All posts by Anna

I am a 20 something Plymouthian. I am a Alone Wolf, I am a geek, I am untalented and easy to please. I am the greatest person you'll never meet.

Our Doctor Countdown 1 : Jon Pertwee

Jon Pertwee, The Third Doctor

PertweeSo, you guessed it right. Jon Pertwee came out as top of our Doctor Poll.

But why?

We’ve had the most beloved Doctors fall to one that, to us, doesn’t seem to be remembered much nowadays.

There is so much more to the Pertwee years then the Third Doctor though, just so much more.

After being sent in exile on Earth the Doctor got a job, he worked for UNIT and made friends, the UNIT family was born.

For us Pertwee was THE Hero growing up, the Doctor is always the Doctor but Pertwee just had something a little more special about him.

Pertwee was my mums Doctor so it was only natural that most of the Doctor Who I encountered at a young age was Three’s era and with age I’ve grown to love it more and more.

I liked how not only did we get a companion who pushed the Doctor back a step when he was over bearing, we got a whole team. When the Doctor started his whole “Well it would be so much easier for you to understand if you were me” stuff a whole group of people who loved him collectively rolled their eyes and shook their heads. There was something so magical about it and so innocent too.

Pertwee played a fatherly figure as well as making the Doctor more like a spy, unlike James Bond he relied on technology and his own smarts but a spy he still seemed to be. Personally I think he was the inspiration for Austin Powers with his crushed velvet, karate and witty one liners.

One thing that always surprised me is how even when his travelling was taken away there was still so much going on. And he grew to love being there as well, of course he is a born traveller so was bound to be off when he could, but he really honestly loved his little group and it showed. Especially in the heartbreaking final moments with Jo before she suddenly decided to run off with someone else.

Everything about the Pertwee era just excites us, we love watching his episodes we love the family vibe and we love his Doctor, so many times we see him ignored when people talk about great Doctors but we really do believe he is one of the finest.

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Our Doctor Countdown 2 : Tom Baker

Tom Baker, The Fourth Doctor

T.Bakeer

Yes we can hear the sharp intake of breath from here. You’ve waited over a week (nearly two!) to find out that Tom Baker was top of our poll only to find out he came second! Yes second.

You can now double guess who the main man is but obviously we’ll need to talk about possibly the most iconic Doctor we’ll ever have.

Think of Doctor Who and you think of the scarf, the hair, the eyes and the Jelly Babies. Tom Baker stayed as the Doctor for 7 years and has become THE Doctor in people’s eyes. Still as popular as ever and still the longest running Doctor. Tom Baker for many is the definition of Doctor Who.

He was eccentric, clever and loved his adventures. With some of the classic companions (Sarah Jane, K-9, Leela, Romana) it is no wonder his era sticks in our mind. There is so much depth in his run, emotional episodes, fun episodes, episodes that you don’t know what the heck is going on but you enjoy the ride anyway… When he has so much going for him why bother with any other Doctor?

Well we bother because they are all different, but still…

Everyone who knows Doctor Who will at least know the iconic profile of the man even if they haven’t seen much of the 172 episodes he was in. Yes that is right 172.

The familiarity of his Doctor placed him so high, with such a high episode count of course the clunckers stick in the mind more. But no matter how many times you watch it you still get that feeling of the unexpected in his performance. You just don’t know what his Doctor is thinking, why he is doing or saying what he is doing/saying and when he’ll surprise you (or of course HOW he’ll surprise you.)

Like all the Doctors his eccentric side is only the surface of what is actually a very complex Time Lord. Four is probably the most complex of them all.

We all grew up with him and know his stories the best, but even now his series works with a younger audience.

