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Are David Tennant’s ‘Special Doctor Who Projects’ undermining Matt Smith?

David Tennant - forever the Doctor?We must be mere days away from Matt Smith beginning his tenure as the Doctor by filming his first scenes.  David Tennant has already filmed his last scene as the Doctor for the series proper (future guest appearances aside, such as in 2013).  So, it’s all Matt Smith’s now?  He IS the Doctor?  No, it doesn’t look like it’s going to be that simple for him.

In stark contrast to his predecessor, one Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant seems to be clinging on for all he’s worth!  No sooner than the likes of Russell T Davies are talking about Tennant filming his last scene, than they are talking about Tennant being back as the Doctor in The Sarah Jane Adventures.  Then he’s back again for a seven part animated story.  Then RTD adds: “… it would be nice to round things off with a Special Project 3… I can promise, it’s worth waiting for!”  I can’t but begin to wonder – has David Tennant really quit the role at all?!

Right now we don’t know what the special third project is, rumours of a big screen film adaptation aside.  Whatever it is, though, we do now, effectively, have two Doctors running concurrently.  Special projects one and two (the Sarah Jane Adventures and the animated stories) are designed to fill the gap of Doctor Who on our screens this year – they will air before Tennant’s official final scene, even if they weren’t recorded in that order.  As for this third project – we just cannot say for now, it is likely that it too is designed to fill the gap before Matt Smith’s on-screen début as the eleventh Doctor.

No problem then.  A bit of concurrent recording can’t possibly cause Matt Smith any problems.  On the face of it, no.  Except I can’t help but think if I were in Smith’s shoes I might be getting a bit concerned that the wildly popular chap I’m supposed to be replacing is still doing my job!  Perhaps Matt Smith isn’t nearly as insecure as I might be – almost certainly not.  Nonetheless, you don’t want your predecessor breathing down your neck when you are trying to make the role your own.

I am, undoubtedly, overplaying this rather – at least I hope I am!  If those rumours of a major Doctor Who feature film turn out to be true and it isn’t Matt Smith on the big screen (especially if it is, instead, David Tennant) then perhaps I am not overplaying it at all.  Any such film won’t be out until long into Smith’s tenure as the Doctor.  The whole film theory is probably unlikely though, isn’t it..?

Before I leave you to your thoughts on this, I would like to point out that I am a great fan of what David Tennant has brought to the series.  His has got to be the most popular Doctor since Tom Baker’s.  David (breaking into first name terms even though I’ve never met him but it feels like I have) genuinely seems to be a great chap – a really down to earth guy who I think would fit in perfectly amongst my group of friends.  He’d be great on the podcast!  I don’t for a second think he’d ever do anything personally to undermine Matt Smith, quite the reverse.  Nor do I think that Matt Smith isn’t capable of taking the role and making it his own, no matter what else might be happening elsewhere.

No, I didn’t want to see David Tennant leave the series but, now that he has, I am very keen to move on and welcome Matt Smith.  Perhaps it isn’t Matt Smith that these David Tennant ‘Special Doctor Who Projects’ are undermining but my own sense of closure.  I felt a tinge of sadness at the announcement that Tennant had filmed his last scene.  Maybe I needed a bit of time to mourn, even.  Now it almost feels like David Tennant is playing ‘cry wolf’.  Will the big bad wolf of David Tennant truly leaving the role ever come?

3 Responses to "Are David Tennant’s ‘Special Doctor Who Projects’ undermining Matt Smith?"

  1. stephen says:

    i think project three is something to do with a children in need special, but yeah ur right

  2. Ian says:

    It will… it will be at Christmas/New Year and it will be heart-breaking I am sure. Fear not… filling the gap is good and Matt Smith will be pretty isolated from it all I’d imagine – he is the focus of a production team that has it’s own agenda and a job to do!

  3. wyn says:

    Don’t have a problem with the gap filling at all. I’m sure that if there was a problem with David casting a long shadow, the Vast Toffee MN would have words with Rusty.
    Take it as it comes, that’s my advice

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