TV Series

10 of Doctor Who’s best-ever gangs

By Paul Lang

“Welcome! This is the gang, I’ve got a gang! Come on then, everyone!”

Troops, team, gang, fam… call them what you want, but the Doctor's always stronger with friends around. Here are ten of the coolest crews...

Team Totter’s Lane

The Edge of Destruction (1964)

How they got together: The Doctor and his granddaughter, Susan, had set up home in East London’s Totter’s Lane while she attended school. Ian and Barbara were two teachers whose unannounced home visit saw them whisked off through time and space, and the rest is history!

Team triumph: When a faulty Fast Return Switch caused strange stuff to happen inside the TARDIS, the Doctor suspected his new companions of sabotage! But as they worked together to identify the fault, the fab four gained a new respect for one another.

The Children of Time

The Stolen Earth/Journey’s End (2008)

How they got together: When the Daleks stole the Earth, the Tenth Doctor rounded up Rose, Sarah Jane, Martha, Captain Jack, Donna, Mickey and Jackie to defeat them!

Team triumph: Ever wondered why the TARDIS control console has so many sides? Each is supposed to have its own pilot! With all these legends at the controls and two Doctors (plus a DoctorDonna) supervising, the TARDIS became an impromptu tow-truck and hauled Earth back to its rightful spot.

The Dino Squad

Dinosaurs on a Spaceship (2012)

How they got together: As a spaceship full of dinosaurs hurtled towards Earth, the Doctor needed a top squad to help him. He recruited big game hunter John Riddell, plus his old muckers Amy and Rory, and somehow ended up bringing Rory’s dad, Brian, and Queen Nefertiti along for the ride too. Random!
Team triumph: Training up Tricey the Triceratops as a getaway car to escape a pair of murderous robots! The dinosaur ignored the Doctor’s verbal commands, but Brian had the genius idea of throwing a ball for it to chase.

The Death Zone Crew

The Five Doctors (1983)

How they got together: Borusa, Lord President of the Time Lords, went rogue. He kidnapped a load of Doctors and their friends, then dumped them in the Death Zone on Gallifrey. Which he’d also filled with monsters. Great.

Team triumph: Borusa brainwashed the Fifth Doctor into doing his dirty work for him, but his other selves put their heads together and drew him back to their side using sheer force of will! Impressive.

The Demon’s Runners

A Good Man Goes To War (2011)

How they got together: When the Eleventh Doctor went to war at Demon’s Run searching for missing Amy Pond, he built his own army. His fighting force were people whose lives he had saved in the past – they owed him one.

Team triumph: The battle was not an unqualified success. Lorna Bucket and Strax the Sontaran both died, and Dorium Maldovar had his big blue head cut clean off – twice! Amy was eventually found, and so was her baby, Melody. But that’s another, much longer story!

The Waifs and Strays

Logopolis (1981)

How they got together: The Doctor had been tipped the wink that his time was up, but instead of having some 'me' time to get his affairs in order, his last days were spent getting to know a whole new crew. Teen genius Adric had already stowed away on the TARDIS, to be joined by stroppy airline worker Tegan and orphaned aristocrat Nyssa.

Team triumph: The Doctor was dying after a fall from a giant radio telescope, but his new friends were there to comfort him in his final moments (which had definitely been prepared for). He regenerated into a more youthful form, leaving this young gang with the perfect new leader!

Absolute UNIT

The Daemons (1971)

How they got together: Stranded on Earth in the 1970s, the Doctor got a job with UNIT – an international task force dealing with alien activity led by Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart. They investigated all sorts of extraterrestrial activity together, including the Master’s demonic scheme to summon up an alien lurking below the village church in Devil’s End.

Team triumph: What could be more relaxing after a hard day’s defeating the forces of darkness than a quick jig round the maypole? The village’s white witch insisted that the Doctor and his UNIT pals join in the traditional dancing – a sight more terrifying than any Daemon!

The Paternoster Gang

The Snowmen (2012)

How they got together: Despite being killed in the Battle of Demon’s Run, Strax went on to be part of another gang. He was revived and teamed up with Silurian warrior Madame Vastra and her wife Jenny in Victorian London.

Team triumph: Convincing the Doctor, in despair after losing Amy and Rory, to come out of retirement and get back to work saving the universe! Well, look at them – would you argue with that lot?

The Thirteen Doctors

The Day of the Doctor (2013)

How they got together: Three different Doctors were already on the case trying to rewrite the ending of the Last Great Time War by safely stashing Gallifrey in a pocket universe. But they needed extra help with the calculations…

Team triumph: Twelve TARDISes, each containing its own Doctor, appeared around the planet! Would every Doctor who had ever existed be enough to get the job done? Not quite – so it’s just as well the NEXT Doctor also popped up!


Resolution (2019)

How they got together: The Doctor has spent the last while getting to know her new fam, who she met on her very first night while racing around Sheffield sorting out alien bother. For New Year, they were joined by Ryan’s dad, Aaron, and archaeologists Lin and Mitch, who’d uncovered something very nasty underneath the town hall – a Dalek mutant!

Team triumph: The Doctor and her gang bravely faced down the Dalek, but it jumped onto Ryan’s dad’s back. He was pulled to safety right before the Dalek was hurled into a supernova.

See the Fourth Doctor’s last stand in Logopolis on Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 18, available to pre-order now, and relive the Doctor and co’s crazy New Year in Resolution, out now on DVD and Blu-ray.

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