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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 Inspector
The 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.
Old-Fashioned Copper: This Inspector, having a more classic "police man" feel about him in comparison to his successors, could sometimes have elements of this trope.
The Second Inspector
The second Inspector was played by Christopher Lee.He has often been summed up as "Sherlock Holmesin 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.
No Sense of Humor: An extremely serious individual who had no intent of masking his intelligence to deal with a situation.
The Third Inspector
The 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.
Let's Get Dangerous: This Inspector may not have liked to exert himself, but when he did... watch out.
The Fourth Inspector
The 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 Eeyore: Conversely, he never tended to display a lot of overt humor and good cheer. Of course, he had reason enough to be gloomy.
Knife Nut: Most metamorphoses of the Inspector used the Optic Pocketknife as rarely as possible, but Four cut a slew of throats in his time. He's also the only Inspector to use an Optic Pocketknife balanced especially for throwing.
When He Smiles: Which made those oh-so-rare smiles he did unleash all the more glorious.
The Fifth Inspector
The 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. In a sad real-life reflection of this, her final episode, "The Hills of Androgyny" was infamously plagued with behind-the-scenes troubles, including a rushed production schedule, numerous last-minute script-rewrites, catastrophic prop breakdowns (some of which forced said re-writes) and an ironically arduous rain-drenched location-shoot in what appears on-screen as an idyllic paradise. Relations were also strained between the episode's director Trav Morgus and the cast, but Bellingham has always denied rumors that things deteriorated to the point that she physically slapped him.Despite all of this, she reappeared on the show in "The Only Inspector", only a year after leaving, which was lampshaded: "Too soon! Too soon!".In later years, Bellingham did admit to sharing many fans' dissatisfaction with her hastily cobbled-together final regeneration scene. Finally, in 2013, she revealed that she had been writing one of her own to redeem her Inspector's departure. This culminated in her (re-)reprisal of the role, albeit several decades, older in "Space Wreck". Because everything from that last scene had been negated, the Fifth Inspector was rewritten to die at an older age, and since she had been alone with the Booth during her transformation, there was no need to worry about rewriting for an associate, just implanting a Time Skip. The only true hurdle was painstakingly reconstructing her old Booth interior, which is now a star attraction of the Inspector Spacetime Undertaking. Sadly, this was Bellingham's last work on the show. She lost a long battle with cancer in 2014. Her Inspector's Booth interior at the Undertaking was dedicated to her memory as a tribute to the late actress.She also 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.)
All Just a Dream: What her previous regeneration scene was retconned to in her new final episode. The whole angle of hallucinogenic moss was kept intact. The Tenth Inspector doubled back over his timeline because he needed a sample of the moss to stop a nuclear meltdown the size of Denmark. Except this caused him to accidentally save his fifth self from her demise, and erased her tentative future. However, she retained some form of memory from the original events that would have killed her, though somewhat lulled away as her timeline shifted. In the Fifth Inspector's eyes, she interpreted her aborted timeline as a dream, and likened the memory loss as to that kind of feeling a person experiences when they wake up from a dreamlike state and their recollection of said dream wanes following the jump from an unconscious to conscious state.
Cerebus Retcon: A spectacular application of one that morphed into an Author's Saving Throw for her controversial final story. Fans lament that Bellingham passed on, as they felt she could have done the same for a the demise of a certain multi-coloured time traveler in his sixth incarnation from that Ripoff.
Obfuscating Stupidity: Or perhaps "Obfuscating Ditziness". Her wardrobe and carefree exterior was cover for an ice pick of a mind.
The Smurfette Principle: The Inspector changed into a female because his (er, her) metamorphosis was artificially induced, causing a shift in gene chromosomes. Later "corrected" during her farcical metamorphosis scene in "The Hills of Androgyny", widely derided as a low point in the series and finally retconned. The Inspector gets loopy dragging the enormous pile of hallucinogenic moss into the Central Temple to head off the Androgyny-Shattering Kaboom. This causes her to be gender-confused and think she will die unless she decides whether she's a man or a woman. She gets the genders switched around and thinks man is woman, and vice versa. She's then tricked into drinking the venom of a Spector Bat (by an "automated defense-dispensing system" no less) in a spectacular case of Idiot Ball, immediately killing her. The venom does as it was expected to do however, inverting her gender. It apparently messes with her genes, causing a poorly-Hand Waved mutation that metamorphosises the Inspector back into a male. As noted above, this was all a last-minute hash thrown together to salvage/finish the episode after numerous behind-the-scene disasters.
As Take That at that scene, when the Fifth and Tenth Inspectors meet in the revived series by accident, Ten actually slaps Five for what she is going to do that will stupidly get herself killed. He unknowingly alters the future and because Five isn't actually going to die from hallucination-induced idiocy, she instead metamorphosizes under more heroic terms, but the resulting time paradox spawns the Indictor. Essentially, the entire last season of the Sixth Inspector's tenure and his death was thus retconned as being the Tenth Inspector's fault.
The Sixth Inspector
The 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".
