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Peter Davison in Doctor Who

Peter Davison took over the role of the Doctor in Doctor Who from Tom Baker in January, 1982. Baker had played the role of the Doctor for seven years prior. Mr. Davison's Doctor wore a cricket sweater, striped pants, a frock coat, a panama hat, and a stick of celery on his lapel. He needed glasses to read, being shortsighted in his right eye, and had a love for cricket that compared to no other incarnation.

Since Mr. Davison was following Tom Baker's goofy yet wise Doctor, he had to create a different persona for the fifth incarnation of the Time Lord. Counterpointing the worn wisdom of the Fourth Doctor, the Fifth was young, energetic, and at times seemed as fallible as any human. That fact alone set the fifth apart from any other incarnation up to that point and beyond it. The insatiable curiosity, that usually landed the Time Lord into trouble, went on as steady as the beating of his twin hearts.

Mr. Davison gave his Doctor much of the arrogance and tetchiness of William Hartnell's (the First Doctor), some of the classiness of Jon Pertwee's (the Third Doctor), and threw in some of his own elements, such as insatiable curiousity, a soft spot for Earth and its people, and the aforementioned passion for cricket.

Mr. Davison's Doctor snapped at his companions often, like Hartnell did, leading to much bickering in the console room. He was convinced of his superiority to humans, and asked, on one occasion, why earthlings were 'so parochial.' Mr. Davison's Doctor acted rashly sometimes, giving him a fallibility that wasn't always present in the previous regenerations. That fallibility made him seem all the more human, in both the eyes of his companions, and the eyes of his viewers. His curiousity got him into trouble often, getting him lost, captured, or worse. He recognised it as a character flaw, but still did nothing to rectify it. But on several occasions, the Doctor laid his life on the line to save that of his companions, willing to die if it would get his friends out of the trouble he'd always blamed himself for getting them into.

Mr. Davison's era in Doctor Who saw the death of a companion, which hadn't happened in the show since 1966. Also lost in his era was the sonic screwdriver, a tool the Time Lord had used since his third incarnation, destroyed by a Terileptil in 1666, London.

Companions of the Doctor in Mr. Davison's era:
Adric Nyssa Tegan Turlough Peri Kamelion

Please visit the synopses of each episode. Information gathered from Jean-Marc Lofficier's The Programme Guide. Used with gracious permission by the author of the definitive work on Doctor Who episodes. Get the book - no Doctor Who fan should be without it. And, by all means, visit Mr. Lofficier's own website, www.starwatcher.org . Terrific!


jleavesley@crosswinds.net