We love his stories even if sometimes we get lost in the train of thought being played out on screen, Tom Baker brought a lot of himself into the role and to be honest the most iconic parts of his character are just iconic parts of Tom Baker. That is why we love it though because you know that you’ll be safe. He was so bizarre at times (maybe wrong word for it) that you couldn’t help but feel he WOULD save you in the end, out of all the Doctors if I was going on an adventure and wanted it to end well Four is the one I would trust. For no real reason other then his egotistic belief that he’ll just get through it.

He also had one of my favourite companions.

Leela.

I always like it when a companion has the upper hand on the Doctor but isn’t super know it all (possibly a reason Adric isn’t liked that much?) Leela needed to be taught about a lot of what was going on, not because she was stupid or ditsy but because she came from a basic back ground. She was brave and looked out for herself against foes and the Doctor, she was clever in her own way and used that to get out of situations the Doctor might have been too bored to think about, she wasn’t scared to learn new things and she got the hang of it easy.

It was nice seeing the way the two of them interacted because moreso then a lot of the Doctors Four had a ego. A big one. He could be quite cold and condescending when he wanted to be, but Leela didn’t care, she knew she was clever and she knew what she was doing and that was the most important thing. And even if the Doctor was being mean at the time you could tell the respect was there and the caring feel he has to his companions.

There is really something for everyone in his era, with so much to get through you could get completely lost in his era, and it is worth doing once or twice every year or so because it is all good stuff.

And there you have it. Second place…..

Our Doctor Countdown 3 : Matt Smith

Matt Smith, The Eleventh Doctor

SmithMatt Smith is the current Doctor, having started his era in 2010 after David Tennant left he is due to bow out at Christmas.

Now I could rabbit on about Eleven all day long if you gave me a chance! He is by far my favourite incarnation post-2005, he is climbing in my estimation all the time and for me ranks equal with C.Baker, Troughton and Pertwee at the number 1 spot in my heart. Yes those four men are perfection for me.

Why do we like Eleven so much?

Smith has a ability to say a million words with a look, he can go from playful and eccentric to one solitary teary look and break your heart in seconds. His timing is perfect and his expressions are wonderful.

I couldn’t even tell you how much I love him without just listing perfect moments. I won’t do that, there would be no point in it.

I didn’t love the Tennant years, I’ve said it before and I’ll keep harping on about it, I didn’t dislike Tennants Doctor I just didn’t like it. I didn’t have high hopes for Smith when I first heard the casting but he changed my mind in seconds of his first episode, he was just perfectly Doctorish for me. I loved how alien he seemed, he was childish and manic but his eyes looked like they belonged to an old, worn out man when he wanted them to. He is the master of the subtle moments, the half spoken words, the looks that tell you the whole story better then any blurb could. It is something I never imagined he’d be able to do but he does it perfectly.

It helps that I love Steven Moffats writing, and I am one of what seems a very small group in places of people that think A Christmas Carol was one of the best episodes we’ll ever see. I hate saying it now because people take it the wrong way and use it in a negative sense but I love the magic you feel when Matt is on screen and that episode was so magical and just made my Christmas feel special. I don’t mean its all Harry Potter and all that stuff, not that I think that is a decent insult as the Harry Potter series is a great one, Doctor Who should feel magical in the way that it should transport you into a fictional world and make you feel apart of it, Matt’s era has done that and a lot of it is down to Matt.

I was saying in my random blubbing on my own blog that Matt will be the first of my Doctors that I’ve been alive to see regenerate, I wasn’t born till 1989 and even though I felt emotional about the others regenerating it didn’t have as much of a impact as this one will have, I’ll be there at the end with my Doctor.

Selfishly it isn’t enough, I want 100 more episodes with him, I don’t want him to leave, his Doctor means the world to me and the way he plays it is just beautiful, losing him will break my heart (that isn’t a negative against Capaldi he’ll do a wonderful job and I’ll probably love him just as much) he was just so perfectly Doctorish and I’ll miss him.

The raggedy Doctor.

