Doctor Who? The Spin Offs

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The thing about a long running TV series like Doctor Who, is that you sooner or later fans are going to want to see a little bit more of certain characters, but Doctor Who didn’t get its first spin off until 18 years after the first serial hit the airwaves.

K-9 and Company


K-9 and Company, A Girls Best Friend served as a pilot episode for a potential spin off featuring Elizabeth Sladen reprising her role as Sarah Jane Smith and John Leeson returning to voice K-9, this spin off sees Sarah Jane and K-9 teaming up to investigate a local cult of witches. Originally broadcast in 1981 as a Christmas special, the first episode was not picked up as a regular series.



Spinning off from the revived series of Doctor Who Torchwood follows the life of Captain Jack Harkness and his Team, Torchwood 2, based at the rift in time and space in 21st century Cardiff, The show mainly looks at the lengths Torchwood will go to, in order to contain extraterrestrial, and temporal threats and the human cost that comes with it.

The Sarah Jane Adventures


The Sarah Jane Adventures picks up from both K-9 and Company and Series 2 of the revived Doctor Who, and follows Sarah Jane, her adoptive son and his classmates and her alien supercomputer as they deal with alien incursions in suburbia. This particular spin off is arguably the most successful with 4 series released before Elizabeth Sladen’s death and one series released posthumously.



K-9 was the only televised spin off of Doctor Who, not to be commissioned by or produced by the BBC but was in fact produced by Disney XD the Australian Network Ten.  The show enjoyed limited success and aside from the protagonist and John Leeson’s reprisal of the role, it had very little to do with the Doctor Who universe, making the canonicity of the show itself very debatable. The Show also introduced a new design for K-9 marking a departure from the original design to give way to a flying model of K-9



The latest of the Doctor Who spinoffs, set at Coal Hill School (renamed Coal Hill Academy) a recurring setting from the earliest Doctor Who Adventure (Susan Foreman attended in the serial The Unearthly Child) This series focused on the children of this schools sixth form being tasked by the Doctor to deal with alien threats while trying to deal with their personal lives.

Doctor Who? The Other Doctors, The War Doctor

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Whilst I’ve looked at Doctor’s 1-12 on other posts there have been several other Doctors, who have only been mentioned in passing, The War Doctor was portrayed by John Hurt, and followed on from Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor and was the Doctor before Christopher Eccelston’s Ninth Doctor

The War Doctor 


The War Doctor was the Doctor who fought the time War, coming after the Eighth Doctor and Before the Ninth, this Doctor (although he didn’t call himself such) began life after the Eighth Doctor regenerated on the planet Karn, he fought many battles for the Time Lords, before finally tiring of the atrocities that the Time War had wrought around him, declared no more. He stole the Time Lord galaxy killer, The Moment, and sought to destroy both Time Lords and Daleks alike, however with the aid of his past and future selves managed to lock Gallifrey at the end of the universe, whilst the Daleks destroyed themselves. Having fought the Time War for centuries, the Doctor regenerates, but he retained no memory of how he saved Gallifrey, so for centuries walked around with the guilt of having committed to genocides.

Notable Appearances 

  1. The Name Of The Doctor- Just for the reveal, John Hurt as the Doctor.
  2. The Day of The Doctor- The Doctors Unite to save Gallifrey and defeat the Daleks.

Dishonourable Mention

  1. That we didn’t get more- That we didn’t get more of John Hurt’s Doctor is a crime, luckily Big Finish produced 4 audio plays before his death in 2017, but sadly this is all we’ll get.


Doctor Who? The Twelfth Doctor

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After Matt Smith decided to give up the role of the doctor Peter Capaldi was cast as the 12th Doctor

The Twelfth Doctor


After being granted a new cycle of regeneration’s by the Time Lords, the Doctor and Clara Oswald land in Victorian England, where they are joined by the Patanoster Street Gang (Strax, Madam Vastra and her wife Jenny Flint) in battling more clockwork astronauts.  Whilst still maintaining her Job at Coal Hill School the Doctor and Clara visit Robin Hood in Sherwood Forest, are shrank in order to save the Universes only good Dalek and take part in a heist on the Bank of Karabraxos. Owing to the strain on Clara’s personal life, and her budding relationship with fellow teacher Danny Pink, Clara decides to leave the Tardis after one last trip, this time, battling a mummy on board the Orient Express… In Space.  Deciding to continue travelling with the Doctor, Clara meets Rigsy a graffiti artist who together defeat the alien Boneless, the Doctor then helps Clara and Danny Pink navigate through London after the world becomes covered in trees.

Not long after this Danny Pink dies after being hit by a car, however his spirit is taken to “Heavan” where it is discovered that a woman named Missy has been manipulating events in the Doctor’s and Clara’s lives for some time.  Upon discovering this the Doctor and Clara learn that Missy has been placing the remains of the recently deceased inside Cybermen units, including Danny Pink and the Doctors old friend the Brigadier. Aided by Kate Stewart and UNIT the Doctor discovers that Missy is in fact the Master in a new regeneration and plans to give the Cybermen to the Doctor as a peace keeping force, this is foiled by the Danny Pink Cyberman and Clara before Missy is seeming killed by the Brigadier Cyberman, but not before telling the Doctor that Gallifrey has been returned to its original time and place in the universe.

