I was checking in on the news over breakfast this morning and came across this terrible story. Actress Elisabeth Sladen, who played Sarah Jane Smith in Doctor Who and had her own Sarah Jane Adventures series more recently, died last night aged only 63. She’d been fighting cancer for some time, apparently. This news makes me incredibly sad.
I can honestly say that Doctor Who is the show responsible for my love of sci-fi. I first experienced Doctor Who as Job Pertwee, with Sarah Jane Smith at his side. I was mesmerised. Jon Pertwee regenerated into Tom Baker and I was blown away. Tom Baker and Sarah Jane Smith are still my all-time favourite Doctor and companion (closely followed by the more recent David Tennant and Billie Piper pairing).
I also remember Sarah Jane as being one of my first crushes when I was too young to even know what a crush was. The picture above makes me feel seven years old again, and every age since when I’ve rewatched and re-loved Doctor Who.
Doctor Who writer and creator of The Sarah Jane Adventures, Russell T Davies, says it best: “I absolutely loved Lis. She was funny and cheeky and clever and just simply wonderful. The universe was lucky to have Sarah Jane Smith, the world was lucky to have Lis.”
RIP Elisabeth Sladen – we’ve lost a legend today.