Top 10 Best Doctor Who Episodes of All Time

This list contains the top ten best Doctor Who episodes from the original 1963 launch date to today.
The Top Ten
1 Blink

The fact that a story by Steven Moffat tops this list saddens me greatly. Even though this story was not bad, the incredible damage he has done to the programme since taking charge in 2010 should mean that no story from him should be anywhere near the top of this list. His mistakes are too many to mention here. Doctor Who will never be great again until he leaves.

Great episode with a holy statue creatures. A little bit scary and the new things that doctor was taken by the angels leaving an unknown girl to take care of it.

Very nerve racking and suspenseful. Made me scream every time when sally's boy-partner (nightingale) blinked and the angel popped up in front of him.

The Doctor is barely in it at all, but his presence is tangible, the monsters are iconic, and the characters are relatable.

2 The Day of the Doctor

A fitting celebration for Doctor Who's 50th anniversary. Billie Piper excels at playing her old character, but not her old character. Getting Tenant to return alongside Matt Smith led to an excellent meeting. John Hurt makes a very different Doctor, but as the Moment says "different looks, same software" (if that id a misquote I apologize). But the absolute best part was when you see all the Doctors trapping Gallifrey in a paralell universe.

Good episode. Replying to what someone else said, the war doctor wasn't a "stupid plot twist", it was actually because Christopher eccleston couldn't make it (well, that's not entirely true but we'll leave it at that.

If I could vote for another this would have been it. I love watching this episode, and it never gets old. I still laugh and cry, even after the tenth watch.

I actually wasn't extremely happy with the war doctor being placed in there, it could of worked just as well with Paul Mcgann, but Moffat just wanted another stupid plot twist.

3 The End of Time

Such an amazing episode. The perfect way to say goodbye to the greatest doctor David Tennant... An emotional send off as the doctor revisited the greatest companions to ever appear in dr who. John Simm also played an excellent job as the master making him my favourite villain and I love his send off too with his heroic moment

David Tennant made me love Doctor Who and he is now my favorite actor and celebrity crush. I had a crying meltdown when he said "I don't want to go." In my brain I said to myself, "I don't want you to, either! " This was a very heart-breaking episode, but it definitely was the best!

This episode is so amazing. The master is so much better in this episode compared to the season 3 finale and Wilf is great as a companion. The tenth Doctor's regeneration is the saddest moment in Doctor Who.

Actually I think this one kinda sucked.
"I don't want to go."
Go where?! You're just regenerating Doc!
And where did he find the time to visit all his companions?

4 The Empty Child / The Doctor Dances

Not my favourite, but I just think that it deserves to be in the top 3 because it definitely makes chills run down your spine! And not to mention Christopher Eccleston, John Barrowman and Billie Piper's FANTASTIC acting! It was an episode that marked the formation of a wonderful trio. It's a shame that Captain didn't stick along with Nine after regeneration and that Christopher Eccleston left after one season! Would have loved to seen more of him. I salute Christopher Eccleston because it's a tough job to bring back a faded T.V. show back to the top after so many years and introduce it to an entirely different generation, and I'd say that he did his role FANTASTIC-ally (get what I mean? )!

Very chilling and dark two-parter, definitely worth a watch. One of Series 1's best, and mostly deserving of a spot near the top, although it being in the top 5 is pushing it - still, a brilliant story with many creepy scenes. Love the ending, and the gas-masked child is genius. Captain Jack and Nancy are great too.

Although I think the 9th Doctor is a terrible actor, the script is excellent. It is, along with Blink, the scariest episode. I think the last couple of minutes was a bit forced, but not enough to detract from a great 90 minutes of entertainment.

When I watched this it was the most nerve racking besides blink. The gas masks stuck to there faces made it a whole lot scarier. This episode was amazing and made me want to go back and watch it again.

5 Human Nature / The Family of Blood

Yes! This is obviously the best story of all time for me. Both parts are practically perfect on every level... the core premise, that the Doctor becomes human, is so genius, and the episode's are even better than that, with emotion, a strong threat (the Family being genuinely unsettling), a great setting, and knock-out performances and writing. Happy to see it's in the top ten, sad it just missed out on the top 5.

"Tremendous acting by David Tennant. After only an hour or so he makes you love John Smith as much as you love the Doctor. "Family of Blood" is certainly the saddest episode I can think of. A unique story that revels in its own simplicity."

