In the yoo-ess at least, the most well-known of the Doctors in the Doctor Who series. Also has a brief cameo in a Simpsons episode.

Has a penchant for eating what I recall him calling "Jelly Babies" which are very similar to Jelly Bellys.

Grins excessively which once earned him a description I read on Usenet as "looking like he has more teeth than brain cells".

In one of the best Doctor Who episodes entitled, The Five Doctors, he was hilariously referred to with the line, "you mean with all the teeth and curls?" by Jon Pertwee's Doctor. When I watched the series back in the day, the local PBS station in Philly, WHYY-TV12, would air Doctor Who marathons during what we called their annual Beg-A-Thon's and would offer up Doctor Who goodies in return for donations and pledges. I really wanted to have a scarf like his, but they wanted a $100 or $150 pledge and the rights to call/mail you repeatedly over the next five years to beg for money directly. Needless to say it was way too expensive.

Tom Baker, the fourth Doctor, was the most popular of all the Doctor Whos; his wild hair and eyes, his spectacular striped scarf, his sonic screwdriver and his sense of melodrama - not to mention his Radar-eared robotic dog K9 - have endeared him to several generations of Who-watchers by now. His was the first Doctor to make the show a hit in the United States and he played the part the longest - spanning 41 stories over the course of seven years (1974-1981). Not everyone altogether approves of his style - over-the-top almost to the point of self-parody - but it was mainly supposed to be a kid's programme...

I saw Tom Baker once in a book shop in Bristol; he looked ready to start signing copies of his autobiography, Who on Earth is Tom Baker?, but so far nobody had arrived to get his autograph - I guess he wasn't due to start for a few minutes. I became aware of these huge, startlingly blue eyes looking at me before it dawned on me that they belonged to Tom Baker. He's aged a lot since his Doctor Who days, of course - his curly hair is still a crazy mess, but it's now entirely white; his eyes are watery with age but still carry an air of keen, eccentric intelligence. I guess he could see that I was slightly awed, and trying to think of something to say to him, but I couldn't come up with anything better than 'You know you were the best Doctor Who ever, right?' - so I thought it best to say nothing.

Later I picked up a copy of his book and read a chapter or two; it's engagingly written, and he obviously has plenty of stories to tell. It made me think: It is hard to imagine anything more satisfying to do in the closing years of a long, full life than to write an entertaining autobiography, and tour the country - if not the world - promoting it and meeting fans. For me, the main lure of fame is the possibility of doing something like this with my twilight years.

Besides his work on Doctor Who, Baker has appeared in a huge range of TV shows and films over the years, not to mention a number of stage plays; but besides his perfectly-cast role as Hopkirk's ethereal mentor in the Reeves and Mortimer version of Randall and Hopkirk (deceased), I haven't seen enough of it to comment. Instead, I give you his filmography from IMDb.com.

  1. Ghost Watch 2001 (2001) TV Series .... Himself
  2. Alter Ego (2001) (TV) .... Himself
  3. The 100 Greatest TV Characters (2001) (TV) (archive footage) .... The Doctor #4
  4. Dungeons & Dragons (2000) .... Halvarth
  5. Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased) (2000) TV Series .... Professor Wyvern
  6. Carnival of Monsters (1999) (TV) .... Himself
  7. Adventures in Space and Time (1999) (TV) .... Himself
  8. Backtime (1998) .... Sarge
  9. Doctor Who: Thirty Years in the Tardis (1993) (TV) .... Himself/Doctor#4
  10. Doctor Who: Dimensions in Time (1993) (TV) .... The Fourth Doctor
  11. Doctor Who: Shada (1992) (V) .... The Fourth Doctor
  12. Resistance Is Futile (1992) TV Series (archive footage) .... The Fourth Doctor
  13. Medics (1990) TV Series .... Professor Geoffrey Hoyt, general surgeon (1992-1995)]
  14. Cluedo (1990) TV Series .... Professor Plum (1992)]
  15. Doctor Who: The Tom Baker Years (1991) (V) .... Himself
  16. Doctor... Who on Earth Is Tom Baker (1991) (V) .... The Fourth Doctor/Himself/Interviewer/Man on Bicycle/Man in Jeep]
  17. The Law Lord (1991)
  18. Selling Hitler (1991) (mini) TV Series .... Manfred Fischer
  19. Lives and Loves of a She Devil (1990) (mini) TV Series .... Father Ferguson
  20. Hyperland (1990) (TV) .... Tom
  21. The Silver Chair (1990) (TV) .... Puddleglum
  22. Myth Makers Vol. 8: Tom Baker (1989) (V) .... Himself
  23. Doctor Who Who's Who (1986) (TV) .... Himself
  24. The Passionate, Pilgrim (1984) .... Sir Tom
  25. The Zany Adventures of Robin Hood (1984) (TV) .... Sir Guy de Gisbourne
  26. Doctor Who: The Five Doctors (1983) (TV) (archive footage) .... The Fourth Doctor (stock footage)
  27. The Hound of the Baskervilles (1982) (mini) TV Series .... Sherlock Holmes
  28. Wholly Moses (1980) .... Egyptian Captain
  29. The Curse of King Tut's Tomb (1980) (TV) .... Hasan
  30. The Golden Voyage of Sinbad (1974) .... Koura
  31. Luther (1973) (uncredited) .... Pope Leo X
  32. The Mutations (1973) .... Lynch
  33. The Vault of Horror (1973) .... Moore
  34. Cari genitori (1972)]
  35. Frankenstein: The True Story (1972) (TV) .... Sea Captain
  36. The Millionairess (1972) (TV) .... Dr. Ahmed el Kabir
  37. Racconti di Canterbury (aka. The Canterbury Tales) I (1971) .... Jenkin
  38. Nicholas and Alexandra (1971) .... Rasputin
  39. Amore e rabbia (1969) .... (segment "L'indifferenza")
  40. The Winter's Tale (1968)
  41. Doctor Who (1963) TV Series .... The Doctor (1974-1981)

Relevant links:

  • Tom Baker's official site: http://www.tom-baker.com/
  • BBC site for the fourth Doctor: http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/doctorwho/doctors/doctor4.shtml
  • Tom Baker quotes: http://www.amk.ca/quotations/tom-baker/
  • NFT interview (with Mark Gatiss of The League of Gentlemen): http://www.bfi.org.uk/showing/nft/interviews/baker/
  • IMDb on Tom Baker: http://www.imdb.com/M/person-exact?Baker,%20Tom
  • History of Tom Baker's scarves: http://www.geocities.com/Area51/Zone/3746/Scarf.html

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