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     Home »  The Peter Davison Era »  Was Peter right?
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    Was Peter right? Views: 3939
     Sunday, June 25 2006 @ 04:28 AM EDT
    It's a fairly well-known assertion on the part of Peter Davison that he quite preferred Nyssa as a sole companion. He, of course, never got his way, largely due to JNT's preference for Tegan. In hindsight, or indeed with knowledge gained from the audios, do you think Davison was right? If the Fifth Doctor could've had only one companion, whom would you have chosen?

    On a related note, do you agree or disagree with both JNT and Davison that the TARDIS was "too full" during Davison's first year?

    "I think of myself as ambitious in casting terms, and I know that Bonnie [Langford] has the potential to make the part totally unirritating . . ." JNT, 1986
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     Sunday, June 25 2006 @ 06:04 AM EDT
    Peter was 'my' Doctor as thatw as when Doctor Who became, for me 'must see' TV for the first time Smile

    I've just started listening to the Big Finish audios and Spare Parts was the first. I thought it was fantastic and felt that the Doctor and Nyssa were a good double act.

    I never felt the TARDIS was over crowded in those days, watching the episodes back now I still like the 'full' line up of regulars. If anything I disliked Tegan the most because she was human.

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     Sunday, June 25 2006 @ 08:49 AM EDT
    I connect more with Tegan, for some reason. I think that the companion should be the relatable character for the viewer, and she was very relatable for me. I also liked her because she was a bit tough. If there could only be one Davison companion, for me, it would be her.

    Heath Holland
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     Sunday, June 25 2006 @ 09:44 AM EDT
    I also connected far more with Tegan. She seemed more like a real character, and not a prop.

    She was always emotionally involved with the situations which they faced. The only emotional connection I ever felt that Nyssa had with anything or anyone was in her last episode and even that didn't seem real to me.

    Tegan hurt, and you could see it in her face. Every new death devastated her, every suspicion she had of Turlough, you felt it was real.

    And when she got left behind, you saw the disappointment, the feeling of abandonment.

    Again, when she was re-found and the final episode with the Daleks... you saw the damage done to her from her travels.

    I have a lot of sympathy for Tegan. Never felt any for Nyssa.


    One solid hope is worth a cartload of uncertainties.
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     Sunday, June 25 2006 @ 12:12 PM EDT

    I can't say I agree with Peter Davison here. I prefer Tegan's character as a companion. I found her far more interesting. While I like Sarah Sutton, I can't say I that connected all that much with Nyssa as a character.

    As for having multiple companions, I thought it was a welcomed change to the one companion scenario that seemed so prevalent through the much of series (at least since it went to colour). Remember the series initially began with a "full" TARDIS with Susan, Barbara, Ian, and the Doctor...

    I enjoy companions interacting with each other and not always having to play off the Doctor constantly.

    In recent times, I enjoyed stories that had Adam, Captain Jack, Mickey, (and even Sarah Jane Smith and K9) joining Rose in the role of companions. It gives the opportunity to express their thoughts about their situation and the Doctor that they normally would not be able to do so to the Doctor himself.


    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at ♥ ♥
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     Friday, July 21 2006 @ 05:08 PM EDT
    I'm another Tegan fan. I agree that I felt every emotion she felt. She was also spunky and didn't just accept everything the Doctor told her as law. She was a breath of fresh air, and I thought she was hot!

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     Saturday, July 22 2006 @ 09:13 PM EDT
    I liked the multiple companion dynamic at the time. The 5th Doctor and Adric or Turlough would have worked. Tegan and Nyssa were great but on their own would have lacked spark, IMO.

    I would have liked another 5th Doctor/Peri outing, though 6th Doctor/Peri was a wonderful combination.

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     Sunday, July 23 2006 @ 07:57 AM EDT
    I know everyone loved Adric, I prefered the Tardis crew with the Doctor, Tegan and Turlough. The Doctor sure had his hands full for a while.

    (Yes, I was being sarcastic about Adric above. LOL)

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     Sunday, July 23 2006 @ 10:33 AM EDT
    My sophisticated opinion as a 7-year-old was that Nyssa was smart and pretty and Tegan was short-haired and loud. Adric I didn't remember much except some spider web killed him. Laughing Out Loud

    20 years later I think what a boring kid I was, Tegan is way more entertaining in the Tardis than Nyssa alone would have been!

    If Worzel Gummidge and the Third Doctor had a fist fight - who would win?
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     Friday, September 08 2006 @ 09:02 PM EDT
    I would have loved it if we could have had a few stories with just the 5th Doctor and Tegan. I have mixed feelings about the days of the "full Tardis." Often it seemed like one of the companions had to be put out of order (delta wave, sprained ankle) temorarily because the writers couldn't accomodate them all. I've heard Peter Davison also complain that many of his companions really, "Didn't want to be there." Looking back it is kind of funny that Tegan prefered going back to her ordinary life (especially in season 19) as opposed to exploring the universe.

