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back to article Staying power: The small screen spans of the eleven Doctor Whos

Here we see the total running times of each Doctor’s regular episodes in which they were the lead – so not counting return appearances with a later Doctor; Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee in The Five Doctors, for instance. With seven years in the role under his belt, Tom Baker’s Fourth Doctor is clearly the longest serving, …

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Mushroom

Worst infographic EVER

They're meant to assist understanding the data, not obfuscate it. A key would be have been helpful too.

Sometimes an old fashioned bar chart it just what the doctor ordered...

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Re: Worst infographic EVER

If I can figure out what's going on here without a key, I'm sure you can, FH

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Re: Worst infographic EVER

If you want the key, buy the book

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Re: Worst infographic EVER

@Platelet: Fair point, but then this is more of an advert for an infographic than an actual infographic. I quite like the format, but really I'd have liked a key too, or at least a note after the 1st, 2nd etc to say the actor's surname.

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Re: Worst infographic EVER

A note with the chart? It's enclosed within a whole freakin' article!

:)

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Re: Worst infographic EVER

"Sometimes an old fashioned bar chart it just what the doctor ordered..."

Looks like a bar chart to me... just wrapped around a clock-face, which given the nature of the subject seems wholly appropriate!

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Good ol' Tom

Was the second incarnation of the Dr that I really remember - I remember the final episode with Troughton, cast into the time vortex in Monochrome, and then I saw Pertwee fall out of the Tardis in colour, for the first time, and I watched avidly till the almost end of the Tom Baker era - by which time my Saturday evenings were taken up with my first girlfriend...

There's a grand interview with Tom on the BBC today:-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-24657064

Amazing that the series has lasted so long - I think it's the constant evolution that has made it a success, even if I'm not too fond of the recent series, many, many millions of viewers can't be wrong :)

I didn't see a problem with the graphic, once I'd looked at it for a few seconds.

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Anonymous Coward

Actual screen time may differ of course.

For the first two Doctors, the long season meant that the actors would need a holiday during the run and so there are episodes when the major actors are missing. Not to mention the time when the producer decided to keep Hartnell out of a story because he wanted to and not just cause Hartnell needed a break.

I heard an interesting theory on Radio Free Skaro's latest podcast this morning: that stunt double Terry Walsh managed about the same on-screen time as Pertwee during one season because Pertwee's back had given out.

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"Actual screen time may differ of course."

And does the 10th incarnation get given double-time for the bit in Journey's End when he was duplicated?

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Oh yeah...

What about the 3 or so hours Peter Cushing was the Doctor :)

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Re: Oh yeah...

He wasn't "The Doctor", he played a character called "Dr Who".

Where one is a 950 year old alien from the planet Gallifrey, who has two hearts, a self-renewing cell structure and penchant for attractive young women, the other was a human Earthling who only had grand-daughters and strange men.

The films are not canon.

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Re: Oh yeah...

McGann's Doctor was supposedly half human and that's canon. Also, the Doctor has often been called "Dr. Who" in the old series' credits.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: McGann's Doctor

The Jar-Jar of the Whoniverse. I refuse to consider him canon no matter what anyone says. What a waste of an incarnation

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Holmes

Re: Oh yeah...

Of course, in the world of the films it's the Doctor who's not canon.

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Anonymous Coward

Time Dilation Factor

Story telling is much faster paced as the years roll on.

Hartnell and Troughton had several 6 episode length stories, with one or two epics up around 10 or 12 (yes 3 months spent telling a story). Hartnell covering 29 stories, Troughton 21.

Tom Baker's tenure saw more 4-parters, so he notched up 40 stories.

A modern story is about the length of two old episodes - but benefits from not needing a couple of minutes repeat of the cliffhanger, or even having to manipulate the story to fit in a cliffhanger at the right time.

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Re: Time Dilation Factor

The phrase you're looking for is 'got worse'.

Yes, you don't need cliffhangers, but you need to wrap the whole lot up in how ever many minutes it is, rather than being able to take as many episodes as you need.

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Alien

Assistants

Would also be interesting to see a (clear) infographic about the turn-over of assistants that they each had.

Interesting to compare the stories where there was basically just the 'Doc plus a single companion to those where he had an entourage of almost diva proportions (although of course the Tennant story -The Stolen Earth I think it was - with the Daleks and the Tardis-full would unbalance things somewhat).

