BBC Worldwide Australia / New Zealand and the New Zealand Mint have collaborated to produce a line of collector’s coins depicting characters from Doctor Who, the longest running science fiction television series in history. The collection is being released in celebration of the show’s 50th anniversary.
New Zealand was the first country outside Great Britain where Doctor Who could be seen by the public, so that’s the apparent rational for releasing these coins there. Curiously, this marks the second time in recent memory that a country has minted really beautiful collector’s coins celebrating some other country’s fictional national hero. Canada did this with Superman last September
They’re only making a limited run of each of the coins. They’re minted in a half ounce of Metal999 Fine Silver, edge milled, in $1 and $2 denominations – except for the gold TARDIS coin, of course. That one’s made of an ounce of gold, and its face value is $200. Each coin has Queen Elizabeth II’s face on the obverse, so the Doctor Who imagery is actually on the back of each coin, not the front.
The coins depict all the actors who portrayed Doctor Who up through about last November – which means the War Doctor is not included in the pantheon, nor is Peter Capaldi, the 12th Doctor. Or the 12th and a half, if you count the War Doctor as the 8th and a Half.
The coins can all be purchased separately, or you can buy the deluxe set of silver coins in a giant pocket watch display case.
The coins sell for about 70 times their face value, so technically, you could spend one. They are legal currency in New Zealand, under the authority of the South Pacific Island nation Niue. We’re not sure who would be daft enough to spend one, though.
If you’re a collector with deep pockets, you may find great joy in owning some of these. As for the rest of us, it just makes us smile to know that these exist somewhere in the world.
The coins were released for sale by the New Zealand Mint on February 1.
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