Classic Doctor Who
Let’s get the obvious out of the way: classic Doctor Who is there for you. You have 26 years’ worth of stories, spanning different eras. This is the show Russell T. Davies, Steven Moffat, Peter Capaldi, and Chris Chibnall grew up on, and if you missed the references to the classic series in their episodes, this is your chance to catch up and get acquainted.
A word of caution: if you’re used to the sleek production style under Moffat, you’re in for a rough time. This is a low-budget sci-fi show back in the day, so you’ll often be treated to cutting-edge special effects such as bubble wrap painted green to depict a man turning into a lizard.
The presentation is also totally different from the modern show – instead of 45-minute stories per episode, the stories would be split into three to five 30-minute episodes. And to pad out the extra time, the Doctor and his companions would do a lot of running. As. In. A. Lot.
Don’t let that turn you off, though. If you manage to power through, you’ll be rewarded with the show’s evolution from historical drama with William Hartnell’s immature and impatient First Doctor, regenerating into the playful Second Doctor, played by Patrick Troughton as a fool, then to the sleek James Bond-style era with Jon Pertwee’s Third Doctor. Then we get to Tom Baker’s epic 7-year era where the styles switched wildly from comedic (thanks to Douglas Adams) to gothic horror, and up to the twilight years with Peter Davison’s insecure Fifth Doctor, Colin Baker’s bombastic Sixth Doctor, and finally Sylvester McCoy’s dark and manipulative Seventh Doctor.
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