As it turns out Missy was in fact lying, and had actually managed to survive owing to a vortex manipulator. Missy, Clara and the Doctor are then summoned by Davros, on a rebuilt Skaro where the Doctor showing mercy saves Davros’ life. The Doctor and Clara resume travelling together and meet Ashildr a Viking woman, who, as a result of conflict with the Mire, becomes immortal. The Doctor then encounters Ashildr again, now going simply by the name Me, in the 1600’s. The Doctor and Clara then discover an element of the Zygon invasion force left on earth have become active and are breaking the treaty in place with the humans. Being manipulated by unknown forces once again the Doctor and Clara once again encounter Me, this time acting as Mayor to a group of exiled and stranded aliens this however leads to Clara’s Death and the Doctor being sent to a mysterious castle with a deadly inhabitant, called the veil. After several billion years the Doctor Manages to escape his prison, and finds himself on Gallifrey, at the end of the Universe. On Gallifrey the Doctor banishes Rassilon and the rest of the High Council before rescuing Clara from her moment of death, and stealing another tardis. At the end of the Universe, the Doctor and Clara encounter Me, who along with Clara agrees to return to her proper place in time within this stolen tardis. Clara and Me then leave an amnesiac Doctor at his Tardis before returning Clara, although Me and Clara decided to travel the universe first, although their Tardis is now stuck looking like an American Diner.

The Doctor, now travelling alone stumbles across Professor River Song, engineering her new husbands death for a priceless diamond. Not recognising the Doctor in his current regeneration she engages his help in retrieving and selling the diamond. The two, along with River’s accomplices Ramone and Nardole, wind up on the planet Darillium where the Doctor gives River the Christmas present of a Sonic Screwdriver, before he and River spend the night (24 years) before River then leaves for the library and the Doctor’s first meeting with her.

The Doctor then begins travelling with Nardole, before being called on to act as executioner for Missy, unable to do this he imprisons her and the three take up residence on Earth, where the Doctor becomes a lecturer at Bristol University. Whilst in academic residence the Doctor takes an interest in a young student named Bill Potts after the two encounter a being called the pilot. The Two travel to the far future and to Victorian England, and then back to the future, where the Doctor loses his sight. The Doctor and Bill save the earth from armageddon and return the Doctor’s sight, at the cost of the Earth being taken over by a race of monks, the Doctor, Bill and Nardole, after prompting from Missy incite rebellion and the Monks control of earth is defeated.

The Doctor and Bill then become stranded on Mars in the 1800’s and are instrumental in the first alliance between Ice Warriors and Humans, and in the Ice Warriors joining the Galactic Alliance. The pair are rescued by Missy and Nardole, and the Doctor begins see signs of Missy reforming into who she used to be. After a short spell in Roman Britain, the Doctor, Nardole, Missy and Bill travel to the future and arrive on a ship nearing a black hole in space, where Bill is shot and critically wounded, she is taken to the other end of the ship, but owing to the time distorting effect of the black hole, time passes at a far slower rate where Missy, Nardole and the Doctor are, than where Bill is. Bill is patched up with cybernetic components and is given into the care of a Mr Razor, the two live and work together in the hospital for several months until the Doctor, Missy and Nardole begin the journey down (5 minuets in their time). However Razor betrays Bill and she is forced into more surgery to become like the hospitals other inhabitants. Upon arriving at Bill’s level the Doctor and Nardole discover that Bill has been turned into one of the first Cybermen from the planet Mondas. And Missy discovers that Razor is really the Master (John Simm). The Master and Missy capture him, but the Doctor had earlier  reprogrammed the Cybernet to target Time Lords as well, forcing them to flee. Nardole arrives in a stolen shuttle to rescue them. The Doctor is electrocuted by a Cyberman, but is saved by Bill. The Doctor manages to destroy the Cybermen, but not before Nardole escapes with many other humans, and the Master and Missy flee, Missy however decides to rejoin the Doctor and stabs her younger self beginning his regeneration, but the Master upon learning the Missy plans to rejoin the Doctor, shoots and kills her, apparently in way that will disable her regenerative process. The Cyberman version of bill also dies in the process, but her essence is saved by the alien Pilot, and the Doctors body is returned to the Tardis. Bill and the Pilot leave to travel the universe together, leaving the Doctor, he begins to regenerate, but tries to halt the process. He travels to Antarctica where he encounters his first self (also in the process of regenerating after meeting Mondasian Cybermen for the first time). The two Doctors meet a time displaced Captain from the British Army in World War One. All three are then forcibly taken into a large spaceship. Inside, they meet with Bill Potts; the Twelfth Doctor, however, doubts she is the real Bill. Upon encountering the ship’s glass-like holographic pilot, they are offered freedom in exchange for allowing the ship to return the Captain to the moment of his death. Refusing to allow the Captain to die, they escape and take the First Doctor’s TARDIS to the planet Villengard.

Alone, the Twelfth Doctor meets with the rogue Dalek Rusty, Given access to the Dalek Hivemind, the Doctor learns that the pilot and its ship, known as Testimony, were created on New Earth, and extract people from their timelines just before they die in order to store their memories “Bill” is discovered to be an avatar, created from her memories. Seeing no evil to fight, the Doctors agree to return the Captain to his timeline. TheCaptain asks the Doctors to keep an eye on his family, introducing himself as Archibald Hamish Lethbridge-Stewart. As time resumes, the Doctors watch as soldiers on both sides begin singing “Silent Night”. The Twelfth Doctor explains to the First that he deliberately shifted the Captain’s timeline to the start of the Christmas truce, to ensure his life would be spared. The first Doctor is returned to his timeline and regenerates, and after encountering avatars of Bill, Nardole and Clara so to does the twelfth Doctor.

