duskpeterson: An apprentice builds a boat as a man looks on. (Default)
All right, it's time for me to convert a few people to the Doctor Who fandom.

The Doctor Who television series is a national institution in Britain. Whenever a new actor is appointed to become the Doctor, he receives the type of coverage in British newspapers that is usually reserved for new Prime Ministers. Alas, the program isn't as well known in the U.S., though it ought to be: it has that blend of high drama and silliness which the British have perfected.

I first encountered the program in 1977, at age fourteen; my family was living in England then. Doctor Who is the type of television program where you can just plop down in the middle of the series. (Which is a good thing, because the series has been running since 1963. It's the longest-running science fiction TV series in the world.) The old series of Doctor Who (1963-1989, 1996) is cult science fiction. The new series (2005-2010) retains the best qualities of the old series but has better production values.

The Doctor is a traveller in time and space. The only other thing you need to know before watching these clips, which are all from the 2010 season, is that the Doctor has the ability to regenerate into a new body if his old body dies. Thus he has been played by eleven different actors since 1963.

Clips, recommendations, and fannish stuff )

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