David Banks

Last updated 09 January 2020

David Banks
(this image appears for illustrative purposes only and no attempt is made to supersede any copyright attributed to it)

David Banks

Born: Monday 24th September 1951 (age: 72)


David Banks is a British actor from Hull, best known for portraying the Cyber Leader in a number of Doctor Who stories in the 1980's. In 1989 he played the part of Karl the Mercenary in the stage play Doctor Who - The Ultimate Adventure. He was the understudy for Jon Pertwee and played the role of the Doctor in  two performances.

As a theatre actor he has played many leading roles in London and throughout the UK. His numerous TV appearances include long-running portrayals in Brookside, playing the wrongly convicted murderer Graeme Curtis, and 181 episodes of L!ve TV's drama series Canary Wharf as Max Armstrong, head of news, who was finally abducted by aliens. He also appeared in EastEnders in 1992, playing the photographer, Gavin, at Michelle Fowler's graduation ceremony.

He writes and directs and has worked extensively as a voice artist, recording over 100 audiobooks - including an unabridged version of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings (Talking Books, 2006). In 2007 he revived his portrayal of Karl the Mercenary in a Big Finish Productions audio adaptation of Doctor Who - The Ultimate Adventure with Colin Baker as The Doctor.

David Banks is the author of several published books. In 1988 he wrote "Doctor Who - Cybermen", illustrated by Andrew Skilleter (Who Dares Publishing, 1988), which encompasses the history and conceptual origins of cybermen. He adapted the book into four audio cassettes, The ArcHive Tapes, which he also narrated. He later wrote the novel Iceberg (Virgin, 1993) for the Virgin New Adventures range of Doctor Who spin-off novels, which was set in 2006, when an inversion of the Earth's magnetic field is threatening to destroy human civilization, and featured the Cybermen and the investigative journalist Ruby Duvall. His play "Severance", about the 12th century lovers Abelard and Heloise, was first performed in 2002.

In 2008 he was invited to deliver a paper about cyber emotions entitled "Life as an emotionless killing machine: Cybermen in a Strange State" by the Universities of Sydney and Melbourne. This paper references the recent reappearance of Cybermen on television after a long absence.