Stand Out Stories 

  1. Deep Breath- The freshly regenerated Doctor surrounded by familiar faces fighting Dinosaurs and clockwork robots in Victorian London, oh and lots of Straxy goodness.
  2. Dark Water/Death In Heaven- The Master will always be my favourite villain from all of Doctor who, and it was great to see this fresh perspective on an old character, which just goes to show why Doctor Who is such a long running series.
  3. The Magician’s Apprentice/ The Witches Familliar– Bringing back Missy and Davros in the same episodes to me sounded like overkill at first, but then I forget that some of the best episodes from the show have been the Master manipulating, not just the Doctor, but other monsters as well. This combination of Daleks, Davros, Doctor and Master, has been one that fans of the show have been clamouring for for decades.
  4. Heaven Sent/ Hell Bound – I don’t know what it is about seeing the Doctor at a low point that makes for great storytelling, but there’s just something about it. Seeing what the Doctor does when his back is really against the wall, and seeing what he does to get an outcome that is on his terms and no one else’s is an aspect of the show that I really enjoy watching. It also helps that a good portion of this two parter is set on Gallifrey and for some reason, I find that I enjoy those the most, when looking at my favourite episodes from any Doctor, I find that I gravitate towards the ones set on Gallifrey, and the stories that deliver a good look at the past of the doctor and his world.
  5. The Empress Of Mars- I’m guessing the title of this episode was a little nod to the Edgar Rice Burrows story a Princess of Mars, and even little things like that always put a smile on my face, but seeing the sort of world building that Doctor Who has spent decades on come to fruition, with lots of nods to its own past (and fictional future) always go down well in my book.
  6. World Enough and Time/ The Doctor Falls- We’ve had multiple, multiple Doctor stories in the past (and future) but never a multiple Master one (spin off media doesn’t count unfortunately) so imagine my delight upon the announcement of not one but two Masters for price of only one licence fee. The weird love hate dynamic between the Master and the Master is something that I never would have imagined possible, let alone the whole weird incest (selfcest?) thing that they had going on, which was both cringey and hilarious to watch at the same time.

Dishonourable Mention 

  1. Nardole-I don’t usually pick on individual characters, but Nardole was not a good one, whether it was Matt Lucas’s portrayal, or just the fact that he was there to be comic relief, but he really just managed to get on my nerves throughout all of his appearances.


Join again soon for more on the wonderful worlds of The BBC’s Doctor Who.

This is part of a series of posts relating to the BBC’s long running show Doctor Who.

Doctor Who? The Eleventh Doctor

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After David Tennant decided to leave the role of the Doctor Behind, Matt Smith was cast as the 11th Doctor.

The Eleventh Doctor


Travelling alone the Doctor encounters a young Amy Pond before meeting her again 13 years later, they begin travelling together and discover a series of cracks in the fabric of reality after meeting Churchill and the Doctor encounters the woman River Song at an earlier point in her existence. The Two are Joined by Amy’s fiance, Rory Williams aboard the Tardis where they travel to Venice and then encounter an aspect of the Doctor’s darker side calling itself the Dream Lord. At this point Rory is seemingly wiped from existence after an encounter with a newly revived clan of Silurians. The Doctor and Amy travel back to Roman Britain at the summons of River Song, where it is revealed that Amy’s entire life has been manipulated by a coalition of the Doctor’s enemies to avert destruction of the Universe, caused by the Tardis exploding.  However the Tarids explodes, and the universe ends. However the Doctor with the aid of Amy, River Song and Rory (in Auton form) manage to reboot the universe, restoring Rory to life in the process.

Amy and Rory get married and Honeymoon on the Tardis, before returning home briefly. They meet an older version of the Doctor at Lake Silencio in the US for a picnic with River Song, where the Doctor is seemingly shot and killed by an Astronaut. However River Song, Amy and Rory meet a younger version of the 11th Doctor (some 300 years younger) and discover that the astronaut was really a little girl who is injured, who then runs off and regenerates. The Doctor, Rory, and Amy encounter a human cloning program, and it is revealed that Amy has been kidnapped and replaced by a clone. Amy had been captured at some point after conceiving a child on board the Tardis, a child that the Silence and the Universal Church want to use to kill the Doctor and avoid the end of the Universe. The Child is revealed to be River Song (Melody Pond) and that she grew up still in captivity programmed to kill the Doctor, she is shot in Nazi Germany, and regenerates into her current, and final form, where her programming is broken, and the Doctor, Amy and Rory, leave her in the future, to become an archaeologist.  She is later recaptured and becomes the astronaut who kills the Doctor, however she manages to alter time, and save him, before the two are then married.

