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“Doctor Who” Announcement: And the New Doctor Is…. Peter Capaldi!


All the waiting, speculating, and incessant rumor-controlling has finally come to an end. The identity of the Twelfth Doctor was revealed today as part of an hour-long live special hosted by Zoe Ball simulcast on BBC One, BBC America, and Space in Canada, and ABC in Australia. And, with the odd-makers laying down bets up to the minute, the special revealed the Twelfth Doctor to be Scottish actor Peter Capaldi.

Capaldi is maybe best known as the foul-mouthed spin doctor Malcolm Tucker on the hit BBC comedy The Thick of It, but he’s no stranger to the Doctor Who world. He was a guest star on the episode “The Fires of Pompei,” and also he played a major supporting character in the Torchwood miniseries Children of Earth.” And, of course, as many folks have figured out by now, his role in World War Z was as “WHO Doctor.” Prescient!

ADDENDUM – You can see Peter Capaldi as Malcolm Tucker in The Thick of It and the spinoff movie In the Loop on Hulu. Please, beware of the incredibly bad language. Not for young children.

I’m so very excited for this new, older, likely sterner and more authoritarian take on the Doctor. Or maybe he won’t be. All Steven Moffat said in his taped bit was that he’s “different than Matt.” I’m stoked. Good choice. As sad as I will be to see Mr. Smith leave, I believe the role will be in the most excellent of hands. What do you think of this choice? Are you pleased, displeased, non-pleased? Let us know below!

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  1. NN says:

    Just reading some of these posts… wow.. people are just mean…. hello… people who ARE fans can have an opinion without being called names. For some reason I was foolish enough to think people on this site just might have respect for opinions. UGH.. I’m glad I’m done… and so sad that a disgusting foul mouth creepy feeling man will not be a Doctor that I’ll watch. Loved C. E. but he was not “foul” and Peter sure as heck seems to be… too disappointed to even give it a chance. I do hope others love it… I’ll wait for a Doctor I believe to be worthy of the roll… my opinion… I’m allowed to have it.. no go ahead, rip me to shreds

  2. NVNikki says:

    Just reading some of these posts… wow.. people are just mean…. hello… people who ARE fans can have an opinion without being called names. For some reason I was foolish enough to think people on this site just might have respect for opinions. UGH.. I’m glad I’m done… and so sad that a disgusting foul mouth creepy feeling man will not be a Doctor that I’ll watch. Loved C. E. but he was not “foul” and Peter sure as heck seems to be… too disappointed to even give it a chance. I do hope others love it… I’ll wait for a Doctor I believe to be worthy of the roll… my opinion… I’m allowed to have it.. no go ahead, rip me to shreds

  3. NVNikki says:

    How do I feel? I canceled my subscription to BBC this morning. I’m disgusted. He even gave me the creeps in “Fires of Pompeii”… I thought… save a nicer guy… something about him. I’m broken hearted… not to lose Matt… I did love Matt and all the Doctors. But I was excited for a new Doctor especially since I think Clara and Matt have NO chemistry… but NOW THIS? I could not be more sad. I will not watch and have had 2 other friends cancel BBCA today as well. Vote with your wallet.

  4. Cheryl Herrera says:

    Really unhappy about your choice. What were you thinking? You have done so well over the past 10 years since I became a fan. Now, I don’t even know if I’ll watch anymore. You’ve gone back to a time that has seen it’s day in the versions of who plays the doctor. What a shame. I really have respected your decisions and talent so much until now. With all the choices you might have made, it’s amazing you made such a bad decision. And, I’m really unhappy to lose a show that has brought me so many fun and interesting hours. I’ve never even felt compelled before to write to anyone about being any kind of fan until now. I’m devastated over this. I feel like I’ve lost a good friend by losing the show”Doctor Who”.
    Sad in Guatemala

  5. Kate says:

    Will he be using bad language in Doctor Who?
    Sorry, may be I don’t understand much in scripts or actors, but it seems to me, that after David Tennant the show is going worse and worse… There’s no development in his character any more (like it was: the man of war was changing into a more compassionate person), – just different people taking up the role.

  6. Charisma says:

    Theres easily a way they can give the doctor more than 13 regenerations…. What did river give up when she saved his life?

    • Patty Marvel says:

      @Charisma – THANK you! I’ve been making the same argument for ages! Either The Doctor or River will have to establish that theory AND how many extra regenerations he now has in an episode soon or the more pedantic fans are going to shit themselves when another regeneration takes place sans explanation. Since the 50th anniversary is around the corner and Matt Smith makes it sound like as many as THREE doctors will be in ONE episode (see this podcast: ), that exposition should come REAL soon.

  7. Asher says:

    As a fan of the Thick of It, I couldn’t be more excited for Capaldi. Like David Tennant (and unlike Matt Smith), he grew up loving Doctor Who, so he is a fan just like us. But unlike most of you, I don’t think that Tennant was much of “hot” doctor, he was bunched into that cuz of the relationship with Rose. Give me Tennant and Tate all day. I wasn’t that big on Matt Smith (sorry…), which makes me even more excited for Capaldi. And a Scotsman like Tennant!

