Writer: ANTHONY COBURN
Original Transmission Dates:
23/11/1963 - 14/12/1963 - 4 Episodes
What better way to start The Celluloid Highway’s occasional look at the classic series of Doctor Who than with the four part adventure that started it all. The 23rd November 1963 became a landmark date in the history of tele-fantasy when audiences were first introduced to the fog enshrouded junkyard that housed a police telephone call box that also happened to be a conduit into the fourth and fifth dimensions of time and space. The opening episode of An Unearthly Child introduces us to the quartet of time travellers with economy and speed. The mystery, initially at least, revolves around the character of Susan Foreman (Carole Ann Ford), a 15 year old girl who has her teachers at Coal Hill School utterly bemused. Her science teacher Ian Chesterton (William Russell) feels that she imparts her vast knowledge a little at a time, so as not to make him feel inferior and her history teacher Barbara Wright (Jacqueline Hill) is perplexed at her shifts from brilliance to stupidity. Rather unethically the teachers decide to follow the girl home to 76 Totters Lane and their curiosity is rewarded with their first fateful encounter with the enigmatic genius known as The Doctor.
© Shaun Anderson 2010