This past Friday marked 55 years to the day when Doctor Who first arrived on British television screens. Over the past half a century, the sci-fi show has always changed with the times – take Jodie Whittaker’s casting as the first female Doctor in season 11, for example – and constantly regenerated itself.
There’s no better way to make that clear than in this awesome supercut from the official Doctor Who YouTube channel which features every single title sequence in the show’s history in an 11 minute video. You can relive the eeriness of the First Doctor’s opening from 1963 right through to the synths of the 1980s and the throwback theme of today’s version by watching it below.
We say every single title sequence, but for the sake of brevity the video leaves out a few one-off openings from over the years. For instance, every episode in the first half of the modern series’ seventh season featured a slightly different title sequence and Peter Capaldi’s Christmas episodes had a specially-festive remix of the theme.
Speaking of the theme, it’s interesting to hear just how flexible the iconic Doctor Who title music is. The original 1960s version – composed by Ron Grainer and brought to life by Delia Derbyshire – is so alien and otherworldly but by the time we get to the 2005 reboot it had become a grand orchestral number, courtesy of Murray Gold. It wasn’t until composer Segun Akinola took over for season 11 that the theme returned to its roots.
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Another favorite element of the title sequence is the appearance of the current Doctor’s face – for a show that changes its lead star so often, that was always a handy way of keeping track who was traveling on the TARDIS in the episode you were about to watch. The modern series initially abandoned this tradition, though Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi brought it back….only for the Jodie Whittaker era to dump it once again.
Doctor Who fans, tell us, what’s your personal favorite version of the title sequence? Alternatively, which one is your least favorite? Join the conversation in the comments section down below.