|Country of Origin:||United Kingdom
Subpages for Doctor Who:
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The central character is a humanoid alien adventurer known as The Doctor, who travels through time and space in his ship, the TARDIS (an acronym for Time And Relative Dimension In Space), which appears in the form of a blue police box from the 1950s. Due to its transdimensional nature, it is much larger on the inside.
Each episode finds the Doctor visiting another planet, or a moment in Earth history.
The Doctor often travels with one or more companions or assistants, the majority of whom are human women. The Doctor "regenerates" into a new body rather than dying, allowing a variety of actors to play the role. Fans often refer to each different incarnation numerically; for example, the incarnation of the Doctor portrayed by Christopher Eccleston would be referred to as "The Ninth Doctor" or simply "Nine". (See the Naming the Doctor section of the Doctor Who Fandom Glossary page.)
Doctor Who originally ran for 26 seasons on the BBC from 1963 to 1989 and featured seven different Doctors played by seven different actors. The series was structured as multiple-episode story arcs of varying length within each season or series. The series was also broadcast in many other countries, appearing on PBS in the US.
Between the Classic and the New
A TV movie was also made in 1996. This was a co-production between the BBC and Universal; it was intended as a backdoor pilot for an ongoing American series, which never eventuated. The TV movie aired on Fox in the US, where it received poor ratings and reviews. It was more successful in the UK.
In the period between the cancellation of the original series in 1989 and the revival in 2005, there was a proliferation of semi-canonical material mostly concerning the Seventh and Eighth Doctors. These books and radio plays were created by fans but published professionally, and in some cases by the BBC.
(INSERT: Virgin novels about Seven, BBC novel series about Eight, BBC Past Doctor Adventures, Big Finish audio plays and spinoffs, more?)
In 2005, the BBC revived the series with Russell T. Davies as head writer and executive producer. The new series, filmed in Wales and made by BBC Wales, continued from the canon of the original series without substantial changes. The format of the show was altered from the multi-episode arcs to the more common television standard of mostly stand-alone episodes. Season running plot arcs--such as the one that launched the idea of Torchwood--are woven into the plot of episodes throughout the series. Steven Moffatt was a contributing writer from the beginning of Davies' tenure, and the BBC announced in May 2008 that Moffat would be taking over from Russell T Davies as head writer and executive producer for the revived show's fifth series, to be broadcast in 2010. (Moffatt and collaborator Mark Gatiss are also responsible for the BBC Sherlock, which is also a fan favorite, though in both cases, fans sometimes take issue with the showrunners' choices.)
New Who has featured three Doctors and three actors as well as five main companions (almost all women):
- Rose Tyler - an ordinary girl who falls in love with the Doctor
- Martha Jones - a bright medical student who develops unrequited feelings for the Doctor
- Donna Noble - a feisty temp from Chiswick, the Doctor's "mate" and pal
- Amy Pond - who first met the Doctor as a small child and obsessed over him
- Rory Williams - the young man very much in love with Amy Pond
The Doctor has had several (potential) love interests in the New series, including Madame de Pompadour, Joan Redfern, and River Song.
Both Classic Who and the new series are broadcast pre-watershed (before 9 pm) which means they are intended as family programming, suitable for children.
Doctor Who Fandom
The main off-Livejournal archive for Doctor Who fanfic is A Teaspoon and an Open Mind, which also includes fanfic for all Doctor Who spinoffs. This archive was created before the new series began.
- The television show Torchwood was spun-off of the "new" Doctor Who around the character of Captain Jack Harkness. Though characters like Captain Jack and Martha Jones have crossed over between the two shows, many fandom communities focus on only one show or the other. Torchwood is designed for a more adult audience than the family-friendly Doctor Who.
- The Sarah Jane Adventures is another television spin-off with Sarah Jane Smith -- who was a companion of the Third and Fourth Doctors in the 1970s and made guest appearances on New Who -- as its main character. It is designed for a younger audience than Doctor Who.
- Big Finish creates a number of audio dramas for Doctor Who.
"The first British fanzine appeared in 1975. This was TARDIS. It comprised twelve photocopied pages and cost a meagre 5 pence. The second issue of TARDIS appeared three months later. The page count had now risen to twenty pages for 8 pence... The second issue of TARDIS was the first to include a letters page and thus what can be described as the first real communication between fans." 
Below are conventions that are/were either centered around Doctor Who or often have/had significant Doctor Who related guests.
- Gallifrey One, Los Angeles, US, February
- Destiny, Northampton, UK
- Whovention, Sydney, AU
- PanoptiCon, Manchester, UK
- Panopticon West, US
- Cult TV Convention Liverpool, UK, October
- Dimensions, Stockton on Tees, UK, November
- Ascension, Cardiff, UK, November
- United Fan Con, Massachusetts, US, November
- Chicago T.A.R.D.I.S., Chicago, US, November
- Sci-Fi Sea Cruise, various dates and departure locations
The Fourth Doctor, played by Tom Baker wore a signature, long, multi-coloured scarf in many episodes. The Doctor Who Scarf shows photos of the various versions of the scarf used in the series and includes knitting instructions for several versions. Other patterns exist for knitting the scarf as well. In 1976, a promotional version of the scarf was commercially produced and sold to fans.
In 1984, a fan promoted her small fan club and saw scarves in her future: "One of my many new involvements is a Doctor Who fan club, called, at present, 'FRED' (Fans who Really Enjoy the Doctor) which meets about every third Saturday at my apartment and watches video tapes. If any of you out there are interested in attending, let me know. As a part of 'FRED'... I hope to shortly have the official BBC pattern [for the scarf] and will make scarves from that... Price is $1.50 a foot. All profits will be given to KCET [a local t.v. station] for the Doctor in the name of 'FRED.'" 
The Adipose monster was featured in the New Who, Series Four (featuring the Tenth Doctor) episode, Partners in Crime. Shortly after the episode aired, fans began knitting stuffed toy versions of the monster and sharing the knitting patterns online. One fan, mazzmatazz, received a Cease & Desist email from the BBC for freely sharing the patterns for the Adipose and other Dr. Who related designs.
- TARDIS Index File, the Doctor Who Wiki, a reference source for canon information
- Doctor Who series page at Wikipedia (canon resource)
- official Doctor Who section of the BBC's website (canon resource)
- Doctor Who fandom overview at Crack Van for First-Tenth Doctor era (fandom resource)
- Fandom: Doctor Who (on LiveJournal) guide at Newbieguide (fandom resource) - last updated 2010
- a Doctor Who Timeline (canon resource, includes some novelizations) - date unknown
- Outpost Mâvarin A blogger talks about the early days of cons and fan fiction (specifically Dr. Who and Quantum Leap) via the newly-born internet
- Everything You Need to Know About Doctor Who at io9
- Doctor Who fans wait for no one, an article about the airing dates and social media, 4.29.2011
- there is much zine chat here at Cookdandbombd
- this issue of Whotopia (issue #10, March 2007) talks about Doctor Who fanzines and webpages
- Ofcom, accessed April 22, 2010
- from Whotopia #10, 2007
- The Doctor Who Scarf, accessed April 21, 2010
- from The Propagator v.2 n.3
- Partners in Crime on Wikipedia, accessed April 21, 2010
- Technolama, May 7, 2008 Doctor Who: Partners in Copyright Crime, accessed April 21, 2010
- BBC News Story, accessed April 21, 2010