Many people scoff at the character of Adric, but those who do don't realise the potential that was in the character and why he developed the way he did. Matthew came on board when he met Producer John Nathan-Turner, he had been working as a File Clerk at the BBC and had appeared briefly in To Serve Them All My Days.
The casting of a young male companion was not new as both Frazer Hines and Michael Craze had previously been cast in a similar role, however the character of Adric differed in several aspects. Adric was the first male teenager who was not from Earth to be a companion for the Doctor. Additionally the character was also a mathematical genius as denoted by the star he wore on his costume.
Matthew Waterhouse began his tenure in the role of Adric in the first E-Space adventure Full Circle shown in 1980 where he starred opposite Tom Baker. The character continued when Tom Baker was replaced by Peter Davison, until the 1982 adventure Earthshock in which Adric sacrificed his life to save his friends.
The character is often derided in fan circles but many people just don't realise that although the intentions were good to start off with with the character, the development of Adric was forgotten when the other new companions of Nyssa & Tegan came on board. There where too many companions aboard the TARDIS at this point in the shows history. If Adric had remained solely as companion, instead of introducing Tegan & Nyssa he perhaps would've been given more to do and been remembered more fondly. However, writers tended to take the lazy way out by pairing Adric off with the villains in the stories! However I do like the character of Adric, and was upset at his demise in the story Earthshock. However he did return twice to the role on television, in Time-Flight the story directly after Earthshock playing an apparition of Adric and in Davison's swansong Caves of Androzani in which it is very telling that the last word the Fifth Doctor uttered before he regenerates was the name of his deceased companion.
As yet there has never been a companion who replaced him. The character of a young male teenage companion aboard the TARDIS didn't continue, it was a succession of young female girls who were paired up with the Doctor. Adric was the last true definitive male companion in the series.
Adric's legacy will never be forgotten, as those fans like myself who have loved him over the years, appreciate Matthew Waterhouse's contribution to Doctor Who. One such person is Heather aka @MissAdric2 on Twitter, who stands up proudly as a big fan of the character, so it is to her I respectfully dedicated this article.