The passing of Elisabeth Sladen yesterday got me thinking about Doctor Who, and it’s long and storied history.
While the current incarnation of the show seems to be going well, and bringing lots of viewers (new and old) to the fold, Sladen belonged to the old school Who. She was a companion to both John Pertwee’s Third Doctor and Tom Baker’s Forth Doctor.
I started watching Doctor Who a long time ago, probably around my junior high/high school days, back when the only way to see it was to watch late on a Saturday night, at the mercy of whichever episode good old KSPS in Spokane chose to broadcast. Tom Baker was my first Doctor. There were a few Pertwee episodes, and after Baker, I followed Peter Davison for a while, but Baker will always be the “real Doctor” for me. Sladen was with him for the first few years of his run, eventually left behind, as Baker moved on to the Leela and Ramona days.
I even convinced my mom to knit me a scarf. It’s bloody huge, at least 12 feet long, and a foot wide. It’s truly magnificent, and I think I might have to pull it out and wear it to Comic Expo this year. If I’ve remembered to, there should be a picture of it just below. In true Doctor Who fashion, it will depend on when you read this as to whether it appears or not. Also, here’s a link to a site that shows you how to knit your own!
After Davidson, I stopped watching, so i’m not that familiar with 6 (Colin Baker) or 7 (Sylvester McCoy). I picked up again with 8 Paul McGann’s TV Movie, which was not great. When the new series started up again, I was hooked. I really liked Christopher’s Eccelston’s 9, and even more so David Tennant’s 10.
When Sladen appeared with K-9, I was delighted. I really missed K-9, regardless of how annoying his voice is. Best. Companion. Ever. I’d take him over bloody Rory any day. The clock is ticking for that guy, I suspect.
I admit to being initially resistant to the idea of some young unknown taking over as 11, but I think I gave in around the time of “fish fingers with custard”. Matt Smith’s first season was good, but it’s too early to tell if he’ll be a memorable Doctor.
I’ve always loved the emphasis on thinking over shooting, and intelligence over brute force that the series conveys, and of course, the crappy looking rubber monster masks.
Thoughts, stories, opinions? Who was your first Doctor?