I hadn’t planned to watch Doctor Who a little over three years ago. Honestly, I was on Netflix just looking for a movie to watch as I wound down to go to bed.
Then out of nowhere, the screen went black in that familiar way that told you it was loading whatever you had clicked on. Thing was, I hadn’t clicked on anything. I saw it was Doctor Who loading so I decided to give it a try. If nothing else, it would shut up some friends who insisted I needed to watch it.
Next thing I knew it was 3am and I was meeting a Dalek for the first time. Within a day or two, I learned what regeneration was.
I’d heard about David Tennant’s run before I watched and he won me over quicker than any fictional character ever has. Meeting him was a bit of a nerve wracking experience, wondering if he would live p to my extremely high expections.
He was as magically wonderful as I imagined. Even better, the other week, I met his father-in-law.
Let me spell this scenario out. The Doctor’s daughter married The Doctor after they met on an episode called The Doctor’s daughter where she played The Doctor’s Daughter.
Welcome to Doctor Who.
Three years later, those same friends tease me about how resistant I was to watching a show that has honestly changed my life. I have made friends, fallen head over heels for fictional characters, cried over things that may have happened years ago to some people but are new to me, and loved every second of being a Doctor Who fan.
Well every second that doesn’t involve the last couple of season of the show. Chris Chibnall, I wish you the best of luck cleaning up that mess.
Happy Birthday Doctor Who.
This show, it’s amusing to see people’s faces when you tell them what the early days had to deal with so that it could be what it is now. The constant jokes about the early days having the budget of a ham sandwich and yet they made it work in a way that is truly magical.
All day, the Time Travel Nexus has been celebrating the anniversary of a show that honestly should have died before it was a week old. Honestly, there have been plenty of times where it has been sheer dumb luck that the show has made it this far.
Doctor Who has also introduced me to a kindred spirit one that I feel my life has been made richer because I got to know her. She stepped into the TARDIS for the first time in the 70s when she was about my age and made appearances off and on until her actress passed away back in 2011.
In case you haven’t had the privilege, let me introduce you to Sarah Jane Smith played by the wonderful and talented Elisabeth Sladen.
I honestly had to sit here and stare at my screen for a minute to decided what to say about Sarah Jane Smith. A Doctor Who anniversary post wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t take a moment to talk about the woman who brought the “Doctor’s True Companion” to life. And if you wonder where i got that quote from, it came from her autobiography. Actually, take a listen because I honestly cannot give her a better tribute than David Tennant did.
A few weeks ago, I rewatched her original serial “The Time Warrior” and I can’t help but laugh at the fact that it was sheer dumb luck on her part that that whole thing didn’t go south real quick. Because she had plenty of close calls. And she got out of them, some by herself and some with the help of The Doctor. That would be something she would do for years to come, even after she left the TARDIS a few years later.
That’s a story that will continue forever. Yes, Elisabeth Sladen might be dead but as long as there are fans of the show willing to keep Sarah Jane alive whether in our hearts or though books and comics, that story has the potential to go on for a bit longer.
After all, there will be more Doctors and they will need to run into their old friend.
Paul McGann was my first Classic Doctor. I accidentally found his movie on and was like “that’s from the classic era” so I sat there and watched it. When I met him I told him that he was my first Classic Doctor and thanked him for introducing me to that era.
He smiles and says, “So it’s all my fault?”
I couldn’t help but smile back and say “It’s all your fault.”
Thank you again, Paul McGann.
These days it’s gotten to the point where it’s hard to separate me from Doctor Who, it has honestly become that much of who I am and I think it’s going to be that way for the rest of my life. I’ll be the one happily wandering to conventions cosplaying away taking my kids and grandkids to meet Doctors and Companions and to spend the weekend surrounded by people who love it just as much as you do.
I’ve realized that said kids will probably want to be Ace. At least I’ll be able to look at them and say “I met Ace and she was wearing her jacket.”
Even as a writer, I’ve learned from this show. Check out my post this week over at 18thWall where I talk about it a bit.
A couple of weeks ago, I got to spend the weekend at L.I. Who and it was honestly one of the most magical weekends of my life. I will forever cherish the memory of Frazer Hines’ face light up when he saw a bunch of us come up dressed as characters from his era on the show (Frazer played Jamie who travelled with the Second Doctor in the 60s). Or how he praised my cosplay to whoever happened to be nearby and took great pleasure at popping the bubbles on my bubble wrap dress.
He did it to the original too.
I met The Doctor when I was a junior in college and with one publishing credit under my belt. In that time, my dreams have grown, changed, adapted, and I’ve added a couple more credits to my resume.
I’ve also added more dreams, like writing for Doctor Who. I even walked right up to Nick Briggs and told him to his face that I wanted to write for him someday and asked him where the bar was and what he looked for in a writer.
By the way, I look like I’m laughing because the two of us almost ended up in a pile on the ground.
And it would have been his fault.
So that’s not me looking like I’m laughing when I took the picture. I’m laughing while she took it.
Doctor Who has opened up so many doors for me. Like I said above, I met friends, grew closer to others, developed a deep love of history, a stronger understanding of how to tell a story that lasts, and had opportunities that I might not have pursued had I not watched the show three years ago.
Fun fact for you. Colin Baker has a really tight grip on my shoulder there. Grandpa Crocs, you’re wonderful.
Happy Birthday, Doctor Who! And many happy returns!
May the adventure never end.