The Doctor reappears, travelling again with Rory and Amy, before the 2 become stranded in 1930’s New York. Losing his friends like this almost kills the Doctor, he goes into exile, where is being somewhat enabled by the Sontaran Strax, the Silurian Madame Vastra, and her wife, Human Jenny Flint. In Victorian London he meets Clara Oswald, and realises he has already met her in the Dalek Asylum in the far future, she dies fighting the Great Intelligence (this time using semi sentient Snowmen rather than robotic Yeti’s)  However the Doctor realises that she has been turning up throughout the Doctors timeline. He tracks her to the 21st century, where the 2 encounter the Great Intelligence once more, the Doctor and Clara begin travelling together, heading to the far future, and encounter an Ice Warrior on board a cold war era submarine. The Two encounter the Cybermen, before causing the Doctor the visit his own grave on the Planet of Trenzalore, where in a effort to destroy the Doctor, the Great Intelligence tries to corrupt every moment of the Doctor’s history, however he is foiled by Clara and the projection of River Song (who lives on in mind, contained within The Library) when Clara enters to the Doctor’s time stream (explaining why the Doctor has met multiple versions of Clara), she defeats the Great Intelligence, but unlocks the Doctor’s memories of the Doctor Who fought in The Time War.

The Doctor and Clara return to 21st century London at the urging of Kate Stewart (the Brigadier’s Daughter) where the Doctor meets his previous self (the tenth Doctor, who saves Queen Elizabeth the First from a Zygon Invasion) and his previous self who fought in the Time War, together the Three Doctor’s defeat the Zygon invasion and actually manage to subvert the outcome of the Time War, with 13 incarnations of the Doctor uniting to phase Gallifrey out of sync with reality, the Dalek fleet destroying itself in the crossfire, so it seemed to the outside universe that both Time Lords and Daleks were destroyed. However owing to Blinovitch limitation effect the earlier Doctor’s retain no memory of this meeting, but the 11th Doctor now sets off to find the now missing Gallifrey.

The Doctor’s search leads him to the Town of Christmas where there is a crack in the universe asking the question “Doctor Who?” realising that this would mean the return of the Time Lords almost every aggressive race in the universe descends on the Town of Christmas, which is revealed to be on the planet Trenzalore, the Doctor sends Clara back to Earth and for 700 years stands guard over the crack in space time. he defeats many races until only The Daleks remain. Clara returns to him so that he doesn’t die alone, (owing to the fact that the Doctor is on his final regeneration), the Doctor goes to face the Daleks, and Clara pleads to the Time Lords for help. They grant the Doctor a new cycle of regeneration’s, before he defeats the Daleks, he and Clara escape to the Tardis, taking off before he regenerates.

Stand Out Stories

  1. Nightmare In Silver- A Cyberman story set in the far future at an amusement park, whats not to love.
  2. Closing Time- Another Cyberman story, this time they’re invading a department store? The Doctor finds his true vocation working in a toy department and there is a great bit involving the Doctor invoking his undying love for another man.
  3. The Doctors Wife- When you get down to it the longest companion in the history of the show is the Tardis herself, and this episode actually looks at the embodiment of the Tardis and shows her relationship with the Doctor.
  4. The Name of the Doctor- It all comes down to the end of this episode, which is what we were waiting for since the shows return. We finally find out what the Time War turned the Doctor into.

Dishonourable Mention

  1. The Fez- I just don’t know why the producers thought that the Doctor regularly wearing a fez would be funny, but they really missed the mark on this one, and it just felt a little bit sad, it was after all just a grown man loving the fact that he was wearing a silly hat.


Join again soon for more on the wonderful worlds of The BBC’s Doctor Who.

This is part of a series of posts relating to the BBC’s long running show Doctor Who.

Doctor Who? The Tenth Doctor

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After just one series of the new Doctor Who hitting the airwaves, actor Christopher Eccleston decided to leave the role and it went to David Tennant.

The Tenth Doctor


Continuing to travel with Rose Tyler, The Doctor travels to the far future and then Victorian Scotland (to house called Torchwood), before meeting up with old companion’s Sarah Jane Smith and K-9 (leaving them to battle aliens as Earths defenders), before being joined on their travels by Rose’s boyfriend Mickey Smith, the Trio eventually faces off against Cybermen from a parallel world where Mickey decides to remain. Rose and the Doctor continue to travel witnessing the coronation of Elizabeth the Second before encountering the Ood for the first time on a planet that seemingly holds the Devil himself as prisoner. The Doctor and Rose return to Earth just in time to foil a breach into their own universe by the Cybermen brought about by the alien hunting Torchwood Institute during this invasion a force of Daleks (the Cult of Skaro who had escaped the time war) also find their way to the Torchwood Institute, with the help of Mickey Smith, the Cybermen and Daleks are forced into the void between universes, but at the cost of Mickey, Rose and her mother being sent to the Parallel Earth.

The Doctor begins travelling alone, and encounters (for the first time) Donna Noble, who opts not to travel with the Doctor. He then meets Martha Jones, a Medical Student from London, the two battle the alien Judoon, travel back to Shakespeare’s London to defeat the Carianites and then head to the future to battle the Doctor’s old foes the Macra, before receiving a message from the Face of Boe, proclaiming to the Doctor “You Are Not Alone”.  At this point the Doctor and Martha discover the Dalek’s in New York trying to create a Dalek Human Hybrid, which results in the death of all but one members of the Cult of Skaro. In an effort to avoid capture the Doctor rewrites his biology to become human (storing his Time Lord self in a rather unique pocket watch) and spends a month teaching at a boys school in 1913 England, upon becoming a Time Lord once more the Doctor and Martha Land in Cardiff where they are joined by none other than the now immortal Captain Jack Harkness, and end up at the end of the universe. There they discover the last survivors of humanity, amongst them a Professor Yana. The Doctor, Jack and Martha help Professor Yana get the survivors to their promised Utopia, but Martha discovers the Professor is in possession of rather unique pocket watch, upon opening the watch he regains his memories to reveal that he is in fact the Time Lord known as The Master. The Master regenerates into a younger form, steals the Doctor’s Tardis and flees to 21st century Earth Leaving Jack, Martha and the Doctor stranded and overrun. They manage to escape to Earth with the use of Jack’s Vortex Manipulator only to discover that the Master has been active on Earth for 18 months and is now the Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (posing under the name Harold Saxon), The Master manages to create a distorted dystopia which he rules as dictator, before the Doctor sucessfully resets the timeline, but the Master is fatally shot and dies, the Doctor cremates him, leaving only a ring as his only legacy. Its at this point that owing to the trauma she and her family suffered at the hands of the Master, Martha opts to remain on Earth to join UNIT and Jack decides to rejoin his Torchwood team in Cardiff, bestowing on the Doctor the gift of his own hand.

