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Comedy Classic: Rowan Atkinson is Doctor Who

by Paul Strauss

Doctor Who is certainly having a renaissance in recent years, and I’m particularly happy with the current Doctor, played by Peter Capaldi. We’re only part way into his first season, and he’s my favorite since the great Tom Baker. While many actors have portrayed the Doctor after his numerous regenerations, I’ve never thought about casting Rowan Atkinson (of Mr. Bean fame) in the role. But that didn’t stop the UK edition of Comic Relief from doing such a thing.

In this classic clip from 1999, called The Curse of Fatal Death, we get a surprisingly stoic Atkinson as the Doctor, along with appearances by Julia Sawalha as the Doctor’s companion, and Jonathan Pryce in a brilliant turn as The Master. Richard E. Grant, Hugh Grant and Joanna Lumley have some pretty amusing cameos as well.

One of the best interchanges has to be:

The Master: Say hello to the spikes of doom!!!!
The Doctor: Say hello to the sofa of reasonable comfort!

What’s particularly amusing about the clip is that the satire is so good that it could pass as an actual Doctor Who episode. Except maybe the fart jokes.

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