FANDOM


5
In 1980, Davison signed a contract to play the Doctor for three years, succeeding Tom Baker (the Fourth Doctor) and, at age 29, was at the time the youngest actor to have played the lead role, a record he retained for nearly thirty years until Matt Smith (the Eleventh Doctor) took the role in 2009 at age 26. Attracting such a high-profile actor as Davison was as much of a coup for the program's producers as getting the role was for him, but he did not renew his contract because he feared being typecast. Patrick Troughton (who had played the Second Doctor and whom Davison had watched on the program as a teenager) had recommended to Davison that he leave the role after three years, and Davison followed his advice. The Fifth Doctor encountered many of the Doctor's best-known adversaries, including the Daleks (in Resurrection of the Daleks) and the Cybermen (in Earthshock).

After leaving Doctor Who, Davison would come back to the franchise on a few occasions. He presented the special videotape documentary release Daleks – The Early Years (1993), showcasing selected episodes of missing Dalek stories from both the First Doctor and Second Doctor's eras. Davison did, in fact, return to play the Fifth Doctor in the 1993 multi-doctor charity special Dimensions in Time and in the 1997 video game Destiny of the Doctors (audio only). He continues to reprise the role in a series of audio plays by Big Finish Productions. He returned once again in "Time Crash", a special episode written by Steven Moffat for Children in Need; in the episode, which aired on 16 November 2007, the Fifth Doctor met the Tenth Doctor, played by future son-in-law David Tennant. Tennant later presented a documentary, Come in Number Five, which examined Davison's Doctor Who years in some detail, and which was included as a special feature on the 2011 DVD re-release of Resurrection of the Daleks. It is one of many DVD releases of his Doctor Who serials in which Davison has appeared as an in-vision interviewee or in DVD commentary recordings.

In 2012, Davison expressed further interest in returning to the role of the Doctor for the series' 50th anniversary, but he did not take part. He did, however, write and direct The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot, an affectionate and comedic account of Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy and himself attempting to get parts in the Anniversary Special, featuring cameos from numerous Doctor Who cast, crew, and famous fans.

In 2014 Davison pre-recorded a video cameo appearance as himself in Benjamin Maio Mackay's touring comedy show "50 Years of Doctor Who: Preachers Podcast Live 2!" which played Adelaide Fringe and Melbourne International Comedy Festival to great acclaim. This was recorded after the interview Peter conducted with Benjamin's podcast surrounding the Dr Who Symphonic Spectacular.

Davison has been critical of the original series of Doctor Who and has expressed great admiration for the 21st century revival. In 2008, Davison spoke unfavorably of some of the writing for the series during his tenure, claiming: "There were some very suspect scripts we did, knocked off by TV writers who'd turn their hand to anything. Fair enough, but they weren't science fiction fans. You do get the impression, both with the television series now and Big Finish, that they are fans of science fiction and that's why they are doing those stories." Davison has also praised the romantic frisson between the Doctor and his companions in the revived series and claimed: "They were struggling for many years to make the companions more rounded characters and... they never once thought it was a good idea to put any frisson or romantic tension – even in its most innocent form – between the Doctor and companion. I think it would make it easier to write a better character. All I know is they've struggled for many years to write a good companion's part. I don't think they've ever really managed it till Rose, when the series came back." Interviewed in 2013, Davison stated that The Caves of Androzani, The Visitation and Earthshock were his favourite serials from his time on the series, and that Time-Flight was the biggest disappointment because of a lack of budget.