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Doctor Who Magazine is the world's longest running magazine based on a television series.[1][2] It is currently published every four weeks and offers Doctor Who news, reviews, articles and comic stories. There are also occasional standalone publications. The abbreviation "DWM" is widely used in fandom to refer to the magazine, even though it has had other names that do not fit the acronym.

The magazine was born as Doctor Who Weekly, published by the UK branch of Marvel Comics in mid-October 1979. The first issue arrived on newsstands midway through broadcast of City of Death, and Tom Baker spent some time promoting it while in the midst of production of the ultimately cancelled Shada. At this time, a weekly comic was still a popular format in the United Kingdom. Doctor Who Weekly's initial cover price was 12 pence, at the time roughly equivalent to 25 American cents.

Although weekly sales were initially healthy, circulation regularly fell, increasingly so after the end of the curtailed Season 17. Following a failed attempt to attract back a younger audience, the decision was made – from its 44th issue in September 1980 – to relaunch the publication as a monthly. The cover title was changed to Doctor Who: A Marvel Monthly. (There is some debate as to whether this was actually meant to be the official title, given that “A Marvel Monthly” was a sub-heading commonly used across all the publisher’s monthly titles: also, certainly by its 50th issue, the interior indicia referred to the publication as “Doctor Who Monthly”.) At the start of 1982, coinciding with the broadcast of Season 19, the magazine was officially named Doctor Who Monthly. In 1984, the title was changed again, to The Official Doctor Who Magazine and in 1985 to The Doctor Who Magazine. Since issue 107, published in December 1985, the title has been, simply, Doctor Who Magazine. The title changes, very broadly speaking, reflected a change of editor or direction for the title, or to emphasise the publication’s status as an officially sanctioned publication. The continuity of the numbering system — largely the indication of whether a title is considered "continuously published" — has remained intact from October 1979 to the present day.

Since its first issue, a major feature of each issue has been an ongoing comic strip based upon the series. It has featured adventures of every incarnation of the Doctor and many of their TV companions. There have also been, from time to time, “back-up” comic strips featuring different characters from the Doctor Who universe. During the 1990s, DWM was affiliated with the Virgin New Adventures book line, publishing short stories (dubbed "Brief Encounters") related to the books and comic strips that linked closely with current New Adventures novels.

DWM 120

Issue 120, dated January 1987.

The magazine's logo has generally resembled the current on-screen series logo used by the TV series. Notable exceptions include the period from 1991 to 1999, when the magazine reverted to the "diamond logo" associated with the late Jon Pertwee and most of the Tom Baker era — in part, this was in recognition of the publication’s focus on a series which was no longer in production. (Editor Gary Gillatt also argued that BBC Enterprises had opted to brand their VHS releases of Doctor Who stories with the “diamond logo”.) The magazine belatedly switched to the logo introduced in the Paul McGann TV movie in 1999; this remained in use until a redesigned DWM adopted a variation of the new logo used for the revived TV series in 2005.

Marvel UK published the magazine until DWM 236 in 1996 when it was sold to Panini Publishing Ltd. Marvel Comics continued to publish DWM as a division of Panini until DWM 285 in 1999. Panini continues to publish Doctor Who Magazine as of 2024.

Over the years, many writers connected with the series have written for the magazine and others who have written for DWM have contributed to Doctor Who or its spin-offs. Correspondence collected over the course of several years between Doctor Who producer and lead writer Russell T Davies and DWM writer Benjamin Cook were collected in the book Doctor Who: The Writer's Tale in 2008; an expanded second edition was published in early 2010. The comic strip has, to date, been used as source material for two television stories: 2010's The Lodger and 2023’s The Star Beast. Contributors to DWM have also been featured in other similar publications such as Doctor Who annuals, Yearbooks and Storybooks.

In October 2008, DWM published its 400th issue. It celebrated its thirtieth anniversary in October 2009. It published its 500th issue in June 2016. In October 2019, DWM celebrated its 40th anniversary with DWM 544, and published its 600th issue in February 2024. It is recognised as the longest-running professionally published and licensed magazine based on an English-language television series; its associated comic strip is the longest-running comic based upon an English-language television series to be published without interruption.

