Doctor Who has had an expansive history, from what happens in the show to what happens outside the show. And as we go through this 60th-anniversary special year, I’ll show you the key moments in Doctor Who’s history – every fortnight for the whole year. What better way to celebrate than that? Here we look at The Birth of Many Doctors in this past fortnight in Doctor Who history.
Doctor Who History: Week Fifteen – 10th April to 16th April
In 1965, viewers tuned in to watch the first broadcast of The Wheel of Fortune on Doctor Who. Jumping ahead to 1971, the first episode of Colony in Space was also broadcast. In 2010, viewers were introduced to the first adventure of the Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) and the Eleventh Doctor’s companion, Amy Pond, in The Beast Below. Three years later, in 2013, Big Finish released two audio dramas, Eldrad Must Die! and The Library of Alexandria. Finally, in 2018, Big Finish delighted fans of the Eighth Doctor with the first volume of Ravenous.
In 1964, The Sea of Death episode was first broadcast. Six years later, in 1970, viewers were introduced to episode four of The Ambassadors of Death. In 2009, viewers enjoyed the broadcast of Planet of the Dead. Also in 2009, Big Finish released The Beast of Orlok: Part 2 as part of their Eighth Doctor Adventures Series 3. Moving ahead to 2014, Big Finish released Moonflesh and The Evil One. In 2017, The Helm of Awe was released by Big Finish.
In 1969, the sixth episode of The Space Pirates aired, while in 1975, viewers saw the final part of Genesis of the Daleks. Sadly, actor Gerald Flood, who played Kamelion, a companion to the Fifth Doctor, passed away in 1989. In 2008, The Fires of Pompeii was broadcast. In 2012, Big Finish released Energy of the Daleks, followed by And You Will Obey Me in 2016. Finally, in 2022, Big Finish released The Outlaws.
In 1951, the world was blessed with the birth of Peter Davison, who later became the beloved Fifth Doctor, while in 1974, viewers watched the fourth episode of The Monster of Peladon. In 1984, Richard Hurndall, who played the First Doctor in The Five Doctors, passed away. Viewers were thrilled by Cold War when it aired in 2013. Big Finish released The Well-Mannered War and Damaged Goods in 2015, followed by Legacy of Death in 2016. Looking at more recent years, The Dalek Protocol was released by Big Finish in 2021, and in 2022, fans were excited to get their hands on Genesis.
Terrance Dicks, who script-edited the Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee eras, was born in 1935. Peter Capaldi, who portrayed the Twelfth Doctor, once wrote a letter to the Radio Times about Doctor Who was born in 1958. In 1964, Gina McKee, who voiced the Lumiat in the Missy audio story The Lumiat, was born. Viewers first watched episode two of Planet of the Daleks in 1973, while in 2007, Gridlock was broadcast.
Big Finish released The Sentinels of the New Dawn, Thin Ice, and Heroes of Sontar in 2011, followed by Nightshade in 2016. Sadly, writer Philip Baker, who collaborated with his wife to create the first incarnation of the Rani, passed away in 2020. Lastly, in 2021, Big Finish released Dalek Universe 1.
In 1967, viewers tuned in for the second episode of The Faceless Ones, while in 1972, the second episode of The Mutants was broadcast. In 1997, actress Maisie Williams was born, later playing the role of Me, or how you might say, Ashildr. Moving ahead to 2006, New Earth was the first broadcast, bringing the New New Tenth Doctor on his first adventure. In 2017, The Pilot was first aired, introducing Bill to Doctor What and also introducing Nardole. Finally, in 2020, Big Finish released Cry of the Vultriss.
In 1966, viewers were introduced to The Dancing Floor. Fast forward to 2005, when Aliens of London was first broadcast. In 2008, Big Finish released The Skull of Sobek, followed by Death Match in 2015 and Year of the Drex Olympics in 2019. The following year, in 2020, Big Finish released Susan’s War. Lastly, in 2021, Echoes of Extinction was first released by Big Finish.
