Who's Your Favourite DoctorWho’s Your Favourite Doctor?

OK, so for most of us it’s not the first thing we ask someone we meet. It is however, an interesting question when asking a group made up of different generations. The answer is usually the doctor you watched most as a child.

This isn’t always the case however, my mother still has David Tennant on her desktop, wearing blue pin-stripe suit, when she should be fondly remembering William Hartnell. My son’s 9 year old friend, who’s father was a huge Doctor Who fan and watched many videos with him, had a favourite Doctor. “It’s Baker”, my son told me. “Wow, really?” I said, impressed. “Yes,” he said, “Colin Baker.” “Oh.”

For most children his age, the answer would be Tennant, Eccleston or Smith. Between 1989 and 2005 there simply wasn’t a Doctor on the telly to grow up with, except for re-runs on UK Gold. And Paul McGann. In fact, some cheeky online surveys who ask the question, don’t even include doctors 1 to 8 as a choice.Sarah Jane Smith - Elisabeth Sladen

Doctor Who returned to us with the 9th Doctor, a rather serious Northerner in a leather jacket. He was a bit of a stroppy bugger and, like the 1st Doctor, he had ‘secrets’. This, I thought, made him mysterious and interesting, after it had all got a bit silly in the 80’s. The show was also bloody scary again. It reminded me of the feelings I had as a child, when faced with 6 foot long maggots or giant spiders doing their impression of backpacks. Ugh. The same spiders also led to the sad demise of my favourite, Jon Pertwee.

Target Books

What have been more consistently produced over the last 48 years are the Doctor Who novels. The first book, “Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks”, was written by David Whitaker and published in hardback by Frederick Muller in 1964. The first ever paperback, the title containing the incorrect ‘Dr. Who’, followed a year later, published by Armada. When British publishing imprint ‘Target’ republished the story as ‘Doctor Who and the Daleks’ in 1973 it was so popular that they launched their now famous series of Doctor Who novels.Target Books, 1965

“The story from the beginning! Here is the exciting adventure of Dr. Who, Susan, Barbara and Ian, from the moment they meet one foggy autumn night on a lonely common beside a Police Box (Ah, but what a curious Police Box!) to the time they encounter the weird Daleks.”

The Target books were published through to the early 1990’s, mostly written by Terrance Dicks. As well as filling the space when the Doctor himself wasn’t on the screen, they gave fans the opportunity to read the novelised ‘missing episodes’, some 100+ programmes from the 1960’s that were wiped or destroyed. Every TV adventure was written, with the exception of those scripted by Eric Saward and Douglas Adams. Yes, that Douglas Adams.  Shame.

Will There Be Jelly Babies for the 50th Anniversary?

Oh, I hope so. In 2013, Doctor Who will be 50 (the show, not the Doctor who is looking at more than 900 candles). According to reports, some of them actually reliable, Tom Baker is ready to dust off his fedora and scarf and appear in a 90 minute celebratory episode alongside theDoctor Who novels signed by Tom Baker very wonderful Matt Smith. This will be a definite improvement on the waxwork figure of Baker that appeared in the 20th Anniversary (not very) special. What ‘The Five Doctors’ did have however, were doctors 2 and 3, something that cannot be repeated due to the sad loss of Troughton and Pertwee (and of course Hartnell). Or can it? Is a little CGI trickery too much to hope for? In the Whoniverse, anything is possible.

Would you like a signed copy? (Now sold)
I was very excited to find a box of  Target novels, many of which are first editions, in my collection.  I was thrilled to find that 2 of them are signed by Tom Baker.  You can find these and more by clicking below.
Doctor Who First Editions

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    One Response to Doctor Who – Who’s Your Favourite, Target Books and the 50th Anniversary

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