The Fourth Doctor very nearly met up with one of his best companions.
For a great many Americans (and Brits!) Tom Baker was their first-ever Doctor. And, while he certainly had a surprising number of really solid companions in his seven-year tenure, it's hard not to see his first as his best -- Sarah Jane Smith.
And, indeed, the fans of the show who went on to run it seem to agree. After all, not only was actress Elisabeth Sladen brought back to reprise her role as Sarah Jane on Doctor Who, but she was even given her own show, The Sarah Jane Adventures. That's doubly impressive considering that the last time someone tried to spin Smith off, we got K9 & Company. Oh, dear.
Sadly, Lis Sladen died in 2011, leaving us far, far too soon. During her time with The Sarah Jane Adventures, she played opposite both David Tennant and Matt Smith, and was even joined by Katy Manning, who played Jon Pertwee's companion, Jo Grant.
But she was also apparently meant to have at least one other major guest star appear on her show -- Tom Baker. Baker explains, "I think it was being mooted at a time when Elisabeth began to be ill. I’d never seen [The Sarah Jane Adventures], you see, but she was so thrilled."
On a personal note, my first ever episode of Doctor Who was "The Android Invasion," and, ever since, Lis and Tom have been my favorite Who duo. They were possessed of a cunning rapport, quick-witted firecrackers both, lighting up the screen in a way that rivals the best of TV and film.
And they nearly could have, again. If only.
(via Doctor Who TV)