November 23, 1963 — The first episode of “Doctor Who” is broadcast

The longest-running science fiction series of all time originally starred William Hartnell as the Doctor – the first of what would become an apparently infinite series of Doctors – in a serial (and episode) entitled “An Unearthly Child”. Early on, the show was intended more to be educational than entertaining, and many of the hallmarks of the show – notably, its recurring villain characters – were slow to make their first appearances. No one expected it to last this long, but then, it was the earliest days of television in the UK – no one really knew anything.

Hartnell would remain the Doctor for the first four seasons – which means that due to the BBC not keeping episodes of anything at the time, more episodes of his run are missing than any other Doctor except his immediate successor, Patrick Troughton.

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