With Inspector Spacetime's long and storied history, it has managed to gather quite a list of various characters. A long list.
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An Infinity Knight from the planet Kayaclasch, the Inspector is our main character, the one who shows us the wondrous bounty of the universe and of history. Because it's not just where we are, but when.
The First InspectorThe first Inspector was played by Leslie French.A versatile theatre actor who specialized in Shakespearean roles, French at first seemed an odd choice for the patronising, cantankerous, and notably lower-middle class First Inspector. Although pleased by the programme's popularity at first, he left suddenly at the start of the fourth season to avoid being typecast. On television, he went on to appear in such programmes as Dixon Of Dock Green, Z Cars, The Avengers, and The Singing Detective. He returned once to the series, making a brief cameo in the 20th Anniversary Special.
The Second InspectorThe second Inspector was played by Christopher Lee.He has often been summed up as "Sherlock Holmes in space", a cold and austere man who nevertheless has a passion for high culture and fine art, always dressed in the latest understated and conservative fashion... except for those battered Wellington boots. When he truly wished to "brood over the cosmos" he would play his ocarina. Word of God has said the show was just playing to Lee's strengths as an actor, but this hasn't stopped the popular theory that the change from French's version was somehow a "promotion", prompting a more upper-class outlook.Lee filmed two IS movies while the First Inspector's televised run was still being taped and aired. These movies, which posited a half-human Inspector, are now considered alt-canon. Following French's abrupt decision to leave the show, hastily conscripting Lee to reprise the role on television was therefore the obvious choice. While his new(-ish) version of the Inspector quickly proved to be quite popular, Lee has never made any bones about the fact that he became the Inspector mainly because it offered a steady paycheque. After his departure from the series, he never reprised the role in film or television, except for the 20th Anniversary Special, where he was persuaded to (literally) phone in an amusing voice cameo. ("Crikey! That's what you used to sound like?!") The positive reception to this led to him further agreeing to reprise the role in a series of radio dramas which are considered quite good and, more importantly, canonical.
The Third InspectorThe third Inspector was played by Bernard Fox.The Third Inspector is well known for his abhorrence of any sort of strenuous physical activity, and his habit of taking long tea breaks at (seemingly) the very worst moments. Continuing the theory mentioned above, some claim that following the events of "The Crime Sports" this Inspector was somehow "retired", even though he pretty much kept on doing what he always had.Unlike French and Lee, Fox cheerfully embraced the role from the start, came back for a guest appearance whenever he was invited, and has been a beloved fixture at worldwide IS conventions for forty years.
The Fourth InspectorThe fourth Inspector was played by Marius Goring.Goring was a surprising choice for the Inspector, given the over-full nature of his filming schedule at the time.The Fourth Inspector is known for his crazily coloured iconic ascot and knee socks, affinity for small sweets—particularly wine gums and sherbet lemons (some suggest that Albus Dumbledore's affection for treats and sherbet lemons was an homage to the Fourth Inspector). He is also known for his extraordinarily high body count.He returned to the series twice for guest appearances: the 20th Anniversary special and "The Only Inspector."
The Fifth InspectorThe fifth Inspector was played by Lynda Bellingham.Bellingham is the first, and so far only, actress to take on the role of the Inspector. She had the absolute worst wardrobe of all the Inspectors, most egregiously a hat that must be seen to be believed. (One expanded universe novel even made it into a sentient life-form.) She also liked ampersands and took to wearing them in the most unlikely of places.The metamorphosis from 4th to 5th was very difficult for the Inspector to achieve. Continuing the theory mentioned above, some have speculated/joked that after "retirement" comes "death" and then "rebirth" into a new childhood.Reappeared on the show in "The Only Inspector", only a year after leaving, which was lampshaded: "Too soon! Too soon!".She later went on to be cast in That Ripoff as an Inquisitor. The hat she wore in the role was considered by many a wink to her wardrobe as Inspector. (This would be neither the first nor last time That Ripoff stole an actor from IS or gave a cameo role, such as in the case of Landlord's recent role as George the Security Guard in "Closing Time", to an Inspector.)
The Sixth InspectorThe sixth Inspector was played by Graham Chapman.The Inspector was one of Chapman's final roles. Defying expectation, Chapman's Inspector was one of the most sombre and monochrome. The extreme colors of the Doctor in That Ripoff at the time was seen as a move by the Ripoff's producers to distinguish themselves from IS.This was also the era in which some of the serials just got weird (much to the delight of many fans). The most (in)famous example is probably all those puppets turning up in the serial "Mindscrew".
The Seventh InspectorThe seventh Inspector was played by Stephen Fry.Fry had one of the shorter tenures as Inspector and is best known for all of the "what could have beens" and his associates. The scripts, in a misguided attempt to rein in the weirdness of the Chapman years, were reduced to repetitive explosive-laden pabulum, while the budget had been slashed to almost the level of That Ripoff. After limping along for three lacklustre seasons, the plug was pulled on the show. The Seventh Inspector is very popular in Fan Fic because of this, and many like to imagine how the series would have ended if it had hired better writers.Particularly (in)famous serials include "Cattlefield", in which fans finally got the answer to the age-old question of whether or not the X7 has internal plumbing (The answer is yes, but, as with many a living thing, it is sometimes problematic.) and "Spectre Night", which is either a load of pro-Creationist rubbish or the one shining jewel of the era.
