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  • Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Fifth Doctor

    The Fifth Doctor is the first Doctor to feel every bit his age, which is of course contrasted by his physical appearance (Peter Davison was 29 when he took on the role, making him the youngest actor to play the Doctor until Matt Smith, who was 26 when he was cast). He’s thoughtful and still, far less wordy than his predecessor, and perhaps partially due to the youth of his Companions, the Fifth Doctor is the most paternal since the First Doctor. He can be stern, one of the earliest to show the Fury of a Time Lord so common to the modern series, but he also has a sense of fun, taking time off here and there to catch a game of cricket and relax. He’s also the most approachable of the Classic Doctors, with a breezy demeanor that contrasts the Fourth Doctor’s manic energy. More

  • Jon Pertwee as the Third Doctor
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Third Doctor

    The Third Doctor is very scientifically minded, preferring to tinker in his lab rather than interact with his colleagues at UNIT. He’s a far more action-oriented Doctor than his predecessors, filling the Male Action Hero role himself for the first time. The Third Doctor is somewhat of a dandy, very carefully selecting his outfit and hotwiring a classic car, Bessie, that catches his eye. He can be abrupt with his Companions, but over time he develops strong bonds with them, missing them when they’re gone even coming across as a bit jealous when Jo leaves to get married. The Doctor is rather proud and his inability to operate the TARDIS is a particular sore point (the Time Lords blocked off this knowledge in his brain as a punishment for the initial conflict that caused him to leave Gallifrey). He has a contentious rapport with the Brigadier, as the Brig represents UNIT’s interests, which don’t always coincide with his own, but eventually the two develop a close friendship, with the Brigadier returning (somewhat) frequently over the course of the series to have adventures with almost all of the Doctors. More

  • David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Tenth Doctor

    The Tenth Doctor is one of the more human Doctors. He’s warm, funny, and rather emotional. He can be incredibly short-sighted and dense when it comes to his Companions’ feelings, but he for the most part is highly emotionally intuitive. Still recovering from the Time War, a wrathful anger lurks beneath his friendly façade, but it very rarely comes out. This Doctor is very energetic, finding it difficult to sit still under normal circumstances, and he talks a mile a minute, a distinct contrast from the Ninth Doctor. More

  • Patrick Troughton as Doctor Who second doctor
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Second Doctor

    The Second Doctor is wily, silly, and thoughtful. He’s happy to play the clown or sit quietly in the background, allowing others to underestimate him. He has no interest in recognition or praise, often slipping away with his Companions after saving the day as soon as those he’s just helped start trying to celebrate him or rope him into assisting them further. Unlike the First Doctor’s early grouchiness and avuncular grandfather persona, the Second Doctor is more of a crazy uncle, less interested in educating or otherwise bettering his Companions and more focused on them as individuals and friends. He opts for disguise and deception over outright confrontation when it comes to gathering information and defeating his foes and the Second Doctor is perhaps best known for his close bond and comedy duo rapport with Jamie, the longest-running Companion in the series. More

  • Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Seventh Doctor

    The Seventh Doctor begins his tenure as a rather comical, light-hearted figure. Sylvester McCoy was known for his vaudeville-style clowning and humor and the early Seventh Doctor stories play into this. As his stories progress, however, he becomes a much darker, more still figure and he’s perhaps the most manipulative and deceptive of the Doctors. He has an incredibly close bond with Ace, who is very much his protégé and a daughter figure, and this relationship is a clear precursor to the more intense, more closely-examined Doctor/Companion relationships to come in NuWho (minus the romance). It’s highly implied during this time that the Doctor has a far more significant, secret past than his “Time Lord on the run” cover story, but this is quickly backed away from later. This ominous, looming secrecy gives the Seventh Doctor an air of foreboding and drama that counterbalances his early and occasional silliness quite well. More

  • Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor on Doctor Who
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Fourth Doctor

    The Fourth Doctor can perhaps best be described as alien. After the very human Third Doctor and UNIT era, this new wide-eyed and unpredictable Doctor is a dramatic change and while each Doctor to this point is brilliant and clearly the smartest man in whatever room he enters, this incarnation is the first to embody that brand of genius that can keep any number of seemingly random threads whirling in their brain at a given moment, jumping between them at will and only later revealing to the rest of the room how they’re connected. He has a manic energy and bluster that seems endless as well as a penchant for bickering with or teasing his Companions, particularly Sarah Jane and Romana I and though he can be deadly serious, this Doctor is most likely to be found with a wide grin on his face and mad schemes percolating behind his eyes. More

  • Colin Baker as Doctor Who's Sixth Doctor
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Sixth Doctor

    The Sixth Doctor is extremely brash and outgoing. He’s quick to anger, but can calm quickly as well, if he puts his mind to it. He’s incredibly arrogant and self-assured and immediately assumes a position of authority upon encountering a situation that requires his attention. He is blustery and is often short with his Companions, making him among the most difficult Doctors for many fans to embrace. He suffered an extreme reaction to his regeneration and went temporarily mad, lashing out at and attacking his then Companion, Peri. He’s not particularly aware of others’ needs and dispositions, as his mind is usually elsewhere, but he cares deeply for his Companions and, like every Doctor, is incredibly protective of them. More

  • Christopher Eccleston as the Ninth Doctor, Doctor Who
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    Doctor Who Profile: The Ninth Doctor

    The Ninth Doctor is a tricky one. He often seems carefree and goofy, but this masks deep pain and rage. He’s fresh from the Time War and when confronted with a Dalek, his façade crumbles and he becomes unrecognizable to his Companion, Rose. The Ninth Doctor hates guns (except when faced with the Daleks) and has a slightly contentious, if light-hearted relationship with gunslinger Captain Jack. He always makes sure to give his adversaries the opportunity to leave peacefully, offering to help them find a non-violent solution to their needs (resources, space, etc.) and his joy at finding non-violent solutions is palpable. Like some of his predecessors, most notably the Fifth Doctor, the Ninth Doctor is somewhat taciturn, very still, and extremely thoughtful. More

  • William Hartnell as the First Doctor, Doctor Who
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    Doctor Who Profile: The First Doctor

    The First Doctor Portrayed by: William Hartnell Companion(s): Susan Foreman, Ian Chesterton, Barbara Wright, Vicki, Steven Taylor, Katarina, Dodo Chaplet, Ben Jackson, Polly Tenure: 28 stories, from An Unearthly Child (Nov, 1963) to The Tenth Planet (Oct, 1966). The First Doctor would later return in The Three Doctors (Dec, 1972) and, played by a different […] More