This may all come to nothing, but it’s being widely reported that Patterson Joseph has been asked to play the lead in Doctor Who and he’s either thinking hard or has accepted the role.
For those of you who don’t know Doctor Who, it’s an iconic British SF show where the main character, The Doctor, has an unusual reaction to being killed. Instead of dying, his body regenerates and he gets a new face, body, and personality. This conceit was invented way back when the guy who first played the Doctor said he didn’t want to, anymore, but the show was doing so well that they didn’t want to end it, so they wrote an in-story explanation for the actor change and now there have been 10 guys in this role.
Further in case you didn’t know: Patterson Joseph is black. And the Doctor has always been played by white guys.
Yes, I hear the wank coming for us, too. There’s already been a bit.
But this is a pretty awesome turn of events. Joseph is a good actor, from what I’ve seen, and quite handsome, which doesn’t hurt. And the role of the Doctor is, as I mentioned, iconic, and a very big deal. Doctor Who isn’t just a very famous SF show. In England particularly, but in Western countries all over, the show transcends genre and is regarded as an integral part of childhood TV viewing. This role is one that actors dream of playing. It’s a chance to make some very influential TV.
I hope that the rumors don’t end up being unfounded, because it has the potential to be very awesome (or very crazy. Doctor Who is not immune to icky race stuff). Yes, the fandom will explode in stupid racism, but it may come out on the other end better and more enlightened.
And also: Black Doctor.