How powerful is a work of art? Can it inspire awe or merely amusement? Does its presence cause a lasting cultural impact or is it some minor fad, soon forgotten amid the new season’s schedules?
With Doctor Who we can see the sudden and immediate impact. Take this experimental subject – a 55-year-old male from the United States who works as a professional science fiction writer:
“I read that the 13th Doctor is slated to be female. Well, I have had enough. In the last few years, Thor is a girl, Wolverine is a girl, Hawkeye is a girl, Vision is a girl, Hulk is a girl,Iron Man is a girl, The Question is a girl. These are not merely female sidekicks or variations, as when Batgirl or Supergirl don a costume to help out. These are replacements for the male meant to erase the masculinity from the name brand.
I have been a fan of Dr Who since age seven, when Tom Baker was the Doctor. I have tolerated years of public service announcements in favor of sexual deviance that pepper the show. But this is too much to tolerate.
The BBC has finally done what The Master, the Daleks and the Cybermen have failed to do. They killed off the Doctor. Dr. Who is dead to me.”
The sudden shift in perspective has apparently caused a subjective loss of ten years of memories and/or a radical shift in the space-time vortex and/or the author jumping to the often confused continuity of UNIT.
Or…maybe it was a typo and John C Wright meant “seventeen”, as 1978 fits with both Tom Baker and the show airing on PBS in the US. I prefer the other explanation though.