Cleverer than all of us put together. Immortal. Millions of fans around the world. Immortal. Time travel in a phone box. Immortal. Loves dogs. Immortal.
I grew up on Doctor Who. Though I can’t claim superfan status as I was behind the sofa the whole time and probably missed some key plot points.
And you know how much I adore Keanu, who I’ve never watched from behind the sofa. Well apart from The Day The Earth Stood Still. But I think I secretly always knew that Keanu Reeves was actually an incarnation of The Doctor.
The Doctor is not supposed to interfere in people’s timelines, because if you change one tiny thing it also alters so much of the future.
Just think if Keanu went back and changed decisions he’d already taken.
Perhaps said “NO!” to The Day The Earth Stood Still remake. Or got naked with Rachel Weisz in one of those baths they kept having together, fully clothed. How different the world would be today.
But occasionally, like the Doctor, he can’t help breaking the immutable laws that hold the universe together. Yet somehow, it works.
The Doctor doesn’t like to travel alone for too long. And he’s had a lot of company, often female, over the years.
Let’s face it, once they’ve vanquished the Cybermen for the 50th final time, until the Christmas Special anyway, there must be so much pent-up energy which just needs a release.
Keanu has had many lovely leading ladies, though we all secretly want him to marry Winona.
(When I say Winona, I mean me, obviously.)
Embarrassingly enough it took me years to realise why the Doctor’s robot dog K9 was called K9.
(Don’t even ask me about Flo Rider.)
Poor K9 was always on hand to help protect his master (HIS master not THE Master).
Though there were actually several incarnations of K9, which sadly doesn’t bode well for the Dog With No Name in John Wick 2.
A Woman’s Touch!
I keep saying “him” as all the Doctors I’ve seen have been hims (well apart from that one time, sometimes you just need a lady doctor don’t you?)
But the new 13th Doctor is a woman. At last! It only took 900 years, and I now have high hopes for a female president of the United States in the 27th century.
And I’m pretty sure the Doctor Who team won’t be going with the usual stereotypes about old ladies and make K9 into a robot cat.
Doctor 13 will be able to do everything the male incarnations did – and forwards and in comfy shoes because she doesn’t live under the yoke of Patriarchy like we poor Earthlings.
Everyone in Britain has a favourite Doctor.
Even if they have never watched Doctor Who and don’t know who any of the Doctors are – it’s just the law here.
If you don’t have a favourite Doctor, you be allocated one, probably one of the less popular incarnations. And a companion. Usually Rory.
I grew up in the 70s and 80s, so “My Doctors” were Tom Baker in his hat and long scarf, and Peter Davison in his cricket whites. Though now I’m in my 40s, my doctors are so numerous, 50% of NHS employees have pet names for my ovaries.
The Galifreyan Time Lord’s enemies Will. Not. Stop… until he is EXTERMINATED.
Don’t the Daleks know that he is yang to their yin? Maybe they do and I missed it, hiding behind the sofa between 1977 and 1989, and then again from 2005.
But if you think Cybermen attacks are bad, may I give you – Knock Knock. It’s fair to say we felt Keanu’s pain in that one. Just not in the way they were hoping.
There must be something in this phone box malarky, as both the Doctor and Keanu have chosen one as their time-travelling vehicle of choice. More than a coincidence.
The Doctor has met many famous people from history.
And so has Ted “Theodore” Logan, even if he couldn’t pronounce their names. Or maybe it’s us who are pronouncing them wrong.
Maybe So-crates’ mum, when explaining her baby’s moniker to her friends in the atrium, followed up with “you know, to rhyme with no-grates” (but in Latin, obviously).
Staying In Touch
Sometimes it’s a lonely life for the Doctor.
Lost in space and time, desperately trying to communicate with his true love.
Yes I mean Rose. Or Clara. Bill Potts? Donna! Or was it Tegan? Ace? Romana I. Oh god I forgot Romana II. Martha! The Rani? The Brigadier perhaps.
Amy Pond? MEL!!! How could I forget Mel, she never shut up. Adric? No not Adric, he was really irritating. Susan? Leela! Peri maybe? SARAH JANE.
Sometimes his companions have to find him after being separated from him for generations. Still at least they now know what it was like for me, between 1989 and 2005.
The Oncoming Storm
I’m completely against violence until I’m faced with a particularly enormous British house spider, maybe a centimetre across including legs.
Or if someone tries to kill my dog, Daisy.
The Doctor tries really hard not to kill anyone. But just as with Mr Wick himself, when the Doctor gets really angry his rage can barely be contained.
That’s why he’s known as the Oncoming Storm, though to be fair we’re so weather-obsessed here that everyone has meteorology-related nicknames.
My six year old is known as the Great Wind and you probably don’t want to be stuck in a TARDIS with him, however big it is on the inside.
But as soon as he’s saved the world again, the Doctor is back putting himself in harm’s way. For us!
Fighting Daleks, and Cybermen, the Master, Cassandra, who’s had so much plastic surgery she’d be a stalwart of the Daily Mail Sidebar Of Shame only being an entirely flat piece of skin she no longer has a “perky posterior”, the terrifying Weeping Angels, spinning Christmas trees, the Haemovores (I think they come for you when you’ve not eaten enough fibre), and our own general, human stupidity.
Hats are cool!