  8. Jay says:

    Good riddance to the shallow fangirls! “Doctor Who” is back!

  9. Ross says:

    I, too, would rather Peter Capaldi had been a surprise waiting for us, but I’m very pleased to see such a versatile actor get the gig. While he’s been getting mostly dramatic roles of late, he started as an anarchic stand up. Congrats to the man who invented the “Bing Hitler” character and gave it to Ferguson, which led to the latter’s first real exposure as a stand-up.
    If you children need more proof that Capaldi can be funny, watch the wonderfully odd “Local Hero”, with Capaldi, Peter Riegert, Burt Lancaster, and(for our obligatory Star Wars tie-in) Denis Lawson(orig X-Wing jock Wedge &, in real life, uncle of Ewan McGregor).

  10. Tammy says:

    I was seriously hoping and praying it was goin to be Andrew Lee Potts. 🙁 he would have been amazing

  11. Kelli says:

    I like that he’s older as I really loved C. Eccleston. It was odd all the younger “hot” doctors. It is a kids show after all. I hope the also keep him a bit darker.

  12. aubreyms says:

    Forget stern, I want him to be wily.

    Also, I wish Dominic West’s McNaulty could be his Brigadier.

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  14. Scott says:

    Very, very pleased!!!!!

    Will miss Matt but very happy with Peter Capaldi.

  15. pumacatxii says:

    To RG,
    Why in the world would you even comment on my name, you have ne idea what it means or where it came from, it is not the twelfth, there is no THE in there.
    You took everything I said out of context, EVERYTHING.
    First, why would you attack my character, I am in no way narrow minded, you want to jump in the box with an older Doctor, that’s totally up to you, I COULD CARE LESS. If anybody wants to jump in the box with any Doctor, I COULD CARE LESS and I was not speaking for all American fangirls, I was speaking for MEEEEEEE!!!!!!! MY OPINION!!!!

    Second the spirit of the Doctor is what you make of it, NOT what you apparently want to push on people.

    I love everything about this show, I was upset when ALL the doctors regenerated, not just this one and for crying out loud get over yourself, I do realize the guy is an actor and he’s played different roles, THEY ALL HAVE, but playing Frobisher made a very negative lasting impression with MEEEEEEEE.

    NOW, that was my opinion that I posted, you also have yours, but lets keep it on the show!!!

  16. ChicagoDave says:

    What is with all this complaining about Capaldi’s role in Torchwood? He is an actor. He played a different character that was not The Doctor. Now, he will play a character that is The Doctor. Were you upset that Warwick Davis portrayed more than one character in the Star Wars films? Or how about in Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, John Rhys-Davies was two characters in the same Film?

    Having said that, I wouldn’t be overly surprised if there was a tongue-in-cheek reference to his earlier participation in that universe – nor do I think it would ruin the show – but I do doubt it will happen.

  17. shawn lopez says:

    This is certainly not the last regeneration. Nor do I think you can rely on the previously established limits placed on the character in the 70s and 80s. I would think that there isn’t a set number of regenerations. I think it would be a waste to end the show by placing arbitrary limits on the main character, especially with something as unprecedented as Doctor Who. As for other appearances in Doctor Who, it doesn’t matter, the previous roles were not reoccurring, or central to the Doctor’s story line, which is only one of the reasons why you couldn’t go with some fans ridiculous request for Alex Kingston. Change need not be feared. It’s a fact of life, and a fact of the Doctor. Make the best of what we are given, as I’m sure Peter Capaldi will. If you don’t like him, just wait…lucky number 13 is just over the horizon.

  18. J-Rod says:

    Peter Capaldi In the thick of it / Doctor Who mashup.
    Beware very very NSFW language.

  19. dawn says:

    I just wanted something different. Maybe a chick. Or a ginger. Maybe a someone of color? But I am not unhappy. We will just have to wait and see.

  20. Pedak says:

    Now I am very excited!

  21. michaelalexkawa says:

    I am up in the air on the choice . I guess he is alright ,kind of wished it was not spoiled till the episode premiered .Yes I know ,I did not have to watch the over promoted ,everyone is talking about special ,and just wait . But I did ,because if I didn’t someone else would of ruined it anyway . I guess I will just have to wait till I see him in the role .

  22. J-Rod says:

    As for Capaldi’s recent who appearances. This is nothing new. Colin Baker played a Time Lord guard called Maxil who shot Peter Davidson 5th Doctor 18 months before he regenerated into the 6th. Britain has a much smaller acting pool snd nobody really bats an eyelid at such situations. I worked on the british soaps and there were always actors playing different roles in the same show, one guy played 3 roles in the 6 years i was there. As for those who are still complaining, dont worry there’ll be a new Doctor along in 3/4 years, thats the beauty of the show.

