The evolution of the costumes worn by the main character of Doctor Who is a fascinating progression: The First Doctor’s vaguely Victorian attire transitioned to the Second Doctor’s ill-fitting hobo gear, through the dandy Third, and the intentionally-designed-as-a-uniform looks of Four (albeit more in his second, all-maroon look), in the Fifth Doctor’s cricket gear and the Sixth Doctor’s intentionally garish ensemble.  From that peak, Seven and Eight moved back down the crazy scale somewhat, and the new series debuted with the Ninth Doctor wearing his trademark leather coat over dark sweaters and pants, giving him a look designed to be so unremarkable that it’s almost drab.  After his example, the modern Doctors have all worn relatively low-key attire, including Thirteen’s regular t-shirt and culottes look that wouldn’t be out of place on modern-day Earth, leading us to today’s #TimeTravelShenanigans query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) notes that The Twelfth Doctor is still wearing his original costume’s red-lined frock coat over the his t-shirt/hoodie look, bridging both eras, asking: Do you prefer traditional Doctor costuming looks or the more modern casual-dress Doctor?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Jarmo Seppänen on

    I think Doctor should look a bit weird, someone who doesn’t quite belong. I don’t care how its done, but it should still be there.

  2. Daniel Langsdale on

    I like the more traditional dress as someone who’s at least a little bit out of touch with contemporary fashion. The Doctor is out of time, so should the Doctor’s clothes be.

  3. The attire that I prefer is intrinsically tied to which Doctor I prefer. Each Doctor had a costume that reflected their personality, and in most cases was chosen (within limits) by the actor that was portraying the Doctor at the time.
    From the first Doctors Edwardian headmaster “I am here to teach you” attire, to the War Doctors (which is where 9 gets it from) practical leather jacket and sturdy pants, to the “13th” doctors “I am trying to break out of a long depression” by wearing bright and cheerful attire.
    As it should be- the attire reflects the Doctor. And in essence by asking “which attire?” , you are asking “which Doctor? ”
    IRL I have no real preference for a particular style so long as it fits with what the persons or Doctors personality is.

  4. Fez are cool.
    I prefer the modern doctor’s casual modern look. It looks like regular outfit with just a little tweek of Doctor

  5. I’d love to see a return to the velvet jacket and cape wearing of Jon Pertwee’s 3rd Doctor. Even if the next Doctor is female I think that could still totally work. Dress her in a similar fashion to how Missy was, but with less dark colours. Maybe a kind of Victorian-era Carman Sandiego.

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