Our Doctor Countdown 4 : William Hartnell

William Hartnell, the First Doctor

HartnellIn 1963 William Hartnell was cast in a little show called Doctor Who. The first episode, written by Antony Coburn, An Unearthly Child was broadcast on November 23rd 1963, he left the show in 1966 after starring in 134 episodes.

The First Doctor, where it all started.

We haven’t really seen much of Hartnell’s era, we can’t really say why either. What we have seen has been excellent and we can see why back then it was a hit, then again we can see why it should have been a hit when it wasn’t… Fans hey?

Anything I write today will be with the shadow of An Adventure in Space and Time hanging over it, to write this like I hadn’t seen that wonderful drama is difficult as before now I really hadn’t seen much or thought much about Hartnell or the First Doctor. He was just there. I love An Unearthly Child, adore The Daleks and after last night (well the night before technically) I am in love with The Romans, his era of the show is brilliant, it really captures the imagination, but for some reason I’ve just not seen much of it.

I love how the Doctor slowly mellows towards Ian and Barbara and how they grow fond of the old man and his funny ways, his love of Susan and his thirst to see everything, know everything and stick his nose in makes me laugh. He just loved having adventures and I think I love that about his incarnation the most, it didn’t matter where or why, he just loved going and doing.

Without him we wouldn’t have the show… Well as Amanda pointed out we don’t really know that! We could have had the show but it wouldn’t have been the same without him, he made his character his own just like every Doctor and I like to think he was the perfect man for the job.

I’m going to make it my task next year to see as much of his era as I can possibly watch as I believe he’d personally be higher for me if I’d seen more of him.

As it is we love him enough to put him at 4. What a wonderful Doctor.

Our Doctor Countdown 5 : Christopher Eccleston

Christopher Eccleston, the Ninth Doctor

EcclestonWhen Doctor Who came back in 2005 Christopher Eccleston played the Time Lord and introduced him to a whole new generation. He only played the Doctor for a solitary series in 2005 but he made it up to 5th in our countdown.

Why?

Maybe it is as simple as loving Eccleston himself anyway. He brought a lot of what we love about him to the Doctor, his wit, his goofiness but also his darker side.

His series wasn’t to all of our tastes but one thing we do usually agree with is that what we did enjoy was his portrayal. He was an interesting choice for the Doctor especially bringing the show back, he’s quite a big star without being massive and is also a very Marmite actor at times. His relationship with Rose was probably what made the show as popular as it was, the series for the first time really was about the journey of his companion and not the Doctor so new fans were able to see the Doctor through someone else’s eyes instead of alongside the Doctor and it worked. Even if Eccleston didn’t stay around for long.

What did we like about the Ninth Doctor?

It is hard to say, in his one and only series we have a little more to talk about then Paul McGann but at the same time it seems very little. His face when they shoot the pig-man-thing is one moment that I’ll always remember, it reminded me how great Eccleston can be when he wants to be.

Unlike Tennant for me his relationship with Rose didn’t make me want to cringe inwardly, it was quite sweet, the only time I had a problem with him was his over reaction to Adam, not that I liked Adam (he bloody annoyed me!) but at the same time it was unneeded, especially as Rose wasn’t quite as perfect as he seemed to think she was (and what was with her stupid face during the whole of the taking Adam home crap?) It was bearable.

I’d love to see the return of the Ninth Doctor as I feel we had so much more to see of him. It is a shame that he only got the one series, but even with farting aliens the series didn’t suffer (I quite liked the Slitheen to be honest!) and we got a new, new Doctor who went on to be one of the most popular ever in David Tennant.

You can’t forget just how important Chris is though, his Doctor was the one that made us love the Doctor again.

Our Doctor Countdown 6 : Patrick Troughton

Patrick Troughton, the Second Doctor

TroughtonAfter Hartnell left instead of end the series they cast Patrick Troughton as the Second incarnation of the Doctor, he started work in October 1966 and left in June 1969 in the War Games.

