Whether it is thirty seconds playing on a jukebox as background ambience, or a wild megalomaniacal sing-along belted out before taking over the world, popular music has been a part of Doctor Who since the emerging days of the Beatles. Now, with musical artists actually appearing and performing on screen in DW episodes, it appears as though we may have turned a corner.

This week, we take a look at the inclusion of popular music in Doctor Who to date, and ask if there is a justifiable place for the use of licensed song material, and beyond that, the risky inclusion of musical performances within the program — or inversely, if it’s time to put the iPod away and focus on other aspects of the show.

List of pop music used in Doctor Who

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