8 Lee Evans
Malcolm in “Planet of the Dead” (2009)
Best known for: rubber-faced stand-up
Malcolm was a thinly disguised version of a Doctor Who geek; the difference being that he was a geek about a real person (the Doctor) rather than a fictional one (within his universe, at least). He was a proto-Osgood, then. Oddly, while fans instantly took Osgood to their hearts, they were pretty hostile to Malcolm, possibly because Evans brought that “comedian” baggage with him. It’s a shame because Malcolm’s actually a wonderfully endearing character, and almost a Doctor-in-making; he has the appearance of being in a complete mess but he’s more in control than he looks.
9 Catherine Tate
Donna in “The Runaway Bride” and season four (2006-2010)
Best known for: The Catherine Tate Show
When Catherine Tate first appeared (previously unannounced) at the end of “Doomsday” many viewers went, “Huh? What’s she doing in Doctor Who?” Even after her first full appearance as the mouthy Donna in the Christmas special “The Runaway Bride” the jury was out. Donna was just a little too full on. Then it was announced she would be the new companion following Freema Agyeman’s departure as Martha and the internet went into meltdown. “She’s a comedian not an actress!” “She’s too shouty!” “She’s too old!”
A year later and nearly everyone was won over. The only ones who weren’t were the ones who can’t admit they’re wrong ever. The Donna/Tenth Doctor partnership was an unlikely and sparky one, but it stuck gold and season four saw the highest consistent viewing figures the revived show has achieved. By the time Donna’s memory was wiped to save her life (which some consider a fate worth than death) the audience was solidly on Team Noble.