Doctor Who breaks TV record with return of William Russell as Ian Chesterton

Doctor Who broke the record for the longest gap between TV appearances with the return of William Russell to the series in Jodie Whittaker’s final episode.

The popular sci-fi series delighted longtime fans by bringing back a number of familiar faces for Jodie’s last hurray in The Power of the Doctor, which aired in October.

Among those who returned to the series is William (98), who played science teacher Ian Chesterton, the companion of the First Doctor, played by William Hartnell.

He’s back: Doctor Who breaks record for longest gap between TV appearances with William Russell’s return to the series in Jodie Whittaker’s final episode

He appeared in 77 episodes during the first two seasons from 1963 to 1965 and returned to the series after 57 years for Jodie’s nostalgic final episode as the Doctor.

And his return broke the record for the longest gap between TV appearances at 57 years and 120 days, Guinness World Records revealed.

Announcing the record on the BBC show’s 59th anniversary, they confirmed: ‘The longest gap between appearances on TV is 57 years and 120 days, achieved by William Russell (UK) as Doctor Who character Ian Chesterton in ‘The Power of Doctor’ ‘ episode, which aired on October 23, 2022.’

Coronation Street’s Philip Lowrie previously held the record for the longest gap between TV appearances, returning to the role of Dennis Tanner after 43 years.

Original Series: Appeared in 77 episodes during the first two seasons from 1963 to 1965 and returned to the series after 57 years for Jodie’s nostalgic final episode as the Doctor

William returned to the series as Ian for a brief appearance in the final episode, as he attended a support group for the Doctor’s former companions in a touching moment at the end of the episode.

As the group all discuss their time traveling mutual friend, Ian expresses surprise that the Doctor is a woman, having not met Jodie’s version of the character. The Doctor also did not regenerate before Ian left the show in 1965.

In addition to Ian’s brief appearance, fans of the original series are also treated to a return former companions Ace (Sophie Aldred) and Tegan (Janet Fielding).

Former Doctors Peter Davison and Colin Baker also made guest appearances in the epic as a host of familiar faces returned for the nostalgic episode.

Familiar Faces: The popular sci-fi series thrilled fans by bringing back familiar faces for Jodie’s final hurray in The Power of the Doctor. Pictured: William as Ian in the original series

Stars: Among those returning to the series was William Russell, who played science teacher Ian Chesterton, companion of the First Doctor, played by William Hartnell (pictured)

The power of the doctor it was also packed with excitement as Jodie stepped down after five years as the Time Lord, David Tennant returned and fans got their first glimpse of Ncuti Gatwa as the 14th Doctor.

The episode came to a very dramatic conclusion as Jodie’s Doctor shockingly regenerated into a very familiar face – David’s 10th Doctor.

Despite her reluctance to regenerate, looking at the sunset she said, ‘The most blooming flower. That’s the only sad thing. I want to know what happens next.

“Okay, Doctor Whoever-I-Will-Be. Tag, it’s you,’ before Tennant appeared in shock.

Exciting: The Power of the Doctor was also packed with excitement as Jodie stepped down after five years as a Time Lord

The newly regenerated Doctor ran his fingers over his teeth and said ‘I know these’ clearly confused as he returned to his previous body.

David returns with a three-episode special, set to air in November 2023, after stepping down from the role in 2010.

The long-running 60th celebration of the sci-fi series will also star Catherine Tate before Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa takes control of the Tardis.

Jodie’s last episode ended with a short trailer for the new series, which will appear on screens at the end of 2023.

Surprise: The episode came to a very dramatic end as Jodie’s Doctor shockingly regenerated into a very familiar face – David Tennant’s 10th Doctor

The trailer teased Ncuti’s much-anticipated arrival as the star was seen asking: ‘Can someone tell me what the hell is going on?’

After the episode, Russell said: ‘If you thought David Tennant’s appearance was a shock, we’re in for a lot more surprises!’

‘The journey to Ncuti’s Fifteenth Doctor is full of mystery, horror, robots, puppets, danger and fun! And how does it tie in with the return of the wonderful Donna Noble? How, what, why? We’re giving you a year to guess, then damn it!’

Meanwhile, it was recently revealed that Ncuti’s new sidekick is Coronation star Millie Gibson, becoming the youngest sidekick ever, named Ruby Sunday.

Big changes: The sci-fi series’ 60th feature-length celebration will also star Catherine Tate before Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa takes control of the Tardis

The 18-year-old actress made a special appearance at the Children in Need 2022 fundraiser live on BBC One on Friday, where the news was announced.

In a statement, the star said the new role was a ‘dream come true’ as the long-awaited secret was finally revealed, much to the delight of fans.

‘Although I’m still in complete disbelief, I’m incredibly honored to be cast as the Doctor’s companion,’ Millie said in a statement released by the BBC.

‘It’s a gift of a role and a dream come true, and I’ll do everything I can to try and fill the boots that my colleagues have walked in before me.’

She added: ‘And what better way to do it than to be alongside the fantastic Ncuti Gatwa, I just can’t wait to get started.’

At just 18, Millie is the youngest actress to be cast, beating the record held by Matthew Waterhouse, who was 19 when he was cast in Doctor Who in the 1980s.

Ncuti, 30, was recently announced as the new doctor, and in a statement he said Millie is ‘full of talent’.

The cast: Meanwhile, it was recently revealed that Ncuti’s new sidekick is Coronation star Millie Gibson, becoming the youngest sidekick ever, named Ruby Sunday

‘She’s full of talent, strength, has a sassy twinkle in her eye and is razor sharp,’ he said.

‘From the moment she walked into the room, she captured our full attention with her antics, and then cemented that attention with a sheer moment of her talent.’

He added: ‘This adventure is going to be so wild and so much fun, I can’t WAIT to sail through space with Millie!’

Millie appeared at the Children in Need charity event on Friday and walked the Doctor Who TARDIS live on stage, sharing the news.

‘This is a dream come true!’ Millie appeared at the Children in Need charity event on Friday and walked through the Doctor Who TARDIS live on stage, sharing the news

‘I can’t believe it myself, I had to keep it so secret that this is the first time I believe it,’ said Millie.

When asked how she felt about the role, she continued: ‘It’s crazy, I’m so honored that they even considered me for the audition, I just hope I can make you all happy and fit in with everyone else.’

‘I’ll be playing a character called Ruby Sunday.’

The Doctor’s companion is a character who travels or shares adventures with the Doctor, and Millie will debut during the 2023 holiday season.

Star: At just 18, Millie is the youngest actor to be cast, beating the record held by Matthew Waterhouse, who was 19 when he was cast in Doctor Who in the 1980s

Source: | dailymail.co.uk