Doctor Who Blog

50 Glorious Years: Episode 25 - 1987

Its 1987 and once again its arguably better to be a Doctor Who fan in North America than in the UK. While there was much division (and in some cases derision) over the debut season of Sylvester McCoy as the Doctor, in North America things were just getting better all the time. After being two years behind on the latest episodes from when they were broadcast in the UK, by March of 1987 when The Trial of a Time Lord was shown in this patch of North America, it meant that we were watching the latest episodes only 6 months behind the UK! You young whippersnappers reading this out there getting your new Doctor Who episodes about 6 hours after the UK broadcast don’t know how good you have it - moving to within a 6 month-lag time behing the UK was considered heaven back in 1987. And the amazing thing is that the broadcast of The Trial of a Time Lord interrupted a run of William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton stories that were being broadcast in the area for the first time (with the exception of a handful of Hartnells that had been shown on the CBC over 20 years earlier that most of us had never seen). From November 1st 1986 through to June of 1987, it was one “brand-new” Doctor Who story every Saturday (except for a two-week break when PBS Buffalo did their annual “Great TV Auction” which suspended almost all programming for the sake of raising funds) showing all of the 1st, 2nd & 6th Doctor stories that existed in the BBC archives at that time.

A lot of fans complain that Season 24 (broadcast in the UK this year) was the worst ever season of Doctor Who. Maybe it was - but who cares! 1987 was a fantastic year to be a fan anyway.


I remember watching who on TVO in the mid seventies in south-western Ontario. Every Saturday night - as long as Tom Baker was on TVO I was watching. I remembered watching the Prisoner on TVO around that time as well - that show was absolutely nutty - I loved it.

Posted by Craig Moorhouse  on  07/12  at  07:57 PM

i’m just watching the Seventh Doctor stories for the first time, and frankly, i love McCoy.  i’m thoroughly enjoying his portrayal, and while i may be several decades behind those who enjoyed them originally, i am nonetheless thrilled to be seeing them, now.  i understand that Sylvester’s Doctor grows increasingly darker and more manipulative, but i am savouring that progression and look forward to the ups and downs of the remaining serials.  the darkening process only makes him more fascinating and multi-faceted… it’s STILL a great time to be a fan!!

Posted by Angela Farrington-Thompson  on  07/15  at  03:22 PM

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