Doctor Who History: Week Sixteen– 17th April to 23rd April
David Bradley, a multitalented actor known for his many roles, such as in Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, and Broadchurch, was born in 1942. Bradley portrayed the First Doctor, reprising William Hartnell’s iconic role in NuWho and William Hartnell himself in An Adventure of Space and Time. In 1965, viewers tuned in for The Warlords, while in 1971, the second episode of Colony in Space broadcast. Fast forward to 2010, when Victory of the Daleks aired. Big Finish released The Emerald Tiger in 2012, followed by The Helliax Rift in 2018 and The Monsters of Gokroth in 2019. Lastly, in 2022, Legend of the Sea Devils was first broadcast.
David Whitaker, who served as the show’s first-ever script editor and wrote several Doctor Who stories, was born in 1928. In 1964, viewers watched The Velvet Web. The Whoniverse’s favourite mother, Camille Coduri, who played Jackie Tyler, was born in 1965. In 1970, episode five of The Ambassadors of Death was first broadcast. In 1971, actor David Tennant, who played the Tenth Doctor, was born.
Fans will get to see Tennant back in action as the Fourteenth Doctor in the upcoming 60th-anniversary specials. In 2009, Big Finish released Wirrn Dawn: Part 1 as part of the Eighth Doctor Adventures Series 3. Big Finish also released The Wanderer in 2012, The Dollhouse in 2017, and The Tenth Doctor Chronicles in 2018.
On this date in 1907, actor Alan Wheatley was born. In Doctor Who, Wheatley played Temmosus, the first person killed by a Dalek in The Daleks. Moving ahead to 1969, viewers tuned in for the first episode of The War Games. Part one of Revenge of the Cybermen was first broadcast in 1975. In 2008, Planet of the Ood aired. Three years later, in 2011, Elisabeth Sladen, who portrayed Sarah-Jane Smith, one of the most beloved companions in Doctor Who passed away. In 2017, Big Finish released Alien Heart and Dalek Soul. Lastly, in 2020, Farewell, Sarah Jane was released, marking the ninth anniversary of Sladen’s death and the in-universe death of Sarah Jane.
On this date in 1951, Louise Jameson, the actress who portrayed Leela, the companion of the Fourth Doctor, was born. In 1968, viewers watched the sixth episode of Fury from the Deep. In 1974, episode five of The Monster of Peladon was first broadcast. Moving ahead to 2013, Hide was first aired. In 2017, Big Finish released Dethras. Finally, in 2022, Nightmares, the Torchwood One audio anthology, was first released by Big Finish.
On this date in 1973, viewers watched the third episode of Planet of the Daleks. In 1996, William Grantham, the creator of the Abzorbaloff character in the Doctor Who episode Love & Monsters, was born. Moving ahead to 2007, Daleks in Manhattan was the first broadcast. In 2016, Big Finish released The Curse of the Fugue. Gooseberry, a Torchwood audio story, was first released by Big Finish in 2021. In 2022, Big Finish released Infidel Places, another Torchwood audio story.
On this date in 1967, viewers watched the third episode of The Faceless Ones. Moving ahead to 1972, the third episode of The Mutants was first broadcast. In 2006, Tooth and Claw was first broadcast. In 2017, Smile was the first broadcast. Three years later, in 2020, Big Finish released The Movellan Manoeuvre and The Dalek Gambit, two audio stories in the New Counter-Measures series.
On this date in 1966, The Final Test was first broadcast. 1975 was the year that William Hartnell, who played the First Doctor, died from a heart attack. In 2001, Big Finish released Minuet in Hell, an audio story. In 2003, Big Finish released The Mirror Effect and Dalek War: Chapters Three and Four. World War Three first broadcast, introducing the Slitheen (or how Jackie Tyler says, Slikeen) in 2005. In 2011, The Impossible Astronaut aired, with the Doctor’s “death”. Spoilers!
Doctor Who History: Conclusion For This Fortnight
This fortnight has been quite an eventful one in Who history or Doctor Who history, if you prefer to put it that way. This fortnight had the Birth of Many Doctors and the death of two. We had the sad passing of Elisabeth Sladen. We all miss you.