Failure Knight: Nothing ever went right for this Inspector. Nothing. Some fans claim that his taking on Jeffery was symbolic of his failure, while Jeffery's death shows his failure at failing. And after that, he failed to recruit any new Associates for the rest of his runnote OK, yes, there was Benjamin, but who ever remembers Benjamin?. In his final episode, he is sentenced to banishment in an alternate universe and can return home only by dying.
Lotus-Eater Machine: Learns the alternate universe he was banished to is actually one (or it was real, but was specifically created for him... or something.. has the era's weirdness been mentioned?), and the only way to get out is to overload the dimension with his psychic abilities. However, the negative feedback from doing so causes him to become fatally injured and start a metamorphosis that gets cut off during a cliffhanger, bringing in a huge number of views eager for "Space or the Maharani", which producers smartly decided to air early and had preemptively filmed, knowing Graham Chapman was dying from cancer.
Real Life Writes the Plot: Graham Chapman's crippling struggle with alcohol and his diagnosis of cancer proved too much for him and he announced that he would not film any more episodes except a finale, previously voicing that he felt he would have the shortest run of any Inspector due to sickness. The BTV controller at the time took great sympathy with him, perhaps more than any other actor who played the Inspector during his time at the BTV, helping to pay for Chapman's medical expenses and promising that he would help him complete his tenure as the Sixth Inspector by going out with a bang.
The Seventh Inspector
The 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. As the least popular of all Inspectors, Fry divides fans as either not a good enough actor for the role's complex demands or the scapegoat for the producers' notes for him to play the character against his thespian strengths. (Chapman's departure only because of his deteriorating health did not help the transition for his successor.) Ironically, many fans feel that his ten-minute appearance at the start of the one-off Eighth Inspector movie was easily his best acted and scripted work as the character. 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. Eventually, an animated series was launched to envision and capitalize on some of the best ideas posed by fans, leading to much wish fulfillment and a bit of Lampshade Hanging about the rocky road the Seventh Inspector faced in the years the show was off the air.
Animated Adaptation: Given a series financed by the Veteran Old Expeditions Studio that ran for 60 episodes, continuing right from where "Failure", his last TV story left off. The series started with "Spacebyrd: Cessation", and completed with "Heartwheel". An additional 61st episode was made called "The Living Nights", a backdoor pilot for the Eighth Inspector's travels, but unlike the beloved Seventh Inspector, it never got off the ground due to less positive remarks about his successor.
Break the Cutie: He goes through a lot of traumatic events and turns extremely glass half-empty near the end of his tenure.
Broken Ace: Gives up hope on his incarnation being capable of doing anything worth keeping it around.
Darker and Edgier: Has a series of animated adventures that serve to connect the dots between his TV era and the movie. It effectively cashes in on all the potential his character could have had. However, it is rife with pot shots at all the people who got the show cancelled in the first place. Until by the end of his incarnation, he has become a darkly cynical presence who tells off everyone he meets, growing highly resentful and almost downright cruel at the conception of how badly he has been treated.
Driven to Suicide: Arranges for his own death, finally admitting this incarnation was a failure.
Ironic Echo: This draws back to when the Sergeant famously taunted the Inspector as a failure in his titular final TV episode, "Failure" (a Lampshade Hanging of the series's cancellation).
The Sergeant: Just give up and let me kill you, already! You've put off your death long enough!
The Inspector: Sorry, old chap. Death's not on my schedule!
And then comes the TV movie, where a broken and disillusioned Seven lets the Inspector gun him down.
The Sergeant: You can't put it off any longer. It's time to die, Inspector.
The Inspector: Right on schedule.
Heartbroken Badass: Revealed to be one in his last animated adventure "Heartwheel", which leads into the TV Movie.
My Name Is Not Durwood: Dynamo kept calling him "Copper", never quite understanding the gist of his duties as an Infinity Knight.
The Eighth Inspector
The 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 Faces". The Inspector's primary Associate in the later books and broadcasts was Fitzwilliam Fort, an amateur detective.
Go Out with a Smile: Was satisfied with how his life had turned out in "The Twilight of the Inspector" and bid a fond farewell to his past companions.
Inspector Oblivious: Fans complained about this comic typecasting for Carell in the TV movie, but in his later adventures, this is revealed as a cunning ruse.
Lighter and Softer: Has a series of audios where he enjoys a very lovely and uplifting life in this incarnation following the downtrodden suffering of his predecessor, becoming extremely confident, with his finest hour taking place in "For a Birth", securing the destruction of the Space Manipulator Blorgon and saving not only three companions from death in a Big Damn Heroes moment, but the whole of humanity. Harsher in Hindsight given that his next adventure was the grueling "Bright Faces".
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...
Awful Truth: He's the one blamed for the final catastrophe in the Time Wave, and the Inspector subsequently disavowed this incarnation entirely.
Came Back Wrong: Dialogue implies he metamorphosized in his sleep. The Ninth Inspector found it embarrassing, and related it to "wetting the bed." Later information given explains that the Inspector went into a deep hibernation while linked up to a biology defragementer (homebrewed medical equipment) that would essentially simulate a metamorphosis by reformatting his body into the form of his Unknown incarnation. But unfortunately, the Inspector put so much strain on his mind by flickering through his former incarnations, his mind could not handle the strain. He awoke too early, causing his nervous system to go haywire, implode in on itself, and destabilize the whole body. He passed out again, remarking that he felt "a bit thick", at which point a real metamorphosis kicked in to prevent him from dying outright.