…according to the Eleventh Doctor, anyway.
Okay, not that one, Keanu.
Fezes. FEZES are cool.
Is that the plural of fez?
We will never know, as the Twelfth Doctor didn’t wear one.
The Doctor always has his trusty sonic screwdriver about his person.
Which combined with his amazing brain (and his amazing companions) is enough to defeat the toughest foe. Well, til the Christmas Special, anyway.
And Keanu too is a demon at technology. Apart from the alarm system and the door locks in his house in John Wick, all of which appear to be beyond him.
Best Of British
The Doctor loves the Earth.
But mostly he loves Britain, and it loves him back too.
Remember the Ninth Doctor’s explanation of his Northern accent?
“Lots of planets have a North!”
He even sounds like he’s from here!
Just like Keanu in Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Oh, wait.
Keanu has been so many people!
Ted “Theodore” Logan, Johnny Utah, Alex Wyler, John Wick. Neo. Him from The Lake House. Him from A Walk In The Clouds. Him from Street Kings.
Klaatu. And that English bloke from Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
Okay not those last two. But lots, anyway.
The Doctor also has an alter ego: John Smith, a teacher. Which maybe explains Mr Wick’s ready supply of pencils.
The Doctor has developed many talents over the years, in case he ever falls on hard times.
Like when the series was completely dormant from 1989 to 2005 (with a brief interlude for Paul McGann, and yes we all went crazy – in a good way – when it turned out his Eighth Doctor WAS CANON. And hot.)
Keanu too has had career ups and downs, perhaps including Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Oh and The Day The Earth Stood Still. So it always helps to have something to fall back on.
The Doctor certainly has a darkness about him. But basically he’s the good guy.
I sometimes wonder if he ever gets just a teeny bit jealous of bolder, less morally-constrained heroes? With more than a sonic screwdriver to save them.
Maybe Keanu too is sometimes fearful he’ll be overtaken by film stars more noisy, almost as old and with more teeth?
No not the Jurassic World dinosaurs, Gerard Butler.
He Loves Us!
The Doctor has a special affinity with Earth.
Even though we’re bloody awful a lot of the time, make endless mistakes, and most of the world doesn’t even know it’s jam on the scone first when you have a cream tea.
Yet still he returns to our little green and blue planet (well, grey and black if we carry on at the rate we’re going) to help us and save us.
From monsters and, dare I say it, ourselves?
It’s A Two-Way Thing
The Doctor gives us everything, and we take it.
Though it’s not all one way. I spent a fortune on all those Tenth Doctor DVDs.
And don’t get me started on the wool and knitting needles when I decided in 1983 to knit my own Tom Baker scarf.
(It’s four miles long now as I don’t know how to cast off.)
But what about Keanu – do we support him?
Surely, after everything he has done for us – the laughter (Bill & Ted), the tears (The Lake House), the fights (John Wick), and the laughter (Bram Stoker’s Dracula) – the least we should do is show the man some love and affection, and make sure any aliens he encounters give him due respect? Me first, obviously.
He may have changed his appearance with each regeneration.
From old to young.
English cricketer to dandy, overlong scarves to silly hats.
But somehow we always know it’s the Doctor.
Even if after each regeneration he worries that he’s finally ginger.
And with Keanu too we never need to say “Who?”
A few seasons ago in Doctor Who, we discovered that the Doctor can be contacted by mobile phone after all!
If it’s an emergency. Which let’s face it, it usually is.
There are more alien invaders attacking London than suspicious deaths around the middle class villages of Midsomer.
He only shares his phone number with his closest friends, though.
The Doctor has been around for centuries; popping up regularly, though with a particular liking for the UK from 1963 onwards.
Like Constantine, spotted in ancient Rome and then again in Los Angeles a decade ago.
Constantine was, in his Roman Emperor incarnation, “not too bad” (with the usual modern-day caveats of course – I’ve seen the Friends fallout!) in that he didn’t actually expel any Christians. I can’t deny he expelled a few demons but not until 2007.
Constantine is considered the first Christian Roman Emperor, though he didn’t convert to Christianity until on his deathbed – to reduce the chance of his soul being polluted by sin. Fast forward 1700 years and he’s polluting his lungs with a million cigarettes while he tries to buy his way out of his fiery final destination.
Again! Well that’s the thing about immortality, it never dies.
How does the Doctor do it? He even time-locked a whole war.
I thought space travel was supposed to be bad for one’s health: radiation, increased height, not knowing if you’re ginger.
He should really be about 12 feet tall by now, and look like a red squirrel. But no.
Keanu too holds the secret of internal youth, if only he could share his secrets with all of us.
More John Wick
- Interview with Sambo expert Stephen Koepfer. Sambo is a Russian fighting technique developed for the military, and now a sport. Steve worked with Chad Stahelski to create a Sambo training scene in John Wick: Parabellum.
- John Wick review
- John Wick: Chapter 2 review
- John Wick: Parebellum review
- “All this, because of a puppy?” Me to me, after writing 4,000 words on the John Wick trilogy…
- 10 Reasons why… the ultimate alt-Xmas movie is John Wick
- 10 what’s with Wick moments from John Wick 1
- Wick did what? 10 things that made me go “Whoa!” in John Wick: Chapter 2
- Podcast: I spoke to Tom Beasley from Flickering Myth about my favourite movie…