A Royal Encounter – A Brief History of the Doctor and the Monarchy

With their ability to travel through time, and their habit of hobnobbing with historically significant individuals, it’s little surprise that the Doctor has crossed paths with the kings and queens of Britain. The monarchs have been both friend and foe to the Doctor, but every meeting was an eventful one!

Queen Elizabeth I
The Shakespeare Code / The Day of the Doctor

Of all the kings and queens that the Doctor has met, their relationship with Queen Elizabeth I was one of the more complicated. You see, they were married! As is the way with the Doctor and his wives, they met in the wrong chronological order. Their first meeting was brief, mainly because the Doctor was fleeing for his life. The reason? The Queen had ordered his execution! 

Events became a little clearer during their next meeting. An older Tenth Doctor met a younger Elizabeth I during an attempted Zygon invasion and ended up marrying her. However, directly after the wedding, he left. In the Doctor’s defence, he and his other selves had to save his homeworld from destruction. Still, it was tough on Elizabeth I, and she understandably never forgave him!

Elizabeth "Liz" X
The Beast Below

Amy Pond’s journey on Starship UK was a journey full of firsts: her first trip in the TARDIS, her first time in the future, her first encounter with royalty! The monarchy continues to reign in the 33rd Century, when the entirety of the UK was travelling through the universe on the back of a Space Whale. Elizabeth X – or Liz Ten to her friends – was a gun-toting queen who believed that something was wrong with Starship UK. With the Doctor and Amy’s help, she managed to uncover what that wrongness was, although it left her with a difficult decision to make…

Richard the Lionheart 
The Crusade

The First Doctor meets Richard the Lionheart in 'The Crusade'

One of the earliest monarchs the Doctor encountered in their travels was Richard I, possibly more commonly known as Richard the Lionheart. There were no alien threats to speak of, but it was hardly a relaxing trip. Even without an extraterrestrial menace, there was still plenty of danger for the TARDIS crew, including kidnappings, death threats and being caught between warring soldiers. There’s never a dull – or safe – moment when you’re caught up in the middle of the Third Crusade! 

King John
The King's Demons

OK, this one’s a bit of a cheat. When the Doctor arrived in England in March 1215, he thought he was meeting Richard’s brother, King John. Except, it couldn’t be. History was very clear on the fact that King John was in London at the time. When the Doctor investigated, he discovered the cause of the discrepancy. The man he met wasn’t the King at all, but a shapeshifting android called Kamelion. A shapeshifting android who was controlled by one of the Doctor’s oldest enemies…

King James I
The Witchfinders

The zealous James I got a little more than he bargained for when his witch-hunt brought him to the village of Bilehurst Cragg. Instead of finding witches, he discovered the Doctor and her fam. He initially believed the Doctor to be a witchfinder’s assistant, even though the psychic paper said she was a witchfinder general. Even though they didn’t get off to the best start, the King was grateful for the Doctor’s help in the end. Bilehurst Cragg wasn’t home to witches – it was the site of an alien prison!

Queen Victoria
Tooth and Claw

As is often the way when people meet the Doctor, Queen Victoria’s life was completely changed by the encounter. To be fair, on the same evening, she also survived an assassination attempt and met a werewolf! Unlike most people though, the Queen was not enamoured with our favourite Time Lord. Whilst the Doctor and Rose managed to save the day, Queen Victoria banished them from her lands. To add insult to injury, she then set up an entire institute to fight aliens. All aliens, including the Doctor…

Queen Elizabeth II
Silver Nemesis / Voyage of the Damned

Despite being the current monarch, a meeting between the Doctor and Queen Elizabeth II has never occurred. However, there have been a couple of close encounters! The Doctor and Ace nearly met Her Majesty at Windsor Castle during the events of Silver Nemesis – but they hid from the Queen when they should have asked for her help! 

However, the Queen has clearly heard of the Doctor, though. A few regenerations down the road when the Doctor stopped the Titanic – the spaceship, not the original – from crashing into the Earth, she stood outside of Buckingham Palace to thank him as he flew overhead!

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