The popular British TV show Doctor Who mixes multiple genres, mainly science fiction and adventure. Considering how often the Doctor saves the day and how many planets he visits, it makes sense that the majority of alien races the Doctor encounters are antagonists. However, there are a few notable rules to this exception, both from the classic and the renewed Doctor Who series.


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Some races and people that the Doctor came across turned out to be friendly and became his allies. Other times, they were originally presented as antagonists, but the show later revealed that wasn’t quite the case. Overall, the Doctor has come across more enemies than friends, but the show also offered some amazing alien races that weren’t hostile.

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5 Adipose

It’s hard to stay mad at the Adipose children, because even though they hurt multiple people, they’re not at fault themselves. The one to blame in the episode “Partners in Crime” is their caretaker, Miss Harris. The Doctor soon realizes that the Adipose aren’t the bad guys here, and allows them to travel to their new home. So even though it might be a bit disturbing to see the Adipose children separate from the human bodies, the peaceful ending in which they wave to the Doctor and Donna before they go, leaves the initial bad impression of the walking fat Adipose behind.

They also were responsible for one of Donna’s best quotes in the show. When she waves back, Donna, who has trouble believing what she’s doing, says simply: “I’m waving to fat.” On an even brighter side, the Adipose are one of the few alien species that are child-friendly, just like the show was originally supposed to be.

4 Time Lords

While it’s true that some Time Lords the Doctor has encountered were hostile (most notably the Master), others joined his side and helped him on more than one occasion. The Doctor had a good relationship with his granddaughter Susan who used to travel with him in the TARDIS in the classic Doctor Who series. Another Time Lady who went on to become the Doctor’s companion was Romana.

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And finally, even though River Song was only partially a Time Lady, she switched sides in the end and even married the Doctor. This proves that despite the Time Lords’ bad reputation, not all of them are evil at heart. After all, the show heavily implies that even the Master was once a different person and he and the Doctor used to be good friends.

3 The Traken People

One of the lesser-known species, especially for those unfamiliar with the classic Doctor Who, is the Traken people. The Doctor’s companion Nyssa came from this planet and decided to help the Doctor fight the Master. Unfortunately for Nyssa, the Master killed her father. That led to Nyssa traveling with the Doctor for a time, before she left to work on a cure for dangerous disease.

Nyssa was intelligent and kind, proving that not all alien species the Doctor comes across are automatically hostile to the Time Lord. Because of the Master’s actions, the show didn’t get to explore the Traken culture as much as it would have deserved. But at the very least, the show provided the audience a glimpse into the lives of these unique people.

2 Silurians & Sontarans (Sometimes)

Other than overly hostile species, Doctor Who also offers some which are antagonistic for the most part…except for individuals who break the mold. Madame Vastra, a Silurian, is such a prominent character that she deserves a mention. She woke up in the Victorian times and set up her own investigative business. She also married a human, her former maid Jenny, proving she wasn’t prejudiced toward humans like other members of the same species.

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As for Sontarans, the warlike species isn’t known for getting along well with others, but Drax is another exception to the rule. He joined Madame Vastra and Jenny and the trio helped the Doctor on more than one occasion. They did so well on the show that they even appeared in several Doctor Who books. Just like with Time Lords, Madame Vastra and Drax prove that it’s not always a good idea to judge all members of one species as evil.

1 Whifferdill

One of the most obscure companions the Doctor ever had comes from the Whifferdill species. Even the fans of the show won’t remember Frobisher since he only appeared in the Doctor Who Magazine and in audio stories. Frobisher had the power to shape-shift, but his favorite form was a penguin. This explains why Frobisher never played a part on the show: it would be difficult to portray him in a way that wouldn’t come across as ridiculous. Of course, doesn’t mean Frobisher can’t show up in the future.

Since he went on multiple adventures with the Doctor, the show would have a lot of source material to draw from. Unlike many companions, Frobisher survived the travels with the Doctor in one piece and in the end left the TARDIS to open a bar, making well for himself. Shape-shifters are often portrayed as villainous in science fiction stories, such as in Marvel (Skrulls) or in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (Changelings), but Frobisher and the Whifferdill prove that’s not always the case.

MORE: The Best Doctor Who Companions, Ranked



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