Time then for a survey of the story so far. Here’s what we know, what we think, what we knew and what changed along the way.
Originally our favourite for the role of The Next Doctor was Ben Daniels. Indeed, we hear he may well have been offered the role, but had to turn it down for personal reasons.
Then I got a tip that The Next Doctor would now been Daniel Rigby. I was wary, it came from the same source that originally told me Paterson Joseph last time around. But here’s the thing, before I ran the story no one has associated Joseph with the role, and in later interviews he talked about coming so close to getting the part. We eventually got the Matt Smith story from a certain Craig McGill.
And it did make sense. Rigby was just the kind of actor who would be cast as the Doctor, young, lots of good stage work, an award to his name (in this case, beating both Matt Smith and Benedict Cumberbatch to the BAFTA) and was appearing in other less high profile BBC drama. He’d just given up his lucrative British Telecom ads, something incompatible with a lead BBC role. Oh and he’s a brilliant actor.
And the tip claimed that an actual flatmate of Ribgy, as opposed to the fictional flatmates of his British Telecom ads, had been telling anyone who’d listen at a certain London pub that Rigby had got the role.
Of course, lots of people claim lots of things in pubs. But there’s something else. Daniel Rigby is a bit ginger.
In his first full episode as The Doctor, David Tennant complained about not being ginger.
In Matt Smith’s first scene he exclaimed “still not ginger.” You know about the rule of three right?
Could this be our first ginger Doctor? Will we get an “and look! I’m finally ginger!” scene? Bleeding Cool was the first to mention his link with the part, and now he’s second favourite at the bookies.
— ChildrenofMine (@ChildrenofMine1) August 3, 2013
Oh and he’s also been performing a few shows at the Edinburgh Festival.
Just… not tomorrow night.
UPDATE: We were looking at the wrong show. He is appearing in Holes by Tom Basden as well, which would have started tomorrow at 15.00. Except that is reported by those there to be cancelled. And there is no second performance at 1830 as on other Sundays. Is this a smoking gun?
There are still tickets available for the show on Friday-Sunday for the next three weeks. Might be worth going anyway, Rigby is good whatever he’s in. Bet the others in he cast are pretty nifty too.
Three conference organisers and a teenage girl are the sole survivors of a fatal plane crash on a remote tropical island. With Daniel Rigby, Katy Wix, Mathew Baynton, and Bebe Cave. A world premiere from the Fringe First winning team behind 2009 smash, Party. Written by Tom Basden, directed by Phillip Breen and associate directed by Alexander Lass. Secret location. Transport provided. NB: Show running time will vary between 2 hrs 55 mins and 3 hrs 45 mins. For non-transport inclusive tickets, search for non-transport option on Assembly Festival website or contact Box Office on 0131 623 3030. Limited tickets also available on the door.
A certain Ewan Spence tweets;
— Ewan Spence (@Ewan) August 3, 2013
I don’t think it was cancelled, Rigby was never going to perform there tomorrow. But it means a BBC live revelation would fit better into his schedule.
And you know you sent me that tweet? Craig McGill…
Whoever is cast, it’s a great role, and the Next Doctor will have even more challenges. Because, as the Thirteenth Doctor, he was have the Time Lord’s last life. It will be one of foreboding, of end, of acceptance. We have already seen his tomb.
But as Steven Moffat wrote in The Curse Of The Fatal Death, maybe the universe can’t bear to be without the Doctor. Something big will happen.
And that is when we may get a female Doctor. For the next thirteen.
Anyway, I’ve been wrong before, I may be wrong this time, this is all joining of dots and speculation. Maybe tomorrow we’ll find out it’s Christopher Biggins.
But whoever it is, can we refrain from the “oh what a terrible Doctor he’d make” chatter we got last time?
Our previous Daniel Rigby-is-the-Doctor coverage:
And while we’re at it, Tim Minchin‘s musings on racial harmony…