first_imgStay on target Happy birthday to the recorder-playing Patrick Troughton!One of the most pivotal actors in the Whoniverse, Troughton succeeded original Doctor Who star William Hartnell in 1966, helping to ensure the show’s survival—despite its unorthodox arrangement.Home from the war, the classically trained theater performer, made his television debut in 1947, and appear on the silver screen for the first time a year later.BBCIn 1953, he became the first actor to play Robin Hood on TV (to which the Twelfth Doctor pays homage in 2014’s “Robot of Sherwood”).Troughton’s impressive resume paid off in 1966 when Doctor Who producers were looking to replace Hartnell in the show’s titular role. Chosen for his extensive and versatile experience as a character actor, Troughton played the Chaplin-esque “cosmic hobo” for three years before leaving the series in 1969, reportedly due to a grueling schedule and fears of being typecast.BBCThe Time Lord and his rotating crew of companions—Jamie McCrimmon, Victoria Waterfield, Zoe Heriot—fight Daleks and Cybermen, battle the Great Intelligence and Ice Warriors, and meet UNIT leader Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart.Troughton’s story came to an end when the Doctor was sentenced to exile on 20th Century Earth and forced to regenerate (into Third Doctor Jon Pertwee).Second Doctor Patrick Troughton (left) with Third Doctor Jon Pertwee (right) BBCHe later reprised his role as the Second Doctor three times—more than any other incarnation—in The Three Doctors (1973), The Five Doctors (1983), and The Two Doctors (1985).Doctor descendants Peter Davison (Fifth), Sylvester McCoy (Seventh), and Matt Smith (Eleventh) have declared their adoration for the Second Doctor, calling Troughton their favorite of the long-running series.The household name went on to star in various films, TV shows, and radio programs, including The Omen, Coronation Street, and Sword of Honour, respectively.Troughton passed away in 1987, three days after his 67th birthday. He would have been 97 today. Rest in peace, birthday boy. HBO Max Scores Exclusive ‘Doctor Who’ Streaming RightsJo Tro Do Plo Plo No: ‘Doctor Who’ Welcomes Back Familiar Monster last_img

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