Eccleston ditches the Tardis 01/04/05

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As we ponder who might be the next Doctor, could the timing of the news have been any better handled?
The news that Christopher Eccleston was quitting as Doctor Who was a bit of a surprise, especially as only the first episode of his 13 episode season had been shown on BBC1.  Eccleston seemed uncomfortable talking about the role and his initial casting had been a bit of a surprise to many.  The general consensus on his casting seemed to have been along the lines of "Great, but what does he want to play the Doctor for?  He's a serious actor with a career." On those grounds, the announcement that he would not be returning for another series was not a huge shock, it was just the timing that was the surprise.
With only one of the 13 episodes having been seen before the news broke, the rest of Eccleston's performance is now tainted.  Why should we warm to an actor/character that we already know has jumped ship? In a way, the audience is merely treading water waiting for the next actor to be confirmed as the Doctor, so that he can then be judged for his suitability for the role.
Eccleston it seems has already been condemned, not for his on screen performance, but for the fact that he has already thrown off the Doctor Who robes before the fans and the audience can decide whether they actually suited him.
Rumours have circulated that the news was rushed out because a reporter at The Sun had got hold of it early and was threatening to spill the beans.  Well, shame on them, if that's true.  Do we really have to have our programmes ruined by forcing "news" like this out early.  I would have preferred to have heard this after I had watched the entire season, thank you very much.

Page Last Updated Sunday, May 07, 2006 at 20:44:48