(Of the various "fandom and me" posts, this is a twofer.)

When I was a kid, we didn't get Doctor Who on television in my area. Well, we had; I remember seeing an episode of The Invisible Enemy when I was little. It gave me nightmares as was its function. But then we didn't. So I got to know Doctor Who through the Target novelisations.

Being in the States, I early on read one of the Pinnacle imports with the Harlan Ellison introduction to Doctor Who for American readers. (I was going to say it was the first one I read, and that it was Terror of the Autons, but as apparently that was not one of the Pinnacle editions, I will just say that my memory is confused. It's plausible that I read the introduction in one volume and then the story in another first.) I don't remember if I had already read, "Repent, Harlequin, Said the Ticktockman," at that point, but I suppose not. I had heard of Ellison, though, because I had a reprint of an Incredible Hulk story that he co-wrote with Roy Thomas.

Anyway, Ellison decided the way to sell Americans on Doctor Who was to make it out to be far better than the sci-fi we knew. So Star Wars was, in his characterization, mere adolescent space fantasy, and Star Trek would turn your brains to bat guano. Wait, here's a quote:
They could not have been more offended, confused, enraged and
startled.[...] But I stood my ground, there
on the lecture platform at the World Science Fiction Convention, and I
repeated the heretical words that had sent them into animal hysterics:
"_Star Wars_ is adolescent nonsense; _Close Encounters_ is
obscurist drivel; _Star Trek_ can turn your brains into puree of bat
guano; and the greatest science fiction series of all time is _Doctor
Who_! And I'll take you all on, one-by-one or all in a bunch to back it
up!"
[...]
I envy you your first exposure to this amazing conceit. And I wish
you the same delight I felt when Michael Moorcock, the finest fantasist
in the English-speaking world, sat me down in front of his set in
London, turned on the telly, and said, "Now be quiet and just watch."
That was in 1975. And I've been hooked on "Doctor Who" ever since.
Understand: I despise television (having written it for sixteen years)
and I spend much of my time urging people to bash in their picture tubes
with Louisville Sluggers, to free themselves of the monster of coaxial
cable. And so, you must perceive that I speak of something utterly
extraordinary and marvelous when I suggest you watch the "Doctor Who"
series in whatever syndicated slot your local station has scheduled it.
You must recognize that I risk all credibility for furture exhortations
by telling you *this* TV viewing will not harm you...will, in fact,
delight and uplift you, stretch your imagination, tickle your
risibilities, flense your intellect of all lesser visual sf
affectations, improve your disposition and clean up your zits. What I'm
saying here, case you're a *yotz* who needs things codified simply and
directly, is that "Doctor Who" is the apex, the pinnacle, the tops, the
Louvre Museum, the tops, the Colisuem, and other etcetera.
Now that is puffery, yes? He even drags poor Michael Moorcock into it!

Anyway, I was a Star Wars fan (I'm of that generation; we all were), and a little offended; not yet a Trek fan for a couple of years, and willing to accept that characterization; and possibly too gullible for my own good. I devoured what volumes I could borrow from my uncle the Whoie (That's "hooey" as in Whovian, not "hwoy"), and ended up quite the fan of that series, and of Terrance Dicks, who wrote a bunch of them. So I was, for a big chunk of my youth, the Whoie who had barely seen Who.

As for Harlan Ellison, at some point I read and liked "Repent, Harlequin, Said the Ticktockman." So I went on a serious Ellison kick as a teenager. I enjoyed his non-fiction: there he seemed witty and likable; that drew me to him. Some of his fiction had a tender melancholy. Some of it, however...

I wish I had read "A Boy and His Dog" first so I knew to run screaming in the other direction. But no!!! I read so much stuff of his. At first I thought he was a science fiction writer, but he wrote a lot of weird horror, which was not a genre I was looking for at that age. The brain scars, the scars!

One thing about that Ellison kick is that I recognized his influence in Babylon Five. Or when I heard he consulted, I could see the influence. His influence is strong in Joe Straczynski's Midnight Nation, too. I let the Ellison (and the Ellison in Joe's work) get in my head too long I think.

At this age, I've gone to an active irritation at Harlan. Even his non-fiction raises my eyebrows. I now believe his journalistic integrity is non-existent; I think he just makes stuff up. Harlan Ellison is a depraved punk.