The main reason I like this episode is because of how brilliant Martha is. She's put under so much pressure to save the doctor and has to deal with so much racism. This is definitely her best episode

I recently read the book that was the basis of this episode and it was brilliant.

This, was also of quality, except David Tennant.

6 Silence in the Library / Forest of the Dead

THE best episode. It was exceptional. We had the suspense leaving us clutching the edge of our seats, the bit of scariness that added more flavor, the creepiness that made it so amazing. We had the best doctor, the best companion (Donna) AND River Song which made it even better. The Vashda Narada took advantage fear many of us have and gave us an impossible, nerve wracking enemy. The bit with Cal gave it that extra mile, it used was frighteningly close to the world we have and the world of doctor who. To think that the real world was not real and the dream world was made it so interesting. BEST EPISODE EVER!

This episode was suspenseful, exciting, terrifying and heart breaking. By far the best episode of doctor who from the introduction to mysterious River Song, the creepy Vashda Narada, the strangeness of CAL, Donna's dream and the Doctor dealing with it all the episode was amazing and even better on a second viewing after knowing River Song: making the episode incredibly sad.

Slightly better than Empty Child, mostly because the second part is absolutely amazing. The first part is good, but not a total classic like many say, but Forest of the Dead left me stunned. So many levels of emotion and imagination... probably in my top 10, but not the VERY best, as Part 1 is merely good. River Song is great, though.

First time seeing river song in this creepy episode. It makes it even sadder to watch after the getting to know river in later series. The monster is really scary and the twist with the dream world adds a lot to the episode. All actors played their roles really well, and Donna was particularly good in this episode.

7 Heaven Sent

It is probably one of the most emotional and gripping episodes in my opinion alongside listen. By having only the doctor it makes it so much more impactful, as you get these stunning monologues. I think everyone who made this episode did an amazing job because it doesn't just feel like doctor who, it feels like Shakespeare. It makes you see things differently. Capaldi is definitely the best doctor and this episode just reinforced that for me. The bit where you get the replays of what happened with every doctor who goes there, could have come of as boring but it didn't. When he finally broke through the wall, it was like all his hard work has paid off. You really felt like you were there and you forget that it is acting. It feels so real.

Showcases what Capaldi can do with excellent writing. It's a shame so many of his stories were terrible one offs. This episode is beautiful writing with a powerful performance from an underrated Doctor.

This cemented Capaldi as my favorite Doctor. It was all on him and am not sure any of the other doctors could have pulled it off as beautiful. You forget he is an actor. He is the Doctor. And this specific Regeneration of the Doctor is the most intense, tender, tenacious, and strong-willed. And the least self-righteous. Such a great episode! Made me a fan of Capaldi in that I am watching his other movies/shows.

A simply phenomenal episode. Moffat has really outdone himself with an intricately layered script that explores the ins and outs of what it really means to be the Doctor; it peels back the facade and shows the Doctor in his raw, most pure state.

This episode could have easily been bad, or just very, very boring. But everyone involved brought their A-game: a beautiful and brilliant script by Steven Moffat, mind-boggingly effective direction by Rachel Talalay, and an incredibly moving performance by all the actors (Peter Capaldi, Peter Capaldi, etc.).

I'll be honest, series 9 is my least favorite series of the Moffat era, but this episode is quite possibly the revival's finest hour yet. Will it ever be topped? Not likely, but with luck, anything' possible.

8 The Waters of Mars

My #1 favourite Doctor who episode. Much more ephasis on the Doctor himself, David Tennant just steals the show in this. Super suspenseful and it had some really deep moments.

This was the first Doctor Who episode I ever saw. Once I saw it, I was hooked!

My very first episode as well and as the same when I watched it I was hooked.

Perfect episode. I love what it was trying to do with the Doctor.

9 Vincent and the Doctor

This isn't just an episode of Doctor Who, it's an artistic statement about beauty and pain and depression, and it also shows that the Doctor doesn't always win, which is akin to the early episodes of the original series where victory sometimes meant getting back to the TARDIS safely. In this instance, Vincent and the Doctor murdered an innocent Krafayis that was just confused, scared and lonely.

This episode has more emotional impact that any other episode, in my opinion. It also tackles the significant topic of depression and mental illness very well. I also cried several times through, and the scene at the end is heart-wrenching.