The Eighth InspectorThe eighth Inspector was played by Steve Carell.Carell's turn as Inspector was an early attempt to revive the series after the disappointment of Fry's run. Carell starred in a made-for-TV movie alongside Anne Hathaway who played his Associate, Charity Galloway. Many (though not all) fans prefer to pretend this movie never existed and sometimes choose to disregard the movie as canon. (It at least allowed Stephen Fry to end his version of the Inspector on a note of dignity.}The Eighth Inspector's books, which were more tightly written and not subject to horrible theatrics, are notably better. Likewise, his audio plays, which often poked fun at his short run as the Inspector, received wide acclaim for his writing, especially the tragic "Bright Eyes". The Inspector's primary Associate in the later books and broadcasts was Fitzwilliam Fort, an amateur detective.
The Ninth InspectorThe ninth Inspector was played by Mark Williams.Mark Williams revived the Inspector with sad humor and a genuine presence. Unfortunately, his obligations to the Harry Potter franchise cut his tenure to only one season. Williams also played the Inspector in a charity event with Daniel Radcliffe as his associate. Many fans were upset to learn that the combination was for the charity special only; however, most forgave the writers when the first episode introduced a new associate, Lily Taylor.The Ninth Inspector had a curious aversion to leather.The Ninth Inspector also traveled with Rory Williams. Rory's role ended when he learned how to cheat death and had to lose all of his memories as a consequence. Darvill would go on to play the exact same character on that Ripoff, with memory loss and cheating death skills fully intact.
The Tenth InspectorThe tenth Inspector was played by Daniel Landlord (later credited under his given name, Christopher Obi).Landlord played the first black Inspector in the series. Landlord was a virtual unknown when cast, but some fans consider him the best of the recent Inspectors.The Tenth Inspector is known for his coke-bottle glasses, endless string of bizarre and humorous shirts, and strong character growth. The Tenth Inspector is also bookended by two of the favoured Associates—Lily and the Constable.
The Eleventh InspectorThe Eleventh Inspector was played by Travis Richey.Richey is most known for being the Inspector chosen to feature in the short clip in the TV show Community. The clip, from early in his run while he still traveled with the Constable, is credited with truly reviving the fandom.The Eleventh Inspector is known for his bowler hats.The Eleventh Inspector traveled with the Constable and laster with a young couple, Angie Lake and Aidan Davies. Brooke Rhapsody, a puzzle shrouded with mystery, was also part of his life. His time was marked by an increasing popularity among the denizens of the universe that can cause problems when he needs to save the day and simply doesn't have time for all the autographs. His associates were known to be kidnapped just so that the abductors get a chance to meet him, causing the Eleventh Inspector to start seriously questioning whether he should just make his associates wear a bell.
The Twelfth InspectorNow open casting for 12th Inspector—see Main discussion page plays the current incarnation of the Inspector.
The Unknown Inspector (a.k.a. the Undercover Inspector)This divergent incarnation of the Inspector was played by William Hurt.As revealed in the 50th anniversary special, the Infinity Knight High Command assigned the Inspector to go undercover as a rogue cop to investigate renegade fellow space-time officers who were conducting their own private war against the Blorgons. The Eighth Inspector secretly adopted the identity of the Unknown Inspector with the special assistance of the mystic Teman Mothers, who transform him in a different version of the standard Kayaclaschian metamorphosis. What he did not suspect was that his inquiries would lead into the Time Wave...
Associates and Supporting Cast
The Model X7 Dimensioniser Time Booth.
