World Book Day: The Doctor Who loves to read

The Doctor of BBC’s Doctor Who might be a world-saving, time-travelling 900-odd-year-old alien, but even he makes time for a good book or two in his hectic life.

What started over 50 years ago as a (somewhat) educational filler-programme is teaching kids today (in a very sneaky way) that literature isn’t dull. Literary references abound on the show, and the Doctor is showing a whole new generation that it’s perfectly acceptable to geek out a little when you meet your favourite author or cry over fictional characters. Sometimes, the literary nods are subtle, a throw-away line here or a sneaky glimpse of something there, but sometimes they are bold and in your face. For example, there are whole episodes dedicated to William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens and Agatha Christie.

Some episodes were even written by famous authors. The list of authors includes such names like Ben Aaronovitch (known for Rivers of London), Douglas Adams (known for Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy), Neil Gaiman (known for Neverwhere) and Mark Gatiss (known for the Lucifer Box trilogy).

As it is World Book Day today, I compiled a list of 40 references to literature or reading on Doctor Who, with a little help from my cousin.

Have we missed anything?

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