Anyway, back in high school, I met a girl from Lancs, and not knowing much about Britain, i said I was a fan of Doctor Who. She thought it was awful that I was a fan of a show like that. And she was right! It was a low-budget, very silly show before; but in the 1980's, Doctor Who was definitely, incredibly dire. But I wasn't a fan of the show, but of its (previous eras') derivative product--the novelisations, and original comics, and, well, what fandom make of it.

I'm not the first to make this formulation: Doctor Who is not really that great a show, but it becomes something in the fandom because of how much people invest in it. That was true before Russell Davies, and it's true now.

But girl-from-Lancs was right, and I had to admit it was childish stuff. Eventually my Whoie uncle (who was by marriage anyway) left my aunt, and my connection to Who was more or less gone. I heard about the TV-movie but didn't see it.

I later heard about Chris Eccleston being in a revival--after his season was over--and at some point I started reading a small amount of stuff online about the new Who. (Specifically, I believe I read a review on Television Without Pity of the episode that Tony Head was in. And not much else. I don't think I even knew what Billie Piper looked like, or her name.)

But one day, I was flipping past my local public TV station, and came upon something I didn't recognize, watched a bit of it, thought, "This sure resembles a Doctor Who story; could this be the revival?" And it was "Rose," with Rose running into some Autons before she met the Doctor.

And I was back in. My local PBS station only ever bought the Rose episodes, and not even the Christmas special! I joke that they're batchippers. But that was still kind of fun.

I long ago forgot how Ellison's introduction continued:
They are not classics, make no mistake. They can never touch the
illuminative level of Dickens or Mark Twain or Kafka. But they are solid
entertainment based on an understanding of Good and Evil in the world.
They say to us, "You, too, can be Doctor Who. You, like the Doctor, can
stand up for that which is bright and bold and true. You can shape the
world, if you'll only go and try."
Fair enough.

So at this point, I'm sort of pro-Doctor Who, depending on the era; sort of anti-HarlanEllison (and sick of Joe Straczynski like the rest of comics fandom); and honestly, Michael Moorcock leaves me cold (though I'm grateful to him for some concepts in the Elric stories).
philippos42: (doctor who)
So I finally saw that "Day of the Doctor" special. (relevant icon is relevant)

Note that I have not seen any of the Clara episodes.

This was all right. It would have been nice to see McCoy or Eccleston, but it was all right. Fixfic.
I'm going to use some foul language here, not because I'm talking about right-wing politicians. Nope, Scots pop culture writer trying to do "America"--usually a good bet to set me off.

22:20: I've been putting off watching "The Angels Take Manhattan" in part because I really hate the Weeping Angels, which are a glaring case of what's wrong with Doctor Who. But I decided to get it over with. Hey, Alex Kingston is in it, right?

I just got to the opening titles. Sod off, Moffat, [cut for minor spoiler] )

Not that that concept for a monster ever made sense anyway. Good grief, did you know that Doctor Who started out with the idea of trying to teach kids a little science and history? Yeah, you wouldn't, what with these monsters that work on nightmare logic. Seriously, you fill kid's heads with this nonsense, and you're working to undermine the scientific mind that's necessary for citizens of a democracy.

Bad enough you use your 45 minutes to make little kids afraid of religious statues, now you want them to [minor spoiler again] )

Moff's probably a Tory, too. A Scot Tory? It could happen.

Fuck him. No, fong him. No, use him to fong Mark Millar.

23:22: OK, that was an OK ending for the Ponds. And nice to see River again.

And I guess if angel statues are going to be scary, ones that just time-displace you are less awful than ones that eat you? I don't know. Still, the concept is crap.

Sorry for the cussing, I edited it down a little. I was flashing back to my raging hatred of Mark Millar comics there.
So I watched the newest Doctor Who.

Right at the beginning, with the voiceover, I had a little Firefly flashback. Twangs in space, y'all.

Set in the USA, c. 1870. I don't know if I'll watch it again just to pick out the real and the fake American accents. A couple of them were real, though.

Ben Browder is in it.

I think he's well ahead of Daphne Ashbrook now. She was in the Doctor Who movie and one episode of Star Trek. (I think there are some other British actors who've done small roles in both series.)

But Browder's now done Farscape (Australia/US), Stargate (US/Canada), and Doctor Who. Granted, it's a role in one episode. But still, he can eat out on that a few times.

link


The comment about Eight's tendency to stand really close to Grace got me wanting to see the movie, so I tracked it down. I didn't really notice the personal space thing that much, but Eight was plenty odd.

