David Tennant reacts to watching Jodie Whittaker’s first Doctor Who episode: “5 minutes in I was just watching it as a fan again”

Tennant has previously worked with Jodie Whittaker and new showrunner Chris Chibnall, but says as soon as the show started he was just excited to see what happened next

David Tennant and Jodie Whittaker in Doctor Who (BBC, HF)

With an astonishing 8.2 million tuning in to see Jodie Whittaker‘s Doctor Who debut, the Thirteenth Doctor has proved a sure-fire hit.

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And despite being abroad for the start of the series, even previous Doctor Who star David Tennant managed to catch the first episode of series 11.

Tennant, 47, who has previously worked with Whittaker and new showrunner Chris Chibnall on ITV drama Broadchurch, had plenty to say on the new look Who, claiming it was “exciting on so many levels.”

“It’s very exciting as a fan,” he said to Entertainment Weekly’s Morning Live radio show.

“It’s exciting as someone who grew up watching Doctor Who. It’s very exciting whenever there’s a rebirth of the show – that’s an exciting moment anyway. But because Jodie’s a friend, and Chris is a friend, it’s exciting on so many levels.”

Tennant, who in 2008 announced live on TV that he was vacating the Tardis, admits it’s strange to watch the show as someone who once starred in it.

(BBC, TL)
David Tennant played the Doctor from 2005-2010 (BBC)

“It’s bizarre because it’s a show I’ve watched all my life, then I ended up being in it which was weird in the first place, and now I’m out of it. There’s kind of a journey back to being an observer again,” he added.

“But five minutes in I was just watching it as a fan again. I’d forgotten that I knew them and they were my mates. I was like, ‘This is fun! This is exciting!’”

Despite being close friends with the people at the helm of Who, Tennant says he’s not privy to any spoilers – and as a super-fan, he wouldn’t want to hear them anyway.

Jodie Whittaker in Doctor Who (BBC, HF)
Jodie Whittaker in Doctor Who (BBC)

“I knew they were shooting it and I talked to Jodie and Chris a little bit while they were making it and since, but I didn’t know anything about it, it’s all new to me,” he explained.

“I don’t think they’d tell me anything,” he added, “but I also don’t want to go there. I want to experience it like everyone else.”

And while Tennant – who is now starring BBC4’s moving There She Goes – may have handed over his sonic screwdriver, he admits he’s still mobbed by Whovians at events – which sees him having to go incognito when visiting the various Comic Cons around the world.

There She Goes (BBC)
There She Goes (BBC)

“I do feel now the geek as inherited the Earth,” he joked. “It’s a shame I can’t go as a fan because I’d love to go to all the comic book stalls and meet the guys that draw Spiderman – that would be my idea of heaven! But I have to lurk backstage.

“The other option is to put a mask on but then you get very hot. Maybe I should put a Jodie Whittaker mask on? That’s what I need to invest in.”

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Doctor Who continues on BBC1 on Sunday 14th October at 6.55pm


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