Ok, I've laid out this illustration for 50 Years of Whovians on Tumblr ([link]
. If you have NOT been, you should totally go check it out. The project is going through a reboot right now, but the blog is up to 4th Doctor stories and there are some awesome contributions.
I was introduced to DW through 9th Doctor, but as I worked my way both forward and backward (what, linear non-subjective view point, blah blah, don't come kill me for spoilers River Song), I really found this love of McCoy's portrayal of the Doctor. 7 is conniving, secretive, but madcap and full of fun. He is also incredibly doting on Ace, like a favorite niece, but tests her like a parent. I mean, her boombox was "good riddance" but then he's built her a new one-with extra features? He admires and criticizes her behavior, but really lets her think for herself. This is pretty forward thinking, and I doubt we would have modern companions without this relationship.
Of the serials, "Silver Nemesis" is one of my favorites. Yes there are unanswered plotholes-the show was canceled before they could be explained. However, what I see in this and serials that follow, is a move toward what is Doctor Who today. There's a lot of the Doctor contradicting himself (classic-the things he DOES with the TARDIS once in events), it IS wibbly wobbly and timey-wimey (he really isn't sure sometimes if he has done certain things yet), and the Doctor has a definitive dark side (which you see in the Dalek serial from this era as well) with secrets and baggage, and low and behold Ace holds the reins on him so they don't get in trouble from him being rude or socially inappropriate. The ep also has one of my favorite exchanges between the Doctor and Ace. The Cybermen were kind of extra, but I wouldn't have my fave exchange without them. And hey, fez! Go watch it and try to let go of the aged effects, ya'll.