Needless to say I have lots of opinions about all of these shows, but if I spent the time writing them all out with their pros and cons, I'd probably end up with a 500 page research book, and nobody wants to read that. At least not online.
First up, Doctor Who!
Resources for the link-ready:
Doctor Who is a 50+ year running television show, aired on BBC (currently BBC One), about a time-traveling Time Lord (aka alien) who's over 900 years old. The Doctor (real name unknown) takes human companions with him on adventures in the TARDIS (his spaceship - an acronym for Time And Relative Dimension In Space), stopping tragedies, getting involved in history, and saving people across the universe, throughout time and space.
The show originally aired in 1963, but ended in 1989 (apparently due to budget cuts and low ratings). It was rebooted in 2005 again for BBC, so there are two levels of Doctor Who -- what fans call "Classic Who" (the original episodes, 1963-1989), and "New Who" (2005-present).
The Doctor, the previously mentioned alien, is the main character in the show (although he looks human - apparently humans are based on his race). He's played by many actors throughout the show's history, made possible by his ability to "regenerate" when mortally injured into a new body and new personality. He's brave, quirky, righteous morally, and very fun to be around. The current actor playing the Doctor is Peter Capaldi, although his episodes will start sometime in the fall. Other recent versions of the Doctor were played by Matt Smith, David Tennant, and Christopher Eccleston.
The other "main characters" are hard to define in Doctor Who, because the Doctor's companions come and go throughout the series. His current companion is Clara Oswald, played by Jenna Coleman, is a bossy teacher who doesn't mind telling the Doctor her opinions.
|The Doctor and Clara Oswald (Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman)|
Love, beliefs, loyalty, self-sacrifice, discovery, travel, and the importance of each and every life.
I haven't watched any Classic Who, so I'm not at liberty to say which of those are worth the while or not worth the while. My top favorite episodes of New Who are as follows:
Human Nature/The Family of Blood (2-part)
The Eleventh Hour
Vincent and the Doctor
The Doctor's Wife (written by Neil Gaiman)
Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS
Sorry I couldn't narrow the list down any more than that.
|Vincent and the Doctor|
Originally, Doctor Who was a children's program. Now, though, it is entertaining for all ages, really. There is no profanity (that I can remember, and I usually notice that sort of thing), very little overt sexuality, and plenty of good moral lessons throughout the Doctor's adventures. There is some violence, although never very explicitly or scarily depicted.
Should I watch it?:
A big resounding YES! Even though I didn't start watching it until my sophomore year of college, it has become my hands-down favorite TV show, and I have a hard time believing it will ever be replaced by anything else. True, the beginning episode of New Who lack a big-budget appeal (some of the special effects are truly laughable), but it is still far and away better and more entertaining and GOOD than any other show I watch.
If you end up watching Doctor Who, or already love it as much as I do, I'd love to read your opinions - leave me a comment!
Coming up in the BBC Telly series: Sherlock, Downton Abbey, and Broadchurch, to name a few!