Vincent and the Doctor is a heart wrenching episode without a real villain, which I think is a good thing in this case. I love it when time travel is used to do stuff like this instead of incredibly confusing season finales like The Wedding of River Song

Hard to beat the emotional impact of the episode. Seeing the painting through Pond's eyes at the very end was truly touching. It also made foe a good starting point on a discussion about mental illness with my boys.

Beautifully done. Wish I could vote for at least 5 so I could put this one on my list as #2. I'm not someone to cry easily, especially watching a television show, but every single time he sees those paintings in the gallery...

10 The Eleventh Hour

I was crying.. I am very easily moved by things but this episode is one of few that made me want to watch it over and over again, very tragic but amazingly preformed. Go matt smith!

Yes! His is when Amy Pond is introduced! I have fallen in love with her Scottish accent! She is fearless, and I love how she has Rory drooling over her!

Can not count how many times I have seen this episode with my family. My kids love it as much as I do. Wish I could vote again and get this one up to at least 3rd place.

I thought Matt was absolutely brilliant in this one! Even though I was sad to see David go, Matt stole my heart in his first episode.

The Contenders
11 Dalek

This is a really good one. A great introduction to the series's greatest villians, with brilliant performances from Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper. An all-round excellent episode - one of Series 1's better ones.

Established the Time War and the Daleks as a threat extraordinarily well in just one episode.

How could such a beautiful and perfectly written story be so low on the list?

First of 9 is the best and this is like the only episode I thought the daleks we're cool

12 Utopia / The Sound of Drums / The Last of the Time Lords

This is an interesting one - on the one hand, it's so magnificently ambitious, so entertaining, so great on so many levels... on the other hand it's camp and a little unfocused, but still okay. Utopia I actually believe to be the weakest of the three, as, although the ending is excellent, most of the story feels like a standard 'base-under-siege' story, with not much going on. Sound of Drums is better, with a focus on the Master's manipulation and his relationship to the Doctor and Galiffrey, although the third act falls apart slightly. Then comes Last of the Time Lords, which I actually really enjoy, even if there are many obvious flaws in it - but it's just such an entertaining story, if not the best crafted one. Overall, this is a pretty decent, but extremely flawed finale, but I don't consider as good as Parting of the Ways, Doomsday or Journey's End.

I liked it, but I don't really like thinking that that's how the human race ends, but perhaps some got away.

The master dies or does he dun dun dun!

Sound of the drums is one of my favourite episodes because just because

13 City of Death

I personally believe this is the best episode of the show. It's witty and has a brilliant plot. Love it!

Awesome episode, stands the test of time and holds up perfectly!

"What a wonderful butler. He's so violent! "
It's everything I loved about Dr Who.

I hate how so much of this list is biased towards NuWho. Put this higher!

14 A Good Man Goes to War

A great episode that should have ended Series 6! It also featured the first appearance of the Paternoster Gang, my favorite recurring characters.

This episode was an awesome intro to Team Vastra, who everyone admits to liking! Madame Kovarian, The Headless and Dorium in one wonderful episode! All set on an asteroid! The twists and turns had me on the edge of my seat.

The characterization in this could easily put it in the top 5. If I could vote again it would be in my top five for sure.

The plot twist with river here changes everything. Good episode. Lots of action.

15 Horror of Fang Rock

This was a great episode and all, but I still can't get over the fact that someone hacked this episode and broadcasted a Max Headroom intrusion.

This story is so depressing, but it has a strong plot and I never lose my attention. Plus, the mystery behind the aliens are frighting!

I'm fine if Max Headroom interrupts a sports game. But do not dare interrupt Doctor Who!

If the Max Headroom intrusion happened today millions of people would go ballistic.

16 Midnight

Is was such an amazing episode full of suspense and kind of scary too. If you have never seen doctor who then this is a good episode to watch because you don't need know a lot of backstory other than who the doctor is.

Beautifully written and acted. Shows the extremes of paranoia and fear. "Take a journey across a diamond planet called midnight," says the Doctor. "What could possibly go wrong?"

A cliched premise is still cliched, but at least here it is given a good understanding of the terrors of crowd mentality.

Wow. This is very intense and cool with efficient writing. It is tight and nice to see the doctor without a companion.