Or perhaps the average screen-time they had per Doctor?

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Re: Assistants

I think the longest time anyone has ever spent travelling with the doctor is nearly 32 years.

In 1982 a Cyberman went down the corridor of the Tardis in the story Earthshock, and he is yet to return.

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Re: Assistants

This might help http://www.geekologie.com/image.php?path=/2011/12/19/doctor-who-timeline-full.jpg

From the looks of it a monogamous relationship with assistants doesn't really begin until 1970, and even then there's all those squaddies hanging around the place.

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Re: Assistants

In 1982 a Cyberman went down the corridor of the Tardis in the story Earthshock, and he is yet to return.

On the plus side, they got the Cyberman in exchange for Adric, and he's much less whiny.

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Trollface

You could argue that 8 was the longest serving.

Since the time between him and 9 appearing on TV was far longer than any of the others were around.

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Pardon the pedantry...

But wouldn't that be "Doctors Who"?

As in "Attorneys General" or "Courts Martial".

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Re: Pardon the pedantry...

Nope just

Doctors

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Re: Pardon the pedantry...

It's Doctor Who. It's always the same one. His appearance changes as a result of regeneration. Has this been forgotten?

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Boffin

Yes, but...

Have appropriate deductions been made for title sequences and end credits, and in the case of Doctors 3*-7 the 'what happened last week' bit at the beginning and for Doctors 9-11 the 'what's happening next week' bit at the end?

*not old enough to remember Doctors 1 and 2 and not sure how those episodes started and finished.

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Would like to see a version where the bigfinish audios are included

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M7S
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Happy

Just how much of this sort of article will there be as 23.11.13 approaches?

as I'm thoroughly enjoying it all.

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Bah!

Nice to see that after Tom Baker William Hartnell has an appreciable lead. I had thought for years his time was less than Troughton's.

One for the Grand Old Man of the show.

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Re: Bah!

Up until the end of Troughton's tenure, the series was on TV for about 43 weeks a year. That's Doctor Who every Saturday all year round, with only 10 weeks off! We never had it so good!

From 1970 onwards, that figure dropped to 27 weeks, less than half the year, so no wonder Pertwee has so little air-time despite his 5 years on the job. Tom Baker has to stick it out for 7 seasons to make an appreciable dent in Hartnell's record.

By the time the 6th Doctor comes along, the show's only on for a quarter of the year - 13 weeks - and it stays that way until it's cancelled in 1989. Then it comes back in 2005 for...13 weeks. Admittedly those 13 weeks are all 45 minute stories, so we're kind of back to 1970s screen-time.

Then in 2009 the 10th Doctor's "Specials" year is only 6 weeks long, as is the first half of the 11th Doctor's 7th Series (including Christmas Special).

2012's a little better, as so far we've had 8 weeks, and there's a 50th Anniversary and Christmas Special still to come. But those halcyon days of the Doctor taking up a sizeable chunk of the viewing year are long gone...

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Scarf

Clearly Tom Bakers time on screen was due to his equally long scarf.

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Coat

Re: Scarf

Apparently Tom Baker wound up his time on Dr Who to audition for Brian De Palma in a failed bid for the part of Tony Montana...

... because after playing The Doctor for so long he thought he'd become such a Scarf-ace!

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Joke

Re: Scarf

Little-Known Fact: the scarf was actually woven from the scripts of the episodes. When you see Tom contemplating a section he's not acting; he just forgot his lines...

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Tom Baker FTW!

My favorite Doctor.

Though I admit the most recent Doctors, after the hiatus, have had much better scripts and effects. Very very very much better.

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I remember when infographics were called diagrams. It was all fields around here then

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No, no, no infographics and diagrams are different things. A diagram tells you something useful and is occasionally pretty. An infographic is pretty and only rarely tells you anything at all apart from arts graduates shouldn't be allowed near a computer.

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What, no Dr. Donna?

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Typo in the article

I wonder if Paul Smith is using a Norwegian keyboard layout...

"Eleventh Doctor Matt Smith’s expected departure in this year’s Christmas Special will mean heÆll fall just short of Tenth Doctor David Tennant’s tenure, (...)"

The Æ and ' is next to each other on the Norwegian standard keyboard layout.

It is superior to all other layouts, so I can't blame him ;)

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