VATICAN CITY, ITALY - Adoring fans of outbound Pope Benedict XVI maintain a constant vigil outside the Vatican today, their hopes held high that, once the smoke clears, he'll be revealed as having regenerated into the body of BBC TV's current incarnation of "Doctor Who," Matt Smith.
"We knew it was just a matter of time before we lost this Pope but gained a new one," said Shauna O'Fallacy, vice-president of the Dingle (Ireland) Chapter of 'Who's Pope' Fan Club International. "When one leaves, everybody knows we get another one - he just regenerates into a new body - and we're holding out hope that the elders will have that body be the one belonging to Matt Smith. Or Karen Gillan. Either Matt Smith or Karen Gillan, but Matt Smith would definitely be our first choice.
Once word of Pope Benedict XVI's resignation leaked to the world press, it was only a matter of time before online fan communities began speculating who would take over the much coveted role of the high pontiff.
Vatican spokesman Herschel Fierstein adamantly denies rumors of Smith's involvement in the coming seasons of Catholicism.
"We tried long ago to put these reports to bed about the Pope regenerating," Fierstein stated from his office. "The Pope isn't a time lord. He isn't from the planet Gallifrey. Such gossip has plagued the Church for centuries, but it isn't true."
Representatives of Matt Smith could not be reached for comment, only adding further fuel to the conjecture that he'll be wearing the pointed hat once Pope duties resume this upcoming season.