Published on May 13th, 2014 | by Nick Kitchen

The Weaving of Doctor Who and Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em

The crossing of stars from one show on a television network to a new/different show on the same network is not a new concept. Often, the likes of BBC, NBC, ABC, etc. will pull from talent that have proven themselves in small parts in other shows to either star in a new role or augment and existing programming effort. However, what is interesting to see is when one show (Doctor Who, duh!) contributes so many stars to a single program. A fine example of this comes to us via the so-called Brain of Morbius, and examines the intersection between the Doctor and Frank Spencer.

Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em ran on BBC 1 from 1973-1978, right in the sweet spot of what many consider to be the best of Doctor Who, the Tom Baker era. Rightly so, the BBC picked up actors from Doctor Who and also used them in the Frank Spencer vehicle. Some of the best examples:

Derek Newark (An Unearthly ChildInferno)

Neil McCarthy (several episodes during Pertwee’s tenure, including The Mind of Evil, as well as The Power of Kroll)

Neil McCarthy

Peter Jeffrey (The Androids of Tara)

Peter Jeffrey

Elisabeth Sladen (the amazing Sarah Jane Smith!)

Sarah Jane

Morbius has a compiled a “near-as-dammit-complete” list of all the other stars who have played parts on both shows. It’s intriguing to see the connection and a testament to the caliber of actors Who has had in its ranks over the years.

What say you, dear reader? Are you surprised at the vast number of actor/actresses that have played on both shows? And are you a fan of Some Mothers? (Of course you are!) Anyone fancy seeing Michael Crawford in Series 8…?


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About the Author


“That’s bacon! Are you trying to poison me?” And from that line on, I’ve been unable to stop watching, reading, musing about the Doctor. As a recent transplant to the Whoniverse, I’ve been trying to soak up as much Who-related knowledge as possible. That journey has taken me from the Tenth Planet to the Fields of Trenzalore and gently set me at the edge of my seat for what’s next. It’s an honor to be here and I plan to bring a unique perspective. I hope you’ll enjoy the journey alongside me.

6 Responses to The Weaving of Doctor Who and Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em

  1. avatar drewboynton says:

    A little off-topic, but I’m a recent big fan of “Gavin & Stacey” and a surprising amount of the cast have made appearances on Who!

    • avatar TonyS says:

      I can think of two

  2. avatar starcityfan says:

    A friend of mine who was a fan of both Doctor Who and Blake’s 7 used to claim that there were only about 50 actors working for the BBC. I think you’d find significant crossovers between any contemporaneous programs in that erea.

  3. avatar Funbundle says:

    I think the biggest crossover of Who talent in another melieu has to be the Carry On films. Without recourse to IMDB, I can think of:
    William Hartnell
    Jon Pertwee
    Peter Butterworth
    Joan Sims
    Peter Gilmore
    George Layton
    June Whitfield
    Bernard Cribbins
    Bernard Bresslaw
    Martin Clunes
    Burt Kwouk
    Richard Wilson
    Windsor Davies
    Julian Holloway
    Maureen Lipman
    Alexei Sayle
    Don Henderson
    Barbara Windsor
    Nicholas Parsons
    Geoffrey Hughes
    Wanda Ventam

    I expect there’s more (the one who played Mrs Brigadier in Battlefield was in a few, but I can’t remember her name)

  4. avatar Funbundle says:

    Angela Douglas!

    • avatar Funbundle says:

      And if you include Big finish:
      Sam Kelly
      Leslie Phillips
      Melvin Hayes

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