17 The Pandorica Opens / The Big Bang

It is really sad when you watch it for the second time and every time they say something like "it was built to contain something to stop it harming the rest of the universe", and the Doctor wonders what it could be that was so dangerous, you know how ironic that is.

"I. AM. TALKING! Who's got the Pandorica? I do. Who's coming to take it from me? ...Just remember who's standing in your way. ...And then! And then! Do the smart thing. Let somebody else try first." BOOM. Great Speech

This was by far the best episode. Every single alien in Doctor Who you can think of in the new series is in the episode along with a great cliffhanger

"Hello Stonehenge! "

Why is this rated so low? This was by far the best season finale.

18 The Caves of Androzani

Always been my favourite. But can everyone stop calling Doctor Who stories "episodes"? Most of these stories actually have several episodes...

Such a fantastic episode. Always Number 1 for me.

A great shame that it was followed by one of the worst Doctor Who episodes ever made.

It's not my favorite Doctor Who story, but I like it a lot. The cliffhanger to Part 3 was the best!

How is Blink better than the caves of Androzani! come on! Give the classics a chance!

19 The Robots of Death

Chris Boucher is the best script editor Doctor Who never had and this is his finest writing. The Robots are still creepy, the deco design fits like a glove for Agatha Christie in space

This may have been the best if they named it... well NOT Robots of Death.

"Please don't throw hands at me." Another classic story.

This episode is a classic Whodunnit, it is the least expected person and the robots are very scary

20 The Time of the Doctor

I loves the 11th doctor, so it was sad to see him go but I think it was a good send off. Clara made this episode even better and for me it just shows her loyalty to him as she tries her best to help him.

It's an interesting goodbye for the Eleventh Doctor, but I think the whole "the Doctor defends Trenzalore from a bunch of monsters was glossed over just a little too much.

Best by far. I have no idea why people like Blink. It barely has the doctor at all.

It may be the best doctor who episode of all time.

21 The Angels Take Manhattan
22 The Girl In the Fireplace

I think this episode is very fun and sad as well. I love the clockwork robots in fact (after the gas mask zombies) they are my favorite Doctor Who monsters. Awesome episode! Doctor Who is one of my favorite T.V. shows!

I love this episode. It's in my top two - with Blink. It's tender, heartwarming, romantic, scary, and David Tennant -- well, no spoilers or anything, but we see him more involved, in a different way, than usual?

The plot is great, Madame de Pompadour is great, and the framing device allowing the Doctor to meet Reinette in many different times is great too.

I had a tear at the end...
Thinking about it, this episode reminded me of the most heart-wrenching experience of my life To the Moon.

23 Turn Left

This episode was amazing in every way! Definitely the best Doctor-lite episode I have seen, usually episodes which are focused mainly on a companion can be slightly boring but this episode is so slick and mind-boggling that you just want to keep watching! Definitely one of Catherine Tate's best episodes!

This episode had me going crazy! It blew me away, especially everything with Rose coming back. This episode proved that everyone's life changes after the Doctor waltzes into their lives, Sarah starting the theory, Martha continuing it and Rose finally proving it to be true. I loved this episode!

This is simultaneously a terrible and good episode. One one hand, it handles it's cliche subject material sloppily, and much fan-service and very little nuance. One the other, you can at least tell that it's trying.

This should be at the top, it's my favourite by far, and Hello Rose comes back, well for a while anyway.

24 The Stolen Earth / Journey's End

A brilliant finale, and one that I see strangely get a lot of hate. You can complain there's too many characters, but I applaud that, as Russell basically covers everything great about his first 4 seasons - being the comedy, action, emotion, ambition and overall entertainment value - and conjures up a perfect piece of each of them. We get a Dalek Invasion, the 'space-man' scene, Donna's farewell, goodbye to around 10 companions and the return of Davros, and it's glorious. And it's still under the Trail of a Time Lord?

25 Bad Wolf / The Parting of the Ways

Great lead in to the Series 1 finale. Live the cliffhanger, and Captain Jack is at his all time high in this episode. All the TV parodies are really fun too, and the second part, the Parting of the Ways, is even better... but its counted separately a little down lower, so I'll review that episode there.

I gave my brief thoughts on Bad Wolf, and now we come to the Series 1 finale, which I consider to be the better of the two. But really, this finale is a near-masterpiece, with high stakes, a simple story, an emotinial centre and one of the best regeneration. Just really, really great television.

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