My favorite episode was.....
A Tom Baker one
Something about a Big Rat under London. It gave me nightmares for ages.
Anybody know the name of this episode I would love to revisit it again.
Over 6,700 Time Lord fans responded to a Doctor Who Magazine call to rate all 200 episodes of the classic sci-fi TV series, and selected 1984's The Caves of Androzani - in which fifth Doctor Peter Davison hung up his sonic screwdriver - as the best of the bunch. Davison's finale beat 2007's excellent Blink, with David Tennant …
You might want to think about that. The old Dr Who's are pretty clunky and you are probably less easy to scare. Revisiting the older episodes is high on nostalgia and the storylines are at least as good, but you do have to get past a certain "disappointment" threshhold before you can see past the cardboard. The big rat was probably just a fat bloke in a woolly jumper.
There's a big rat under Victorian London in Talons of Weng-Chiang (number four on the list), but the main plot is to do with a theatre and a Chinese God. Tom Baker spends the story dressed much like Sherlock Holmes, and it was originally broadcast in 1977 according to Wikipedia. Could that be it?
Remembrance of the Daleks by Ben Aaronovitch. And Blink, of course, which happened to be on TV a couple of nights back.
The one with the clockwork aliens was also very good and clever (Girl In The Fireplace?). Suprised that wasn't there. Impressed at the number of "old" episodes though.
Actually I disagree. I grew up as a child in the 70s and Tom Baker was my Doctor. As I grew older, I thought that I had outgrown the programme, especially in the McCoy era, but when they started releasing the Tom Baker episodes on video, I lapped them up because they were still great stories. I now have them on DVD and they are still fantastic!
IMHO, the Philip Hinchcliffe (producer) era produced some of the very best episodes of Doctor Who, and they stand the test of time to this very day. It is interesting to note that 4 of the 5 Baker episodes listed in this article were produced by Hinchcliffe.
Genesis - written by Terry Nation, Dir Maloney, produced by Hinchcliffe
Talons - written by Robert Holmes, Dir Maloney, produced by Hinchcliffe
Pyramids - written by R. Holmes and Lewis Greiffer , Dir Paddy Russell , produced by Hinchcliffe
Robots - Chris Boucher, Dir Briant produced Hinchliffe
Holmes was script editor for all these
Anyone see a pattern yet?
I've recently started listening to the Big Finish audio episodes. While some of them are a bit by the numbers, many of them are absolutely terrific.
And of course, being audio, the pictures are *much* better :) There are no clunky special effects in my head. A lot of the story-lines are much grander than you could possibly get away with on TV since it's all in your head. Some of them are genuinely very scary as well, but you can't hide behind the sofa.
Worth checking out.
so its good to see him realised as pretty much the best doctor there :)
one of the scariest ones for me was the T-Baker one with the vampires, sorry I am not quite nerdy enough to remember the titles, but the big spaceship as a stake was a smashing idea :)
The recent one where Jon Simms plays the master wsa also amazingly great
especially as he carries off that not very sane thing really well! :)
it had to be ... the whole program was drenched in a fantastic air of foreboding and mystery. Quite elegaic. The TARDIS inside a TARDIS paradox. The concept of pure maths keeping the CVEs open, the corruption of the register leading to the decay of the universe ...
AND Sarah Sutton - ding dong !!!!
...Talons and Pyramids, so it's nice to see those in there. I would like to make it clear that this has absolutely NOTHING to do with Leela's or Sarah Jane Smith's respective presences in them. At all. In any way, shape or form. Just so's we're clear on that. *shuffles feet awkwardly*
And it's not all to do with how good a doctor he was... (no denying he WAS a good doctor, but then, so were all the ones before colin baker).
Most doctors expire within about 3 or 4 years. Tom Baker lasted 7 meaning he had a far larger pool of episodes to choose from.
Mine's the one with the pockets that're bigger on the inside.
So the one in the library-world with the Vashta Narada shadows didn't make it to the top 10?! Now *that* was an amazing episode (pair of episodes actually). Not just carnivorous shadows, but also ghosts in mobiles, virtual worlds *and* a time-travel paradox thrown in. And the most impressive set ever used, because it was a real building.
