New to Doctor Who or returning after a break? Check out our guides designed to help you find your way!



David Whitaker (born 18 April 1928 in Knebworth, England-died 4 February 1980[1] in Fulham, London, England) helped create Doctor Who and served as the series' first script editor, beginning with An Unearthly Child and ending with The Dalek Invasion of Earth. At the time his involvement with the show began, he was working from a caravan in the BBC Television Centre car park. (TCH 1)

He also wrote Doctor Who serials, including The Crusade, The Power of the Daleks and The Evil of the Daleks, with Power being the debut of the Second Doctor. Other Dalek work included writing the Dalek comic strip in TV Century 21, and the 1965 stage play The Curse of the Daleks.

In 1964, Whitaker was commissioned by publishers Frederick Muller to write two novels based on the series. They were Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks (an adaptation of the series' first Dalek story, The Daleks, by Terry Nation; later republished as Doctor Who and the Daleks) and Doctor Who and the Crusaders (an adaptation of his own serial, The Crusade). They were originally published by Armada Paperbacks for the kingly price of 2'6. In 1973 they were reprinted by Target Books and, along with a third novel by Bill Strutton, became the core of the long-running and popular series of Doctor Who novels.

Whitaker also co-wrote, with Nation, three books of Dalek-related stories published around the same time as his novelisations: The Dalek Book, The Dalek World, and The Dalek Outer Space Book.


In 1980, Whitaker was commissioned to write a novelisation of The Enemy of the World but died before completion. In 1993, a previously unpublished short story, Rennigan's Record, was published in DWM 200.

Whitaker's first wife, the actress June Barry, described him as having "impeccable manners that somehow always reminded you of a bygone age."[2]


A documentary on David's life and career was the subject of the documentary Looking for David, which was released on the Blu-ray box set The Collection: Season Two.

David's interview for The Doctor Who Review was read by an actor for the documentary The Power of the Daleks - From Script to Screen.






Short stories[]

Comic strips[]

Stage plays[]


External links[]


  1. Find a Grave
  2. Doctor Who: [[The Early Years (reference book)|]]