cover image

Doctor Who

British science fiction TV series / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Dear Wikiwand AI, let's keep it short by simply answering these key questions:

Can you list the top facts and stats about Doctor Who?

Summarize this article for a 10 years old


Doctor Who is a British science fiction television series broadcast by the BBC since 1963. The series depicts the adventures of a Time Lord called the Doctor, an extraterrestrial being who appears to be human. The Doctor explores the universe in a time-travelling space ship called the TARDIS. The TARDIS exterior appears as a blue British police box, which was a common sight in Britain in 1963 when the series first aired. With various companions, the Doctor combats foes, works to save civilisations, and helps people in need.

Quick facts: Doctor Who, Genre, Created by, Written by, St...
Doctor Who
Logo (2023)
Created by
Written byVarious
Theme music composerRon Grainer
Opening themeDoctor Who theme music
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons26 (1963–1989)
No. of series13 (2005–present)
No. of episodes
(list of episodes)
Executive producer
Camera setup
Running time
50 minutes
  • Regular episodes:
    • 25 mins (1963–84, 86–89)
    • 45 mins (1985, 2005–17)
    • 50 mins (2018–present)
  • Specials:
  • Various: 50–90 minutes
Production companies
Original release
NetworkBBC1[lower-alpha 1]
Release23 November 1963 (1963-11-23) 
6 December 1989 (1989-12-06)
NetworkBBC One
Release26 March 2005 (2005-03-26) 
present (present)

Beginning with William Hartnell, thirteen actors have headlined the series as the Doctor. As of 2022, David Tennant leads the series as the Fourteenth Doctor. The transition from one actor to another is written into the plot of the series with the concept of regeneration into a new incarnation, a plot device in which a Time Lord "transforms" into a new body when the current one is too badly harmed to heal normally. Each actor's portrayal is distinct, but all represent stages in the life of the same character, and together, they form a single lifetime with a single narrative. The time-travelling nature of the plot means that different incarnations of the Doctor occasionally meet. In 2017, Jodie Whittaker became the first woman to be cast in the lead role as the Thirteenth Doctor.

The series is a significant part of popular culture in Britain[1] and elsewhere; it has gained a cult following. It has influenced generations of British television professionals, many of whom grew up watching the series.[2] Fans of the series are sometimes referred to as Whovians. The series has been listed in Guinness World Records as the longest-running science-fiction television series in the world,[3] as well as the "most successful" science-fiction series of all time, based on its overall broadcast ratings, DVD, and book sales.[4]

The series originally ran from 1963 to 1989. There was an unsuccessful attempt to revive regular production in 1996 with a backdoor pilot in the form of a television film titled Doctor Who. The series was relaunched in 2005 and since then, has been produced in-house by BBC Wales in Cardiff. Doctor Who has also spawned numerous spin-offs, including comic books, films, novels, audio dramas, and the television series Torchwood (2006–2011), The Sarah Jane Adventures (2007–2011), K9 (2009–2010), and Class (2016). It has been the subject of many parodies and references in popular culture.

Oops something went wrong: