As Karen Gillan collects her well-deserved National Television Award for playing the role of Amy Pond, Dr Who’s companion, in the latest series of the Tardis-traveller’s adventures, we take a look back through the archives to remember some of the more surprising members of the elite club to have accompanied the Timelord on his never-ending mission to keep the planet safe, and cause some mischief along the way... How many of these do you remember?
The First Doctor - William Hartnell:
Carole Ann Ford
She played the Doctor's very first Companion, Susan Foreman, and made 11 appearances in all during the first two seasons of the show, and also appeared in a 1983 20th-anniversary special.
Small fact: The first Doctor’s first Companion was also his grand-daughter, because programme makers decided that a teenage girl accompanying an old man across the universe might seem otherwise unseemly.
Her last name of Foreman was reportedly an alias taken from the owner of the junkyard, near where she and her grandfather Doctor lived in the TARDIS during their time in London in 1963.
He played Steven Taylor and made 10 appearances with the Doctor in total in the 1960s, before making his name as a Blue Peter veteran and stalwart of school education and corporate training videos (where he even turned up in The Office)
This fine-boned actress played Sara Kingdom in one appearance only. She later became a household name as the creator and star of Upstairs Downstairs.
The Second Doctor - Patrick Troughton:
Hines played Jamie Crimmon for 21 episodes, although another actor had to step in for two episodes, when Hines was struck down by chickenpox.
Hines later found bigger fame as a resident heartthrob of Emmerdale (when it was a Farm).
The Fourth Doctor - Tom Baker:
She became the thinking, time-travelling man’s crumpet with her sensual portrayal of Leela in nine episodes in the late 1970s.
Bizarrely, writer Chris Boucher named her after the Palestinian hijacker Leila Khaled.
Jameson later rocked up in Emmerdale, Tenko, as Jim's love interest in Bergerac and in EastEnders as Rosa DeMarco.
The Sixth and Seventh Doctors - Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy:
Despite only making six appearances in all, child star Langford made her presence felt as Melanie Bush, crossover companion to two different Doctors. She first appeared as part of the Doctor’s future, and it was never established how he actually met his curly-haired companion. Langford has always been famous, both before and since, most recently as a pantomime regular.
The Ninth Doctor - Christopher Eccleston
Another child entertainer, Piper made her first acting mark as the Doctor’s companion Rose Tyler, one of the leading characters of Russell T Davies’ high octane series reboot in 2005. Even the grim-faced Eccleston couldn't fail to be charmed by his working class shop assistant Companion, and Rose broke well-established TARDIS taboos by actually falling for him, although they were destined to go their separate ways after two series.
And in special fond place, standing apart from the rest...
Gets her own category as Sarah Jane Smith, appeared in 19 episodes in all, as Companion to the Third and Fourth Doctors (John Pertwee and Tom Baker), but was given her own strong storyline that captured fans' imagination. She was the keeper of K-9, and later her own spin-off series that introduced her to the next generation of views.
Sladen enjoyed a renaissance after returning, at Davies' invitation to accompany the Tenth Doctor, but died in April last year.
And the rest... Catherine Tate, David Morrissey, Kylie Minogue, Lindsey Duncan, Bernard Cribbins(?)... you definitely remember even if, in comparison with the Doctor, you have to take more conventional routes to rediscover them.
Who's been your favourite of the Doctor's companions? And how does Amy Pond compare? Let us have your thoughts below...
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