‘Not a gambling man myself. But I would take a punt on ‘yes’..
- Yes, it is only rumour. But being reported VERY widely.
- IE: someone, maybe high up, WANTS this leaked?
- Could be a feeler? See how people take the news. But I would say negotiations are advanced if not sealed by now, given the fact that Tennant is a busy actor and must be booked well in advance.
- BBC NEEDS good press. NOW! Licence fee at risk? Everything to play for. Why not bring out a big gun?
- It was an inevitability. Soon as Russell T signed on as returning show runner , his anointed leading man of record could not be far behind.
- Identity politics just works here. Though white, male, sorta middle class etc? Tennant is a champion of social justice and appeals to everyone. His Doctor always captured that balance; fusing light-hearted bouncing adventurer antics to a more thoughtful and textured layer of inner conflict. That’s why girls LOVE him!
- The timing makes sound, commercial sense: nostalgia bomb to cash in on current trends. We have returning Bat and Spider-Men..possibly even an older 007. So why stop there? SONY are a partner on the new series of Timelord adventures. Think branding! Timing! Zeitgeist!
- Degeneration as well as regeneration was always an option. It’s in the canon. Tenth Doctor even said himself he never wanted to go.
- And Tom Baker’s cameo in the 50th anniversary special all but confirmed the trope as a (then) future option should the show require that. Baker himself had volunteered to do it as far back as 1993.
- Remember, too: Russell set this up in 2008. There is STILL a kind of Tennant Doctor ‘out there’ (the meta crisis incarnation), so allowing for a self contained spin off series. Maybe even bringing Billie Piper along as Rose? Allows Tennant to come and go as he pleases and age in the role, too.
Now: why might it not happen or be a good idea??
- If Tennant IS back? It will be short term. 3 specials, rather than same amount of series.
- He has always said he is up for cameos. And did a LOT of BIG FINISH audio returns for his Doctor, as his own acting career started in that format. The man also needs a new hit to call his own. But does he NEED to come back, even quasi full, let alone fully, full time? Like I said, he is a busy dude and fully committed husband and father with the loveliest woman /mother in the universe (Georgia). He can say ‘no’!
- There was never any bad blood with Tennant/BBC, unlike with Eccleston, for example. Even so? Rumour had it that David asked BBC chiefs if he could do a few specials here and there with occasional full series, rather than continue full time or retire entirely. They said no? Stupid (if true) as both Tennant and varied format was the way to go as early as 2009/10. Think John Thaw with Morse or David Jason with his assorted series. Do the character at Christmas etc but also remain free for any other project of choice. Perfect compromise! Like I say, that is rumour but IF true, then the boat sailed and chance missed.
- A step back is NOT necessarily one in the right direction. Indeed, it is an awkward admission of defeat? Rather than cleanse the recent ratings fall, it might even redraw our attentions there and create all manner of needless continuity questions…
- ..ESPECIALLY if we then have to endure yet another prolonged exit for Mr Tennant. Thereby ruining things for his successor? Again! Plus, without denting my macho image in any way at all..I cried my eyes out last time David regenerated. Don’t put me through that trauma a second time! I would need bereavement counselling. Again.;)
Whatever happens? In whichever iteration he appears and for however long? I do think Tennant is TARDIS bound. Again. And that is exciting, great news. Because he is one of the best Doctors and has new things to say in the role. Same energy and spark; matured edge and new look (just lose the beard and man-bun and gain a few pounds, please).
If David cannot do it? Matt Smith is just as good and even at 88, Tom Baker (belated happy birthday, btw) might still be available.
BBC: Park money truck outside Tennant’s home. Socialist though he might be, money is money. Build him a new swimming pool. Give him choice of any project he desires in addition to his Timelord duties. Serial killers, fops, political thrillers, anything. Give him endless downtime with the adorable Georgia and family. BUT GET HIM BACK. OH YES!