Ignoring for the moment the Tour’s particular obsession with claiming, correctly, that Doctors from John Hurt going forward require a different numbering than the publicly accepted framing, Tour Honchos recently had one of those rare, serendipitous confluences seeing not just one but two Doctors acting against each other outside of Doctor Who.
The ‘Mrs Bradley Mysteries’ is one of the cozy high-end period mysteries, in this case the 1920’s, which the BBC (and ITV it must be said) seem to churn out so expertly. Including the pilot, only five episodes were produced between 1998-2000, but the distinguishing factor in this series was the presence of the lead, Diana Rigg (from The Crimson Horror) who at this point was still quite sparing in her TV appearances but is also someone for which the Tour has unabashed affection going way back to The Avengers.
There it was though in the first ‘regular’ episode “Death at the Opera” with David Tennant as a suspicious teacher at an all-girls school and Peter Davison as the stalwart (and admiring towards Rigg) Inspector Christmas. Davison only appears in two scenes, but one was with his future son-in-law. There’s even a brief exchange of dialogue.
The thrill of it all though is simply in not knowing that it was coming, such as has happened so often seeing someone like Patrick Troughton or Roger Delgado in an random ITV adventure series. The tendrils of Doctor Who, as we need to be reminded of from time to time, expand far and wide.