The air is thick with them, the internet perforated by them, the press carpeted in them.
But enough about rumours concerning the identity of that woman who sings Ride On Time. Let’s try and pin down exactly what is common knowledge about the identity of the next Dr Who.
1) In July, a man in Jedburgh told his local paper he thought he’d spotted someone who “looked like Tony Hawks” stepping in and out of a blue box.
TV CREAM DR WHO CONSUMER UNIT SAYS: It was Tony Hawks, but on investigation it turns out he was merely “researching” his latest book about wryly carrying large goods (in this case a walk-in ice box) in a wry fashion around wryly inhospitable landscapes.
2) A fortnight ago an old lady in Hereford phoned her son to say that she’d overheard two people in Waitrose, “one of whom was Tom Baker”, discussing how much they were looking forward to “seeing more Billie Piper”. The son later posted this revelation on a fan forum.
TV CREAM DR WHO CONSUMER UNIT SAYS: It was Tom Baker, but he was relating how much he was looking forward to “seeing more Marie Piper”, i.e. potatoes.
3) During the summer Russell T Davies reportedly told a fan convention he was very much hoping to give Danny Dyer a hand in getting an opening.
TV CREAM DR WHO CONSUMER UNIT SAYS: Russell T Davies was not talking about Dr Who.
4) The next Dr Who will be someone who has already been in the show.
TV CREAM DR WHO CONSUMER UNIT SAYS: He was asked, but Colin Baker declined, stating it would “be like being asked back for one night with your ex-girlfriend”.
5) The next Dr Who will be a black man/old man/American/child/cripple/gay/gay cripple.
TV CREAM DR WHO CONSUMER UNIT SAYS: The next Dr Who will be Julia Sawalha.