Hey, everyone! In an earlier episode, Matt suggested that I should do a write-up of the individual Doctors Who. I have since made a decision. Instead of reviewing each Doctor individually, I’m going to do a compare and contrast of the Doctors. Obviously, one Doctor does not a comparison make, so I have had to wait until I finished the Second Doctor before I could continue with my plans. As you may have guessed, I have finished the Second Doctor. On to the review…
The First Doctor was played by William Hartnell. From the beginning, Hartnell was meant to be a grandfather figure. In fact, the first companion was his granddaughter. It is made clear from the beginning that he is not of this planet, and he spends a great deal of time being smug about it. Though he is quite old, he has superior intellect, and that drives his performance. No matter how difficult the situation gets, he never shows fear. Even when he is being threatened by an alien race, he doesn’t get afraid, he gets impotently enraged. There are numerous occasions when his reaction to a situation was to draw himself up to his full height, grasp his coat lapels, and fume. He has a bit of a sense of humor, but mostly he reminded me of a grumpy old man.
The Second Doctor was played by Peter Troughton, and even before he opened his mouth, the difference was obvious. He was not a young man, but he was much younger than Hartnell, and his performance was much more active. He wore an oversized coat that, rather than making him look slovenly, instead looked more comfortable and lived-in than the buttoned-up First Doctor. In my mind, though, the biggest difference was that this Doctor showed fear. Whereas the First Doctor went from angry to smug, the Second Doctor would run the gamut of emotion, from fear to panic to delight to confusion to curiosity, and many more. He was still more intelligent, but he was also aware that his brain could not stop a bullet.
All in all, I liked the Second Doctor a lot more. He was much easier to relate to than the first one, and his stories were a lot more action-packed, owing to having an actor young enough to run around. It is clear that this was the first step in the evolution of Dr. Who, as the show wanted to focus more on sci/fi, and move away from the historic fiction flavor that the First Doctor had. The final episode of the Second Doctor sheds some light on the Doctor’s background and the Time Lords. It is noteworthy that the sonic screwdriver makes it’s debut here. Up until these events, the Doctor has been little different from the rest of us, just with a time machine. After this, however, the door is opened for the Doctor to become… something else.