Commuting on a Bus: William Hurt expressed interest in returning every now and then to the series, resulting in the decision not to make his metamorphosis stick.
Gone Horribly Wrong: The Unknown Inspector's mountains of regret caused him to have a yearning desire to return to his younger, more innocent days when the Trans-Temporal Tourbillon was activated. He didn't known this would influence it to regress him back to his first incarnation.
Diagonal Cut: Starting using the Optic Pocketknife as a weapon more often than usual and got adept as using it to deliver a finishing blow with a single strike.
Karmic Death: Grew particularly attached to this body and tried to keep it young and primed for combat, unable to put his worries to rest that he would need to keep on fighting against the universe. His resistance to aging got the better of him when he decided he wanted it back, only to screw up, lose another metamorphosis and wind up in a totally different body.
Killed Offscreen: Implied to have tried reversing his botched metamorphosis somehow after undoing a paradox that reset him to his first incarnation, and then rapidly shifting between all of his previous selves during an adventure involving a soap opera. But instead of it returning him to his Unknown incarnation at the end, his experiment was ever so slightly off, resulting in him having a genetically unstable form. That malformed body immediately metamorphosized, which caused him to end up with a new body entirely. The concept of this metamorphosis posed to directors is often the bane of their existence, as there is much frustration on how it should be interpreted, and the effects it calls for are just too demanding for it to be shot on film without eradicating the series budget.
He Who Fights Monsters: The underlying mentality behind his attachment to this body, and what proved to be his undoing. Unknown was so fixated on keeping this incarnation, he refused to have a numeric categorization or be labeled an Inspector, believing he should become immortal, and that he was held back by his moniker after seeing the advantages of going incognito.
Pride: The one drawback from deciding to take on this appearance- an overwhelming sense of hubris, influencing an unwillingness to move on with his existence when this chapter of his life was due to end. He just couldn't take the fight out of him no matter how hard he tried, so fate intervened for him and made the Inspector metamorphosize out of this incarnation by force.
The 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 Call Put Me On Hold: Spent 222 years trying to decide whether or not he wanted to go back and accept Lily Taylor as his companion, wondering if he should try being the Inspector again.
Noodle Incident: During that time, he visited Hyroblits and got a new optic pocketknife made in his honour for saving their eco-friendly energy plant from Circuit Chaps, sacrificing the old one his Unknown Incarnation had to defeat them. He even arranged for a watermelone grove to be planted outside the facility as away of returning the kindness, and they sent him another gift- the Prophetic Parchment.
The Dandy: This Inspector's ridiculously posh outfits, even more so than the Second, often drifted into this territory.
Establishing Character Moment: Shown waking up out of bed with his body finishing up a metamorphosis. As his Booth is careening down to Earth at breakneck speeds, it doesn't register to him. He just lets out a yawn, smacks his chops, and lazily opens his eyes, remarking that he feels like he just awoke from a long nightmare. Then it hits that the Booth is crashing.
Notably a radical move by the writers to film his regeneration out of nowhere to new viewers. Although it would leave them confused, it was a way of testing who would continue to watch the show. The ones that stuck around to the Series 1 finale would be reward with an explanation. This choice was also to allow someone else to fill in the blanks as they pleased and show the first half of the metamorphosis of the past incarnation move seamlessly into the new one retroactively. Except there have been no takers.
Pajama Clad Hero: Lampshaded and averted. He outright refuses to be one at the start of his life.
Skewed Priorities: The first thing he did after his metamorphosis completed and the BOOTH started crashing to Earth? Barge straight toward the dressing room to change out of his drab pajamas.
The Stoic: As a result of being Last of His Kind, the Ninth Inspector became more and more detached, adopting a "stiff upper lip" persona that he'd maintain even in the most dire of situations.
The Tenth Inspector
The 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.
Adorkable: By far the geekiest of all the Inspectors.
Bald of Awesome: And the Inspector is overjoyed about it. It's a dream come true that he always wanted to happen to him. He'd thought it would be fun to be a baldy-waldy, since it meant he wouldn't need to waste his money on hair gel to do up his hair into some modern style that stuck out every which way.
The 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 later 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 current incarnation of the Inspector is played by ██████████.note Since everyone has their own idea of who would be perfect as the Inspector, the casting is explicitly left open to tropers to imagine whomever the wish.
Susannah Overseer (First Inspector)
Played by Honor Blackman in the series and Maureen O'Brien in the radio plays
Phone Call From The Dead: Made a fleeting cameo in the 30th anniversary special and revealed that she was doing fine in Heaven, as a reward for her honourable life in the living world. She arranged for a psychic projection to communicate with the Inspector. Layla had been observing him from above and noticed was surprisingly inactive for the past few years and seemed to be losing his touch (a nod to the show's cancellation), so she thought she'd check up on him. Fans can't seem to make up their minds whether they loved or hated this scene, but it served as the turning point for the Seventh Inspector into a more interesting and rather mysterious character. And it was O'Farrell's final performance as Layla before passing away in 1999.