The heart breaking truth of it is that seeing we weren’t alive back then to see his episodes live unfortunately there has of yet been little to no chance of seeing most of the Second Doctors tenure as the episodes have been lost to us after the BBC wiped them. Thankfully, slowly, his episodes are being found and with rumours that the last two serials to be returned (Enemy of the World and Web of Fear) not being the only episodes found we could broaden our Troughton viewing in years to come.

But for now he sits at number 6.

He is a well loved Doctor for each of us, we all love his incarnation a lot. We love the wackiness he brings to it but also the ability to switch it on and off like a tap. HE can be deadly serious, pull a funny face, then scare you to the bone. The Second Doctor is the one that we constantly compare the Eleventh too, their comedy is much more physical then most of the other Doctors but they have such a deadly side to them that it usually a good disguse, play up to the funny side of yourself then let rip with a quite terrifying darker side.

The biggest strength his series had was a long standing companion in Jamie. He was with the Second Doctor throughout most of his tenure, he wasn’t the smartest of companions, coming from the 18th century and not knowing anything about gadgets of any kind he was the companion that needed to be taught, but at the same time he would call the Doctor out whenever he was getting too big for his boots.

It is a great shame that there is so many missing episodes from his time as the Doctor because what we have got is magic, and the find of Enemy just proved this. In Enemy he plays both the Doctor and Salamander (the bad guy) and does it perfectly, both characters don’t feel similar at all even with the same face and you are easily able to forget it is the same man playing both characters. Salamander can’t be any different from the Doctor if you tried, he is the complete opposite and it is wonderful to see him play the part, it showed how straight he could act given the time to do it, but I’m happy that he played his Doctor with more humour.

For a Doctor that we don’t know much about at times he makes the biggest impact on people. Such a wonderful Doctor. And if anything he had one of the hardest roles to play in the series, if people didn’t believe he was the Doctor then the show would have ended with him and would probably be mocked as “that show that tried to change the face of their main character once” instead it worked wonderfully to the point that we’re making this countdown on the 50th anniversary of the show that he gave so much heart to.

Our Doctor Countdown 7 : Colin Baker

Colin Baker, The Sixth Doctor

C.Baker

I’m sad I couldn’t boost Colin higher as Six is my Doctor, but 7th is better then I’d thought he’d get.

The Sixth Doctor was portrayed by Colin Baker between March 1984 and December 1986. Β His iconic rainbow coloured coat makes him stand out from the rest of his counterparts, but also his fiery temper!

His era isn’t seen with a lot of love but for us there is a lot to love about Six and his adventures with Peri. Even the Trial of the Timelord series wasn’t half as bad (for us) as others think. I quite enjoy Sixies back and forth with the other characters, especially his childish insults to The Valeyard.

I enjoyed his volatile side, the fact that he was egotistical and knew what he was doing. He had a loving side though which came out in Trial so well. Being aware of how great he is wasn’t a problem for me, and having a bad temper is nowhere near as terrible as people seem to think.

I never found any of his stories boring and loved watching him and Peri go from journey to journey.

You do have to give Colin a lot of praise, he played the Doctor in a way that wasn’t going to be popular, a polar opposite of what Peter Davison did with Five. It was a brave, if futile attempt to shake up the format and the character, but after being mellowed out for Trial of the Timelord his Doctor had quite a nice balance that could have worked if given another series.

Sometimes it feels like it is the “popular” thing to do to hate on Six whether you watched his series or not, and also whether you really liked it or not. I’m not saying that it is something everyone does but sometimes people just like to hate on poor Six for no reason, personally I think he was the most endearing Doctor of the lot of them. I enjoyed his incarnation the most.

His highlight?

The Two Doctors, him and Troughton were a wonderful pairing. Peri and Jamie were pretty funny together to, plus we have a load of Sontarans.

We have big love for Six. Plus I met him once, what a wonderfully lovely man Colin Baker is!