I remember very clearly being at the US premiere of Matt Smith’s first episode of Doctor Who. I was on the Red Carpet, chatting with the stars, and every single interviewer, down the line, asked Smith, “When are you leaving?” This is, mind you, before his first episode even aired. So it’s not that shocking that every few months or so, rumors crop up that Smith, or his companion Karen Gillan will be leaving Doctor Who.
Granted, he will be leaving at some point – and maybe even in the next two years or so... And we will be sad, because Smith has easily become our favorite Doctor ever. That said, when Smith DOES leave, we hope Steven Moffat and company take a look at our list of ten actors who would not only be great replacing Smith, but downright awesome:
10. John Barrowman
Okay, fine, so having Captain Jack Harkness as the regeneration of the Doctor doesn’t make a lick of sense – but given that the ambisexual Harkness is an immortal time traveler himself, it wouldn’t be TOO jarring to see him as the lead in the series for a while; and we’d love to see what Steven Moffat could do with the good captain.
9. Benedict Cumberbatch
Sherlock is basically The Doctor, but quite a bit meaner, right? And not a time traveler? Anyway, given that Cumberbatch has brilliantly embraced Moffat’s words, and has just the right manic energy for The Doctor, we could easily see him step into the TARDIS.
8. Johnny Lee Miller
While we’re at it, why not snag Miller, who actually costarred in a stage production of Frankenstein with Cumberbatch where they both switched roles every night between the Doctor and the Monster? Miller is no stranger to TV (Eli Stone, Dexter); and if that wasn’t enough, his first ever (uncredited) screen role was in a 1982 episode of Doctor Who.
7. Lee Pace
Pace captured our hearts as pie-man Ned in Pushing Daisies, so lets him get back on our TV on a weekly basis as the Man From Gallifrey! He’s enigmatic, British, and is comfortable around the fantastic, as we saw in Pushing Daisies, and on his other regular role, Wonderfalls.
6. Nathan Fillion/Bruce Campbell
This is a geek casting round-up, right? So we’re legally required to submit either Nathan Fillion or Bruce Campbell for your consideration, though they’d be spectacularly wrong for the part. Or would they? How’s this for a scenario: Nathan Fillion as the swashbuckling, time travlin' Doctor Who, along with his best friend TARDIS, voiced by Bruce Campbell. I mean... I'd watch that.
5. Eddie Izzard
The British comedian’s name has been floated for The Doctor before, and that’s mainly because he’d be a really good choice. Caustically funny, able to also play drama (see: The Riches), and he comes pre-packaged with his own “Cake or Death” catch phrase!
4. Patterson Joseph
If you believe rumors, Joseph was nearly The Doctor this time around, before Smith snagged the role. And though he’s a bit older, and been around a bit longer, he’s also perfect for the role. He’s worked with Moffat before on Jekyll, appeared in two episodes in the “first” season of Who in a minor enough role it wouldn’t be a conflict, and his part as the Marquie de Carabas in Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere basically was The Doctor. We’ll see if his name doesn’t come up again soon…
3. Robert Carlyle
A few years ago, we wouldn’t have even suggested the actor, as he was firmly entrenched in movies. But sine then, he became our favorite part of the sadly cancelled Stargate: Universe, and is now starring as the villainous Rumplestilskin on Once Upon a Time. So genre TV friendly? Check. British? Check. Able to bring a sense of menace and strangeness back to The Doctor? Check and check.
2. Rose Leslie
She’s been dynamic, hilarious, and heartfelt on Downton Abbey. She’s about to play a major, crucial role on Game of Thrones as the “fire-kissed” Ygritte. So once she’s done there, why not bring Leslie back to the BBC to become the first female Doctor? Plus, she’s got the one thing the Doctor has always wanted: red hair. It’s a win-win all around.
1. Danny Pudi
The Community actor is brilliantly funny and nerdy, able to play alien and weird, and has legions of fans, but there’s two words that seal the deal: Inspector Spacetime. Community’s ridiculously funny parody of Who featured Pudi as the Inspector in a recent episode, and it all just clicked. Heck, he can even bring his own bathrobe from the Community set. Let’s get this one going, guys: you all saw what happened with co-star Donald Glover and Spider-Man… Now it’s Pudi’s turn.
What do you think, MTV Geeks? Who should play the next Doctor? Tell us in the comments below...