However, watching Doctor Who from its humble beginnings back in 1963 to the present day has become much easier.
Those wanting to get up to speed with the programme need only visit a single BBC iPlayer page to watch it all on demand.
How to watch every Doctor Who episode in chronological order?
Those wishing to watch Doctor Who from its black and white days to the present need to visit BBC iPlayer’s Whoniverse page where the classic series (1963 to 1996) and the new show can be found and watched.
There are also a number of show extras and spin-offs such as The Sarah Jane Adventures, Torchwood and Talking Doctor Who starring David Tennant.
However, it should be noted that a number of classic Doctor Who episodes will be animated or totally missing from the Whoniverse archives.
Why are there Doctor Who episodes missing from BBC iPlayer?
The reason why so many early episodes from the first six seasons are missing from the show archives is, according to Screen Rant, because of a long abandoned policy of ‘junking’.
In the 1960s and 1970s, the BBC would often delete archived footage (including recordings of Doctor Who episodes) for numerous reasons.
This was often done because of a lack of space, scarcity of materials and lack of rebroadcasting rights.
As a result of this, some 97 of the 253 episodes from the show’s first six years are missing.
Doctor Who was not unique in this regard with episodes from TV shows like Dad’s Army and Steptoe and Son being affected.
It wasn’t until 1978 that the policy was scrapped altogether by the broadcaster.