The Essentials is a review of all eras of doctor who from beginning to present. A new post will go live every week and you can see them all here.

Wacko Says:

So here we are, the beginning of the new age.

In between his last incarnation and now, a terrible war occurred, and the Doctor was forced to fight on the front lines with nothing short of universal existence at stake. The details are still a mystery, but we know that when it was over, only the Doctor remained.

Now older, and infinitely more lonely he was a darker and more melancholy character. Almost thuggish in his appearance he found himself pretty short on patience, wearing more subdued modern attire and for the first time, short cropped hair.

U.S. audiences might not have realized the subtle attitude he now possessed. Being from the north isn’t exactly like being from the American south, but it did signify a more ‘commoner’ attitude. But even in a state of mourning his better side often shown through and his love of life won out.

Billed as a Doctor Who for a modern audience the truth was he was really a Trojan horse, a way to sell the series to the BBC and set up the era of his successor (you can see the clues of this from the very beginning). This is the main reason his series only lasted 13 episodes… well that and his family objected to his casting.

John Says:

Essential Episodes

Rose: Rose Tyler was a shop-girl with nothing to look forward to in life until a near death encounter with a group of homicidal Shop window dummies crosses her path with a mysterious stranger called The Doctor, and a brief encounter with him is enough to change her life forever. (Rose joins The Doctor)

The End of the World: Rose’s first trip in the TARDIS lands her on Platform One in the year 5,000,000,000 just in time to observe the Earth being consumed by the sun. The great and good (AKA the rich) have gathered to watch this historical event, but one amongst them has another modus operandi.

Dalek: The Doctor and Rose arrive in a museum of alien artifacts owned by a scavenging industrialist who also happens to have a deadly survivor from the war to end all wars. (Adam Mitchell joins the TARDIS)

Father’s Day: Rose learns the hard consequences of meddling with time when she rescues her father from a hit and run accident. A drastic change of this magnitude causes a wound in time which has brought about a race of creatures that proceed to consume everyone in their reach.

The Empty Child and The Doctor Dances: The Doctor uses the TARDIS to chase a dangerous cyllinder through time into the London blitz in 1941. The Doctor and Rose are separated and while Rose is being…questioned by a dashing intergalactic con man The Doctor investigates a strange child in a gas mask endlessly searching for his Mother. (Captain Jack Harkness joins the TARDIS)

Bad Wolf
and The Parting of the Ways: The TARDIS crew is transported against their will onto the Game Station where they are forced to compete in a lethal series of reality TV shows. But The Doctor discovers that all this in merely a distraction to conceal the reemergence of one of The Doctor’s greatest enemies. (Captain Jack is killed and resurrected by Rose but accidentally left behind. The Doctor regenerates after sacrificing himself to save Rose)