  23. Andy says:

    I do remember Capaldi as the Angel Islington in the TV series of Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere as well. Personally I think it’s a good choice, and could certainly make things go off in a different direction to what we have already. Looking forward to seeing how it goes.

  24. CJ says:

    Scottish actor Peter an interesting choice that I welcome (about time they got someone older – after all the original Doctor was like a Granddad type character) vs “lets make it an actor so fucking young that it appeals to all the teen literature fans!” (rolls eyes) …

    Love it, or Loath it, lets ask ourselves who the next new Companion(s) will be vs going “waahhh” because it wasn’t your choice (for the Doctor) ….


    before you lot who are still going “waah” over Capaldi’s previous roles in television / films, remember the longest actor in the role (Tom Baker) starred in cult classics (some of which aren’t kid friendly) before he was the Doctor –

    The Vault of Horror 1973
    Frankenstein: The True Story 1973
    The Golden Voyage of Sinbad 1973
    The Mutations 1974

  25. Maurtimer says:

    MOFFAT! *shakes fist*
    I don’t like they are completely ignoring Torchwood with this. I guess they’ll not even try to explain away the fact that the Doctor looks like a high level government official from a few years ago who murder/suicided his own family. The gap between the two shows was bad enough as it was. I don’t like that somehow the entire world keeps forgetting everything that happens. Jack must have poisoned the water supplies with Retcon. If we don’t at least get some Captain Jack time out of this I’m going to be furious.

  26. Jaddsy says:

    I wanted 12 to be a ginger! I don’t like the Doctor being old…old men are …well….Old. I am bummed….but I will watch a couple shows to give him a chance.

  27. RG says:

    To the redundantly-christened “Puma Cat” the Twelfth,

    What of Karen Gillan and Freema Agyeman, who both appeared in Doctor Who episodes before being recast as companions? And why the need to apply your narrow opinion to other fans with similar genitals? Also, why does the companion’s choice to join the Doctor have to be sexual? I’m afraid that if you got the impression that they jumped into the Tardis because the Doctor was a reasonably-handsome young man and not a thin middle-aged man, your comprehension of the spirit of the show is straight jacked.

  28. William slough says:

    People miss count regeneration their is 12. To count them the 1st regeneration is the 2nd Doctor and the10th regeneration is the 11th Doctor(mat smith) and so on.

  29. Jen says:

    Im very happy with the choice. I was a fan of the show The Thick of It. I hope he gets to stick with the Scottish accent.

  30. Brandy says:

    Not all us ‘American Fangirls’ are unhappy. I think it’s a refreshing choice and it shows variety in the idea of the doctor. I’m looking forward to seeing him closer to the Valeyard era at the end, he looks as though he could pull it off quite nicely. Besides, If I’m in the mood for young and handsome, I’ll just watch re-runs of 10. 😉

  31. pumacatxii says:

    BIG MISTAKE!!!!! I think the reason DOCTOR WHO was such a big success the second time around WAS because the last three DOCTORS were young. What women doesn’t want to jump in the Tardis and fly off into the night with a younger doctor, sorry Peter I’ll take Matt any day of the week!! I also can’t get over the fact that he played Frobisher in the Torchwood series, and tried to off Capt.Jack. I don’t think a true whovian is going to forget that, as far as us fangirls across the pond doin the waaaawaaa because he isn’t young or that he has an award of this and that, Shall we not forget Matt Smith was a nobody (in his own words) and look where he brought DOCTOR WHO ,all the way across that lil ole pond!!!

  32. J-Rod says:

    I think the press blurb about ‘the clock is about to strike twelve’ might be the big clue, that they’re going to play this up as the last regeneration (if you include John Hurt) Having an older actor will bring gravitas (and Capaldi is all gravitas) Of course I fully expect the show runner to figure a way out of it but it would be great to see a Doctor without the getoutofjailfree card of regeneration.
    BTW we can hear the screams of the American fangirls all the way overv the pond “He`s not young and handsome waaaaaa!!!!” Maybe but he is a BAFTA, British Comedy Award and Oscar winning Actor/Director/Producer.

  33. stuart says:

    Im really looking forward to seeing his take on the doctor. An excellent choiceis going with an older doctor.

  34. Laura says:

    Dave, re: “in one of the episode in 70/80s it was said the doctor can only regenerate 11 times so please why have we got doctor number 12” on Matt’s guest appearance on The Sarah Jane Adventures I’m pretty sure he extended the number of regenerations…not 100% to how many but I think it’s more than 12/13 now.

  35. MrBongoClown says:

    I am totally stoked by an older Doctor too. I think it will change the faux romantic nature of Smith’s Doctor and Clara, and like Hardwick stated, maybe make him a bit sterner. Great choice BBC and Moffat. Bravo.

  36. SaveRiver says:

    He already killed his family in Torchwood! How is he going to be Doctor Who. What is Jack going to do when he meets the new Doctor?