Fifty Years of Who


Doctor Who 50 Years graphic.In November, the British television series Doctor Who will be having a special to commemorate its 50 years of existence. It should be noted that the show has not continuously aired new episodes for half a century. What is considered the “classic” Doctor Who ran from 1963 to 1989, then there was a TV movie in 1996, and in 2005, the series returned and starred Christopher Eccleston in the title role.

About the Show

The Doctor looks human but he is an alien known as a Time Lord. He travels through space and time in his ship, called the TARDIS (Time And Relative Dimension In Space), usually getting into trouble, fighting enemies, and saving lives. He will usually have at least one human, called his “assistant” or “companion,” accompany him on his adventures.

One way Doctor Who has maintained its longevity (no pun intended) is by giving the Doctor the ability to “regenerate,” which causes his physical body to transform and allow him to heal from otherwise fatal wounds. This allows a different actor to take over the role within the series.

Currently playing the part is Matt Smith, who will leave the role after this year. As the eleventh actor to be cast, he is also the Eleventh Doctor. Fans on the Internet may refer to each incarnation of the Doctor by their numbered order of appearance on the show, such as the Fourth Doctor (played by Tom Baker), Nine (Eccleston), 10 (played by David Tennant), or 11 (Smith).

Want to Know More?

Try these books to learn more about the show’s universe and characters:

Travel with the Doctor

Join the Doctor on his adventures through time and space by experiencing Doctor Who in books, on CDs, and/or DVDs from your library.



“Classic” Series DVDs

“New” Series DVDs


Author Bio:

Jessica Chung is a MLIS student and an intern for San Mateo County Library. She loves that David Tennant achieved his dream of playing the Doctor.

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