Peter Capaldi's Letter to a Fan Is Something Truly Heartwarming
He became the Doctor one last time, giving this fan a true Doctor's farewell.
In 2013, it was announced that Peter Capaldi, probably best known at that time from his role of Malcolm Tucker in The Thick of It, would become the Twelfth iteration of the famous Timelord. Taking over from the beloved Matt Smith, Capaldi quickly, and with great ease, put his own spin on the character, introducing his own brand of fun and mischief, while at the same time embodying an element of darkness about the character we hadn't really seen before.
Well, four years later, and it came time for us to say goodbye to Peter Capaldi as 12, and hello to his replacement as The Doctor in none other than Jodie Whittaker. The new series would see The Doctor transform once again, only this time the Timelord would be what us mere humans would call a "female." Even though Timelords technically don't recognise the concept of gender, this change kicked up an almighty fuss from fanboys who have way too much time on their hands. They were outraged at the possibility of a gender swapped Doctor, and promised to never watch Doctor Who again.
Despite the furore, Whittaker made her debut as the Thirteenth Doctor in the Christmas special, giving us our final goodbye not just to Peter Capaldi, but to showrunner Steven Moffat. Now I will say from the offset that I'm glad that Moffat is leaving the show. He should have gone a long time ago, and I'm of the view that his ridiculously convoluted stories, and overall terrible writing are what made Doctor Who such a difficult watch in recent years. Yes, he was able to pull out some decent twists and surprises, but Moffat also had a very uncanny knack for writing himself into a corner, which became a bit of a slog really.
Well, one young fan of Capaldi's wrote to him expressing his concern at Capaldi saying his final goodbye to the role of the Doctor, and what would ultimately come next. Little did nine year old David McGilloway expect that Peter Capaldi would send him a personal letter, in the guise of the Doctor (kinda) offering the young lad reassurance about what the future holds, and just how a regeneration really feels.
I'm not crying, you're crying.
Get ready, folks. The letter is some truly heartwarming stuff that brought even a tear to my eyes.
I hope you are having a very merry Xmas. Xmas is always good fun. Well not always. Not every single second. Regenerating is not completely good fun. And it usually happens about Xmas-time. But you know what? Even though it can be a little bit icky (like really bad flu), it has always, always turned out good for Doctor Who. The new Doctor always becomes your favourite and the one that goes… Well, he never really goes, he is always there, somewhere in time and space, and if you think about him hard enough you’ll see him, and he’ll see you.
It’s like the Doctor says, “Everything ends and it’s always sad. But everything begins again, and that’s always happy. Be happy.”
So, have a brilliant Xmas, a happy new year, and a wonderful life—I’m sure you will.
All the best,
I know, this is some incredible stuff. Peter Capaldi was known as being a fan of Doctor Who way back when he was a kid, so I have no doubt that he had his own childhood in mind when penning this letter to his young fan. Perhaps it's this letter that will set young David along on his own journey, and maybe he will become an actor one day that could even become The Doctor.
One thing I love about the show isn't the lore behind it and the world built around just one character, it's the impact it has on its fans both young and old. It's the inspiration is gives, the positive energy it provides to those who watch and get truly invested in it. It's why I also get really annoyed when some fans are reacting so viciously and negatively toward the idea of a woman playing the Doctor.
If they're angry about that, they're forgetting the very essence of what the show represents. In the multitude of companions, friends, and enemies of the Doctor, there has never been a moment when the Doctor has rejected or considered a person based purely on their race or gender. The Doctor has either been their friend or their enemy purely based on their character and their understanding of the difference between right and wrong.
So what do you think, folks? Did the letter bring a tear to your eye?