The movie's pretty corny, very American, and actually shows somewhat just how good RTD's treatment was by comparison to so much low-budget daftness in TV.
philippos42: (doctor who)
I've pretty much let this online identity fade away, and for sort of random reasons, when I do use it, I have been checking my tumblr more than Dreamwidth & LJ.

Well, I do use the name, I just have been too busy for the journal/reading journals.

I wonder about people like bluefall, kali, and the poster who played as Cissie Jones-King. We knew pieces of each other once, but now we have moved on, and in other names will know each other not.

Really, this became a big comics-fandom-observing blog for me, and not only do I have little patience for all that now, but I've been busy with other things.

I did actually see the entire season of Doctor Who this year, out of order & sometimes well after broadcast, but within a year of its broadcast for the first time. That was neat.

I have a new notebook computer that apparently I took for granted--it now reboots itself when I leave it to sleep--less often while I am working on it.

I kind of miss reading some of the people on my flist, but I don't really miss fandom and its ranting so much.

Read some stuff on s_d today, kind of liked some of it, skipped a lot.

Have I mentioned this video here? I guess not. I just want to leave you with something cool.

GIANT SPOILERS FOR DOCTOR WHO I AM NOT EVEN JOKING.
philippos42: (clover)
I just finished "The Wedding of River Song." This is about as fast as I ever see a new episode of Doctor Who. But I had to see them pack all this in. And it was indeed jam-packed.

Spoilers! )
I was googling for the Seventh Doctor serial "Battlefield" like so:
doctor who battlefield
The 1st result:

Best guess for Battlefield Doctor is Seventh Doctor

Mentioned on at least 4 websites including wikipedia.org, wikia.com and amazon.com - - Feedback
I laughed out loud.
philippos42: (doctor who)
OK, if people aren't responding on a Sunday night, reposting on a Sunday night is not real helpful.

I did get one response to silly questions, though. Since I've been on a Doctor Who kick, I found it amusing to read the questions as if "One, Two, Three" etc. were Doctors. So, gwen, 1) I think there are whole books about that; 2) Yes, and No; 3) No; 4) Alone. But that's just if it's Doctors. Actual answers to come.

Questions open still here.
philippos42: (doctor who)
Metal rat, real mouth! Metal rat, real mouth! Metal rat, real mouth!

I dunno, made me laugh.

We get to see a little bit of Amy, Rory, and later even River, surprisingly enough.

The New Who crew are quite fond of Black Guy Dies First, aren't they? It's a bit glaring now. I know, I know, we had Mickey and Martha as companions, but at this point it seems like they're killing off darker-skinned characters intentionally as a running gag. Not always first, though.

Also a rather comical use of Made of Explodium. And since there were Cybermen, I started thinking at one point about who they were? Were they recent conversions or not? Because I was thinking maybe they were, and that was ugly....

Wow, the Doctor is depressed in this. He was last time as well.
by drwhofan74

All results are for entertainment purposes only. Do not place your enitre future in the hands of some computer geek who watches too much British television.

You are Susan
You are Susan
Take The Doctor Who Personality Test and Horoscope today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Personality Test Generator.
You are generally worthless. You are very intelligent, but don't utilize your gift. You prefer to listen to the radio, swaying back and forth in a daze. Life generally bores you. You always end up having to be rescued due to your laziness and total lack of common sense. The only reason people put up with you is because your grandfather is someone important. You respond to danger by running around in a circle yelling, "Grandfather! Grandfather!" You will end up being ditched by your family in some horrific future, never to see them again (except maybe for a single special event episode).


Seriously, any quiz result that starts with, "You are generally worthless," but isn't from a crap quiz that makes all the answers like that, that bears looking at right there. I think this one passes.

I changed one answer, and, look, Worst Meme Result Ever:


You are the Fourth Doctor
You are the Fourth Doctor
Take The Doctor Who Personality Test and Horoscope today!
Created with Rum and Monkey's Personality Test Generator.
You are eccentric, and slightly deranged. You enjoy overdramatizing everything you say and being the constant center of attention. Friends are just people you end up having to rescue. If anybody gets too close to you emotionally, you just dump them off in some random village to fend for themselves. You are the smartest person you know, and ever will. You have no patience for stupidity or ignorance. You will marry a travel companion who will resent you, do occasional voice over work and cameos, but always be fondly remembered as being, "The Best."


C'mon, Four, how boring.

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philippos42

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