The doctor then meets back up with Donna Nobel, travelling to Pompeii and the Planet of the Ood before defeating the Sontaran’s on Earth. The Doctor and Donna then travel to the library planet where the Doctor meets a woman called River Song, who seems to know him, but The Doctor has no idea where from, or when. The Doctor and Donna then learn that Rose Tyler is coming back to their Earth, but this heralds with it the arrival of the Daleks who capture the earth and 26 other planets. During the course of which Sarah Jane Smith, Torchwood, Rose Tyler and Martha Jones work together to bring the Doctor to Earth, Upon arriving though the Doctor is shot by a Dalek, but instead of regenerating the Doctor heals himself and dumps the regeneration energy into his handy spare hand (costing him a regeneration in the process)  This hand later grows into a second (although half human) Doctor, who passes on his mind to Donna. The Two Doctors, Donna, Captain Jack, Sarah Jane Smith, Rose, her mother, Mickey Smith and Martha all join forces to defeat the Dalek’s now being helped by none other than Davros, their own creator. The Doctor returns Jack, Sarah Jane, Martha and Mickey to Earth, before returning Rose and Her Mother to the Parallel world where she stays with the Half Human Doctor. The Doctor and Donna return to their universe, where the Doctor then wipes Donna’s mind (owing to the strain of absorbing a Time Lord consciousness) and returns here to her mother and grandfather Wilfred.

The Doctor then opts to travel alone, battling the Cybermen in Victorian England, before defeating a planet eating swarm at Easter, and then goes on to the first human expedition to Mars, where the human colonists fall victim to a martian plague. The Doctor tries to change time which results in a woman’s suicide, mortified the Doctor is then summoned to the planet of the Ood, stopping in Elizabethan England along the way, The Ood show the Doctor that the Master has returned and will be instrumental in bringing back the Time Lords. The Doctor heads straight to earth to stop The Master, whose physical form is not stable, but gives the Master control of electricity, battles the Doctor, but is captured by human agents. The Doctor, working with Wilfred (Donna’s Grandfather) tracks down the Master, where he then manages to open a gateway to a timelocked Gallifrey. The Time Lord President Rassilon reveals that he is responsible for the Master’s madness (as a means of escaping the Time War) and begins a Nuclear reaction that will wipe out the Universe, so that the Time Lords may ascend as beings of pure intellect. The Time Lords plan is foiled by the Master, whom they would not have allowed to ascend owing to the madness they inflicted upon him, The Master sacrifices himself in order to trap the Time Lords back within the Time War. In order to safe Wilfred from the dangerous radiation build up the Doctor absorbs the harmful radiation, triggering his regeneration into the 11th Doctor.

Stand Out Stories

  1. The Impossible Planet/The Satan Pit- It was a really cool premise, and one of the first, and only times, Doctor Who has ever really looked at the whole good and evil aspect of religion.
  2. Utopia/ The Sound of Drums/ The Last Of The Time Lords- It introduced John Simm as the Master and lent something fantastic to the new series, which was both evil, and at the same time wasn’t afraid to be a little bit silly with the whole notion of it.
  3. The Waters of Mars- This one of those times that we get to see the dark side of The Doctor, this is a Doctor unfettered by convention, rules and regulation and really corrupts the image of who he is, it shows him as the real lord of time, a man answerable to no one, except himself, and it takes that all away from him in an instant.
  4.  The End of Time- Possibly the finest episode of the entire revamped series, it shows the origins of the Master and The Doctor and how these one time friends can look at the same thing and see something completely different, but at the same time, it shows that even after everything, these two Time Lord’s still deeply care for each other, and probably always will.

Dishonourable Mention

  1. Planet of The Dead- The story itself wasn’t bad, I just think it was Lee Evans who put me off. Also The Idea of an Easter Special just seems a little bit on the weird side as well.


Join again soon for more on the wonderful worlds of The BBC’s Doctor Who.

This is part of a series of posts relating to the BBC’s long running show Doctor Who.

Doctor Who? The Ninth Doctor

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After almost a decade since the ill fated television movie debacle the BBC finally did it and brought back Doctor Who to our screens. We were introduced to the new Doctor Christopher Eccleston amid a flurry of mystery really adding the who? into Doctor Who.

The Ninth Doctor 


Travelling on his lonesome this new Doctor arrives in contemporary London meeting companion Rose Tyler after blowing up her workplace in order to stop an attempted take over of the earth by the classic series villain the Nestene Consciousness and their foot soldiers the Autons. After administering an epic defeat the Doctor and Rose take off into time and space, heading to the end of the earth where we find that the Doctor is now the last of the Time Lords, the race of near immortals having died in a war, The Last Great Time War, the effects of which have passed into legend and can still be felt all across the cosmos.