For that matter, I'm surprised there weren't any Sylvester McCoy episodes in the top 10. His time as Doctor was when they finally managed to team up decent scripts with decent sets, and he made a very good Doctor.
The one with the spider and blue crystals used to freak me out.
Strangely when growing up i didnt relaise how raunchy some of the assitants were at the time, maybe i have just become a dirty old man? (maybe Mary whitehouse was correct, maybe seeing such cleaveage at a young age twisted my psyche?)
I see your Victoria and raise you a Jo Grant.
As for the comments about Peri's boobs, if that had been the major factor "Planet of Fire" would have won hands down...
*Anyone else see the Spitting Image style Dr Who "making of" pisstake that had in the credits: "Peri's boobs by Industrial Light and Magic"? I'd give my eyed teeth for a copy of that.
Totally agree. Silence in the Library/Forests of the Dead was my all-time fave Who story, with Blink coming a very close second. I have high hopes for the Moffat-led episodes to come. Hope we haven't seen the last of River Song or Sally Sparrow (although she did have 'closure' at the end of Blink).
... has resulted in some knowledge transfer.
I believe the one you are referring to is "The Tenth Planet" which was the last of William Hartnell's stories. Last I heard the first three episodes survive but the only remaining bit of the concluding episode is a clip of the regeneration scene.
That would be Jon Pertwee''s final story entitled (appropriately enough) "The Planet of the Spiders"
These headings are always soooo stupid:
a) There will be more.
b) There's always going to be a huge bias towards the more recent ones.
The fact that some of the older ones got to the top only goes to demonstrate that the kids are turning off the idiot-box. Unfortunately, they're turning on the idiot-interspazz-social-nets-web instead.
Couldn't agree more. The climax of that episode had one of the greatest lines in television:
"My name is The Doctor and we're standing in the biggest library in the Universe. Look me up." Invincible alien pauses, and decides not eating The Doctor would probably be the better part of valour.
Can't wait for the new season.
Oh, good to see "Blink" in there, of course.
Can anyone point me to a site where I can order/download all the Dr. Who episodes? MY only exposure here in 'Merka is from the now-named SyFy channel with Christopher Eccleston being "that guy in G.I Joe" and David Tennant being "the Harry Potter guy".
I'm reading right now "HGTG"; I want to move onto Lovecraft next. Why does it seem, that for good stories that have some science in them for fun and not the other way around, I need to look across the ocean?
I loved that as a child and watched it again about four years ago. It's painful. Wooden acting, deeply crappy sets. I'll grant that the ending is good and the plot isn't that bad but it really doesn't stand up when stripped of its nostalgic glow.
I agree that War Games was pretty good and much of Moffat's episodes were excellent. Ditto lots of Holmes episodes.
No one seems to have mentioned Impossible Planet/Satan Pit which has a hackneyed plot but great implementation. Likewise Family of Blood.
I have a soft spot for Warrior's Gate, Black Orchid and The Deadly Assassin too.
I just ordered one off eBay. Do you have eBay in 'Merka'.
You could also try the BBC shop although just looking now BBCmerica looks a little expensive.
Of course you could hunt around but I would never condone infringing BBC License Payers copyright.
Does anyone remember the Dr Who with Peter Cushing and Roy Castle?
Pure suspense in greyscale
Having lived in Australia I was lucky enough to be able to revisit - with my daughter - the whole run of Dr Who from first opening in the junkyard to today.
Sure, a lot of the older episodes where pretty cheesy - wooden acting, plastic sets, and plots you could drive a truck through... but for sheer entertainment I really enjoyed it (and was really glad to be able to introduce my daughter to the whole back story)
Nice to see some of my favourite episodes on this list, though Fang Rock was the one that scared the willies out of me as a kid and even re-watching it made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck.
Big fan of the new series (and Torchwood and even Sarah Jane Chronicles)... really keen to see how it evolves
Greetings and Salutations....
