Colin Baker is an English actor, who is best known as the 6th incarnation of The Doctor in the long-running science fiction television series Doctor Who from 1984 to 1986 and as Paul Merroney in The Brothers from 1974 to 1976.
One of Baker’s first acting jobs, in 1970, was a supporting role in a BBC adaptation of Jean-Paul Sartre’s trilogy The Roads to Freedom. In 1972, Colin Baker played Anatole Kuragin in a BBC serial adaptation of War and Peace. His most prominent role in the 1970s was as the villainous Paul Merroney in The Brothers, a role that he played from 1974 to 1976.
Baker made his first appearance in Doctor Who as Commander Maxil in the story Arc of Infinity. Producer John Nathan-Turner described Baker’s performance as being “quite arch” and a little sassy. Maxil was one of the few characters actually to shoot the Doctor, then played by Peter Davison. At the time of Baker’s casting as Davison’s successor, he became the only actor portraying the Doctor to have appeared in the television series as another character prior to taking on the leading role.
In 1991 Baker played a Doctor-like character in the BBC video series The Stranger. Another standalone BBC drama entitled The Airzone Solution appeared in 1993 and featured former Doctor Who actors Jon Pertwee, Peter Davison, and Sylvester McCoy.
Television work during the 1990s included guest appearances in the BBC’s medical drama Casualty, The Knock and Dangerfield. In 2003 Baker appeared on Top Gear, participating on a one-lap run on the Top Gear track in a Honda civic hatchback. Baker competed against a Klingon, a Cyberman, a Dalek, Darth Vader, and Ming the Merciless. Baker came in 4th position, with the Cyberman coming 1st.