Christopher Eccleston could probably have been a good Doctor Who. Watching the first new series, there were some momentary flashes where I could see what inspired the casting department to choose him, but these were far outweigh by the negative aspects of his performance, and the announcement of his departure even before the series ended was no real surprise, but welcome nonetheless.

David Tennant isn't such a good choice, that's not to say he's not doing a reasonable job in the part, but he seems to lack character, authority and a certain arrogant confidence, qualities that the past Doctors displayed, and that he'll hopefully develop if he settles into the part. And I keep thinking 'Richard Hammond' when I see him, and that's just not right.

Eccleston exhibited too much emotion,  his frequent outbursts and ranting were just too far from the established character of an ancient Timelord and the Doctor we (the old, established viewers) knew of old. One of the Doctor's strengths was the way he largely maintained his composure, despite the provocation or advantage his adversary, or how powerful (recall the very poor Dalek panic/outburst scene in the first new series) they were – the Doctor always maintained an attitude that would unnerve his opponent, even in an apparently hopeless situation.

Although the rumours have been strenuously denied, there has been talk of Eccleston playing the part of Number 6 in a re-make of the prisoner. Based on his performance as the Doctor, his is the first name I've seen associated with that part which has sounded anything like realistic, and I suspect that with a little fine-tuning, he could slot into the role originally masterminded by Patrick McGoohan all those years ago. It will be interesting to see if anything comes of this story, which is forever alternating between fantasy and reality as the remake is reported as being on, then off, then on…

I won't be considering any so-called remake of The Prisoner as anything other than a poor copy. Quite apart from the fact that the publicity has already made it clear that the production will not be a reconstructive remake of the classic original, but something using the theme as its basis. The reason I say poor copy is not to detract from it, it may be superb. Rather, I mean that the original was made in the mid 60s, and even if being made for the first time today, would not be able to capture the same atmosphere (Cold War etc.) that prevailed at the time, or be able to feature the gadgetry and imagination that was largely fantasy at the time, but is very much reality today.

And… that's a bit of a shame 


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