Forget the rest of the news you read today— the arrival of the 13th Doctor is finally here. Money was on the current golden girl, the brilliant Phoebe Waller-Bridge of Fleabag, to take the title. But it was actually another Broadchurcher who was revealed as the 13th incarnation of the Doctor. Jodie Whittaker is taking over. And, with her astounding acting talent with a bold but emotional edge, she seems like the perfect choice. It couldn’t have come at a better time, especially with life in the the US and UK feeling distinctly shambolic. Because, as Whittaker herself understands, a little escapism with Doctor Who is everything we need right now.

“I’m beyond excited to begin this epic journey – with Chris and with every Whovian on this planet,” Whittaker said. “It’s more than an honour to play the Doctor. It means remembering everyone I used to be, while stepping forward to embrace everything the Doctor stands for: hope. I can’t wait.” A new Doctor Who announcement, especially with a talent like Whittaker, is something that we can all get behind. Whether you’re a full-blown Whovian or just a casual viewer who has dipped in and out over the show’s long lifespan (it started in 1963), it’s a win.

Widespread Support For A Female Doctor

Despite Whittaker taking over as the first female Doctor in such a long running show, there has been wide celebration over the gender swap. The most devoted fans— the heads of some of the shows fan groups— have stated that they were most concerned that a talented performer would take over the role. And they have no doubt that Whittaker will deliver. Even Colin Baker seemed to be on board. The actor, who played the sixth Doctor, tweeted his support of a Doctor Who with a female touch.

The rumors of the new Doctor being a woman have been circling for some time. Peter Capaldi announced in January that he would be leaving the show. From then, the speculation began. “I always knew I wanted the 13th Doctor to be a woman and we’re thrilled to have secured our number one choice,” Chris Chibnall, Doctor Who’s new head writer and executive producer, told the Guardian. “Her audition for the Doctor simply blew us all away. Jodie is an in-demand, funny, inspiring, super-smart force of nature and will bring loads of wit, strength and warmth to the role. The 13th Doctor is on her way.”

For a show that’s been aired off and on for over 50 years, a female lead feels a long time coming. But it has finally come. And to have a woman starring in arguably the biggest sci-fi television show of all time is great to see. The show is a cross-cultural phenomenon. It’s practically peerless. Doctor Who is such a huge part of British culture, known by fans and non-fans alike, and has gained millions of followers around the world. So every reveal of a new doctor is a special and exciting experience— but this time, it’s different. The time is right for the first female Doctor to take the stage. And we’re all waiting to see what happens next.