Tenth Doctor - David Tennant
Tenth Doctor – David Tennant

“Some people live more in 20 years than others do in 80. It’s not the time that matters. It’s the person.”

While there have been over a dozen actors to play the role of The Doctor across the last 53 years, there have only been a few that can truly be said to be synonymous with the show itself. In the classic era, Tom Baker was the iconic Doctor, but if you were to ask anyone about the post-2005 revival, there’s one particular name that is likely to spring to mind… and guess what? Today’s his birthday!

Tenth Doctor Generation - Doctor Who (c) BBC
Tenth Doctor Generation – Doctor Who (c) BBC

That’s right, it’s David Tennant’s special day, and what a mark he has made on the world of Doctor Who. The Scottish actor had already enjoyed plenty of success prior to being cast, playing the title role in Russell T Davies’ Casanova, appearing as Barty Crouch Jr in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, participating in plenty of Royal Shakespeare Company productions… and in his earliest big screen appearance, even sharing a scene with soon-to-be Ninth Doctor Christopher Eccleston. But, if Eccleston caught the public’s attention in bringing Doctor Who back to our screens, it was Tennant that helped to turn it into the absolute global phenomenon that we know and love today.

Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) - Doctor Who - The End of Time Part 2 (c) BBC
Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) – Doctor Who – The End of Time Part 2 (c) BBC

David joined the show at the end of the Series 1 finale, The Parting of the Ways, before making his full debut in the 2005 Christmas special, The Christmas Invasion. With his geek chic look and a suave, fast-talking persona, The Tenth Doctor instantly became a hit with fans and to this day is regularly voted as one of the greatest Doctors of all time. Tennant’s era ran from 2005-2010, encompassing many adventures along the way – whether it was reuniting with Sarah Jane Smith and K-9 in School Reunion, rallying against the laws of time in The Waters of Mars, or the tearful farewell to companion Rose Tyler in Doomsday, there was never a dull moment for his Doctor. Throughout David’s tenure, he met many friends – including Martha Jones, Donna Noble, and Captain Jack Harkness – as well as many foes, both old and new – the Daleks, the Cybermen, The Master, the Time Lords, and the Weeping Angels, to name but a few. He was even the first Doctor to regenerate twice on screen, beginning with a “handy” healing process in the cliffhanger to The Stolen Earth (a twist that had the whole nation on a knife edge!) before finally letting go in The End of Time, Part Two after sacrificing himself to save Wilfred Mott from deadly radiation.

Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) & Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) - Doctor Who - The Day of the Doctor (c) BBC
Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) & Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) – Doctor Who – The Day of the Doctor (c) BBC

The joys of playing The Doctor wouldn’t stop there for David, however – he additionally made a special appearance in an episode of spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures, and he was also invited back to celebrate Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary in 2013 by helping to save Gallifrey from the Time War with Matt Smith and John Hurt. The role even led him to romance, as he married Georgia Moffett – not only the on-screen Doctor’s daughter, but also the real-life Fifth Doctor’s daughter!

Since leaving the show in 2010, Tennant has gone on to appear in the hugely successful ITV drama series Broadchurch and its American counterpart Gracepoint (both written by incoming Doctor Who showrunner Chris Chibnall), as well as landing the role of Kilgrave in Marvel’s Jessica Jones series for Netflix. Currently, David is reprising his role as Richard II on stage, and there’s a whole wave of new Tenth Doctor novels and Big Finish audio stories coming soon. We just can’t get enough of David Tennant!

Join us in wishing David a wonderful 45th birthday today, and all the best for his current and future endeavours. Now, what are you waiting for? Wrap a tie around your head and remember to always take a banana to a party – it’s time to celebrate! Allons-y!



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