A Biography of the Doctor

The First Doctor

Season Four

"What did you say, my boy? It's all over. That's what you said. No, but it isn't all over. It's far from being all over."
- some of the first Doctor's last words in The Tenth Planet

The Smugglers

(First Doctor , Ben Jackson, Polly Wright )
Placement Rating: 5 - Part of ongoing series
Follows on from The War Machines

The TARDIS arrives in 17th Century Cornwall, to the astonishment of Ben and Polly. The Doctor is soon kidnapped by pirates, after learning a cryptic clue to the location of hidden treasure. He escapes when the local Revenue Officer arrives.

Duration: 3 Days.
Location: Cornish coast, 17th Century.

Notes: Follows on from The War Machines, ends with the TARDIS arriving somewhere very cold.

Ten Little Aliens

(First Doctor , Ben Jackson, Polly Wright )
Placement Rating: 4 - Between consecutive stories

The TARDIS materialises in an airless chamber, which turns out to be an alien control room complete with ten dead aliens, who turn out to be the Ten-Strong, the most wanted terrorists in the Earth Empire. Meanwhile, a team of ten members of Earth's Anti-Terror Elite Squad are on a mission in the caves which contain the chamber. The aliens turn out not to be dead, and the whole thing turns out to be a set-up to transform the humans into Schirr (the aliens' species), and ultimately do this to the entire population of Earth. The presence of the Doctor, Ben, and Polly foils the Ten-Strong's plan.

Location: The Vertigan Majoris asteroid. Probably the Earth Empire period.

Notes: It's very cold (p.32), suggesting that this is one of the various cold, icy, and inhospitable stops between The Smugglers and The Three Paths.

The Three Paths
(Short Trips: Farewells)

(First Doctor , )
Placement Rating: 4 - Between consecutive stories

The Doctor wakes up in the middle of the night to find that the TARDIS has landed . Exploring on his own, he discovers that he is on Mount Cadon, Gallifrey, the night he originally left, and meets the hermit he used to see up there. The hermit helps the Doctor accept the idea that he will soon regenerate.

Duration: At most a few hours.
Location: Gallifrey, the night the Doctor left.

Notes: The TARDIS has landed several times since The Smugglers, and every stop has been icy and unwelcoming (p.214). Ben and Polly are asleep in the TARDIS for the whole of the story. It's strongly implied that this is the first time the Doctor has returned to Gallifrey, which would make it before The Five Doctors - although since the Second Doctor didn't remember the story, it's entirely possible that the Doctor forgot those events shortly after they happened.

Food for Thought

(First Doctor , Ben Jackson, Polly Wright )
Placement Rating: 4 - Between consecutive stories

The TARDIS lands on the planet Appresar, where telepathic giant slugs called Mollusi have hypnotised one of the natives to give them food to eat. He adapted the planet's race preservation program – a mechanism to put everyone into cryogenic suspension in the event of a planetary disaster. Since then, automated systems fed the Appresarian population to the Mollusi. The Doctor's intervention destroys the Mollusi on Appresar and wakes up the population.

Duration: 1 day.
Location: The planet Appresar, time unknown

Notes: Must be between The Smugglers and The Tenth Planet. Ben wonders where the TARDIS has brought us “this time”, suggesting they've been travelling with him for a while. On the other hand Polly says “this is the 1960s, you know”, suggesting she hasn't got used to the idea of time travel yet. The fact that it isn't icy means it has to be after The Three Paths.

Sagittarius: Five Card Draw
(Short Trips: Zodiac)

(First Doctor , Vicki Pallister, Steven Taylor )
Placement Rating: 4 - Between consecutive stories

The first Doctor acquires a golden bow set with diamonds and rubies from the third emperor of the Cresap dynasty of Gallutia after he persuades their enemies to lay down their arms at the battle of Andromeda. He plays cards for it with his future incarnations. He leaves Ben and Polly visiting an old friend, and lands the TARDIS in a 12th Century forest for some practice with it. He hears some bandits and uses the TARDIS on a short hop to rescue the girl they are accosting. When some knights arrive, he leaves her in the TARDIS and confronts them. He escapes to a nearby abandoned castle, which he is able to seal, and mentally calls his future selves to help him. His fourth self refuses, his eighth self is confused, and he doesn't call his seventh self because he can't abide the way he will try to turn things to his own ends. He gets the others to play cards to decide who should go outside and deal with the knights. His fifth self loses and successfully resolves things by giving away the bow.

