Desmond Bradbury
2 years ago

I'm so ancient I can recall the first series of Dr. Who back in the early 60's....the black and white flickering tele in the corner, the two channels to choose from... for kids in the 60's Dr. Who was a big deal, it really is hard to put into context the importance of such storytelling to the kids of the time, and if the truth be known adults too....there weren't too many kids programs in the U.K. and the television on a weekday afternoon consisted of Blue Peter, Crackajack, and the odd tv adaptation of a children's book, such as Swallow and Amazons', there was a smattering of news, cricket, concerts, educational programming, with things generally warming up after tea and the early news with a selection of comedy, drama, game shows followed by the late news, weather and bed.....and programming was generally over before midnight.

My first Dr. Who was William Hartnell who was like an old friendly, ever so slightly eccentric Grandad rambling about the shadowed sets of Broadcast House in London or scrambling through tight passages in coal mines in Wales..... for us it was engrossing, engaging and exciting and something we looked forward to every week, most shows ran about 25 minutes and left us with a cliff hanger only to be resumed next week.... which of course when your 9 is a very very long time away.

In my teens John Pertwee was the doctor for a number of years, he was replaced, er I mean regenerated by my favourite Dr. Who; Tom Baker.... His mad scarf, Fedora, slightly dipsey eccentric manner won me over straight away, its Baker's Dr., that I recall the most and who I have the most affection for some of the episodes that I can recall are Terror of the Zygons, Horror of Fang Rock, Destiny of the Daleks...Genesis of the Daleks....

I kind of lost track after Tom Baker, I recall the odd episode with Peter Davison ( who for a long time I had problem getting out of my head his rather convincing role of the younger vet in marvelous BBC series All Creatures Great and Small ).... he also brought a lighthearted and jocular Dr. Who and a snazzy line in blazers.

Over the years I have been brought back into the orbit of Gallifrey through my kids, the likable and enigmatic but short-lived Christopher Eccleston who I thought added a physicality and palpable toughness to the character...followed by most peoples favorite Dr. Who, David Tennant.... well at least for the youngsters and the adults who came to the series later on..... I wasn't convinced at first, but he grew on me and did a remarkable job in the role, it was also nice to see his longevity, some strong script writing as well as recreating the Doctor to another generation of fans, each series got stronger and stronger, and with the new hi - tech Dr..... ( you know what I'm talking about ) older Whotards....
it became a visually stunning series to watch, rather than some of the shambolic sets of the 60's and 70's...... but of course that was a great part of its charm, and certainly why in our teenage years we loved it so ... there was a rough edge proceedings to the action, the sets, the occasionally ropey costumes and ropier adversarial characters.......
All in all its kept me glued to the tele over the decades, with an ear out for that oh so familiar theme tune and searching the screen for that spinning blue police box.

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