Last summer, Doctor Who Online asked you to submit your ratings for all the televised Doctor Who stories from An Unearthly Child to The Name of the Doctor, and you responded in droves! We received hundreds of voting forms, and now we’re pleased to reveal the results.
Below, you’ll find all 239 stories ranked by their placement in the poll. Entrants were asked to rank the stories between ‘1/10’ and ’10/10’. From there, we worked out the average score for each story to present a guide to the way people saw the series in 2013. The lists below also contain - where relevant - the previous score achieved by the story during the 2009 ‘Mighty 200’ poll in Doctor Who Magazine, so you can see how much opinion of these stories has altered in the last four years. Obviously, we asked you to rate almost the entire Matt Smith era, too, which wasn’t around during that previous poll.
You’ll also find some commentary for each of the sections, pointing out anything that you may find interesting about the results. While you’re likely to find some of more common answers hanging around at the polar ends of the scale, you may well be surprised by some of the placements…
The bottom ten is made up of stories which aren’t likely to come as a surprise to many readers - sadly unloved tales such as The Twin Dilemma and Time-Flight were always going to come in with lower scores!
More of a surprise might be the appearance of a Tenth Doctor story taking the lowest spot - with 2006’s Fear Her pulling in an average score of just 40.11%, down massively from almost 49% four years previously!
On the whole, there’s been a decrease in popularity for most stories. 144 adventures received a lower average score this time compared to 2009, while only 56 managed to improve upon their earlier result. That said, the voters of 2013 were generally more favourable towards the programme - no story rated below 40%, whereas in 2009 The Twin Dilemma scraped the barrel with 38.44%
The rest of the bottom 40 is packed out with the lowest ranking stories for every Doctor bar the Eighth - who only appears once on the poll in The TV Movie.
(The lowest-rating stories for the other ten Doctors were;The Smugglers, The Space Pirates, The Time Monster, Underworld, Time-Flight, The Twin Dilemma, Time and the Rani, Boom Town, Fear Her, and The Rings of Akhaten)
The results for stories 199 - 150 contain a mixture of stories that - while not entirely unloved - rarely appear high on people’s lists of favourite stories. Tales such as 1989’s Battlefield, 2010’s Victory of the Daleks, and 1967’s The Wheel in Space all find themselves confined to these middle-grounds of the results table.
Interestingly, 1967’s The Enemy of the World finds itself placed at number 191. The poll was conducted before its recovery to the BBC was widely known, and long before Doctor Who fans were able to watch the story for the first time in 45 years. All of us at Doctor Who Online are keen to see how that story might place now that it’s complete and back in the archives!
Another lost classic, 1964’s Marco Polo has seen a significant drop in its approval rating since 2009 - tumbling almost 15% to place at just 184 on our poll (in 2009’s ‘Mighty 200’ listings, it was at a much more healthy 65th place). We wonder if this story’s fortunes may take a turn for the better were it to appear back in the archives sometime soon?
Just missing out on a spot in the top 100 Doctor Who stories of all time are a number of stories which seem to generate no strong emotions at all. 1976’s The Android Invasion, 2005’s The End of the World, 1988’s The Greatest Show in the Galaxy, and 1965’s The Chase never seem to draw much negative opinion, but they don’t seem to court a lot of positive reactions either.
The Eighth Doctor’s single full-length TV outing finds itself sat at number 144, placing it just inside the lower half of all stories, while the very first Doctor Who story - 1963’s An Unearthly Child - just manages to slip into the upper half, sitting comfortably at number 112.
As we move into the top 100 stories, we’re still in a land defined by those so-so tales which never seem to attract a great deal of fuss. The final story of Doctor Who’s original 1963-1989 run, Survival, sits at number 76… making it only one place higher than the first story of the 21st century revival Rose, coming in at number 77.
2013’s The Bells of St John is the lowest-placing appearance of The Great Intelligence on our list at number 84, though the creature’s first appearance also falls within this section of the poll, with 1967’s The Abominable Snowmen falling at number 68, and its return to the programme in 2012’s The Snowmen coming in slightly higher in position 54.
Another 1960’s creation - The Ice Warriors - find four of their five stories confined to this period of the list with their 1969 appearance in The Seeds of Death being rated as their best adventure, and placing at number 78. 1967’s The Ice Warriors doesn't fall far behind (number 80), with the first of their two 1970’s adventures on Peladon coming in at number 81. Their 2013 return to the series in Cold War rates slightly lower at number 95, while their second outing in the Citadel on Peladon lags way behind at number 217.
Entering the top 50 means that we’re starting to see some familiar names cropping up - stories which are considered to be among the very best that Doctor Who has to offer. 1976’s The Brain of Morbius, 1970’s Inferno, 1988’s Remembrance of the Daleks, and2006’s The Girl in the Fireplace have long geld their position as ‘fan favourites’, and defend that status well here.
We’re also seeing the Eleventh Doctor rating rarely well here, too, with the two highest new entries to the list coming in at numbers 16 and 15 - representing The Name of the Doctor (2013) and 2010’s debut for the character The Eleventh Hour.
Also missing from the 2009 poll were the Tenth Doctor’s final two adventures, and both of these stories take their places here, with The Waters of Mars gaining a respectable place at number 30, and the Tenth Doctor’s regeneration story - The End of Time - coming in at number 41.
Last but not least, we’ve reached the final nine - those stories which are considered to be the absolute pinnacle of Doctor Who.
The list is likely no surprise to fans who remember the ‘Mighty 200’ poll, and several stories crop up here which also graced the top spots back then. 1977’s The Robots of Death, 1984’s The Caves of Androzani, and 1975’s Genesis of the Daleks are always considered to be winners, but it’s 2007’s Blink which takes the number one position, pulling in a massive 92.81%.
In one of those perfectly neat little Doctor Who moments, this means that you’ve voted the Tenth Doctor into both the top and bottom places on the poll - there’s a neat kind of symmetry to that!
We want to thank everyone for voting - it's been really fun to see all the results come in as stories jostled for their positions. The top spot seemed to be on a rotation every day, with each of the top five stories occupying the position at some point before the final list settled into place. Over all, though more stories have dropped in popularity than grown, the scores on average are slightly higher than they were for the 2009 poll, with both the lowest and highest rated stories sporting a higher score than they previously held - we love Doctor Who now more than ever!
[Source: Doctor Who Online]