Alas, I have not seen ALL the episodes, but, the thing that impresses me about them is the continual flood of amusingly subtle (and not so subtle) humor that shows up. The Talons of Weng-Chaing is one of my favorite episodes, too, both for the over the top acting and, that golden moment when Li H'sen Chang opens the box of swords, to discover that the Dr. has slipped out; looks at the audience and says in that delightfully bad Chinese accent "One of us is Yellow...".
All in all, though Dr. Who demonstrates that a well written show, even with cheesy effects and amazingly huge calls for the suspension of disbelief can provide pleasure for generation after generation, and, can evolve to bring a "reality" to the characters in it. Some of the recent episodes where the Dr. has been truly scary have done just that, and have enriched the show by the exposure of these facets of his complex personality.
Gordon is not a Moron, you are thinking about "The Curse of Fenric".
Ian Ferguson, I don't remember an excellent episode with Peter Kay. There was an increcibly lame one, though, called "Love and Monsters".
I agree with someone else who commented that the large number of episodes from the last three series is probably largely due to them being most recent. but I personally think that Blink is possibly the best episode ever.
And City of Death has to be there, if only for John Cleese's cameo in the art gallery (oh, and it is a genuinely excellent story as well).
(Anonymous, to avoid getting lynched by all the RTD and/or Peter Kay fans.)
Amazon.com has nearly all the commercially available DVDs. I've been getting mine from a mixture of them, DVD Empire, Deep Discount, and, in a couple cases where I was willing to pay the trans-Atlantic shipping charges and absolutely couldn't wait the extra couple months for the region 1 DVD, Amazon.co.uk.
I've seen better prices than Amazon.co.uk for the region 2 DVDs, but none of those sites are willing to ship outside the EU.
If you want a list of all the "classic" stories currently available, see the DVD list on the Doctor Who Restoration Team site at: http://www.restoration-team.co.uk/
To this day I remember (in black and white, of course) the Doctor and granddaughter landing on the planet of the Daleks, with the dark spindly forest and the (probably plywood) city full of humans trying not to get killed by Daleks. Lifts with big round buttons for the Daleks to push, and corners for unsuspecting humans to get ambushed and turned into negatives.
But I was a rather small and gloriously terrified child. Nightmares for weeks!
BTW, talking of back stories, what happened to the Doctor's granddaughter? She seemed to drop off the plotline quite early.
...by the people who say they can't make any sense of "Warriors' Gate". Best. Story. Ever!
I do agree "Logopolis" (rather like the idea of trying to fix the universe) and "The Aztecs" (what's this rumor about all the female companions before Ace being wimps, huh?) belong up there as well.
My soft spot is for the reunion shows, so "Mawdryn Undead", "Battlefield", and all the multi-Doctor stories would be on my list...
Definitely does not deserve any episodes in the top 10, or top 100 for that matter. I can't believe anyone actually paired up "decent script" with "McCoy era" using a straight face...that's just not on, even accounting for differences in taste. I saw a few of them this year for the first time in decades, and even the ones I remembered as "not bad for a McCoy episode" were deeply nonsensical. I think the only half-decent one of the lot was Remembrance of the Daleks (in which a Dalek happily levitated up the stairs, so the commentators you see wibbling on about "ooh, the Daleks can fly in the new Who, they could never get up the stairs before" can kindly stuff it, thank you). Maybe Fenric was OK; I haven't seen it lately, but I remember it as what should have been a 6-parter crammed not entirely successfully into a 4-part story.
Being modern kids, they thought most sci-fi/horror stuff was a bit naff.. but Blink and the echo's of "are you my mummy" (Empty child) had them squirming on the couch (and my 8 yr old diving behind the couch to hide at key moments).
Brings back fond memories of me having nightmares as a kid watching Tom Baker. I have never gone back to the old episodes; I suspect my memories are far better than the actual quality of the programs.
Top 5 Pertwee IMHO
The Green Death (I cried with the Doctor at Joe leaving)
Brain of Morbius (scared the bejesus out of me)
TOW The demon in the cornish village (witchcraft, ancient alien science being like magic to us - mind expanding stuff to a kid)
The Axons (golden coloured people?) and the Nestens (plastic people horror)
Pyramids of Mars (birthed my fascination with Egyptology)
They should be on this list.
