Doctor Who on-demand: Sylvester McCoy
Simon Kinnear | On 19, Nov 2013
Photo: BBC/Matt Burlem
Doctor Who turns 50 on Saturday 23rd November with a special anniversary episode on the BBC. To celebrate, VODzilla.co is running a daily countdown of every Doctor to date, providing our expert tips on which stories to see – and where to watch them online.
Sylvester McCoy (1987-9; 1996)
The season lengths were cut; the show was broadcast opposite Coronation Street; the Doctor was a man famous for stuffing ferrets down his trousers. The writing was on the wall, but McCoy’s blend of whimsy and steel energised the show’s creative team, high on graphic novels and left-wing politics. The result is one of the most interesting, if divisive, runs of stories in Doctor Who, a return to magic and chaos after several years of hard-edged action.
Top three Sylvester McCoy episodes to watch
Remembrance Of The Daleks (1988)
With the series celebrating its 25th anniversary, Doctor Who returned to its roots – London 1963 – to survey how much had changed, not least that, for the first time, the Daleks can climb stairs!
Happiness Patrol (1988)
Too whimsical for some with its villainous Kandyman visibly based on Bertie Bassett, but this surreal satire of Thatcherism is as out there as Who gets.
Ghost Light (1989)
A literate, allusive commentary about Victorian values disguised as a ‘haunted house’ chiller, this is notoriously hard to follow on first viewing, but rewards attentive rewatching.
Other Doctor Who episodes also available on-demand:
Doctor Who: The Best of the Seventh Doctor
Including: Time and The Rani, Happiness Patrol, Silver Nemesis and Remembrance of the Daleks.