Friday, November 22, 2013

Doctor Who celebrates 50 years

by +Ian C

50 years and 11 faces ago, Doctor Who made his first ever television appearance, the first of many. In total nearly 800 episodes have been screened, covering 239 stories. Each story revolves around The Doctor travelling into a troubled area of time and space with a hapless assistant, discovering that some alien race is messing around with stuff, then putting things right using wit, guile and a sonic screwdriver.
Doctor Who - 50th Anniversary
Doctor Who - geekier than a Radio Shack manager
In November 1963 when William Hartnell first stepped out of the Tardis as The Doctor, geek-chic was born, and Sci-Fi was changed forever. With a combination of flimsy sets made from old washing machine parts and egg containers, and sound effects created by Kraftwerk on Acid, Doctor Who was obviously made on a budget, but the concept was new and the story-lines compelling so none of the cheapness mattered.

The series was originally going to be called Doctor When (because he is a time traveler), but the title and main character name was changed after the BBC realized that it would sound like 'Doctor Venn', venn ze Germanz overdubbed ze dialog. The writers still wanted to keep the question motif so they opted eventually for Who because it translated better than Vatt, Vye and Vare. Besides, if it stayed as Doctor When, the spin-off series would be known as TrenchWood.

A Sonic Screwdriver
The universally famous Sonic Screwdriver
While Doctor Who faced as many foes as he did different reflections across the ages, there is little doubt that the viewer's favorite are the Daleks. The original Daleks were constructed from items found in the set designer's kitchen and bathroom (plunger, whisk, plastic cups etc.) along with garbage cans, jelly moulds/jello molds and a couple of traffic cones. Put this altogether with some paint and a robotic voice yelling "EXTERMINATE" and you have a TV baddie which will scare a 6 year old boy into hiding behind the couch whenever the Daleks are on screen. Note:- This is NOT a real life account based on personal experience.

The anatomy of a Dalek
Daleks - like a Swiss Army knife for women
With 30+ years of retrospection the Daleks were not that scary, since they can be outwitted by one of man's simplest creations, stairs. Attention Davros, the next time you want to build a robotic exoskeleton to house a soft, squishy alien life form, give it some legs and not just a big flat base with shopping cart wheels.

Every Time Lord needs a method of temporal perambulation and Doctor Who uses a TARDIS disguised as a blue police box, which in the British 60's would not seem out of place, but in modern society sticks out like a Dalek's Disintegrator, and has sometimes been mistaken for a portapotty at conventions. The TARDIS (which stands for Time And Relative Dimension In Space) is much bigger on the inside than it appears on the outside, allowing The Doctor and his companions to comfortably navigate time and space without taking up too much space when parked.

The TARDIS should not be confused with a Fucktardis, which is defined as a person who is a bigger fucktard than they appear to be from the outside.

Doctor Who and a Fucktardis
Knock Knock - Who's There? - Doctor - Doctor Who?
Make sure you tune in to watch the galaxy wide simulcast of the 50th anniversary edition of Doctor Who on 11/23/13 (or 23/11/13 for everyone else not in Japan or America). Times vary by solar system so check your local listings. And finally before we part (or before you click to another of our pages) a heartwarming picture of the 11 incarnations of Who and K9.

Doctor Whoville

Who was your favorite Doctor? Use the comments area below to let us know. We will delete any comments which answer this question with a YES.

4 comments :

Big D said...

I loved "Fucktardis" - I may nick it for my own use.

Favourite Doctor - Ooh, tricky. Tossup between Tom Baker and David Tennant with Peter Davison coming up on the outside rail.

Ian C - Slap The Penguin said...

Glad you liked 'fucktardis', I thought it was unique but I googled it and as usual urban dictionary already gad an entry.

I grew up watching Tom Baker, and just like your first Bond, you favor your first Doctor. Peter Davidson was also good. I did start moving away from doctor who with the appearance of Colin Baker, and Sylvester McCoy was the last straw. I haven't watched it since...

Janene Murphy said...

I have just added a new word to my vocabulary. :)

Ian C - Slap the Penguin said...

You're welcome

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