Facts About the Doctor Who Series
Doctor Who is a world wide television phenomena and one of the BBC's top five Superbrands *.
It has the distinction of being the longest running Science Fiction T,V series in the world, since it's first screening on the 23rd of November 1963.
It has become a cult T.V favourite which has won BAFTA awards, Best Drama Series awards and National T.V awards.
To date there have been 11 Doctors who between them have made 31 series from 769 episodes.
The series was created by Sydney Newman, C.E Webber and Donald Wilson.
It's iconic theme tune was composed by Ron Griner, realised by Delia Derbyshire and played by the B.B.C Radiophonic Workshop making it the first T.V series to have an entirely electronic theme tune.
Today the series is screened on a regular basis in 50 different countries, making it the B.B.C's most lucrative product by way of it's DVDs, books, games, comics and toy sales.
From 1963 until 1969 the series was filmed in monochrome ( black and white) from 1970 until 2009 it was filmed in colour SD ( standard definition) and since 2009 it has been screened in H.D ( high definition).
The first country to screen Doctor Who out side of the U.K was New Zealand in September 1964.
The Doctor's craft is the iconic T.A.R.D.I.S, which resembles a 1960's public telephone box from the U.K.
The original model built for the series cost £4,328 to construct.
The time and space ship has a chameleon circuit for when it lands, enabling it to blend in with any surrounding. When it landed in London in 1962 the circuitry malfunctioned and was never repaired. The name T.A.R.D.I.S means:
T - Time
A - And
R - Relative
D - Dimensions
I - In
S - Space.
The British actors who have played the Doctor over the years have been:
William Hartnell - 1963 - 1966.
Patrick Troughton - 1966 - 1969.
Jon Pertwee - 1970 - 1974.
Tom Baker - 1974 - 1981.
Peter Davison 1981 - 1984.
Colin Baker 1984 - 1986.
Sylvester McCoy - 1987 - 1989.
Paul McGann - 1996.
Christopher Eccleston - 2005.
David Tennent - 2005 - 2010.
Matt Smith - 2010 - incumbent.
The longest serving Doctor was Tom Baker, who played the Doctor for 7 years.
However, unofficially Sylvester McCoy was the Doctor for the longest timeframe as he was still classified as Doctor Who during the series long break from 1989 to 1996.
The shortest serving Doctor was Christopher Eccleston who played the Doctor for just one series, although some may credit Paul McGann with this title as he only appeared on screen as the Doctor once, but he did make several audio productions and was officially considered the Doctor for nine years.
Although we all know Doctor Who as The Doctor, he has been known to go by the name of John Smith.
All the Doctor's regenerations have been screened, except Patrick Troughton to Jon Pertwee and Paul McGann to Christopher Eccleston.
The Doctor has had many adversaries over the years with 4 returning on a regular basis which have become iconic symbols of the series in their own right,they are:
The Daleks. Created by Terry Nation.
The Cybermen. Created by Dr Kit Pedler.
Davros. Played by Michael Wisher.
The Master. Played by Rojer Delgado. Peter Pratt.
Geoffrey Beavers. Anthony Ainley.
Gordon Tipple. Derek Jacobi.
Six spinoff T.V series have been made by various T.V channels over the years, they are:
K-9 and company.
The Sarah Jane adventures.
Doctor Who confidential.
Totally Doctor Who.
K - 9 was created by Bob Baker with the voice of actor John Leason.
Two Doctor Who films were made with British actor Peter Cushing playing the Doctor,they were called Doctor Who and the Daleks, 1965 and Dalek Invasion of Earth 1966.
In 1983 a 20th anniversary special was screened called The Five Doctors, starring the first five Doctors of the series, however by this point actor Willaim Hartnell was now deceased and in his place actor Richard Hurndall played Doctor number one.
One T.V movie was made in May 1996 starring Paul McGann called Doctor Who , The T.V Movie.
Five Christmas specials were made featuring David Tennent as the Doctor.They were:
2005 - Christmas Invasion.
2006 - The Runaway Bride.
2007 - Voyage of the Damned.
2008 - The Next Doctor.
2009 - The End of Time. Screened in two parts.
2010 - A christmas Carol.
The Doctor has had 51 official assistants or companions over the years both male and female humans, and a few non humans too.
However, a certain few of them have played a larger part in the Doctor's life than others. They are;
Barbara Wright played by Jaqueline Hill.
Ian Chesterton played by William Russell.
Jamie McCrimmon played by Frazer Hines.
Jo Grant played by Katy Manning.
Sarah Jane Smith played by Elisabeth Sladden.
Tegan Jovanka played by Janet Fielding.
Peri Brown played by Nicola Bryant.
Ace played by Sophie Aldred.
Grace Holloway played by Daphne Ashbrook.
Rose Taylor played by Billie Piper.
Rose Taylor played by Billie Piper.
Donna Noble played by Catherine Tate.
Martha Jones played by Freema Agyeman.
Amy Pond played by Karen Gillan.
SOME DOCTOR WHO WEBSITES.
* The BBC's top five Superbrand TV series are, Top Gear, Doctor Who, Life, Planet Earth and Being Erica .
Doctor Who is a brandname, trademark and copyright of the B.B.C.( British Broadcasting Corporation)
The BBC is a broadcasting organisation publicly funded by annual licence fees charged to all U.K, Channel Islands and Isle of Man households, which was founded on the 18th of October 1922.
All the images used in this article are copyrighted publicity photographs owned by the BBC, all of which are low-resolution copies of publicity photographs released between 1963 and 2009;
I have used them as there is -
No free alternative available.
I wanted to emphasise the popularity of Doctor Who in popular culture.
It does not detract from the value of the image, or the copyright holder's ability to make further profit from it.
The image is provided at a low resolution inappropriate for re-printing, thus the usage of them does not pose a problem of aiding media piracy.The use of the images in this article will have no effect on the BBC's commercial use of the images in question.
© D.B.Bellamy.September 2010.