After defeating the criminal family Slitheen of the planet Raxacoricofallapatorius from destroying the earth to sell the irradiated remains as space fuel, the Doctor and Rose travel to the near future where we find that the Time Lords had fought their war with the Daleks and that the Doctor was the one who destroyed them both, it was the Doctor who killed them all, and it changed him into the person he is, determined never again to commit such acts, and to save as many people, no matter the cost.

After the last Dalek in the universe ends its life the Doctor Rose and new companion Adam travel to a television network in the far future where its revealed that humanity has been manipulated by this news network aboard satellite 5 for hundreds of years, however due to his selfish actions in the future companion Adam is returned to his own time, with the Doctor exclaiming he only travels with the best.

Travelling to World War 2 the Doctor and Rose team up with dashing time agent Captain Jack Harkness before heading back to contemporary Cardiff where they discover a surviving member of the Slitheen posing as the Mayor of Cardiff who also happens to be chapioning a nuclear power station right on top of a rift in time and space. While trying to manipulate the Doctor, Captain Jack and Rose, Blon Fel-Fotch Pasameer-Day Slitheen is exposed to the heart of the Tardis, the infinite power of which reverts her to an egg.

Winding up on satellite 5 inside familiar television shows such as Big Brother and the Weakest Link the Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack discover a race of mutated Daleks left over as the last surviving vestiges of the Time War, their leader proclaiming himself the god of the Daleks is hell bent on continuing the Dalek’s quest of destruction and conquest. The Doctor seeking to save rose from the fate the Daleks have in store for humanity tricks her into returning to her own time. Knowing that the Tardis is sentient Rose looks into its core absorbing the whole vortex of time and space into her consciousness, returning to the Doctor, expunging the Dalek’s from existence and granting new life to the deceased Captain Jack Harkness, Rose soon begins to succumb to the pressures of the time vortex ripping her apart, the Doctor absorbs the energy into himself before returning it to its proper place in the heart of the Tardis. The strain however leads the Doctor to regenerate leaving a bewildered Rose alone with a stranger while the Tardis hurtles back to Earth landing on Christmas Day.

Stand Out Stories

  1. Rose: A good opener to the new series starting out with a classic, if little know, villain, it introduces you to the key players and sets out the world of Who pretty quickly.
  2. The Empty Child/ The Doctor Dances: A pretty creepy two parter that sees the first appearance of Captain Jack Harkness and Whoniverse mainstay who remains one of my favourites.
  3. Dalek: This is a superb piece of acting from Christopher Eccleston it really gets across just how much hatred their is between the Doctor and the Dalek race, it answers the question of how Daleks get up stairs and it to this day remains one of the most powerful pieces of television I have ever seen.

Dishonourable Mention

  1. Sex in Space: I get that sex is everywhere, but it is one of my major bug bears with the new series of Doctor Who, the Tardis should be a sex free zone, the weirdness between Billie Piper and Christopher Ecclestone was creepy, and while it isn’t as bad as in later series, its still pretty weird when you think the Doctor is 881 years her senior.
  2. The Domestic Approach: I’m not sure how I feel about adding the family and boyfriends of the Doctor’s companions into the cast. But I suppose making the companions fully fledged characters with well rounded and sympathetic back stories does require so annoying additional characters littering an episode here and there.


Join again soon for more on the wonderful worlds of The BBC’s Doctor Who.

This is part of a series of posts relating to the BBC’s long running show Doctor Who.

Doctor Who? The Eighth Doctor

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After its long hiatus of 7 years Doctor Who fans finally got what they wanted, a new Doctor Who that was made by the BBC (this time with 20th Century Fox and Universal Studios as well). In May 1996 we finally saw the regeneration of Seventh Doctor Sylvester McCoy into a new younger Doctor portrayed by Paul McGann

The Eighth Doctor 

The Eighth Doctor

Travelling alone this doctor comes into being on new years eve 1999 after being shot multiple times in a gangland shooting in San Francisco, here he meets surgeon Dr Grace Holloway and the two become entangled in a plot of he doctors old adversary the Master, who using the Tardis’ link to the eye of harmony on Gallifrey seeks to take all the Doctors remaining regeneration’s for himself.  At the end of his lives the master inhabits the body of an unsuspecting paramedic, in much the way he inhabited the body of the Trakenite Tremas.

After defeating the Master and trapping him in the eye of harmony, the Doctor begins travelling alone again, leaving Grace to remain on Earth.

This version of the Doctor was not seen again on television for 17 years (8 years after the shows second revival in 2005) however his adventures where chronicled in a series of books published by BBC books and several series of audio dramas produce by Big Finish Productions (to be explored in Doctor Who? The Wilderness Years Part Two), however this Doctor became embroiled in the events of the Last Great Time War between the Daleks and the Time Lords, attempting to save a young gun ship operator named Cass, whose ship was damaged as a result of skirmish between the two warring factions, the Doctor crash lands on the planet Karn. Upon being revived by The Sisterhood of Karn, the keepers of eternal life, they implore the Doctor to take up arms to save the universe from both sides of the war, The Doctor agrees and the sisterhood trigger his regeneration and he becomes the Doctor No More

Stand Out Stories

  1. The Movie: I first saw the movie in the cinema when it was released and being 7 I thought it was a good film, this was the first (official) Doctor Who to be released in my lifetime and even at 7 I was already enamoured of the TV show, and then this new film came along with even more action, motorcycle chases, gunfights and explosions, and it has a real nostalgia value for me, so even when watching it again as an adult I still love it, even though the script is not fantastic and some of the cast members acting was truly awful. Paul McGann makes the role his own and is sadly underrated, I think he was fantastic in the role and I would have loved to have seen more of him on screen (even if he was equally fantastic in the Big Finish Audios)
  2. The Night Of The Doctor: 17 years after the TV move the Eighth Doctor finally got a regeneration story and it was probably one of the most powerful performances ever seen in Doctor who, the fact that this all happened in a six minuet episode is just another astounding feat that I have come to expect from Paul McGann.