We Hardly Knew Ye: The first Associate to show how Anyone Can Die in the programme. And also the first one to show there really is an afterlife, as opposed to that Ripoff's gloom and doom imagery of a nothingness.
Officer Tara Parradyce (First Inspector)
Played by Suzan Farmer
Action Girl: At the beginning of epic twelve-episode serial "The Blorgon's Cunning Scheme", she introduces herself as a Space Police agent.
Put on a Bus: Literally. She and the Inspector tearfully part company at Victoria Coach Station at the beginning of "The Opium Dealers".
Real Life Writes the Plot: Quayle had requested her character's departure in "The Peacemakers" at the end of Season 3 when she learned that Leslie French would be leaving (and the imposing Christopher Lee would be his replacement), but producers convinced her to come back at the beginning of Season 4 so her character could receive a proper farewell.
Peter/Petula (First and Second Inspectors)
Aiden (Second Inspector)
Played by Hamish Wilson
Cool Sword: Never seen without his high-tech claymore.
Noodle Incident: Born in Scotland of the far-distant future; most of what little the audience learns about that place and time came from the comments he would occasionally drop. ("Course I know what an elephant is. The wretched beasts came blundering around every time they opened the Sgian-dubh Gate.")
Wide-Eyed Idealist: Unfortunately, the future does not hold up to her rather utopian ideals, so at the end of "Rage of the Depths", she decides to return to her own era to improve things there.
Constable Rosamund (WPC Rosamund Murray of Exo-Pol) (Second Inspector)
Played by Anna Massey
Married to the Job: Aiden's attempts to flirt with her while she's assisting with the investigation in "The Underground of Doom" receive only silence.
The Silent Bob: Although she has only three lines ("How d'you, Inspector.", "Look out, Inspector!", and "Good-bye, Inspector"), Massey's reactions to the Inspector and the Superintendent did more with a blink, an eye-roll, and a raised eyebrow than volumes of dialogue.
Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence: Went to Heaven for all eternity, despite all the no-no's she did in her mortal life. It was her last act that redeemed her—giving up all mortal pleasures in a selfless act to save the man (and occasionally woman) she loved the most.
Actor Existence Failure: What ended her live-action highly rated spin-off, The Mary Sue Predicaments. Writers just stopped producing any form of story with her in it, until one called them out and said the character needed a proper wrap-up story, which led to discussions for the animated continuation.
Death by Adaptation: An animated continuation of her series was produced with an actor masterfully impersonating her voice, continuing the fifth season where it left off and tacking a final sixth season onto the show, including a Halloween special. In the Grand Finale, "Adieu, Our Mary Sue", Mary Sue united with every incarnation of the Inspector that will ever exist and performed the ultimate Heroic Sacrifice- sacrificing her time left on Earth to save all of them, giving perhaps the most well-known classic associate the greatest closure, but also the most bittersweet.
Famous Last Words: "This tale will go on forever and ever. And I shall be reading... always. I love you. Every single one of you. Good-bye."
Intrepid Reporter: A talented photojournalist who took her skills as a celebrity tabloid reporter to fighting monsters.
Knight Templar: Willing to do whatever it took, including (see below) dying a couple of times, finally taking the Bolt in Space on a one-way trip out of Space, into another dimension, to keep it away from the Orange Warden forever.
Suspiciously Similar Substitute: A rare in-universe example: She metamorphosed twice while on the show (everybody kept dying around the Fourth Inspector...); and, very much unlike the Inspector's various incarnations, all three times was played by similar-looking actresses who portrayed the role in much the same manner. This provoked both a million fan-theories about male/female Infinity Knight biology and many complaints of Unfortunate Implications, especially since along with being tall and thin, all three actresses were black.
Veneziana (Fourth and Fifth Inspectors)
Played by Pauline Quirke
Action Girl / Faux Action Girl: Drifts back and forth between these two. She is good with a lasso, but she's not quite as tough as she looks or pretends.
Americans Are Cowboys: Or at least their 24th century descendants are. Always wears a bushranger hat and carries a lasso. She did eventually ditch the spurs.
Cowardly Sidekick: Mimmek quickly became such a Nervous Wreck while adventuring with the Inspector that he retreated to the Booth at the end of "The Slumbering" (and according to Word of God has never emerged).
Soap Opera Disease: The Inspector learns she will suffer Alzheimer's disease later in her life, which will eventually claim her life. He was tempted to cure her, but then finds out her demise will inspire her descendants toward a breakthrough cure for many human memory illnesses which will not come to pass if Dynamo's future is changed. His foreknowledge of this prompted him into goading Dynamo off the Booth to start a life on Earth before she got too old to enjoy one.
Straw Feminist: Thanks to the era's lackluster scripts, she sometimes edged into this territory.
Stuff Blowing Up: Would compulsively leave dynamite in buildings to have this affect. Joined up with the Inspector after almost doing as much to the X7.
Theremin: He plays one in the books, but ironically, it never comes up in the audio plays.
