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Meet The Doctor's Granddaughter

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Meet The Doctor's Granddaughter
The news that The Doctor has a daughter has sent many hearts fluttering. Admittedly, this offspring stemmed from a DNA-based plot contrivance rather than a roll in the Gallifreyan hay, but our heroic Time Lord has made several references to having once had his own family before the Time War wiped them out. In fact, one of them was the first ever companion on the show.

Roll back the decades to November 1963 and the very first Doctor Who story 'An Unearthly Child' for proof that the cantankerous first incarnation had performed some nappy-changing duties earlier in his life. Step forward Susan, The Doctor's fifteen-year old granddaughter.

Played by relative unknown Carole Anne Ford, Susan desperately tried to fit into life as an Earthling teen as The Doctor tried to fix his Tardis on the planet, kookily swaying to the music on a transistor radio and adopting the fashion of the era. Yet her uber-intelligence and mysterious gaps of contemporary knowledge compelled two schoolteachers, Ian and Barbara, to investigate her private life. The pair soon tracked her back to a junkyard and followed her into a blue police box, a structure that was rife on the streets of England in the early Sixties. A legend was soon born.

Susan was often defined in contrast to her grumpy Gallifreyan grandpa, trying to reason with him to bring out any shreds of compassion and often acting as a mediator between him and the reluctant schoolteachers. Susan exhibited a kindness and understanding towards alien species - a trait most noticeable in the current incarnation of The Doctor, as played by David Tennant. This was highly evident in the trip to the Daleks' planet Skaro, where she quickly befriended the peaceful Thal race. She wasn't afraid to display her giggly nature in front of the Daleks either when one of the metallic mutants mispronounced her name.

Over the course of several adventures through time and space, the thoughtful Susan encountered cavemen, Marco Polo, giant insects, the Ood-like Sensorites and the evil Voord. It's no surprise that the telepathic lass longed for the normality of Earth, as she was increasingly coming down with all kinds of ailments, being kidnapped or sentenced to be sacrificed. As you can tell, this was in the pre-Thatcher and Spice Girls days. Ultimately, it was to be a soppy romance that led to her forced departure from the Tardis.

Susan's exit in late 1964 story 'The Dalek Invasion Of Earth' matched Rose Tyler's swansong in terms of its emotional poignancy. Susan wasn't hurled into a parallel world, instead falling in love with a young resistance fighter called David in 2164AD. A massive 12.4 million viewers, gripped by the rampant Dalekmania of the time, tuned in to see Susan become the first original cast member to leave the show.

The world in ruins thanks to the Daleks, a new era dawned for mankind and there was plenty of rebuilding to be done. The Doctor observed Susan and David confess their love for each other on the Tardis scanner, only for the Time Lady to reject her beloved's offer of a new home because she felt loyalty to her elderly grandfather. The Doctor opted to be cruel to be kind by locking Susan out of the Tardis and making the decision for her, giving her the identity and stability she craved.

Via the scanner, The Doctor told her: "One day I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward with all your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mind. Goodbye Susan. Goodbye my dear." The Tardis promptly dematerialised and the young couple walked off hand in hand accompanied by some cheesy mood music.

Alas, Susan did return almost twenty years later in 'The Five Doctors', although she did little more than sprain her ankle and remind everyone that she was a physical liability back in the day. Could she possibly have managed to escape the Time War and be limping around somewhere in the universe?

> What are your memories of Susan? Should she reunite with her grandfather?

> Click here for our review of 'The Doctor's Daughter' and share your thoughts

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