I have a new favourite Tom Baker interview. It was conducted for Australia’s ABC Television to promote the fifteenth season, and includes a lengthy digression onto the subject of what would happen in the Doctor met Superman. The transcript is below, but to get the full impact you really have to watch the video.
Q: What does it feel like to be in Australia, considering you travel the universe, you span 500 years?
A: Oh, good. Good.
Q: Sometimes they say Australia’s 500 years behind the rest of the world. What’s your assessment of that?
A: Oh, I would’ve thought it’s longer than that, isn’t it?
Q: I hope not. Now you’re starting your new series tomorrow night, four nights a week at 6.30. You must get in some awful strife. Can you let us in on some secrets?
A: Well, the first one has a very messy monster. ‘Horror of Fang Rock’, it’s called. And in a series of ‘Doctor Who’ type coincidences… It’s not a bad script at all, I think that viewers might like it. I hope they do, because there seems to be a big interest in it.
Q: Are you surprised by how popular ‘Doctor Who’ is, both here and in Britain?
A: Well it’s very difficult to believe anything that happens on the other side of the world, isn’t it? I’ve never been to Australia before, so to arrive here and be so warmly welcomed, especially by young children, is wonderful. I knew the series was popular here, but I didn’t appreciate it, and now I appreciate it and I enjoy it.
Q: Your theme song was a bit hit in the charts a couple of years ago, and now there’s a disco version. Have you heard the disco version?
A: Mmm. Yes, I have.
Q: Will we ever see Dr. Who and the monsters dance to it?
A: No. No, they’re not brave enough back home to let me do that. I’d like to do that very much.
Q: The disco version?
A: (smiles) Yes.
Q: Now, with the advent of ‘Superman’ coming to the big screen, do you think there’s ever a chance that Dr. Who and Superman may run into each other?
A: Well that’s a nice idea, but what would be the point? I mean, Superman wouldn’t be any opposition, would he, because… well…
Q: You both have a similiarity with phone boxes, though, don’t you?
A: Ah, yes, but that’s the only way. I suppose Superman only uses a phone box because he’s rather prudish and modest, and doesn’t want to take his knickers off in public. But I think compared to the character of Dr. Who, he’s a bit of a bonehead, isn’t he, Superman? He punches things out. Whereas the character I’m involved with tries to think it out.
Q: Now, I’ve often wondered, does Dr. Who wake up in the morning and get confused about the time? Because you only have to travel from Sydney to Perth to get confused about the time. You must get really confused.
A: Yes. I am. I’m in a permanent state of confusion.