing. It is the inherent problem with a show that is constantly changing-attachment is hard and as fans learned, quickly and brutally destroyed by stray Weeping Angel or necessary mine wipe.
The show lends itself to discussion and differences but fans need to make sure those differences don’t hurt the show. They need to appreciate the things that a still good along with the things they may not like. And they can’t hate other fans. Just because someone likes Peter Davison more then Tom Baker doesn’t make them a bad person and just because someone has only watched ‘new Who’ doesn’t meant they’re not a true fan. Anyone who watches and loves the show is part of the fandom and that’s something the fans need to remember. The show is about changing and growing and you can’t refuse to change with the show, or the show may not be around.