Doctor Who: 5 American Presidents The Doctor Has Met
All of space and time at his disposal, and yet The Doctor always seems to end up somewhere on Earth. Man, it's almost like it's cheaper there or something.
All joking aside, Doctor Who started out as an educational children's program that was supposed to teach kids about science and history. These days it's wandered a little far from that premise (I would love a good, old-school historical outing with no monsters myself), but everyone likes it when the Tardis shows us some famous person or event that we've only read about in books.
Though he's keener on England and Europe, The Doctor does occasionally manage to find the time to meet up with some of the men who have served as president of the United States. Five in particular stand out.
Thomas Jefferson (3rd POTUS): As one of our most iconic founding fathers, Thomas Jefferson is a towering historical figure in American history. He invented the dumbwaiter, made the Louisiana Purchase and also founded the University of Virginia. He was also a man as strange as The Doctor himself, speaking five languages and having a passionate interest in science, religion, and philosophy.
Perhaps Jefferson's most revered contribution to United States history was his authorship of the Declaration of Independence. If the Tenth Doctor is to be believed, though, Jefferson had a little help. In deleted scenes from "The Lazarus Experiment," The Doctor claimed to have aided Jefferson in the early drafts, saying he was the man behind the phrase "the pursuit of happiness." He keeps a first draft of the Declaration in his tuxedo pocket.
William McKinley (25th POTUS): Though he's rarely mentioned among the company of the great presidents, McKinley was an upstanding man who led America to victory in the Spanish American War, and may be one of the most imperial presidents in our country's history. What he tends to be most famous for, unfortunately, is being shot, leading to the rise of Theodore Roosevelt as a legendary president who soon eclipsed his old and much beloved boss in the public imagination.
In the Keith Topping novel Byzantium!, the First Doctor mentions he was inside the Temple of Music when anarchist Leon Czolgosz approached the president with his guns. It's possible with his advanced knowledge that The Doctor could have saved McKinley, as it was infection brought on by probing with bare fingers that caused McKinley's death rather than the actual bullet. Knowing the First Doctor's stance on changing history, it's unlikely he would have done so; however, he surely would have felt a kinship with the president who begged attackers to cease beating Czolgosz even as he lay wounded.
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