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By Horror Channel, Friday 11th April 2014
Played By: William Hartnell
Characteristics: An irascible, unpredictable traveller who likes adventure and dislikes fuss.
Memorable Moments: His heartfelt talk with Susan when he leaves her during Flashpoint, the final episode of The Daleks Invasion Of Earth (1964)
Quotes: “One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then, there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine”. “So, you’re my replacements. A dandy and a clown!”
Man behind the Myth: William Hartnell (1908-1975) was best known for playing hard men and Sergeants when the chance to play the Doctor came around. Though originally hesitant on taking on the role he relished the part and loved the adoration he experienced from fans. He gave the Doctor a rough edge, keeping the audience guessing as to whether he had ulterior motives to some of his actions or not. When Hartnell was Doctor, public thoughts of space exploration had begun and his travels fuelled our increasing fascination of what could be “out there”.
TARDIS Trivia: Hartnell returned to Doctor Who in 1972-73 adventure The Three Doctors but his failing health forced his pieces to be filmed in advance and had to read his lines from boards. The First Doctor was played by Richard Hurndall in the 20th anniversary story The Five Doctors in 1983.
Played By: Patrick Troughton
Characteristics: A mischievous, thoughtful, caring hero often referred to as a Cosmic Hobo.
Memorable Moments: Battling Yeti in the London Underground
Quote: “You’ve redecorated. I don’t like it”.
Man behind the Myth: Patrick Troughton (1920-1987) was the first person to play Robin Hood on TV and was established as a much loved character actor when he became the Doctor. He played the role initially with a comedy element which gave some fans cause for concern. He won viewers over with his enthusiasm and obvious love of the role. It’s a simple fact that if he hadn’t been so good at developing the character then Doctor Who wouldn’t have become the global success it is today. His companions in the TARDIS found him approachable and “with it” and as the 1960s matured so did the adventures.
TARDIS Trivia: Troughton was the first Doctor to have his image in the title sequence, was the first Doctor to have a Sonic Screwdriver, returned to the show three times; The Three Doctors (1972-73), The Five Doctors (1983) and the Two Doctors (1985), played Father Brennan in the horror classic The Omen (1976)
Played By: Jon Pertwee
Characteristics: Dynamic, adventure seeking patriarch with a love for adventure and frilly shirts.
Memorable Moments: The times he used Venusian Aikido in self-defence.
Quote: “A tear, Sarah Jane? No, don’t cry. While there’s life…”
Man behind the Myth: Though usually associated with comedy roles, Pertwee (1919-1996) added a more serious, James Bond style edge to the character of the Doctor. Playing it totally straight with depth and pathos, he reflected the early 1970s, a time of change and upset in the UK and people’s desire for something better in life and a need to explore the world. Pertwee saw the Doctor as a “mother hen” character, protecting everyone in his care such as his companions and the UNIT family, and loved gadgets.
TARDIS Trivia: His middle names were John Devon and was a distant cousin of Dad’s Army actor Bill Pertwee, Pertwee’s Doctor isn’t seen to regenerate in his opening episode, his first story was to be called Facsimile but changed to Spearhead From Space, Pertwee once submitted a storyline but it wasn’t picked up.
Played By: Tom Baker
Characteristics: Bohemian time traveller with an overlong scarf and taste for jelly babies.
Quote: “There’s no point in being grown-up if you can’t be childish sometimes”
Man behind the Myth: One of shows true characters, Tom Baker’s life is as colourful as his trademark scarf. He had walked many different career paths until he arrived at actor and when he was offered the role of the Doctor he was working on a building site. Tom loved playing a hero to children and introduced a lot of humour to the character as he developed it. His curly hair, huge grin and staring eyes made him an icon for this golden age of the series.
TARDIS Trivia: The Human League recorded a track called Tom Baker, Tom alongside Ian Marter (who played companion Harry Sullivan) drafted a script called Doctor Who Meets Scratchman but it was never produced,
Played By: Peter Davison
Characteristics: Emotional, friendly, young looking cricket loving Time Lord with a stick of celery attached to his coat collar.
Quote: “When did you last have the pleasure of smelling a flower, watching a sunset, eating a well prepared meal?”
Man behind the Myth: Peter Davison was, at the time the youngest actor to play the Doctor. Already famous to millions from playing another much loved character, Tristan in All Creatures Great And Small, Davison pulled off the impossible and took over the role after a record breaking run of 7 years. His subtle take on the character was less bombastic than Tom Baker’s and took the series into a new direction.
TARDIS Trivia: Wrote the theme tune to Button Moon with his then wife Sandra Dickinson, is the father of Georgia Moffett who is married to Tenth Doctor actor David Tennant.
Played By: Colin Baker
Characteristics: Loud, brash and very alien in tone (not just talking about his costume here!), the Sixth Doctor was a real change from the norm.
Quote: “Change, my dear. And it seems not a moment too soon”
Man behind the Myth: Baker was known for playing tough guys, predominantly that of Paul Merroney in The Brothers and brought a sense of reality to that larger than life role so was perfect for the Doctor. Colin gave the Doctor an alieness that made him very unpredictable. This seemed at odds to what had gone before, but you realise that this is a delicious idea and made for some of the Doctor’s most controversial but at times satisfying adventures.
TARDIS Trivia: Colin played Commander Maxil in the adventure Arc Of Infinity and actually shot the Fifth Doctor, the cat badge motif on his costume was his idea, final words as the Doctor were “Carrot juice, carrot juice, carrot juice!”
Played By: Sylvester McCoy
Characteristics: Often thought of by adversaries as merely a fool, this Doctor always had a cunning scheme running at the back of his mind.
Quote: “If we fight like animals, we will die like animals”
Man behind the Myth: Like Tom Baker, McCoy had many different jobs including Insurance Salesman until he eventually ended up as part of Ken Campbell’s Roadshow where he made a living hammering nails up his nose! Eventually he became a regular on children’s TV in shows such as Jigsaw. He initially played the Doctor as a cosmic clown but toned the prat-falls and juggling for a darker interpretation of the character.
TARDIS Trivia: McCoy’s real name is Percy James Patrick Kent-Smith, the Seventh Doctor didn’t regenerate until the 1996 TV Movie so some fans say his tenure lasted from 1987 until then, in 1990 Doctor Who Magazine readers voted him as the best Doctor.
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