The Five Doctors

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Story Code: 6K / Season : 90 minute Special UK Airdate: 25 Nov 1983 Doctor: Peter Davison
First airings by location UK Repeats / Foreign Cable and Satellite Previous Story / Next Story
list of PBS stations to air The Five Doctors on November 23, 1983

This story aired in the following known countries. They are listed in chronological order according to known airdate. If no month is noted, the actual airdate is not confirmed, and is a close approximate. (Refer also to Selling Doctor Who for expanded airdates.)

United States 23 Nov 83 NTSC
United Kingdom 25 Nov 83 PAL
Australia Dec 83 PAL
New Zealand Nov 88 PAL
Canada May 91 NTSC
Germany Feb 95 PAL
  • The story was made as a 90 minute "movie" (UK running time 1:30:23).
  • The story made its TV debut in the United States in November 1983 -- see list of stations at right. Just over a minute of material was cut - mostly trims from the starts or ends of scenes - bringing the episode's running time down to 1:29:19.
    • Other stations that aired the special on the anniversary but not listed include: Austin/San Antonio, Bridgeport, Gainesville, Milwaukee.
    • Alternate names used for the first airing in the US: "The Five Doctors Who," "Doctor Who: The Ultimate Celebration"
still from a WTTW promo

Spoiler-ridden New Jersey Network trailer!

  • A four-part edition was also made: it screened in that format in the UK for the August 1984 repeat (see BBC Repeats), and appeared on some stations in the United States during the mid- to late 1980s - one of the first being WGBH (where it aired 8-11 October 1984); on YTV in Canada (31 May to 5 June 1991), and in Australia in the mid-2000s.
  • A subtitled VHS was released in Norway in the late 1980s.
  • The adventure was dubbed into German and re-edited into a three-parter for the screening in Germany.
  • The story was often skipped during later repeat runs due to copyright issues relating to the Daleks.
  • The re-edited extended Special Edition made for the 1995 VHS release - and later reissued on DVD in 1999 - was shown by WQEX in June 2001, and on WCET in October 2002 and April 2003.
  • The 1999 DVD release is unique in that it is the first and so-far only Doctor Who story to feature multiple language subtitles, but it's not known if the DVD was actually sold in any of those countries!
  • In the early 2000s, the story was shown (usually as a 4-parter) on satellite and cable stations, but with the Dalek sequences removed.
  • The story was later re-released on DVD in the Netherlands in the mid-2000s.
US TV Guide July 1983

KCPT Program Guide
DVD language subtitles: "No, not the Mind Probe!"

US TV Guide descriptions

More Information
Title: The Five Doctors (sometimes The Five Doctors Who)

  • Part 1: Doctor Who runs into some of his former selves in the Death Zone.
  • Part 2:  
  • Part 3:  
  • Part 4:  
  • Compilation: The current regeneration of Doctor Who runs into some of his former selves when they are plucked out of time and placed in the Death Zone on a program commemorating the series 20th anniversary.