I remember going to an SF con as a teenager and wondering who the guy with the perm and the scarf next to the words "Doctor Who" was. I'd seen Doctor Who, and it wasn't him! I came to like Tom Baker later, but it took a while. Hartnell _is_ Doctor Who to me. The mystery of the early episodes, never knowing where things would go or what the Doctor could do, is something later episodes just can't match.
I'd have expected Pertwee, Jo, the Brigadier, Benson and the gadgets to come high on the list,too. Ah, well. Talons of Weng-Chiang made it. Unearthly Child belongs there, too.
And Fang Rock--if nothing else for:
"Are you in charge here?"
"No, but I've got lots of good ideas!"
Still gets me, every time.
who can forget the scenes leading up to the regeneration in the final episode of The Caves of Androzani? Carrying Peri across a battlefield surrounded with explosions, nearly dying of asphyxiation in an earlier scene and generally engaging in derring-do - all so he can save the girl he accidentally got into this situation and all while dying from spectrox poisoning. And not only this, but in the final moments of the first scene mentioned, he knows he has no cure for himself - he still delivers Peri to safety and meets death with dignity. And people thought the Fifth Doctor wasn't badass.
Besides Peri's gravity-defying boobs, I remember the 'Caves of ....' episodes as marking one of the first TV appearances for 'Hustle' ever-present Robert Glenister (Ash Morgan), brother of Philip Glenister (Life on Mars/ Ashes to Ashes). He played the rather shifty android Salateen.
I bet that's made everybody's Friday.
Certainly peri brought a couple of important qualities to that episode. (Davidson often remarked afterwards that his death scene was his finest moment of acting, but nobody's ever seen it because their attention goes elsewhere.)
I'd prefer Earthshock though, the script wasn't that good but Adric getting killed whjile trying to save the dinosaurs earns him a fairly unique Darwin award.
Terrified as a kid. For years afterwards my dad would make the monster noise.
All this "voted for by the kids" complaining is nonsense. Anyone can vote. Kids don't watch Doctor Who more than adults nor do they vote more. It's one of those shows you watch *with* your kids if anything, a tradition I'm more than happy to perpetuate.
Just bought and watched the E-Space Trilogy. Full Circle was interesting, the deciders reminded me of some of the managers I work with. State of Decay was a bit lame. I first heard this on Audio Tape and was much scarier. Warriors Gate had an awful lot of bad acting and maniacal laughing in it.
People also need to remember that at the time time of broadcast, the TV SFx were cutting egde. Dr Who was the first TV serial to use CSO and boy, was some of it crap - Underworld in particular.
I'm glad that Talons is in the top 10 as it is my favourite, but the Key to Time Saga was an excellent season.
People also have to remember that Dr. Who has been going on for 46 years, not 4.
No, "Green Death" is right. Big green maggots down mineshafts. The requirement for Jo Grant is a giveaway here as it makes it a Jon Pertwee / Katy Manning outing. "Ark in Space" is a Tom Baker / Liz Sladen piece.
I do appreciate the opportunity to think about Jo Grant again though. Thank you.
Re: "Planet of the Spiders". I went to a convention once where one of the guests was Matt Irvine (spelling?) of the BBC effects department. He brought the animatronic spider with him. Quite large, but nowhere near as scary once you find out it's called, er, "Boris" (announced to a roomful of groans at the sheer cheese involved). Bloody tempremental, rather difficult to control and a tad fragile (says he wot drove it off a table edge).
@ Francis Vaughan
"Great, so the rankings credit the actor who played the Doctor. Not the writer. Nor even director. This seems to say something fundamental about tthe nature of the fans, and it isn't all good."
The thing is that most people who are Doctor Who fans would know the story by who played the Doctor in it, not the writer or director. They would know, for instance, that The Doctor in Caves of Androzani was Peter Davison, they would not necessarily know that the director was Graeme Harper, despite Graeme Harper directing many excellent stories in both New and Classic Who.
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