Tom Baker, The Fourth Doctor
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.
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…..