In July 2017, the BBC elated fans of its long-running "Doctor Who" science fiction series by announcing actress Jodie Whittaker as the eponymous main character. The 13th doctor and first female actress to take on the role, Whittaker said she was looking forward to the challenge of both living up to fan's expectations and breaking new ground with the story.
"I want to tell the fans not to be scared by my gender," she said in a statement. "Because this is a really exciting time, and 'Doctor Who' represents everything that's exciting about change. The fans have lived through so many changes, and this is only a new, different one, not a fearful one. It’s more than an honor to play the Doctor. It means remembering everyone I used to be, while stepping forward to embrace everything the Doctor stands for: hope. I can’t wait."
For those not familiar with the "Doctor Who" series, the story follows the adventures of an extraterrestrial "Time Lord" named Doctor Who who explores the universe in a time-traveling space ship called the TARDIS. Owing to its British roots, the ship is disguised as a blue police box, a holdover from the early 1960s when such telephone kiosks were widespread in the U.K.
Unlike the James Bond franchise, where a new actor takes over the role without any explanation necessary, the "Doctor Who" series has a concept of regeneration built into its storyline to bridge the transition from one lead to another. When the Doctor is gravely injured, he or she simply takes on a new body and personality to recover. This will soon be the fate of Scottish actor Peter Capaldi, the current Doctor, who will hand over the reins to Whittaker during the series holiday special this December.
A fashionable nod to history
While the reveal shown above featured Whittaker in a dark hood and long grey coat, the producers were quick to acknowledge that would not be her main outfit. True to their word, the BBC this week posted our first real look of Whittaker in all her geeky glory.
Fans immediately applauded the new Doctor's look, which combines elements of past Time Lord outfits with some bold new colors.
Jodie's outfit actually feels to me like a perfect successor to the 80s Classic Doctor aesthetic!— Dominic G. Martin (@DominicJGM) November 9, 2017
If she was the (hypothetical) Eighth Doctor in the early 90s, she would have blended in perfectly with the colours and the eclectic style. All she needs is question marks! #DoctorWho pic.twitter.com/ZLoZdH6R9B
I have to say, I'm loving the new outfit for Jodie on Doctor Who. It seems to be an amalgamation of several previous doctors, and yet still a little bit wacky— Arcade (@PlagueArcade) November 9, 2017
The 13th Doctor’s outfit is mildly ridiculous. But every Doctor outside of the Davies episodes dressed ridiculous, so who cares? #DoctorWho— Kevin LaF (@Kevin_LaF) November 9, 2017
I don't care what anyone thinks. I'm already wondering where I can get the new Doctor's outfit for myself. #doctorwho— J. Lea López (@JLeaLopez) November 10, 2017
As some pointed out above, the 13th Doctor's garb playfully references past character in the role while retaining the characteristic long coat. And for those complaining its too ridiculous, let's please not forget the costume that actor Colin Baker embraced in the 1980s.
The 11th season of "Doctor Who" is set to premiere in the fall of 2018.