Greetings and salutations fellow Whovians and people with a passing interest in Doctor Who. Last week we took a break from “So Who Saturdays” but now we are back and better than ever.
Now I subscribe to a number of Doctor Who Facebook pages and now and again you would read news about former actors who played the Doctor and new projects they are involved in. And I told myself “self, you should do a ‘where are they now?’ post featuring former Doctors”. And here we are.
Now this list will be focusing on living actors; we lost First Doctor William Hartnell to heart failure in 1975 at age 67, Second Doctor Patrick Troughton from a heart attack in 1987, also at age 67, and Third Doctor Jon Pertwee from a heart attack in 1996 at age 76. With that said on to the list:
#1 Fourth Doctor Tom Baker age 82 (1974-1981, last appearance “The Day of the Doctor” as The Caretaker)
One of my favourite moments as a Whovian was seeing my favourite Doctor Tom Baker cameo in the 50th anniversary special “The Day of the Doctor”.
After leaving the show in 1981 and opting out of “The Five Doctors” special, a decision he later regretted, he continued to work with the show via Big Finish audio dramas, like most former Doctors, and BBC talking books.
A voice over artist, Baker’s most recent work is the voicing of the force-sensitive creature “Bendu” in “Star Wars: Rebels” Season 3.
#2 Fifth Doctor Peter Davison, age 65 (1981-1984, last appearance “Time Crash”)
Davison returned to his most famous role in the 2007 special “Time Crash” and was partnered with Tenth Doctor David Tennant. He was also writer and director of the hilarious The Five-ish Doctors Reboot comedy spoof where he was joined by fellow former Doctors Sylvester McCoy and Colin Baker. He also had a four year stint on “Law and Order: UK” as director of Crown Protection Service Henry Sharpe.
His most recent tv work is in the ITV detective drama Grantchester and in film the 2017 movie Fish with Bicycles. Davison is also the father of Georgia Moffet, who played Jenny, the daughter of Tenth Doctor David Tennant. And then Tennant married Moffet making Davison his own father-in-law. Try not to think too hard about it.
#3 Sixth Doctor Colin Baker, age 73 (1984-1986, last appearance “The Ultimate Foe”)
Baker’s introduction to the show was actually as another character – Commander Maxil in the episode “The Arc of Infinity” where he shot then Doctor Peter Davison. After two seasons of dubious quality he was unceremoniously fired and refused to film his regeneration sequence into Seventh Doctor Sylvester McCoy; McCoy had to wear a wig.
His most recent work is in the aforementioned The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot and appearing in the fan-created non-canon web series ‘Star Trek Continues’ as Minister Amphidamas in the episode “The White Iris”.
#4 Seventh Doctor Sylvester McCoy, age 73 (1987-1989, Doctor Who movie 1996)
Outside of being the Seventh Doctor McCoy is best known in fandom for playing the pipe smoking, animal loving hippie wizard Radagast the Brown in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy.
He also has an American-British supernatural horror film Slumber which is in production.
#5 Eighth Doctor Paul McGann, age 56 ( Doctor Who Movie 1996, last appearance 2013 “Night of the Doctor” minisode)
After his one off appearance in an abysmal movie McGann redeemed his character in more than 70 audio dramas. And when he appeared in the “Night of the Doctor” minisode he showed that he had all the makings of a great Doctor and had fans hankering for more.
In recent years McGann has been appearing in a number of short films including 2015’s The Pit and the Pendulum: A Study in Torture and in terms on TV on hit BBC crime drama ‘Luther’.
#6 War Doctor John Hurt, age 76 (Cameo in 2013 “Night of the Doctor”, “Day of the Doctor” 2013)
Of everyone on this list Hurt is the only one whose best known role is not as the Doctor. And this is no surprise for an Academy-award nominated actor whose work spans an astonishing six decades. Though a one off role he brought great depth and gravitas to the War Doctor.
His most recent work is in the 2016 biographical film Jackie about the life of Jacqueline Kennedy, wife the 35th President of the United States John F. Kennedy. The film stars Natalie Portman in the title role and Hurt plays a priest.
#7 Ninth Doctor Christopher Eccleston, age 52 (2005, last appearance “The Parting of the Ways”)
After leaving the show and declining to return due to behind the scenes issues Eccleston has kept himself busy doing work on the stage, in television and in film. He appeared as Destro in 2009’s G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra and as dark elf Malekith in 2013’s Thor: The Dark World.
Eccleston’s most recent film is the 2015 French-British crime thriller Legend where he plays Detective Superintendent Leonard “Nipper” Read who is in charge of taking down identical twin criminals.
#8 Tenth Doctor David Tennant, age 45 (2006-2009, “Day of the Doctor” 2013)
Many people’s favourite all time Doctor and Barty Crouch Jr. from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, David Tennant has been quite busy post-Doctor Who. From 2013 he has appeared as Detective Alec Hardy on crime drama ‘Broadchurch’ and would appear as Detective Emmett Carver in the American version of the show ‘Gracepoint’.
He also had a masterful turn as the villain Kilgrave in Netflix superhero drama ‘Jessica Jones’. Tennant also does voice over work and won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2012 for playing a droid in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
#9 Eleventh Doctor Matt Smith, age 33 (2013-2013, “Time of the Doctor”, cameo in “Deep Breath”)
Finally we come to the most recently departed Doctor – Matt Smith. After leaving Doctor Who he briefly appeared in the reboot film Terminator Genisys, played Mr Collins in romance drama horror mash up Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and next year will be the lead in supernatural horror Patient Zero.
In terms of television he will be appearing in the upcoming Netflix Queen Elizabeth II drama ‘The Crown’ and will play Prince Philip.
So which former “Doctor Who” actor do you miss the most. Feel free to comment below.
For my Top 13 Doctors ranking you can click here and for my Top 9 Most Wanted Doctor Returns you can click here. Next week I will be doing a similar list on former companions. For this and for more wibbley wobbly timey wimey posts you can follow me on Twitter @suprememango012 for updates and other cool stuff.
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