I’ll readily admit that my Doctor Who fandom only stretches back to Ecclestone. Actually, that’s not strictly true. As a child I have fleeting recollections of hiding behind the sofa when Tom Baker’s Doctor was on the television. I remember him falling from a pylon or something similar and regenerating into Peter Davidson. I never really watched again after that.

But the reason why I’m championing Tom Baker as the best Doctor is not because of any on-screen antics, but because I’ve actually met the Doctor. Unlike his companions who get whisked off to far off worlds, I got taken by my parents to Debenhams to meet him.
He was there to sign a non-fiction Dr Who book on mythical creatures, one I had forgotten about until I came across it earlier this year. What impressed me, wasn’t the book but the fact that Tom Baker had signed it to me as Dr Who.

I couldn’t have been more than about 5 years old at the time so wasn’t sure if it was really him but my parents confirmed that it was indeed Tom Baker at the signing. There’s something about the fact that he signed it in character rather than as his own name that I find greatly endearing. I didn’t go to the store to meet the actor who played Doctor Who, but the good doctor himself.
I like that I still have the book, the signature still clearly visible. How cool is that? I actually met the Doctor. I don’t remember if he told me to run!