Read David Tennant 's Thoughts On Patrick Troughton

"If Patrick Troughton hadn’t done what he did ... I wouldn’t be sitting here today."
David Tennant

David Tennant was one of the guest contributors to the second special in the monthly BBC America series Doctor Who: The Doctors Revisited. He joined Steven Moffat, Caroline Skinner, Wendy Padbury, Neil Gaiman, Frazer Hines and John Barrowman to reflect on the effect that Patrick Troughton's portrayal of the Second Doctor had on the show. 

In stark contract to William Hartnell's rather formal, controlled version of the Doctor, Patrick Troughton revelled in a lighter, clownish portrayal, a "cosmic hobo rather than a gentleman of the universe", he was naughty and mischievous, more prone to physical clowning and less of a figure of authority.

However, David observes that the humour hid the real nature of the Doctor. "He’s much more of a buffoon although most of the time it’s a slightly dishonest buffoonery." he says, "He’s using it to disarm people. Underneath it there’s this steeliness and brilliance.
"You don’t doubt for a second that he’s a Time Lord and he’s brilliant and he’s gifted beyond our imaginings…and yet at the same time he seems like a little scruffy hobgoblin of a man."

The arrival of the Second Doctor was an important moment in the history of the programme, showing as it did that the Doctor could change his whole appearance and personality, turning into someone else entirely to cheat death. As Steven Moffat explains, you discover that the Doctor that you have known all along is one of many potential Doctors. And with a new actor, the show itself changed to focus more upon the Doctor. 

David explains, "As the Doctor moves to become the focus of the show more he becomes more involved in every  way, so you see Patrick Troughton running around in a way that I don’t think William Hartnell ever did."

The programme explored the Second Doctor's companions, Jamie, Victoria and Zoe, and also took a look at some of the foes that they faced, in particular the Ice Warriors and the Cybermen. David said of the Cybermen, a threat faced more than once by his version of the Doctor, "They are a race that slowly started replacing first of all an organ here and a limb there and eventually they replaced their entire bodies and within that lost any semblance of humanity. Reproducing yourself again and again is the ultimate necessity for life, I guess, so it’s become a very simple formula for them as they parade through the universe."

On the legacy that Patrick Troughton left Doctor Who, David was beyond generous in his recognition of what the actor had done for the show and the role of the Doctor.
"I think Patrick Troughton created the Doctor as he is now." he says, "William Hartnell created something that was unique and brilliant, but actually the Doctor we recognise today is much more Patrick Troughton’s Doctor. We’ve all sort of done our version of kind of what Patrick Troughton did. He gave the show a way to keep going. He allows it to still exist.
"If Patrick Troughton hadn’t done what he did so confidently  and with such charm and so brilliantly I wouldn’t be sitting here today."

The next episode of The Doctors Revisited covering the Third Doctor as played by Jon Pertwee will be shown some time during the last week of March on BBC America