Dr who Exposed…. Whats it all about?

Posted: May 4, 2011 in Gossip/News/Reviews - TV
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With the new series of eleventh “dr who” on our screens on BBC1 in the uk at the moment with Matt Smith as the new dr, I thought I would give a brief background about Dr Who to those who are not familiar with this iconic series

Doctor Who is the longest running science fiction television series in the history of broadcasting, a series that began on the BBC1 network in the United Kingdom in November 1963 and ran until 1989… and then returning to BBC1 in early 2005 until now for all new adventures. It was created as a show for older children to be aired late Saturday afternoons and, due to a sudden boost during its first season caused by a race of mechanical nasties called the Daleks, became an overnight British sensation. It was later syndicated overseas to many countries such as the US, Australia, Canada and New Zealand, and eventually became one of Britain’s most popular export entertainments. It also became a staple of American public broadcasting network PBS during the 1980s, drawing record pledge amounts.

 It’s the story of a wanderer in space and time known only as the Doctor, and travels in a dimensionally transcendental time machine  (i.e. bigger on the inside than on the outside), the camouflage system of which became stuck in the shape of a London police public call box. The Doctor, who is in reality a Time Lord from the far-future civilization on the planet Gallifrey, now travels time and space fighting the forces of darkness, taking on traveling companions from places he visits who join him on his adventures. The Doctor’s true name has never been revealed, thus the reason for the much of its success was due to its flexible nature: the Doctor’s ‘people’ have the power to regenerate their bodies during near death experiences, allowing the central character to be recast with a new actor … and a new personality completely.

During the run of the show, ten actors have taken the role:

William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy, with an eighth actor,Paul McGann, playing the role in 1996 for a special US/UK co-produced film that aired on BBC-1 and America’s FOX network. And more recently Christopher Eccleston and David Tenant as the ninth and tenth doctor.

And now with Matt SMith as the eleventh doctor.

Click here to vote for your favourite Dr Who

Over the years, he has been joined by nearly forty regular cast members fighting alongside him (his companions) or against him (in the case of the Doctor’s arch-nemesis, the renegade Master).

The Doctor’s companions

The Doctor almost always shares his adventures with up to three companions, and since 1963 more than 35 actors have been featured in these roles.The First Doctor’s original companions were his granddaughter Susan Foreman (Carole Ann Ford) and school teachers Barbara Wright (Jacqueline Hill) and Ian Chesterton (William Russell).

The companions’ characters serve to further the story by requesting exposition from the Doctor and manufacturing peril for the Doctor to resolve. The Doctor regularly gains new companions and loses old ones; sometimes they return home or find new causes — or loves — on worlds they have visited. Some have even died during the course of the series.

Karen Gillan now plays the 11th Doctor’s companion, named Amy Pond, along with Arthur Darvill, who plays Amy’s husband, Rory Williams.

The Doctors Adversaries

Besides infrequent appearances by the Ice Warriors, the Yeti, the Rani, the Meddling Monk, Omega, Black Guardian, and Sil, several adversaries have become particularly iconic:-

Daleks

The Dalek race, which first appeared in the show’s second serial in 1963, are Doctor Who’s oldest enemies. The Daleks are Kaled mutants from the planet Skaro, who utilise tank-like mechanical armour shells for mobility. Their chief role in the plot of the series, as they frequently remark in their instantly recognisable metallic voices, is to “exterminate” all beings inferior to themselves, even attacking the Time Lords in the often referred to but never shown Time War. The Daleks’ most recent appearance was in the 2010 episode The Big Bang. They continue to be a recurring ‘monster’ within the Doctor Who franchise.

The Daleks were created by writer Terry Nation and BBC designer Raymond Cusick. The Daleks’ début in the programme’s second serial, The Daleks (1963–64), caused a tremendous reaction in the viewing figures and the public, putting Doctor Who on the cultural map. A Dalek appeared on a postage stamp celebrating British popular culture in 1999, photographed by Lord Snowdon.

Cybermen

Cybermen were originally a wholly organic species of humanoids originating on Earth’s twin planet Mondas that began to implant more and more artificial parts into their bodies.This led to the race becoming coldly logical and calculating, with emotions usually only shown when naked aggression was called for. They continue to be a recurring ‘monster’ within the Doctor Who franchise.

The 2006 series introduced a totally new variation of Cybermen. These Cybus Cybermen were created in a parallel universe by the mad inventor ‘John Lumic’; he was attempting to preserve the life of a human by transplanting their brains into powerful metal bodies, sending them orders using a mobile phone network and inhibiting their emotions with an electronic chip.

The Master

The Master is a renegade Time Lord, and the Doctor’s archenemy. He is conceived as “Professor Moriarty to the Doctor’s Sherlock Holmes”, and first appeared in 1971. As with the Doctor, the role has been portrayed by several actors, since the Master is a Time Lord as well and able to regenerate; the first of these actors was Roger Delgado, who continued in the role until his death in 1973. The Master was briefly played by Peter Pratt and Geoffrey Beevers until Anthony Ainley took over and continued to play the character until Doctor Who’s hiatus in 1989. The Master returned in the 1996 television movie of Doctor Who, and was played by American actor Eric Roberts.

The Master was also featured in the 2007 series, portrayed briefly by Derek Jacobi and then John Simm. Simm reprised his role as The Master in the 2009–2010 specials, The End of Time where he is last seen fighting the Time Lords into the void.

Davros

Davros is a scientific genius and megalomaniac from the planet Skaro. He is the creator of the Daleks and became a recurring villain after he was introduced in Genesis of the Daleks, in which the Time Lords send the Doctor back to either destroy the Daleks, avert their creation or tamper with their genetic structure to make them less warlike. Davros was first played by Michael Wisher, who was followed by David Gooderson, Terry Molloy and Julian Bleach.

My favourite Dr Who adversaries are the Nashta Nerada, the Master, the Sontarans, the Cybermen and last, but certainly not least, the Daleks.

I hope this has been useful for those not familiar with Dr Who. Thanks for reading and hope you enjoy the new series.

For news and reviews of upcoming science fiction and horror films please look at the SFHDominion monthly Newsletter.  And if you want to purchase second hand Comics and books please look at the science fiction and horror online shop.

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Comments
  1. […] For those not familiar with doctor who then please read my blog “Dr who Exposed…. Whats it all about?” […]

  2. […] For those not familiar with doctor who then please read my blog “Dr who Exposed…. Whats it all about?” […]

  3. […] For those not familiar with doctor who then please read my blog “Dr who Exposed…. Whats it all about?” […]

  4. […] For those not familiar with doctor who then please read my blog “Dr who Exposed…. Whats it all about?” […]

  5. […] For those not familiar with doctor who then please read my blog “Dr who Exposed…. Whats it all about?” […]

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