As the 9th Doctor himself would say: “Fantastic!” Ever since Jodie Whittaker was cast as the 13th Doctor on the BBC’s seminal sci-fi series Doctor Who, there has been a divisive reaction about the role going to a woman for the first time in the franchise’s history. But as for Christopher Eccleston, that leather jacket-clad ninth iteration of the Doctor who you also might know from The Leftovers? He fancies the casting quite a bit. Speaking on a BBC Radio 4 program in England this weekend, Eccleston excitedly responded with the following when asked about his thoughts on Whittaker: “She’s working-class, she’s northern, what can go wrong?” Eccleston’s cheeky statement echoes the sentiments also shared by fellow “modern” Doctors Peter Capaldi and David Tennant — Capaldi called Whittaker “a wonderful actress of great individuality and charm,” while Tennant praised the casting as signaling “another show with a strong female lead.”
Another Doctor, however, hasn’t been so easily accepting of a female in the role. Peter Davison, who played the fifth Doctor in the franchise, expressed some skepticism over Whittaker’s casting, mostly because he believed boys would be losing a strong male figure in their lives. “If I feel any doubts, it’s the loss of a role model for boys, who I think Doctor Who is vitally important for,” he said. “As a viewer, I kind of like the idea of the Doctor as a boy but then maybe I’m an old-fashioned dinosaur — who knows?”
Whittaker will assume the role in the Christmas Special later this year.