Dishonourable Mention 

  1. America/Americanisation: The main problem with the 1996 movie was that it was made for American’s and it lost something of its Doctor Whoiness, Doctor Who after all is a British institution, and whilst car chases and shoot outs appealed to the seven year old me, but it doesn’t really do much for me at this age.

Join again soon for more on the wonderful worlds of The BBC’s Doctor Who.

This is part of a series of posts relating to the BBC’s long running show Doctor Who.

Doctor Who? The Wilderness Years Part One

Doctor Who- The First Doctor (8).png

After the cancellation of Doctor Who after 26 series there was a massive outcry from fans of the show for a continuation of the show. And they got several, but not in the way that they wanted.

Direct To Video

What you actually got were a few different continuations the canonical nature of which are all pretty much up for debate, there were some direct to video productions from companies such as BBV and Reeltime. However because of the unlicensed nature of these programmes they could not feature any overt reference to the Doctor, Time Lords or the Tardis. Between BBV and Reeltime you got productions such as Shakedown, Downtime, Wartime, Daemos Rising, Zygon’s, Auton’s and P.R.O.B.E. These all took old companions and friends of the Doctor, or old adversaries and allowed them to have adventures on earth or in space, without the aid of the Doctor,  a trend that would continue when the series was revived with spin offs such as Torchwood, Class, K-9 and the Sarah Jane Adventures.

Downtime DVD Cover

The quality of some of these direct to video stories were fantastic, others were not so good, and many I think were hampered by an abundance of ambition, but were lacking the resources to accomplish what they set out to do.

Stand Out Stories

  1. Wartime: Wartime was the first attempt at a Whoniverse spin off released by reeltime, and while it was a low budget picture, the premise of which was a little shaky, but still it manages to show that it can be done. Jon Levene as John Benton manages to convince audiences of fear that comes when confronted over the guilt of ones own past.

Dishonourable Mention

  1. Downtime: It should have been good, Sarah Jane Smith fighting alongside the Brigadier, bringing his career full circle fighting the Yeti and The Great Intelligence (the Brigadier’s first appearance was fighting the Yeti in the London underground), but it wasn’t good, no such luck, the dialogue was stilted and the Yeti costumes had not aged well.


The Virgin New Adventures

Whilst BBV and Reeltime were kicking about the companions and classic monsters of the Whoniverse, both the Doctors past and then current incarnations adventures were being looked at in depth courtesy of Virgin Books, the publishing division of Richard Branson’s Virgin Empire. Under Virgin there were three series of books published focusing on the adventures of the Doctor (as well as numerous fact books as well) These were Decalog a series of books 5 books collecting short stories from various points in the Doctor’s lives. The Missing Adventures, a series of 34 books, featured Doctors 1-6 and their companions at various points throughout their history set between serials of the original run of the show.

And then there were The New Adventures, a series of 61 books all but one of which were set between the last serial Survival and The Television Movie and feature the Seventh Doctor as portrayed by Sylvester McCoy (the last book of the series was set after the TV movie and features the Eighth Doctor as portrayed by Paul McGann). The series itself moved forward the characters of Ace and The Doctor, and explored a vast swathe of the shows fictional history, and in many ways served to tie up loose ends and plot threads that had been left by the show, and reintroduced characters such as the War Chief, The Great Vampire and the Monk. As well as seeing the return of characters Leela and Romana, The Brigadier and saw the death of companion Liz Shaw. The New Adventures also saw the introduction of long serving companion Bernice Summerfield, who would later enjoy her own series of novels and audio drama’s that are still in production to this day. The stories see the relation ship between Ace and The Doctor grow increasingly more fraught, before she leaves for a time, before returning several years (from her point of view) later.  The stories took on a darker tone that mimicked the latter parts of the series, with the Doctor fighting Lovecraftian beings and the stories took on a more adult theme, with cursing and sexual content becoming more commonplace, and whilst older villains and alien races were featured regularly the stories didn’t rely on them, with the Dalek’s only being seen in a cameo 40 or so books in and the Cybermen appearing only once.  It made use of the lesser villains within the narrative framework, and worked as a nice way to round off the series and answer a good deal of unanswered questions that had plagued the series since its beginning.

