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Thursday, 21 November 2013

#SaveTheDay Countdown: The Second Doctor--Patrick Troughton

As a countdown to the upcoming 50th Anniversary of Doctor
Who, TARDIStyle will be showcasing one Doctor a day.

Patrick George Troughton  was born in Mill Hill in Middlesex, England on 25 March 1920. He had one older brother, Alec, and a younger sister, Mary. He attended Mill Hill School. At the school he acted in a performance of Bees on the Boat Deck in March of 1937.

Later, Troughton studied under Eileen Thrordike at the Embassy School of Acting. After that, he won a scholarship to the Leighton Raillus Studios at the John Drew Memorial Theatre in Long Island, New York. In 1939, he joined the Tonbridge Repertory Company.

In WWII, Patrick came home form the US on a Belgian ship, which was struck by a sea mine and sank. He escaped on a lifeboat. He joined the Royal Navy in 1940. Patrick was commissioned as Lieutenant with the Royal Navy Reserve, and was deployed on East Coast Convoy duty from February to August of 1941. After that, he was with Coastal Forces' Motor Gun Boats until 1945. Troughton was awarded the 1939-45 Star, Atlantic Star, and was Mentioned in Dispatches. Interestingly, he would wear a tea cosy on his head in the colds of the North Sea. It doesn't get much more British than that.
After the war, he returned to theatre. He was with several troupes, and made his film debut in Laurence Oliver's extremely influential Hamlet, playing the Player King in the "play within the play". In 1953, he became the first actor to ever portray Robin Hood on television. He said often that television was his favourite medium.

When Patrick took over for Hartnell in 1966, Doctor Who producer Innes Lloyd hand-picked Troughton for the role. He said of him, "There's only one man in England who can take over, and that's Patrick Troughton."  Don't worry, Pat. No pressure. As per many actors who played the Doctor, Troughton left after three years in fear of being typecast afterwards. This wrote an unwritten law--"The Troughton Rule"--in acting, to not stay on one show for more than three years.

After his time on Doctor Who, Patrick went on to play many, many roles, like all the ex-Doctors. He did a bit two much--his doctor said that he was stressing himself and it manifested in the form of a serious heart condition. He was not an extremely healthy person, so he should of heeded the doctor's advice to slow down, but he did not. he had two major heart attacks--one in 1979 and the other in 1984, both of which prevented him from working for several months. In 1987, Patrick attended the Magnum Opus Con II, a sci-fi convention in Georgia, US, against the doctor's warning him not to leave the UK.On the first day, he seemed happy and healthy, even celebrating his belated birthday. The next day, he had a heart attack at breakfast and died instantly, according to the paramedics.

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