Georgina "George" Liddell (Eighth Inspector)
Break the Cutie: She starts out sweet and naive, but she gets her best friend fired from his job on her first day and things just go downhill from there, until she's trapped in the mind-bending Peculiar Dimension, neck-deep in evil cattle, fending off Infinity Knights who want to kill her for being a walking paradox with one hand and disgustingly fused to the Inspector by the other.
Beware the Nice Ones: Eventually revealed to have murdered an entire dimension. But it was just the Peculiar Dimension, with no space, only time, and no one liked it anyway.
Coconut Superpowers: A shapeshifter who prefers the form of a parrot, which is probably the reason he's restricted to audio plays. Subject to a lot of Leaning on the Fourth Wall, wherein he uses his powers to become invisible and asks the Inspector to check whether he can see him; the Inspector replies in a pointed tone, "I'm pretty sure nobody can see you."
Magic Pants: Averted; probably the other reason he's audio-only.
Expanded Universe: Fort, McSporran, Liddell, and Mmm'Fash't'ஐ'lan'zac have never appeared on the actual show but have proved popular in various radio dramas and novels.
New Series Associates
Rory Williams (Ninth Inspector)
Played by Arthur Darvill
Ancient Grome: In regards to the ''other'' show. He spent a brief stretch of time posing as a Greek Demi-God in on the show; the other one tried to play homage to this but got the nationality wrong, making him Roman.
Bad Ass: Considered one of the most epic associates to date, often completely upstaging the Inspector. Enemies often exploded when he came on screen.
Chaste Hero: Has zero intention of being tied down with anyone, because a part of his inner subconscious is telling him that he's already spoken for. Naturally, he speaks his mind without being criticised by a doting girlfriend.
Hand Wave: His appearance in two separate shows is explained away due to a paradox that was created when reality began to fall apart in that other show, and he ended up falling through a crack into the IS universe, memories wiped clean. Later, it happened again and the reverse occurred- back to the other show, this time as an ancient robot.
Immortality: The story of his inability to die needs no repeating here. Mainly because he's been turned into a robot.
Laser-Guided Amnesia: At the end of his tenure, he lost his memories. The actor, however, was not ready to give up the role and continued it on that other show, hoping to improve upon its quality.
Robotic Reveal: Learns he was turned into a machine by a race of aliens similar to the Clothons, alerting him that he's from an entirely different dimension.
Lily Taylor (Ninth and Tenth Inspector)
"These past eighteen years of my life, everything changed. Always changing, always too fast. Until the moment I met a man called the Inspector…"
Played by Hannah Spearritt
Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Her ultimate choice. After her brief time as the Good Lamb, in which she personally saves countless billions of lives from the Blorgons, the Immortals offer Lily a seat in their pantheon. Lily spends her remaining time on the show debating this, before ultimately choosing to accept her destiny as the Good Lamb and ascending to watch over the universe with the Immortals.
"Remain safe, Inspector. Whisked from the clutches of the true devil."
"I'd tell you about the time I rescued the planet with a tiny purple school bus, but then someone's bound to jeer, 'Ooh, Minnie finally got on the short bus, where she belongs!' And I'd have to beat the knickers off their sorry little boll-wait, what was I mad about again..?"
Tenth Inspector: Look at you- hair twice as long, and shoes all gone. Did you alter your appearance this way because you love Joanna?
Minnie: What, did you think I grew out my hair and stopped wearing shoes because I love dandruff and fuzzy bugs crawling beneath my feet? What about you?
Tenth Inspector: Well, you look happier without shoes, and I can't argue on the dandruff angle...
Minnie: I beg to differ! I'm barefootin' my merry way now because there's no point in wearing shoes if they always get ruined. Most of which were ruined by you, might I add! All the money I woulda blown on continuing to replace them goes to conditioning me hair, me new pride and joy! Jonna's thrilled with it, and so am I!
Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: Sometimes loses her train of thought. When she revealed she had headbutted herself against blunt objects for quite some time, her friends and lover feared that her spacing out was a result of brain damage. Nope- Minnie's just scatterbrained, as was revealed by a scan the Circuit Chaps tried to use on her mind when trying to convert her into their Circuit Director. It was this quality that allowed her to resist conversion and ultimately defeat them.
Badass Boast: Two to a Rostatraan in her final appearance, after becoming known as one of the Barefoot Bounty Hunters with Joanna:
Minnie: "Hello. We're two women who want to play kickball with your head. And just to make sure you know we're serious, we're in our bare feet. (raises her right bare foot in the air, pointing to it and flexing her toes) Why? So we can enjoy the nice, squishy feeling of bits of your brain getting tenderised between our toes."
Got into a belching contest with a Glissadeen because she thought it insulted her.
Once hijacked a special ed bus full of children because she needed it to save the world, rather than go find an empty one. No less than thirteen cops were called to arrest her. She spent the night in lock-up and cried herself to sleep. An insane asylum was called in to take her away, but luckily, it was the week of Christmas, and the coppers took mercy on her when the Inspector posed as her distant uncle with the Prophetic Parchment and gently explained with great expertise that she had been distraught following the "loss of a childbirth", so she kidnapped children to fill the void of being deprived her own.
