Thursday, November 12, 2009
NBC Nabs Doctor Who
I've been crushed at the imminent loss of David Tennant as the brash, funny, sexy, and wickedly intelligent Doctor Who. His final episodes on the brilliantly reduxed series will air this November and December on BBC One, and in December on BBC America (no idea why the first installment is delayed a month in the US). I wasn't sure anything could console me, but now I see news that NBC has snagged Tennant for a pilot.
Entertainment Weekly reports that the show will be about "a panic-attack-prone attorney [who] teaches his clients to represent themselves". That does sound like a promising comedy premise, and Tennant is very good at both broad physical comedy and sly delivery of clever witticisms. The other thing I've learned from seeing Tennant on Doctor Who (and in the miniseries Casanova) is that he also has a wonderful talent for poignant drama--and the capability of seamlessly weaving drama and comedy together, which is no easy task.
NBC has been faltering in the ratings for some time now. The sad thing is, that they've actually made a lot of interesting attempts at bringing quality to the screen (Kings, Southland), but they don't back up their dramas with the proper support and abandon them before they've had a chance to truly succeed. Tennant is a real charmer and could be a huge draw for NBC. We'll have to hope they either change their strategy, or that the new Tennant pilot gets explosive enough ratings to guarantee it a permanent slot.
I don't think I could bear to lose Tennant a second time, so lets hope the new show is worthy of his talents. Knowing the American audience, I'm guessing it's too much to hope for that Tennant will get to use his lilting Scottish accent--but perhaps we have a shot at the English accent he adopts for Doctor Who.
PHOTOS: David Tennant as Doctor Who (and a hint of Moonlight's Sophia Myles as Madame de Pompadour), Doctor Who "The Girl in the Fireplace" screencaps, c2006 BBC.