Polly (Doctor Who)

Polly (Doctor Who)


series=Doctor Who
affiliation=First Doctor Second Doctor
start= The War Machines
finish= The Faceless Ones
portrayed=Anneke Wills

Polly is a fictional character played by Anneke Wills in the long-running British science fiction television series "Doctor Who". A young woman from 1966, she was a companion of the First and Second Doctors and a regular in the programme from 1966 to 1967.

Character history

Polly first appears in the First Doctor serial, "The War Machines", where she is working as a secretary to Professor Brett. Brett develops the artificial intelligence known as WOTAN, and Polly meets the Doctor and Dodo when they come to investigate it. Polly befriends Dodo and takes her to a London nightclub called the Inferno, where they meet Ben Jackson and try to cheer up the merchant seaman. When Polly is accosted by another patron in the Inferno, Ben comes to her rescue. Eventually, Ben and Polly aid the Doctor in his fight against WOTAN when the computer tries to take over the world. They are the bearers of the news of Dodo's decision to stay in 1966 to the Doctor, and accidentally get carried away in the TARDIS when they try to return Dodo's key to the time machine.

Polly, in contrast to Dodo, is a more sophisticated and hip young woman of the 1960s — vivacious, attractive, and alternately shy and aggressive. She and Ben make an odd couple, but she is receptive to Ben's protective urges, and he in turn finds her elegant and , giving her the nickname "Duchess". Polly is present with Ben when the First Doctor regenerates into the Second, and continues to travel with the Second Doctor.

Eventually, the TARDIS finds its way back to 1966 London (in "The Faceless Ones") on the very day Ben and Polly had left (although about a year had passed for them). They decide to remain behind to resume their lives without disruption as the Doctor and Jamie travel on.

Polly was never given a last name in the series. According to production notes, she was meant to be Polly Wright, but this was not used in case it would be confused with previous companion Barbara Wright. In "The Faceless Ones", a double of Polly is named Michelle Leuppi; an apparent mishearing of this and misinterpretation of the context led to unofficial reference works giving Polly the last name of "Lopez". Anneke Wills suggested the name "Bettingham-Smith", after one of her friends. In the Virgin Missing Adventures novel "Invasion of the Cat-People" by Gary Russell, Wright is expressly given as Polly's last name. The canonicity of the spin-off novels is open to interpretation.

What happens to Polly after her return to Earth is not known. The Doctor seems to think that Ben will become an Admiral and that Polly will look after Ben, but it is unclear if this is a prediction or simply wishing them well.

Other appearances

In the spin-off short story "Mondas Passing" by Paul Grice (in the anthology "Short Trips") which takes place in 1986, it is revealed that Ben and Polly have gone their separate ways and married other people. By 1999, Polly is running a record company, has divorced and has an estranged son named Mikey, in the short story "That Time I Nearly Destroyed The World Whilst Looking For a Dress" by Joseph Lidster (in the Big Finish Productions anthology ""). She and Ben meet again at the end of that story and admit their love for each other. Once again, the canonicity of spin-off media has yet to be officially determined.

Anneke Wills has played various other characters in the "Doctor Who" audio plays produced by Big Finish, most notably "Zagreus" and "The Next Life" in the role of Lady Louisa Pollard, mother of the Eighth Doctor companion Charley Pollard.

List of appearances


;Season 3
*"The War Machines" ;Season 4
*"The Smugglers"
*"The Tenth Planet"
*"The Power of the Daleks"
*"The Highlanders"
*"The Underwater Menace"
*"The Moonbase"
*"The Macra Terror"
*"The Faceless Ones"


;Virgin Missing Adventures
*"Invasion of the Cat-People" by Gary Russell

;Past Doctor Adventures
*"The Murder Game" by Steve Lyons
*"The Roundheads" by Mark Gatiss
*"Dying in the Sun" by Jon de Burgh Miller
*"Ten Little Aliens" by Stephen Cole

;Telos Doctor Who novellas
*"Wonderland" by Mark Chadbourn

hort stories

*"Mondas Passing" by Paul Grice ("Short Trips")
*"That Time I Nearly Destroyed the World Whilst Looking For a Dress" by Joseph Lidster ("")
*"Pluto" by Dale Smith ("")
*"Do You Dream in Colour" by Gary Russell ("")
*"The Slave War" by Una McCormack ("")


*"The Tests of Trefus" by David Brian ("Doctor Who Annual 1968")
*"World Without Night" by David Brian ("Doctor Who Annual 1968")
*"Food for Thought" by Nicholas Briggs and Colin Andrew ("Doctor Who Magazine" 218–220)

External links

* [http://tardis.wikia.com/wiki/Polly Polly] at [http://tardis.wikia.com/wiki/ "The TARDIS Index File" website]
* [http://www.bbc.co.uk/doctorwho/classic/episodeguide/companions/page9.shtml Polly on the BBC's "Doctor Who" website]

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