Gave up shoes because, "Me toes are too lonely in shoes. They want to come out and play! Why didn't I figure it out sooner? Here, play with 'em!" (wiggles them intrusively in Joanna's face and pinches her nose between her big and second toes; a confused Joanna gives her a saucy blush)
Had a tickle fight with Joanna to celebrate their first big score as bounty hunters.
Cuddle Bug: AdoresThe Glomp. Perhaps a little too much for her own good. When she administered it to the incredibly girl-shy James Haggard, he got so flustered... he threw up. On her new Mary Janes. Minnie had to be lulled to sleep with a Martian rock ballad to avoid going into a trademark headbutting fit.
Ninth Inspector: You'll have to forgive Minnie. She's a bit of a... spacey-out sorta person.
Minnie: Oh, pick on the spacey-out girl, eh, Inspector? You're one to talk. You practically live in space!
Does Not Like Shoes: She adopts Joanna's barefoot lifestyle, admitting that after traveling with the Inspector, running around all the time in filthy places, she's tired of cleaning the mud off her shoes and ruining so many pairs. Joanna playfully suggests that if she were a barefooter like her, she'd just get her feet dirty with a healthy layer of earth and wouldn't have to worry about soiled shoes anymore. Minnie actually accepts her proposition, tosses her most recently ruined shoes off a bridge, and they charge through a patch of mud with bare feet together.
Epic Fail: After defeating a Glissadeen with cinnamon, the one substance that makes them explode into goop because they're all deathly allergic to it, she broke a heel and slipped on its soupy entrails, falling face first into it with her mouth open. She freaked out and tried every trick in the book to cleanse her breath of its stink. Until finally, after much desperation and resulting insanity, Minnie began headbutting herself against things just to knock herself out cold so she wouldn't have to endure the bad taste it left in her mouth.
Johnnie Taylor: Minnie, it can't have tasted that bad!
Nice Shoes: Early-seasons Minnie was an avid shoe-lover, with many beautiful pairs of shoes to her name. One by one, they got wrecked, until she was literally down to makeshift cardboard moccasins. Once those were ruined, she quit trying to fight fate and decided to go shoeless. In her final appearance, however, the Tenth Inspector gifts her with all-purpose indestructible metamorphic shoes, which he created in one of his botched attempts to fix the Booth's camouflage.
Tears of Joy: Normally not one to cry, her floodgates opened when she discovered an alternate universe version of her long-dead grampy. Minnie immediately glomped him and sobbed heavily into his chest.
Took a Level in Badass: Over the course of her travels with the Inspector. She faced the Circuit-Chaps single-handedly to save the Inspector and Joanna, for crying out loud! And then she becomes a bounty hunter with her wife.
Use Your Head: Her signature quirk. Minnie headbutts things when frustrated or just plain pissed.
Later revealed to be a habit that she developed subconsciously as a way of getting over the death of her grandfather, which she still blames herself for. Minnie would bash her head against things until she was too numb to feel regret.
Captain James Haggard (Ninth and Tenth Inspectors)
"U-uhh... I'm... C-C-Captain.. J-James Hag-ggar-dd....(struggles to say something)... Good-bye!"
Played by Jamie Bamber
Allergic to Love: Often regrets being so. Richard Miles shunned him when he turned down a chance to be lovers (Then again, Miles is a raving alcoholic and a controversial character among parents who let children watch Peacemist- he was designed as a example of a bad role model for a Very Special Episode: an obvious PSA for anti-alcoholism). Once he overcomes his shyness, he patches things up with Richard again.
Cerebus Retcon: His shyness in romantic situations and closet gayness is initially Played for Laughs, but it's later revealed that it's been a major source of distress for him for as long as he can remember (which admittedly isn't long, due to his endlessly-mysterious amnesia).
Chaste Hero: He's embarrassed by or oblivious to to flirting or innuendo of any sort. It's eventually revealed that this is partially caused by the fact he's ashamed of his sexuality.
Cry Cute: Practically bawled his eyes out once he thought the Tenth Inspector was going to die.
Does Not Like Guns: Hates shooting people, even though he's Immune to Bullets. It's because he knows they can die, but he can't, and it would mean he'd have to live with the regret of cold-blooded murder.
"No, sorry, I — not that you're not a pretty girl — or I'm not straight, or anything — oh, look, is that a Blorgon? Thank goodness!"
Long-Lost Relative: His sister Violet. She has a heart of gold and is a Cuddle Bug who set up a simulator that would help her brother overcome his fear of romance. It malfunctioned and lasted for what seemed 5,000 years in his head (really two days in real time). Haggard still says was the best time of his life.
Noodle Incident: Angered a Tibetan warrior princess by turning down her marriage proposal, which led to himself, the Inspector, and Lily bolting into the Booth chased by her ten thousand guards, narrowly avoiding the wrath of a hundred thousand arrows.
Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Then the Booth was yanked from its flight path and brought to the events that got him killed and made the Inspector metamorphosize.