Duration: 1 day.
Location: 12th Century England.

Notes: The Doctor says he is travelling with Ben and Polly, placing it between The Smugglers and The Tenth Planet. The fact that he can suddenly control the TARDIS might suggest that it is in the same gap as The Witch Hunters, except that Brief Encounters: Roses forces The Five Doctors into an earlier gap. And the details of this story are at odds with the whole boon of Rassilon thing that makes that trip possible.

There is also no explanation of how the Doctor gains the ability to summon his future selves, why he doesn't trust his seventh incarnation [who, as far as we know, he has never met], or why he can't summon his ninth incarnation or later. Since everything is told from the perspective of the fifth Doctor, these inconsistencies might lead us to speculate that this isn't the first Doctor at all.


(First Doctor , Ben Jackson, Polly Wright )
Placement Rating: 4 - Between consecutive stories

The Doctor promises to show Ben and Polly the coronation of Queen Victoria. Instead, he lands on Mars. He suggests that they stay up to see the Martian Dawn. So they pitch a Millets tent, and try to toast marshmallows. They are interrupted when the TARDIS's lateral drift compensators decide to start working, and the ship almost dematerialises without them. They leave the tent and the Doctor's pipe behind.

Duration: At most a couple of hours.
Location: The south pole of Mars.

Notes: The Doctor tells the story in Please Shut the Gate (Short Trips and Side Steps). He says that their next destination was Earth's South Pole, meaning that this leads directly into The Tenth Planet.

The Tenth Planet

(First Doctor , Ben Jackson, Polly Wright )
Placement Rating: 5 - Part of ongoing series
Follows on from Please Shut the Gate (first Doctor)
Concurrent with Twice Upon a Time (First Doctor)

The temperature on the TARDIS suddenly drops as it arrives at a space tracking station at the South Pole, 1986. The Doctor, who comments that "this old body is wearing a bit thin", lets on that he knows that there will soon be some "visitors". The tracking station has been trying to talk down a space capsule, but the Doctor soon discovers that its problems are caused by a rogue planet, Mondas.

Mondas, once Earth's twin planet, is now home to the Cybermen, who have replaced most of their organic parts with machinery. They have also eliminated emotions and work by pure logic. They plan to drain Earth's energy to replenish Mondas and convert humanity into Cybermen. General Cutler, commanding the base, tries to use the powerful Z-bomb to destroy Mondas - clearly unhinged by the death of his son. Ben, Polly, and one of the scientists from the base prevent him from doing this, as the bomb would release colossal amounts of radiation on Earth.

Soon afterwards reinforcement Cybermen arrive at the base, kill Cutler, and take Polly hostage. They force the humans to move the Z-bomb to a point where it could destroy Earth, thus preventing Mondas from absorbing too much of Earth's energy. This is prevented when the humans realise that the Cybermen are vulnerable to radiation. Eventually Mondas disintegrates when it absorbs too much energy. The Cybermen then collapse and shrivel, as they were dependent on energy from Mondas.

During the course of these events the Doctor had become progressively weaker. He was clearly aware that his body was in poor condition, and that he was close to regeneration. Staggering back to the TARDIS, he entered. Feeling exhausted, aware that the change was upon him, he collapsed by the console, just managing to reach up and open the doors to let Ben and Polly in. Then he collapsed, and the change came upon him...

Duration: 1 day.
Location: Snowcap Base, Antarctica, 22 December 1986.

Twice Upon a Time
(First Doctor)

(First Doctor , Ben Jackson, Polly Wright )
Placement Rating: 4 - Between consecutive stories
Concurrent with The Tenth Planet

The Doctor is afraid, and decides to try and fight his coming regeneration. He encounters one of his future incarnations just before time freezes around them, and they encounter a World War I soldier. They encounter a group calling themselves The Testimony, who copy the memories of people who are about to die. Eventually everybody is put back into their own place and time.

Duration: Technically speaking, this takes no time at all.
Location: Antarctica, 1986; Ypres, 25th December 1914, Villengard

Notes: During The Tenth Planet episode 4. It is unclear why the Doctor's impending regeneration has suddenly made him a sexist.

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