The 13th Doctor's First Line On 'Doctor Who' Signals The Beginning Of A New Era
No, The Doctor still isn't ginger, but she doesn't appear to particularly bothered in the 2017 Christmas special. The 13th Doctor's first line is the beginning of a new era for Doctor Who, both because the Doctor is now a her, and because she seems absolutely delighted by this turn of events. After the 12th Doctor spent nearly two hours trying to fight regeneration and simply let go, he realized the planet just wouldn't be the same without the Doctor. So he let go, and Jodie Whittaker emerged in a literal blaze of glory.
The 13th Doctor's first line? "Oh, brilliant!" Her words upon seeing her new face are uttered with complete sincerity, a bright grin spreading across her face. After spending so must time with 12's world-weary Doctor, 13's enthusiasm seems to signal that the character is finding her joy again — even when the TARDIS appears to be exploding around her.
With one simple utterance, the tone for Season 11 is set. After contemplating letting the universe solve its own problems for a while, the Doctor ultimately chose to live, and to live with a renewed sense of purpose. Before 12 signed off for good, he used his final moments to offer his next incarnation some advice. Before he regenerated, the Doctor spoke to his future self, saying,
"You wait a moment, Doctor. Let's get it right. I've got a few things to say to you. Basic stuff first. Never be cruel, never be cowardly. And never ever eat pears! Remember — hate is always foolish… and love, is always wise. Always try to be nice and never fail to be kind."
The 12th Doctor's final piece of advice to his future self is, "Laugh hard, run fast, be kind." It's at once a speech built on returning the series back to basics, and one that signals that the 13th Doctor will truly be seeing and experiencing the world with new eyes.
Until Season 11 officially premieres in the spring, it's impossible to know where Whittaker and new showrunner Chris Chibnall will take Doctor Who. But there's no doubt that the first glimpse of the 13th Doctor is promising. In a rare twist, the show allowed viewers to see the Doctor see herself for the first time, and her happiness upon seeing the face staring back at her in the TARDIS console is magical to behold.
It seems like it's been a long time since viewers have seen the Doctor be properly happy, but in that moment she was almost giddy. The Doctor has lived at least 12 lives — 13 when you add in the War Doctor — and while each regeneration brings with it new adventures, there's also a world-weariness that's been settling in more and more in recent years.
The Doctor has done it all — or at least it felt that way. But the character has never experienced the world as a woman. For 13, there will be a sense of newness to the running, the world saving, and yes, even the pain of loss. The Doctor has been given a true gift. She can see all of time and space in a completely new way. If that's not a reason to exclaim "brilliant" then nothing is.
"Twice Upon a Time" was the perfect farewell to Peter Capaldi, and a wonderful teaser for Whittaker's era. After much contemplation, the Doctor decided there is still so much living to be done, and 13 is going to be the one to do it. With her first challenge set — she's currently plummeting towards somewhere without her TARDIS — the Doctor is ready to begin again, and it's an absolutely brilliant time to be a fan of Doctor Who.