Took a Level in Kindness: Did so in a very heartwarming scene in the finale of Peacemist: Terra's Progeny, where he had been given the choice to sacrifice his granddaughter Sally or let the 321 abduct all the elderly from the Earth. Until the Ninth Inspector (during his 222 year pilgrimage alone) answered his call for help and aided James in saving the day. Although Nine did not recognise his future companion, James told him they'd meet again someday and was grateful for the help in his darkest hour. When Sally cried at the way her grandpa had scared her, James also broke down crying, cradling his granddaughter in his arms and tearfully told her that no one would ever hurt her again. This act also convinced Ifan Johnson to finally marry him. He spent the following year on an extended honeymoon with his husband.
Badass Normal: Her profession is a treasure seeker, though you wouldn't know it by looking at her. She simply hates desk jobs. Instead, she likes to adventure and write about it afterwards. When the Inspector turned up in her life, it was almost like a match made in Heaven.
Big Damn Kiss: Enjoyed a rather gratuitous one with Nick Palace, her on-and-off boyfriend.
Catch Phrase: Commonly called the Inspector and other aliens "Time Dude"!
Disappeared Dad: Her dad, Norman Noble, a treasure hunter, was often away from the family as he searched for a legendary family heirloom buried by his ancestors. While in the Amazon, he discovered the heirloom... only to contract an unknown disease that was not fatal, but severely debilitating. He remained ill during her childhood and had to be hospitalised on and off for a long time for antibiotic treatment whilst doctors sought out a permanent cure. Mona lacked a strong authority figure in her life because of this, and became a timid, reserved person. Thanks to the medical expertise of Joanna and the Inspector, he was cured of his illness and resumed life with his family, happily retired. The medical bills were easily paid off once Norman cashed in the heirloom and the Virtues got a massive fortune in return.
Fiery Red Head: Averted. One of the most quiet and demure associates on the show.
Genki Girl: By her final appearance, Mona has outgrown years of insecurity and is very outward and loving to her newlywed husband, Nick.
I Just Want to Be Loved: Painfully admits she feels alone because her father was never there to take care of her, and grew attached to the Inspector because he was the father figure she never knew. The Inspector, knowing it would be awful to leave Mona without her memories of him, indirectly introduces her to Nick Palace, a secret admirer that enjoyed reading about her exploits. What he didn't expect was how simple it was to get them to hook up.
Laser-Guided Amnesia: The result of being blasted with metamorphic energy. It began scrambling her DNA and almost caused her to undergo a metamorphosis of her own, rolling back her middle-aged body to ten years younger. But since metamorphosis was a process engineered for Infinity Knights, humans obviously could not handle the same kind of experience, and she started to regress. Some of her impassiveness was undone as she was no longer feeling beaten down by her unsupported dad, and Mona's repressed side of her personality was brought out, making her very hyperactive to the point of nearly frying her mind. The Inspector forced the energy to leave her, which soothed her mind, but caused some level of memory loss. The Inspector decided to leave her behind so she could heal, and predicted she'd get her memories back in about a year's time. Her dad had a change of heart and began to nurse her back to good health.
"I've darted every which way across this Earth to help the sick. Into the beaches of Malibu, through the wilds of the Outback, and even the snowdrifts of Russia. And would you believe I did it allwith barefeet and a smile on my face?"
Bi the Way: After spending her entire tenure pining after the Inspector, she was suddenly revealed to be bi so she could be in a relationship with Minnie.
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Spent most of her first episode running around in bare feet, annoying the Inspector by constantly introducing herself, complimenting his shirt, then going up behind him and repeating the process. Won the Inspector over by successfully arguing that taking the travel agency to Mars via the shuttle express that ran through Solar Meadows Sanatorium—while amusing—was in fact illegal and getting them all returned safely.
Grew up in the countryside and went barefoot in the grass all the time. It stuck with her for life.
She immediately discarded them and ran around Solar Meadows Sanatorium in bare feet when she was informed they had a "no shoes" rule, even turning down a pair of booties that were allowed in their sanitation code because she liked the idea of romping across Astroturf. Forgot to go back for her shoes in the Sanatorium, forcing an annoyed Inspector to go fetch them, only to end up going back in time too far and hand them off to her in the past, creating a Stable Time Loop. She realized they were still in her knapsack after being so caught up the events of her first adventure with him. However, not long after putting them back on she tried to go barefoot again in the Inspector's Booth, but he curbed that habit. This didn't stop her from shoe-doffing, though.
It becomes a Running Gag for Joanna to go without shoes at least Once per Episode- in the case of "Stare", the whole episode. She mentioned taking them off and leaving them in the Booth to tiptoe by Snarling Lions. When one Lion got a chance to pounce them, she and the Inspector were stranded in the future without the Booth, meaning she was stuck barefoot.
Joanna eventually decided to stop wearing shoes permanently after being forced to wear them for a year non-stop on the Moon and they wore out completely. It was symbolic of her growing annoyance with the Inspector, gifting him with her tired sneakers. Afterwards, she became a barefooter with Minnie.