Stand Out Stories 

  1. Cats Cradle, Times Crucible: This Novel features possibly the most in depth look into time lord history , it shows the birth of time travel and shows the formation of the sisterhood of Karn (from the serial The Brain Of Morbius) and shows how the Doctor’s people went from being plain old Gallifreyans to becoming Time Lords.
  2. Love and War: This book saw ace leave the Doctor and the introduction of the character Bernice Summerfield, and it truly shows this incarnation of the Doctor at his most manipulative and at his lowest point ever.
  3.  No Future: This novel is set in London during the Age of Punk and brings back the Brigadier and U.N.I.T, but also the return of the Doctor’s foes the Monk and The Vardan’s who have teamed up to exact revenge on the Doctor, it is also the culmination of events that have proceeded this novel and it is where the Doctor finally begins to make amends with ace for all the pain she has suffered because of simply knowing the doctor.
  4. Head Games: This sees the return of companion Mel , who after being abandoned by Sabalom Glitz , helps the Doctor defeat the Master of The Land Of Fiction, but disgusted at how the doctor has changed in this new incarnation she leaves him again.
  5. First Frontier: The Master finally gets a new body,  and a new cycle of regeneration’s courtesy of the Tzun Confederation, setting the stage for the beginning of the TV movie, this piece is a bit of cold war, space age, spy action.
  6. Lungbarrow: We finally find out who the Doctor is, or do we? Set of Gallifrey, in the house of Lungbarrow, the Doctors ancestral home, caught up in the conspiracy of a centuries old murder, and secrets that date back from the beginnings of Time Lord history, who is the this man called the Doctor? A healer? A traveller, A Time Lord, or something other?

Dishonourable Mention

  1. Sky Pirates:  Trying to write like Terry Pratchett is not a bad thing, I myself am certainly influenced by the mans writing style, but it doesn’t work with Doctor Who. and this story did not work, it was a pretty awful thing that I had a great deal of trouble following.
  2. Falls The Shadow: Its torture porn. There are needless deaths, and I understand that the antagonists are meant to be psychopaths, but it really does seem that a lot of pointless torture takes place just for the hell of it, and I really feel that it was needless as it adds nothing to the overall story,  other than to bump up the word count.

Doctor Who? The Sixth Doctor

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After Peter Davison’s departure from the role of the Doctor in March 1984, the role went to Colin Baker, the Doctors most colourful incarnation to date. Colin Baker stared in only 8 serials (33 episodes) until being replaced in 1987.

The Sixth Doctor 

The Sixth Doctor

The Sixth Doctor was a man given to great eccentricities, donning a patchwork coat of rainbow hue, a pair of bright yellow pinstripe trousers, mismatched waistcoat, polkadot cravat and capped off with bright orange spats and a mop of curly blonde hair. Due to the trauma of his regeneration this Doctors personality was prone to violent outbursts of temper and a depressive sensibility, often at times brooding, his domineering personality was only enhanced by his great physical stature, a big man, both tall and broad, this Doctor was the most physically imposing to date.

Continuing his travels with Peri, The Doctor battle old enemies such as the Daleks and Cybermen, meeting new foes such as Sil and The Board, whilst meeting H.G Wells before coming across the Master and the sociopathic Time Lady the Rani, a being solely interested in the advancement of her scientific research, stopping at nothing to meet her ends.

The Doctor then once again meets one of his past selves, his second incarnation (played by Patrick Troughton), when this prior incarnation and Jamie are sent on a mission by the time lords to end rival experiments into time travel, experiments being conducted on behalf of the war like Sontaran’s, all to aid their war effort against the Rutan Host. Managing to save himself from the Sontaran’s grasp, both Doctors return to their proper place in time and space, the Second Doctor about to being exile on Earth and the Sixth Doctor still in 20th century Spain.

It is then that the Doctor faces the most difficult battle of his life, placed on trial by his own people the Doctor faces off against the mysterious Valeyard, a Gallifreyan prosecutor with a clear grudge against the Doctor. Presenting evidence from the Doctor’s past, a court room drama unfolds, in which the prosecution seems to stack against the Doctor, before a plot at the very heart of Time Lord society. The Doctor is framed by the Valeyard for the Death of Peri, before being revealed to by the Master as a potential future incarnation of the Doctor. Defeating the Valeyard and The Master, the Doctor meets new companion Mel, before discovering that Peri is still alive and well, living as a queen, his innocence secured the Doctor and Mel once again set off into time and space.

Whilst Colin Baker did not serve in the role long, two series in total, he is still the most colourful Doctor there has ever been and it saddens me a little that he didn’t come back for a regeneration scene, and whilst his successor is still probably my favourite doctor since William Hartnell, I feel that Colin Baker deserved better.

Stand Out Serials

  1. The Trial Of A Time Lord: This was to be Colin Bakers last serial (also last series as it lasted a whole series), this 14 part saga, saw the departure of Peri, the introduction of companion Mel and recurring character Glitz, all whilst the Doctor battles through a trial, being enforced on him by his own people, with a biased Judge and vengeful prosecutor the Doctor is fighting for his lives.
  2. Vengeance On Varos: Its a little like the hunger games, and a bit like big brother, all with the Doctor and Peri trying to get out of the clutches of a group of corrupt politicians and some slimy merchants.
  3. The Two Doctors: Doctor meets Doctor in this head on collision that tires to see the Time Lords maintain their monopoly on time travel, in the heart of the endless conflict between the Might Sontaran Empire and the Rutan Host. This episode also gives rise to the series 6b fan theory, that in spinoff media suggests that the second Doctor didn’t go straight from courtroom to exile on earth, but was in fact acting as a secret agent of the Time Lords.

Dishonourable Mention

  1. The Doctor and the Amazing Technicolour Nightmare Coat: Even Colin Baker admitted to absolutely loathing his costume, it was tartan, it was tweed, it was gingham and it was a rainbow coloured nightmare of fashion dont’s.