William Hartnell once said: “If I live to be 90, a little of the magic of Doctor Who will still cling to me.” I don’t know what it is, but there is something in the fibre of the programme that is rather magical. Although Sherlock Holmes is in its DNA, and HG Wells is a source, what’s fantastic about the show is that it is a TV original, not an adaptation. It is one of the greatest single ideas that television has produced.
There’s something rather wonderful about the creation of Doctor Who, something very smoky and Novemberish. I imagine people on buses with wet raincoats, that kind of Britain. And going through it like a typhoon are two young people, Verity Lambert and Waris Hussein, with fantastic ideas, and an older man, William Hartnell, who sort of becomes young by association.