It has come to our attention that half way through the broadcast of this evening’s episode of Doctor Who, Pope John Paul II passed away in the Vatican. The Pope had been known for many years as an ardent fan of the show, and it is believed that the shock of discovering that Gallifrey has been destroyed contributed to his final end.
We remember him with fondness, particularly for the support he gave the Uncertainty Division in its formative years, when he would let us rehearse in his rooms in Selwyn College, Rome. Of course the Pope was also a support to many other young performers, including John Cleese, Germaine Greer and Stephen Fry. At the Pope’s gala performance only a year ago, people turned out to show their support for the man who has been, in the words of Alan Rickman, “a very good man. Perhaps the goodest man of all.”
The Pope’s last words were “it is the end…but the moment has been prepared for.” He was then seen to blur and take on the form of a younger man with straight, fair hair. The next Pope has not yet been announced, but possible candidates are David Tennant and George Carey (though Michael Howard has also shown interest in the role, having expressed a desire to move on from his current position in early May). The Producer of the Vatican, Cardinal Russell T. Nathan-Turner, has indicated that he wishes the next Pope to be “more vulnerable and less eccentric”. He has dismissed rumours that the next Pope will be female, or that Tom Baker will be returning to the role.
We will naturally keep you informed as and when we get news, but in the mean time we acknowledge with sadness the passing of a great, great man.
James and James