DWM 480

Issue 480, dated December 2014.

In an appearance on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross in October 2006, Billie Piper revealed she was a regular subscriber to DWM and that she loved the magazine, defending it when Ross attempted to dismiss it as "only for geeks". (CD: Doctor Who at the BBC: The Tenth Doctor) Alexa Havins, in an interview published in DWM 437, also said she was a fan of the magazine, which was often available for reading on the set of Torchwood: Miracle Day.

In addition to these superlatives, Doctor Who Magazine is a survivor of the print medium, having now outlasted many long-running science fiction-based publications such as Starlog, which have in recent years abandoned print for website-only productions or closed down completely. In January 2010 the magazine was relaunched with a new look. In 2011, it published its first 100-page issue. In January 2013, the magazine was again redesigned, with the physical dimensions of issues being changed. In late 2013, a Doctor Who Magazine app was launched, allowing users to purchase easily navigable digital versions of issues.

Regular issues[]

Further information relating to the various periods of the magazine's publication can be found through the links below.

By "era"[]

From 1979 through to November 1985 the magazine was known by a variety of titles, including Doctor Who Weekly and names that referred to its monthly status. Issues in the following pages are arranged by the "eras" when the magazine was known by a slew of titles titles.

By year[]

From issue 107 in December 1985, the magazine was retitled, dropping "The" from its name to become, as it is known today, Doctor Who Magazine. All issues following this change are arranged by year based on their cover date; this is the date that is listed on the front of the magazine and indicates the last date the issue was current. It is not a publication date, rather it can be viewed as an expiry date.


Issue numbers[]

Issue Year Special stories
DWM 1 1979
DWM 50 1981
DWM 100 1985 PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey
DWM 150 1989
DWM 200 1993 PROSE: Rennigan's Record
DWM 250 1997 COMIC: A Life of Matter and Death
DWM 300 2001 AUDIO: Storm Warning (part 1) /
Last of the Titans (CD)
DWM 350 2004
DWM 400 2008
DWM 450 2012
DWM 500 2016 COMIC: The Stockbridge Showdown
DWM 550 2020
DWM 600 2024

Show anniversary[]

Issue Anniversary (Year) Special stories
DWMS Winter 1983/84 20th (1983)
DWM 141-142
DWMS 25th Anniversary Special
25th (1988) COMIC: Planet of the Dead
DWM 207
DWMS Winter 1993
30th (1993) COMIC: Time & Time Again
DWM 272 35th (1998) COMIC: Happy Deathday
DWM 337 40th (2003) COMIC: The Land of Happy Endings
DWM 456-461
DWM 467
50th (2013) COMIC: Hunters of the Burning Stone
COMIC: John Smith and the Common Men
DWM 485 10th (BBC Wales, 2015)
DWM 597 60th (2023)

DWM anniversary[]

Issue Anniversary (Year) Special stories
DWMS Tenth Anniversary Special 10th (1989)
DWM 283 20th (1999) COMIC: TV Action!
DWM 350 25th (2004)
DWM 414 30th (2009)
DWM 544 40th (2019)

"...is the Doctor!" covers[]

Comic strip reprints[]

Over the years, the Doctor Who comic strip has been reprinted – often with colour added (it was published in black-and-white before late 2001) – in a number of different publications. In the United States, Marvel Comics and, more recently, IDW Publishing have issued reprint titles in comic book and graphic novel format. Panini has reissued the comic strips in deluxe omnibus form and in magazine-sized publications (see Doctor Who Magazine graphic novels).

Distribution outside the UK[]

Distribution of DWM and its forebears outside the UK has been sporadic. In areas where Doctor Who has been popular it has found limited distribution through specialty stores such as comic book shops and cult/fantasy shops.