Earthy Barefoot Character: More often than not barefoot in Series 3, rarely wearing shoes or socks. Following "First of the Inspectors", Joanna is always barefoot. Often considered an unhealthy obsession and a trait that marks her as a weirdo. But then she explains it in an endearingly discussion with Minnie that shows it's a meaningful choice:
"You know how a normal person views a home? Four walls that surround them. Maybe a backyard, and that's it. The rest of the world is foreign to them. Not for me. I made it top priority to familiarise myself with the layout of this world. I made it feel like home no matter where I go. People forget every inch of the Earth is their home. I know for sure it is my home, so I treat it with respect. And one of the rules that I follow to do so is that I don't wear shoes or socks in my home. Because they disconnect me from it. I want to feel home. And since I never technically leave my home, I don't need them anywhere. So I shall romp around this huge home of mine in my bare feet. I let my toes mingle with floor, dancing loose and free to my heart's content.... However, I wore shoes and socks in the Booth and the rest of the universe because I thought they weren't my home. Places I don't actually live, just visit from time to time, and so I need shoes. It's the land beyond Earth, my home and backyard in one, and as soon as I'm back on Earth, I kick my shoes off anew and it's back to bare feet. But now... I know the whole universe is my home. I never needed shoes or socks. This is my boundless barefoot wonderland. So Minnie, if you really think the universe is home to you, let go of those shoes and enjoy it barefoot alongside me. You never needed 'em. Just ten toes that love to wiggle and a yearning for complete freedom."
Establishing Character Moment: A beaten up pair of tennis shoes and faded socks are seen lying abandoned by a tree in Hyde Park, followed by a pan up shot of her humming a gentle tune ("Barefootin'" by Robert Parker) while strolling around the park barefooted, the soles of her feet covered in very heavy grass stains, listening to a medical journal on CD through headphones. She wades into a lake to clean off the stains, and then gets paged for her hospital shift. She almost leaves the park... before remembering to go back for her socks and sneakers, fussing impatiently with the laces as she reluctantly slips them on for her job.
Handy Feet: Uses her toes to pull the trigger of her gun while captured by a Rostraan and sassily remarks that her abandonment of shoes was the best decision she ever made in her life, because it actually saved it.
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.
Art Evolution: The Blorgons benefited greatly from the new series' increased budget. You can barely see the duct tape at all these days.
Spell My Name with an R: Following initial confusion over the pronunciation of their name, the fanbase is divided on the spelling of "Blo(r)gon," and BTV seems to have changed their official stance multiple times during the show's run—one official episode guide even referred to the race as the "Blorgrons," the "Blogrons," and the "Blogrolls" on the same page. Needless to say, this isn't a controversy that'll end any time soon: Although a majority of fans seem to favour "Blogon" at present, the programme officially calls them "Blorgons".
The Digifleet of the Circuit-Chaps (also known as the Kybermenschen)
Creepy Monotone: Subverted in "The Lost Asteroid" when the Inspector first attempts to communicate with the Digifleet in an imitation robotic accent, and the Circuit-Chaps counter with a characteristically chipper comeback.
Dissonant Serenity: The Circuit-Chaps are always in infamously high spirits, even when they're plotting the destruction of all organic life.
Do Androids Dream?: The eerie question surrounding the Kybermenschen is whether they actually possess the mechanical equivalent of emotions or are merely simulating them to put their opponents off balance.
Turned Against Their Masters: In "The Retirement Home of the Circuit-Chaps", the Inspector learns about the Second Industrial Revolution on their home planet that led to their ascendance.
Weaksauce Weakness: In early serials the Circuit-Chaps were completely invulnerable to everything except lead particles, which clogged up their condensers and caused them to overheat. This worked well for a while, but as the series wore on the weakness was exaggerated to the point where anything even related to lead—lead bullets, lead plumbing, lead paint, lead pencils, etc.—would make them explode.
This was fixed in the new series by their creators who state that "early prototypes reacted badly to the lead soldering on their circuitboards, but using gold instead solved that problem immediately."
You Will Be Assimilated: "You will be modified," the Circuit-Chaps reassure ordinary appliances and everyday gadgets before turning them into cheerfully murderous conscripts of the Digifleet.
Anti-Villain: As her name suggests, this Infinity Knight set out to literally "educate the dear Inspector" rather than commit any outright villainy. The program was always very coy about whether she took this task upon herself, or was carrying out Infinity Knight orders with enthusiasm.
Obfuscating Disability: A borderline example, in that she always wore dark glasses and carried a white cane, but never explicitly tried to pass herself off as being blind.
Death by Materialism: Was killed when he couldn't reach the X7 while his museum was collapsing, due to trying to carry so many of his artefacts at once. Though the Inspector tried to save him, del Manhattan just kept trying to grab one more artefact and trying to pick up the ones he dropped, forcing the Inspector to leave him behind.
Greed: As detailed to the Inspector, del Manhattan literally wanted to rip the stars from the sky, label them, and stick them in a lovely glass case for all the world to see and marvel at.
Evil Cripple: Following a near-lethal dose of radiation, Vosrda replaced the entire top half of his body with Blorgon cybernetics. The sight of his terrifyingly spindly little legs struggling under the weight of a robotic pepper shaker has driven many a child behind the sofa.
Mad Scientist: Well, he DID create the Blorgons, and he DID try to kill everyone with them.
An 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".
An 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.
A 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 Deviants
They look human and can blend in seamlessly with our society, but they're soulless psychopaths who feed off of chaos and destruction.
The Quiet Men
When 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.
A 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.