For over 50 years fans have British Sci-Fi fans have been asking one question, Doctor Who? The Doctor has been on air since 1963, as a two-hearted alien who travels through space and time trying to find and save as many lives as possible. He is the last of his species, the Time Lords. The Time Lords are older than any other living being in the universe, their home planet is Gallifrey. Each time lord has their very own Time and Relative Dimension in Space (TARDIS), which is a time machine that can travel anywhen or anywhere in the universe. They are aware of all time and space in the universe at once, since they not only can travel anywhere, but are also potentially immortal. Time Lords have the ability to change form once their body dies. One of the body’s hearts dies, while the other takes care of regenerating into a new body. This is how the Doctor has been able to stay on television for so long, anytime the actor needs to be replaced, the Doctor dies and regenerates into a new body. So Doctor Who’s immortality is exemplified time and time again on the show, he has died and come back a total of 12 times in his 50 years on television.
The show’s 34 seasons (and/or series) are divided into two separate parts, the original and its return. The original run lasted 26 seasons from 1963 to 1989. The original was years ahead of its time, both in story and in reality. The song that played in the intro was technically the first Techno song ever produced. The Doctor was originally easy to anger and a very serious fellow, but as the series progressed he was shown to be much more mellow and compassionate. The show was in black and white for six years before moving into a color format. The show was cancelled in 1989 due to a decrease in viewership, though it was always supposed to return to according to the BBC. The first attempt to revive the Doctor was in 1996, when Fox, in conjunction with the BBC and Universal, agreed to present a TV film. While successful in The United Kingdom, American viewers did not tune in, which lead to the show not being picked up as an American television series.
But as of 2005, Doctor Who is back on the BBC in a brand new show, that is named after the old one. The ninth doctor was played by Christopher Eccleston, he was well received, being voted the third best Doctor by Doctor Who Magazine, but short-lived as he did not even make it to the end of 2005. Eccleston was replaced by David Tennant the same year and lasted until 2010. Tennant is widely regarded as the best doctor, as many sources, including IGN, Doctor Who Magazine, Radio Times and the Daily Mail named him number one in their lists. Tennant brought a much more playful and silly nature to the Doctor, which was very well received. Tennant won over many American viewers, which brought a huge influx of funding for the show. Matt Smith was the first to see the increase in production value when he replaced Tennant in 2010. The audience was worried when Tennant left, as they did not know if Smith was capable of filling the big shoes left by Tennant. Smith portrayed the Doctor in an even goofier manner, while giving this interpretation his own quirk, bowties. After Smith as the Doctor proclaimed, “Bowties are cool” fans everywhere started wearing them, however Fezes were not quite as well received.
While the Matt Smith was not as critically well received as David Tennant, many fans and reporters claim that he is their Doctor. The 50th anniversary special was incredibly well received by fans everywhere, as it showed all 12 doctors and had both Smith and Tennant starring. The Special also introduced the 12th incarnation of the doctor, but it was so brief that the actor is not even credited. A leak of the first episode of season eight is already circulating the web, but Doctor Who will be back in his intended form on Aug. 23, 2014.
By Eddie Mejia