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Seventh Doctor Sylvester McCoy Turns 69

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, Happy birthday dear Sylvester McCoy, Happy birthday to you! Sorry, I don’t know the Gallifreyan birthday song. Sylvester McCoy, best known for his role as the Seventh Doctor between 87-89, turns 69 today!

McCoy was the last actor to play the Doctor in the “Classic” Era, before Paul McGann took up the mantle in 1996, followed by Christopher Eccleston’s highly successful Ninth Doctor in 2005.

This Doctor started off as a comedic and somewhat clownish individual, before showing his dark side as a secretive manipulator. He remained firmly opposed to violence of any kind, especially the use of firearms. Instead he relied on improvised plans and customised gadgets to save the day.

Now, which Doctor was I taking about? I believe that Sylvester’s McCoy’s Seventh Doctor is more important than a lot of people realise. In some ways, he acts as a template on which the three “New Who” Doctors have been built. So thank you, Sylvester, for making such an impact on those who would grow up to be the people running Doctor Who in my generation.

Of course, this isn’t the only talking point we have about the man in this day and age. He’s playing Radagast the Brown (another of the Istari wizards) in Peter Jackson’s Hobbit film trilogy, a role that has apparently been greatly expanded upon from the books through mining Tolkien’s Appendices.

Here’s hoping that the Time Lord of yesteryear will find new fame and glory as the wizard of today.