Harris Poll Results: Your Favorite Doctor Who

Who's The Favorite Who? David Tennant and Tom Baker Tie for Favorite Doctor, while Rose is the Favorite Companion

NEW YORK, Aug. 5, 2013 -- Well, it's official, and Peter Capaldi has some pretty big shoes to step into starting next year. How daunting it must be to take over a role that 11 other men have filled - some for a short time and some for years - while at the same time taking on a British icon celebrating its Fifty Year Anniversary this year. And, while each Doctor must make the sonic screwdriver their own, they each take something from the men who embodied previous incarnations – or rather, regenerations – of the Doctor.

So, who should Peter Capaldi draw inspiration from? Among those who have ever watched Doctor Who, the favorite Doctor is actually a tie between the tenth Doctor, David Tennant (16%) and the fourth, Tom Baker (16%), followed by the eleventh and outgoing Doctor, Matt Smith (7%).

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll of 2,240 adults surveyed online between May 8 and 13, 2013 by Harris Interactive. (Full findings, including data tables, available here)

Looking at the rest of the Doctors, the second Doctor, Patrick Troughton, is in at number 4 (5%), and then the fifth Doctor, Peter Davison (4%) is ranked, appropriately enough, at #5. Two Doctors each have 3% saying they are favorites – the ninth and the one that "brought the series back," Christopher Eccleston, and the sixth, Colin Baker. The remaining Doctors all have 2% of fans and watchers saying they are their favorites, while over one-third (37%) are not sure.

When it is just Doctor Who fans, there is a clearer picture. Over one-quarter of fans (27%) say David Tennant is their favorite, while one-quarter (24%) choose Tom Baker and one in ten (10%) the outgoing Doctor, Matt Smith.

The Companions
While there have been many Doctors over the past fifty years, there have been even more companions. Looking at some of the more recent ones, among total viewers asked to choose their top two, Rose Tyler is the favorite (17%), then the "Ponds", Amy and Rory (15%), followed by Donna Noble and Sarah Jane Smith (12% each).

Among fans, Amy and Rory are the favorites (27%) followed closely by Rose (26%), and then Captain Jack Harkness joins Sarah Jane and Donna at 19% each. The Doctor's wife - and the daughter of the TARDIS and the Ponds - River Song and the current companion, Clara Oswin Oswald, come in next with 15% of fans saying they are one of their two favorites, followed by Martha Jones (9%).

The Villains/Monsters
And where would the Doctor and his companion be without someone to fight? Some of the villains or monsters are one-offs. They show up and are easily dispatched. But others have a presence. And easily at the top of the list of favorite monster or villain are the Daleks, for both total viewers (28%) and fans (46%). Don't look away, the Weeping Angels are the second favorite villain (18% of total viewers, 26% of fans), followed by the Time Lords (16% and 20%, respectively). For fans, rounding out the top five favorite villains are the Master (16%) and Davros, creator of the Daleks (14%).

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This Harris Poll was conducted online within the United States June 12 to 17, 2013 among 2,210 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.

All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words "margin of error" as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.

Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

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