Welcome to this special blog post dedicated to commemorating the 60th anniversary of Doctor Who, a journey that started on BBC One on November 23, 1963.
Doctor Who was not just a TV show; it was a Saturday evening ritual in the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. I vividly recall being glued to our black and white television, rented from Radio Rentals, every Saturday, immersed in the adventures of the Doctor. The absence of catch-up TV or streaming services back then meant that watching Doctor Who was a live, communal experience – one that has stayed with me through the decades.
Any discussion of who is the best Doctor often boils down to personal preference, and for many of us growing up in the ’70s, it’s a toss-up between Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker. Pertwee’s portrayal was that of a suave, action-oriented hero, while Baker brought a quirky, alien charm to the character.
As I revisited some of the classic episodes available on BBC’s iPlayer, I was struck by how well stories like “The Daemons” and “The Sea Devils” have stood the test of time. Pertwee’s Doctor, with his velvet jackets and Venutian Aikido, brought a James Bond-esque flair to the series.
Conversely, Tom Baker’s tenure, with episodes like “Genesis of the Daleks,” offered a more unpredictable and morally complex Doctor. His moral dilemmas, such as the choice to destroy the Daleks, were profound and thought-provoking, even at 8 years old!
Doctor Who’s impact extends far beyond its immediate viewership. Its influence on pop culture is undeniable, from the Daleks becoming a symbol of terror to the TARDIS becoming a pop culture icon. The show also broke ground in the U.S., with Tom Baker’s Doctor becoming a familiar figure to American audiences.
In our Podcast you will hear much deliberation and consultation with fellow Whovians and experts like Geoff and Paul from WHO Corner to Corner, Steven Schapansky from Radio Free Skaro, Mark Cockram from All Of Time And Space, Christian and James from Kasterborous: The Doctor Who PodKast (with a K), Keith, Shaun, and Glenn from Travelling the Vortex, and Aidan from The 50% Doctor Who Podcast, I find myself torn.
Both Pertwee and Baker brought unique elements to the role that defined an era of British television. Pertwee’s Doctor was a man of action, encapsulating a certain ’70s flair, while Baker’s Doctor brought an otherworldly, whimsical, yet profound depth to the character.
In conclusion, the question of who the best Doctor was in the 1970s may never have a definitive answer. It’s a testament to the show’s enduring legacy that this debate continues to inspire and engage fans across generations.
As we continue celebrating the 60th anniversary of Doctor Who, let’s remember that its true magic lies in its ability to evolve, inspire, and ignite the imaginations of viewers across the world. Here’s to many more years of adventure, exploration, and, of course, time travel!
Acknowledgements: Special thanks to my special guests. Your knowledge and insights know no bounds. And to you the listener and reader, for being the best champion a guy could ask for!
How to Find Our Guests
- Geoff and Paul from WHO Corner to Corner: Podcast Link
- Steven Schapansky from Radio Free Skaro: Profile
- Mark Cockram from All Of Time And Space: Webpage
- Christian and James from Kasterborous: Doctor Who PodKast (with a K): Website
- Keith, Shaun, and Glenn from Travelling the Vortex: YouTube Channel
- Aidan from The 50% Doctor Who Podcast: Podcast on Apple
How to Find Me:
Until next time, keep away from those Daleks… and safe travels through time!