I was watching my twitter feed yesterday looking for the announcement of who would be selected for the role of Doctor Who. I had to laugh at some of the theories. Some of them were well reasoned and some, like David Tennant was coming back to the role, were far fetched. I was also unfortunately not surprised by the attitude that the Doctor could not be anyone other than a white male. The Doctor is a fictional character and an extraterrestrial. The usual rules do not apply.
I am excited to see Jodie Whittaker as the new Doctor. I am not familiar with her work at all. I did look her up on IMDB and was impressed with her resume. I am interested to see what her take on the doctor will be. Matt Smith had such an exuberance and childlike wonder quality. David Tennant was more serious but also had a quality of danger. One the one hand I would like to see the first woman doctor treated no differently than a man doctor but that is not realistic. There should be one or two stories were her gender does play a role in terms of the society they interact with. I remember Jon Pertwee's two episodes on Peladon where women were marginalized, even when one of them was the ruler. How the writers deal with that type of situation will be very important. There has to be at least one episode where the Doctor's gender provides the conflict but it should not be a constant theme.
Dear Doctor Who writers (whether comic, tv show or audios) here is my wish list: I want the Doctor to be strong and confident. I want her to be everything positive that we want our daughters and granddaughters to aspire to. She should be kind as all past Doctors have been. She should have soft spot of us "apes". She should also not be afraid of conflict or stepping in to protect those who need it.
I also feel the show should not engage in debate with trolls who say they will stop watching the show. If polled, a large number of them probably only heard about Doctor Who because a woman has been cast, not because they are long time fans. Doctor Who fans have embraced change since William Hartnell regenerated into Patrick Troughton and every time since. We all have our favorite Doctors. For many it is the first Doctor they say (in my case, Tom Baker). Imagine those that one day will list Jodie Whittaker as "their Doctor". At least people should give the show a chance. It is a new Doctor and a new show runner.
Finally, "It has always been this way" is the worst reason for something to remain unchanged. We are looking forward to Christmas and a very special regeneration episode.