Susannah Overseer (First Inspector)
Played by Honor Blackman in the series and Maureen O'Brien in the radio plays
Irma Rong and Bart Gilbert (First Inspector)
Played by Joan Plowright and Jeremy Brett
Layla (First Inspector)
Played by Bernadette O'Farrell
Officer Tara Parradyce (First Inspector)
Played by Suzan Farmer
Nicola "Coco" Coates (First Inspector)
Played by Anna Quayle
Peter/Petula (First and Second Inspectors)
Aiden (Second Inspector)
Played by Hamish Wilson
Regina Ayrefield (Second Inspector)
Played by Susan Hampshire
Constable Rosamund (WPC Rosamund Murray of Exo-Pol) (Second Inspector)
Played by Anna Massey
Played by Suzanna Leigh
Elisabeth "Bess" Wilde, M.D. (Third Inspector)
Played by Virginia Maskell
Yosif (Third Inspector)
Played by Lucy Fleming
Markus Rogen (Third Inspector)
Superintendent Irvine Leith, London Branch, Exo-Pol (Third and Fourth Inspectors)
Played by Norman Bird
Mary Sue Brown (Third and Fourth Inspectors)
Played by Susannah York
DI Gary Mulligan (Fourth Inspector)
Played by Lewis Collins
Reena (Fourth Inspector)
Played by Imogen Hassall
FE-Line (Fourth Inspector)
Infinity Knight Lunda (Fourth Inspector)
Played by Cassie McFarlane, Josette Simon, and Grace Jones
Veneziana (Fourth and Fifth Inspectors)
Played by Pauline Quirke
Thorough Visor (Fourth and Fifth Inspectors)
Played by Hugh Laurie
Nymeria of Planet Kraken V (Fifth Inspector)
Played by Karen Dotrice
Mimmek (Fifth Inspector)
Jeffrey (Sixth Inspector)
Played by Rik Mayall
Benjamin (Sixth Inspector)
Theodora "Dynamo" McRae (Seventh Inspector)
Played by Tracey Ullman
Charity Galloway (Eighth Inspector)
Played by Anne Hathaway
Expanded Universe Associates
Fitzwilliam Fort (Eighth Inspector)
Georgina "George" Liddell (Eighth Inspector)
Mmm'Fash't'ஐ'lan'zac (Eighth Inspector)
Jimmy McSporran (Eighth Inspector}
Rory Williams (Ninth Inspector)
Played by Arthur Darvill
Lily Taylor (Ninth and Tenth Inspector)
Played by Hannah Spearritt
Minnie Smythe (Ninth and Tenth Inspectors)
Captain James Haggard (Ninth and Tenth Inspectors)
Played by Jamie Bamber
Yorke (Tenth Inspector)
Played by Tom Hardy
Mona Virtue (Tenth Inspector)
Joanna Martin (Tenth and Eleventh Inspectors)
Played by Georgia Taylor
Constable Wigglesworth (Tenth and Eleventh Inspectors)
Played by Derwin Jordan
Camilla Sea (Tenth Inspector)
Angelica "Angie" Lake (Tenth and Eleventh Inspector)
Aidan Davies (Eleventh Inspector)
Played by Andrew Lee Potts
Brooke Rhapsody (Eleventh Inspector)
Played by Carey Mulligan
Geneva Stilton (Eleventh and Twelfth Inspectors)
Played by Alison Brie
Special Episode Associates
Played by Lily Allen
The Blorgons (a.k.a. Blogons)These robots (although they're occasionally called cyborgs) first appeared in 1962's "The Blorgons", having been created by Vosrda to commit armed robbery, burglary, and criminal mischief on his behalf. They would eventually become the Inspector's most iconic enemy.
The Digifleet of the Circuit-Chaps (also known as the Kybermenschen)
First played by Vincent Price in the classic series, later by Windsor Davies and Peter Wyngarde, and then by Christian Slater and Stephen Colbert in the TV movie; and by Julian Sands in the new series
Played by Eleanor Bron
Oscar del ManhattanA Corrupt Corporate Executive with a collection of artefacts from across time and space, which he kept atop his skyscraper in Las Vegas, Nevada, including a heavily damaged Blorgon.
Played by Robert Helpmann
Played by Angela LansburyAn old lady who knits and drinks tea. She also wants to kill the Inspector and steal Brooke Rhapsody's powerful weapons. She is the leader of the Quiet Organization.
Played by Geoffrey PalmerA One-Arc Wonder, the Indictor prosecuted the Inspector for dereliction of duty, evidence tampering, witness harassment, and falsifying statements before revealing that he was a form of incarnation of the Inspector, created from the collected Order in the Inspector's soul.
Played by Sean ConneryAn ancient and powerful Infinity Knight who's credited with establishing the first police department on Kayaclasch. Wielder of an artefact called the Truncheon of Sassafrass. Thought to have retired thousands of years ago, until the events of "The Last Minutes".
Played by Nigel CuthbertsonAn enigmatic "Man-tiss" from Thallidium, and a prominent enemy of the Eleventh Inspector.
Aliens and Monsters
The Homene Awareness and the Clothons
The Snarling LionsAn observer-effect-dependent species, the Lions only exist when they're being observed by other life-forms, vanishing as soon as you blink. Not that you'd dare turn your back on a fearsome, ferocious-looking lion... which is just what they want. They absorb quantum energy by brutally killing people who look them, or are even aware they exist.
The LirusiansA species of aliens who are due to move in once the humans have left the Earth. A kind race, quite open to peaceful relations with humans.
The Time DeviantsThey look human and can blend in seamlessly with our society, but they're soulless psychopaths who feed off of chaos and destruction.
The Quiet MenWhen you look at these aliens, they will cause you to remember meaningless things so you don't focus on them. If you do remember them, that means that they don't care if you remember or not...because you'll be dead soon. They cannot shut up.
The Orange Warden. The Blue Warden.
Played by Graeme Garden and Tim Brooke-Taylor, respectivelyThese two bring new meaning to the phrase "Sufficiently Advanced Alien". Members of the Pantheon of Immortals (see below).
The ImmortalsA pantheon of mostly benevolent cosmic beings who maintain the balance in the universe. Among others, includes the Orange and Blue Wardens, the Prankster (the Big Bad of The Mary Sue Predicaments, and Lily Taylor/The Good Lamb.
The Exploding Rock