Just like clockwork, the official Doctor Who YouTube Channel trotted out a video compilation of the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) and Donna Noble (Catherine Tate). Things moved fast: first Russell T. Davies announced Ncuti Gatwa was the next Doctor on the Sunday of the BAFTAs, then suddenly announced the following Sunday that Tennant and Tate were back for the show's 60th anniversary.
In hindsight, the sudden rush of news makes sense: the Monday after, Tennant and Tate were seen filming in London's Camden Town, in full view of the general public. There was no way they were going to be able to deny or cover it up. Better to get ahead of the leaks and also generate enough buzz to break the internet. It's been a long time – more than three years! – since Doctor Who last broke the internet. This level of showmanship and buzz is a welcome return. Then by Wednesday, the BBC brought out this short Doctor & Donna video to remind us why the two of them were the most popular combo.
Tate's Donna was the one companion who didn't moon over the Doctor. She was an adult. A mouthy, bolshy adult who started as a bridezilla and ended up saving the world, as companions tend to do. Tate was the last person anyone expected to become a companion on Doctor Who. She was already a household name with her popular sketch show. This was stunt casting at its finest because it became more than that. Tate and Tennant were the best comedy duo of the current era. Both classically-trained actors, they seemed to relish bouncing off each other like tennis players, Tate's comic timing complemented Tennant in ways no Doctor-Companion pairing did before or since.
All this is well and good, but the one casualty here is Jodie Whittaker. She has become ignored and forgotten when she's still the current Doctor with one last special coming in the Autumn. Granted, many of us would love to forget Flux ever happened, but Whittaker has become roadkill in this rush to hype. She's been a good soldier through all this, loyal to the show and its producer, but she's been hard done by. We have a lot more to say about that later.