BBC Audio / AudioGo sure snuck up on us with this one. This was brought to my attention via theLogBook’s Facebook page, and yeah, it was a surprise. The current Tom Baker audio series produced by the BBC, Serpent Crest, features the fourth Doctor teaming up with the second Doctor. The voice of the second Doctor is provided by this actor who was in the David Tennant episode Midnight…
…David Troughton. You might notice the resemblance to his dad:
He also happens to sound a lot like him.
Now this opens a whole can of worms dating back to the very first FAQ on the Big Finish web site, where Gary Russell (who was then in charge of Big Finish’s Doctor Who output) categorically stated that there would be no recasting of the first three Doctors, all of whom are deceased, even though David Troughton and Sean Pertwee are capable of being dead ringers for their dads if they feel like doing a bit of impersonation.
The BBC, however, arguably crossed the Rubicon back in ’83 when they recast Richard Hurndall as the first Doctor in The Five Doctors; obviously they’re not being quite so precious about it.
Russell is no longer in charge of Big Finish Who, and Nicholas Briggs seems to show more of a willingness to shake things up (i.e. pairing the sixth Doctor with Jamie and Zoe… sorta). So should Big Finish rethink that policy and open the doors to a new era of second Doctor adventures? Would that be disrespectful to the memory of Patrick Troughton (and moreover, to his still-very-much-alive son)? Or should they just have some fun with it since all of the second Doctor’s companions (barring the Brigadier) are still alive?
I don’t think it’s disrespectful. In a way, I think it’s honoring his memory by letting his son reprise his father’s role. There have been Bugs Bunny cartoons since Mel Blanc passed away, since his son was able to do a passable version of the character. I have no problem with any new audio stories being based on the second Doctor.