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     Saturday, September 09 2006 @ 12:23 AM EDT
    Well, it looks like I'm in the minority, but here goes.

    Nyssa is my preferred companion. She was intelligent and determined, showing some serious chutzpah in many episodes, without being overbearing, loud and obnoxious, as Tegan often was.

    I do not have a problem with "strong" women or men. I simply believe that there is a way to pull off "strong" that is classy and dignified. Tegan was frequently neither.

    Nyssa, on the other hand, was "strong", but maintained a dignified presence that was in keeping with a character of her background, vis-a-vis the daughter of a high ranking government official, and perhaps even a noble.

    The other thing about Nyssa was that she got things done, without a need to grandstand, whereas Tegan was mostly mouthy and loud, while contributing very little in terms of intelligent assistance.

    I could go on, but I think I've made my point. Tegan was an excellent companion, don't get me wrong, but if my back were against the wall and the chips were down, I'd want Nyssa in my corner.

    "Elemental, my dear Benton." The Doctor to Sgt. Benton (The Daemons)
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     Saturday, September 09 2006 @ 11:37 AM EDT
    I think I'd prefer Tegan, though probably not when I was a kid watching it the first time around. I think the best companions are those that question the Doctor, and not in an exposition kinda way. Nyssa seems too obedient, though this is only from watching the DVDs I have of the Peter Davison era.

    Excallibur? Blizard? ...Bikini Cops?
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     Sunday, September 10 2006 @ 07:59 PM EDT
    I would call Nyssa level-headed and sensible, but probably wouldn't go so far as to say she was obedient. I can recall several occasions, for example, when she and Adric acted on their own, against The Doctor's expressed wishes.

    "Elemental, my dear Benton." The Doctor to Sgt. Benton (The Daemons)
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     Monday, September 11 2006 @ 05:46 AM EDT
    Something you will notice is that the companion is almost always OPPOSITE the current Doctor in personality (probably also one of the many reasons why it is usually a young, Earthly, female). Think of Ian, Stephen, and Ben vs. the 1st Doctor. Jamie and Victoria vs. the 2nd. UNIT, Jo, & Sarah vs. the 3rd (and why Liz didn't seem to work out so much). Harry, Leela, & (particularly) Romana 1 vs. the 4th. Peri vs. the 6th. Ace vs. the 7th. (and, God help us, even Mel vs. the 6th AND the 7th) The same can be said about the 5th Doctor vs. Tegan, Turlough, & Kamelion. He was actually TOO much like Nyssa, Adric, & Peri (youth, intelligence, curiousity, vigor, & compassion). It may have been easier for Peter to work with someone that was as agreeable as his Doctor was, but it really wouldn't have created the same dynamic that existed throughout the series. Tegan's antithetical disagreeability & bombastity were a perfect match against the 5th Doctor's amnesty, vulnerablity, & charm. Not to mention Turlough's & Kamelion's (supressed) malevalence & inhumanity. Likewise, they would have all been terrible companions for the 6th Doctor... especially Tegan & Turlough.

    Something else to mention is JNT's determination to bring back some of the elements of "Doctor Who's" origins to the 80s. The 5th and 6th Doctors BOTH had characteristics of the 1st (the 6th was almost identical in persona, even if louder and more garrish). The 5th Doctor harken back to the idea of having 3 companions again (like Susan/Vicki, Ian, & Barbara)... as well as reintroducing so many past adversaries (the Master, the Black Guardian, Omega & the Time Lords, the Daleks & Davros, the Cybermen, the Sea Devils & the Silurians).

    Nevertheless, if I were the Doctor (any) I would prefer K-9, then Romana (1 or 2), Nyssa, Zoe, Kamelion, Jamie, Leela, Ace, Liz, Sarah Jane, the Brig, Adric, then Rose. The rest can boil their heads. lol You'll notice the list is based on intelligence, resourcefulness, heart, and/or loyalty - and yet Susan is nowhere to be found!

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     Monday, September 11 2006 @ 10:42 AM EDT
    I always thought that Nyssa was the more attractive of the two. I liked Tegan, but she was loud and emotionally all over the place. I think that's why I like that they were both in the Tardis at the same time--they played well off of each other. Nyssa could be more logical and often calmed Tegan down. I enjoyed seeing Tegan in the show because she'd challenge the Doctor and let him know that he wasn't running the show for her. Nyssa, on the other hand, was more dignified and would quietly disagree with the doctor.

    As for the TARDIS being "too full," some of my favorite episodes (Earthshock) took place during that era. With characters able to split up and go different ways, it was nice to see characters doing something instead of simply following the Doctor's orders. That's one of the reasons why I really enjoyed Romana: She would sometimes put the Doctor in his place. Something that Nyssa wouldn't typically do (although Tegan would).

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