During the Doctor Who Weekly era of the magazine it was not circulated in North America, but regular distribution through Marvel US occurred during the 1980s, following its move to monthly publication. This continued into the late 1990s. When ownership of the magazine shifted to Panini, distribution in North America became less widespread. Few magazine shops and comic book retailers carried it month-to-month, only occasional issues.

The re-emergence in the popularity of Doctor Who post-2005 has meant that Doctor Who Magazine can be found in most newsagents within Australia.

Due to distance considerations for areas such as North America and Australia, (two of the larger markets for the magazine) the magazine is often available on or after its cover date, rather than the few weeks before the magazine is distributed locally in the United Kingdom.

Whilst this lag time often means articles intended to promote upcoming episodes in the United Kingdom arrive overseas out of sync with their UK broadcasts, they sometimes fall into sync with their local broadcasts. However the lag time does impact on a reader's ability to participate in deadline-specific activities such as contests, polls and surveys. Aside from this, the magazines generally arrive intact, including giveaways and premiums such as free CDs and cards included with the original UK release.

Inserts and special features[]

From the very beginning, occasional magazine issues have featured special bonus items and inserts. The first few issues in 1979 came with free transfers and many issues have come packaged with posters and other paraphernalia. These premiums have become less frequent in recent years, but still occur at least a couple times a year.

Notable items included with DWM releases over the years have included flexi-discs of soundtrack music, CDs of specially commissioned audio dramas by Big Finish Productions and in the summer of 2008, issue 397 came packaged with one of twenty-seven vintage Target novelisations (or related books). Issue 411 in August 2009 included a code that allowed readers to download an exclusive Big Finish audio drama, The Mists of Time, for a limited time. All issues following this issue that included a free or exclusive audio story with the magazine included it in this matter, as a digital download rather than as a physical CD.

Unusually, as many magazines strip inserts before shipping overseas due to licensing issues (or are prevented from international distribution as a result such as Doctor Who Adventures), DWM's international distribution includes most inserts, including the Big Finish CDs/downloads and Target Books bonus.

Special editions and other publications[]

Doctor Who Magazine has been in continuous publication since its launch, offering special editions each year in addition to its regular issues.

A number of sister publications have been published at various times. Some ongoing features alternated between titles.

In addition, DWM editorial staff also oversaw a spin-off publication, Doctor Who Insider, which Panini initially published exclusively for North American markets.


In January 2010, Doctor Who Magazine became one of – possibly the only – fan-focused magazine to itself become the subject of a fanzine, with the launch of Vworp Vworp!, a fanzine dedicated to the Doctor Who comic strips and the history of DWM.


Based on Image Year(s) Issues
1973 logo 1979-1980 DWM 1-43
Doctor Who Target Books logo 1980 DWM 44-45
1980 logo 1980-1981 DWM 46-49
1981-1982 DWM 50-60
1982-1983 DWM 61-79
1983-1984 DWM 80-84
1984 DWM 85-91
1984-1985 DWM 92-98
1985 DWM 99-106
1985-1987 DWM 107-129
1987 logo 1987-1988 DWM 130-134
1988-1991 DWM 135-169
1973 logo 1991-1994 DWM 170-219
1994-1997 DWM 220-249
DWM logo 1997-1999 DWM 250-278
1996 logo 1999-2003 DWM 279-325
2003-2005 DWM 326-351
2005 logo 2005-2007 DWM 352-389
2008-2010 DWM 390-416
2010 logo 2010-2012 DWM 417-449
2012 logo 2012-2013 DWM 450-455
2013-2014 DWM 456-476
2014 logo 2014-2018 DWM 477-499,
DWM 501-522
1973 logo 2016 DWM 500
2018 logo 2018-2022 DWM 523-583
2022 logo Doctor Who Magazine diamond logo 2022-present DWM 584-present

External links[]


  1. Marcus (01 April, 2010). Doctor Who Magazine wins Guinness World Record. Doctor Who News. Retrieved on 26 February 2013.
  2. Touted on the magazine's cover from issue 421.