Monday, 5 December 2011

What Doctor Who means to me

As a kid growing up in the Eighties I was quite taken by the repeats on BBC2 of the original Star Trek, I also liked Doctor Who too, but it was with the changeover from Tom Baker to Peter Davison which really got me into the show and when I really became a fan.

I followed the show quite religiously through my teens and into my twenties. My two favourite shows of all time from this era are Doctor Who and Dallas. I loved Colin Baker's brusqueness when he took over the role, and then had to endure the 18 month suspension when Michael Grade attempted to cancel Doctor Who. It was a shame the BBC forced Colin Baker to go, citing that three years was the optimum time for a Doctor. The BBC's attitude at this time disgusts me.

What can I say about Sylvester McCoy, a very good Doctor, but unfortunately the BBC were past caring about Doctor Who and wanted well rid of it. They got their wish in 1989, when the final episode of Survival became the last Doctor Who story to be transmitted. As to the programmes future, the show was in limbo. It was heart-breaking living through the wilderness years.

I turned my attention to Star Trek: The Next Generation when it began on BBC2, and still had the comfort of watching my other favourite show Dallas, at least until 1991, when after thirteen years of being on air the continuing saga of Southfork Ranch finally rode into the sunset. My two childhood favourite shows were no more. There's an old saying that you don't realise how much you love something until it's gone, that's exactly how I felt when I lost Doctor Who back in 1989 and then Dallas in 1991.

I love both those shows, I grew up with them, they were a part of my life, and I desperately wanted them to come back. I kept the faith during the wilderness years that eventually the BBC would bring the programme back. After the failure of the 1996 Television Movie, I knew even then that sooner or later the programme would come back.

I'll never forget that day in 2003 when I read a little Stop Press article in my then latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine that the Controller of BBC1 Lorraine Heggessy had recommissioned a new series of Doctor Who. I emailed the then editor Clayton Hickman for confirmation, and he was kind enough to reply to me that yes, the BBC were bringing Doctor Who back. I cried! Tears of joy of course, but sadness too as I still mourned the loss of Dallas, because I realised there was no way they could ever bring Dallas back.

For the first series back in 2005 I must've cried every episode at the mere sight of the titles and the iconic theme music as the programme started! Thankfully I don't cry as much as I used to, but I do remember gasping with joy at the reveal of the Time Lords at the end of the first part of The End of Time, and being clutched by my boyfriend who probably thought I was having a heart attack.

Of the new series Doctor's I really liked David Tennant, but it was still a shame that Chris Eccleston only did one series, I hope he returns for the Fiftieth Anniversary. What can I say about Matt Smith, he's terrific, a worthy successor to David, he reminds me of a young Jon Pertwee, with that very Doctorish nose he's got!

I'm looking forward immensely to the new series of Doctor Who next year, even though we do have to wait till the Autumn, but it will be lovely to have the programme back in it's old traditional time slot.

I'm also very happy too that my other favourite show Dallas, which I thought could never come back is currently filming a new series in America for transmission on TNT and Channel Five next summer. So it'll be great to find out what the Ewings have been up to. Like the new Doctor Who series, this new Dallas series is a direct continuation of the original CBS Dallas series. For anyone who wants more information about the new Dallas series click on the link further down this page on the left.

Not many people get to have both their two childhood shows return, so I'm really extremely lucky. Roll on 2012, when I'll get to see both my fave shows together again, isn't it amazing they both start with a D!!

Please support the official Doctor Who DVD's from 2|Entertain and BBC Worldwide. Please support the official Dallas DVD boxsets from Warner Home Video.

Written by @Via_The_Void

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