This Week In DOCTOR WHO History: March 12th to March 18th

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The first female Doctor makes her debut this week in Doctor Who history.


Click on any red text to read our full retrospectives/reviews for that episode. All dates and viewing figures are for UK premier broadcasts unless otherwise stated.

March 12th
We begin another week in Doctor Who history by turning the clock back 51 years to this day in 1966 when 6.9 million people were possibly still wishing Dodo was extinct, as part two of The Ark (entitled The Plague) was broadcast at 5.15pm. Twelve years later a whopping 10.2 million scarf loving people tuned in to part three of The Talons of Weng-Chiang.  

Then in 1999 Steven Moffat's very first Doctor Who story was broadcast. Yes, the Moff wrote the Comic Relief spoof Doctor Who and The Curse Of Fatal Death. Starring Rowan Atkinson as the Ninth Doctor, Richard E. Grant as the Tenth Doctor, Jim Broadbent as the Eleventh Doctor, Hugh Grant as the Twelfth Doctor, and - shock-horror a woman! - Joanna Lumley as the Thirteenth Doctor.

Also on this day we make time for a bit of Torchwood in the form of From Out of the Rain which was broadcast in 2008 at 9:49pm and watched by 0.95 million viewers.


March 13th
It's back to 1965 for episode five of The Web Planet (entitled Invasion) which was watched by 12 million viewers. Two regenerations and 6 years later, it's either Take That trying out a new look or it's the Third Doctor facing The Claws of Axos (I know which one I'd rather watch). Episode one was broadcast Saturday March 13th at 5.15pm and watched by 7.3 million viewers.

Flashing all the way forward to 2009 for another Comic Relief special, this time for The Sarah Jane Adventures, titled From Raxacoricofallapatorius with Love it was broadcast as part of that evening's charity telethon at around 7:25pm, and watched by 8.3 million viewers.


March 14th
March 14th 1964 saw the fourth episode of Marco Polo (entitled The Wall of Lies) broadcast at 5.15pm and watched by 9.9 million history loving viewers. Six years later episode 7 of Doctor Who And The Silurians was watched by 7.5 million viewers.

Then, in 1981 it was nearly the end, but the moment was being prepared for - part three of Logopolis, the Fourth Doctor's swansong, was watched by 5.8 million viewers.  


March 15th 
We start this day back in 1969 when episode two of the Second Doctor adventure The Space Pirates was broadcast to an audience of 6.8 million. Moving on to 1975 and 10.5 million were tuned in to a story that is routinely voted the number one Doctor Who story of all time - part two of Genesis of the Daleks.

Time was running out for Adric in 1982 (although some may say not quick enough), with part three of Earthshock drawing 9.8 million viewers. The following year the first part of the pseudo-historical adventure The King's Demons saw 5.8 million tune in to catch the introduction of Kamelion, the rarely seen shape-shifting companion. And finally on this day in Doctor Who history, we had one hell of a cliffhanger courtesy of part three of The Caves of Androzani. The Fifth Doctor's swansong drew an audience of 7.8 million.


March 16th
On this day in 1968 8.2 million people were watching the Second Doctor in episode one of Fury From The Deep, a story which is entirely missing from the archives. Six years later part four of the Third Doctor adventure Death to the Daleks was watched by a 9.5 million viewers. Then on Tuesday March 16th 1982 the fourth and final part of Earthshock (possibly subtitled Adric's Last Stand) saw 9.6 million viewers tuning in - just to be sure!

If you were watching BBC1 from 6.47pm on Wednesday March 16th 1983 then you were joined by 7.2 million others, all there for the second and final part of The King's Demons. The following year we said farewell to the Fifth Doctor in part four of The Caves of Androzani, and if it wasn't bad enough that he was dying of Spectrox toxaemia, Adric showed up just to put the boot in. 7.8 million people were watching, all of them excited for the change that was to come - none of them having seen The Twin Dilemma yet! Poor old Colin, eh? He had a rough time of it, and speaking of time, this day in 1985 bought us part two of Timelash, watched by 7.4 million viewers.


March 17th
Just the one episode broadcast on this day, and that was back in 1973. Part four of Frontier In Space was watched by 7.1 million viewers.


March 18th
In 1967 the Second Doctor faced the episode two of The Macra Terror. Broadcast at 5.15pm to an audience of 7.9 million viewers. Also on this day in 1972 the fourth part of the Third Doctor story The Sea Devils was watched by an audience of 7.8 million.

We round things up this week in Doctor Who history with yet another charity telethon event broadcast this day which featured not one, but two Doctor Who minisodes. The 2011 Comic Relief night broadcast the Eleventh Doctor shorts, Space and Time.

That's it for this week, but did you watch any of these adventures live? We'd love to hear your memories about any of them. Tell us in the comments below.

Until next Sunday...

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