Category Archives: Dr. Who

A Pair of Pertwees

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When I was a teenager in high school, PBS began running episodes of the BBC sci-fi show Doctor Who.  And back then, the show had already gone through two doctors before I ever saw it.  So the first Dr. Who Doctor for me was Jon Pertwee.

Now, for those of you unfamiliar with the whole idea of Doctor Who, a time-travelling fixer of plot holes in history who goes about appropriating young women as companions and travelling through time and space and other dimensions by using a T.A.R.D.I.S. that manipulates “timey-wimey stuff”, I am afraid there is no hope for you here.  I am a Whovian and am not inclined to be a chief explainer  of all things Whovian to basically non-Whovians, and especially not never-will-be-Whovians.

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I was in college already by the time Jon Pertwee was no longer Dr. Who.  And though I also loved Tom Baker as the Doctor, I was forever caught by the heart with the first Doctor I watched and will forever hold in my heart the notion that Pertwee is the real Doctor.

And he was a gifted comedic actor that had a long career stretching back to Vaudeville and would also come to be identified with British comedies like Worzel Gummidge.

He had a prehensile face, capable of many comic contortions, and an ability with voices and characterizations that made you think “multiple personality disorder”.

Jon left us in 1996, but he has had a new life for me through his son, Sean Pertwee.  His little boy is practically a clone, though as far as I can tell, a very serious clone.  The comic DNA was apparently forgotten on the laboratory shelf.

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Sean Pertwee is now playing the ninja butler in the pre-Batman show on Fox called Gotham.  He has stepped into the role of Alfred Pennyworth, Bruce Wayne’s butler, and it’s like having my first Doctor back again.

Now, I admit that this post is mostly just fan-gush about people and characters that are mostly forgotten now.  But Jon Pertwee lives on in me.  I saw him play the Doctor back when some things in life could still be absolutely perfect just as they were.

 

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Filed under artists I admire, characters, comedians, Dr. Who, humor, nostalgia, review of television

Ouch!

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I am a Dr. Who fan.  It is without a doubt, one of the most important factors of my Who-life.  I started watching in the early 70’s when Jon Pertwee was the Third Doctor.  We used to get Whovian re-runs on PBS on Friday nights.  I watched every episode I could manage… Cybermen, Daleks, Silurians… the Master.  It was fantastic sci-fi and imagination fuel of the highest octane.  The Fourth Doctor was my favorite after I started watching his episodes.  I still think of the image of Tom Baker’s Doctor whenever I think of Dr. Who.

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It was during the 1980’s that PBS went back to the beginning and aired the Dr. Who serials from the very start with William Hartnell as the Doctor.  My favorite Doctor turned out to be the little clown Patrick Troughton who played the Second Doctor and really sealed the formula of a wild and wacky adventurer through time and space who could make me laugh and keep me on the edge of my seat and sometimes even make me cry.

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The order I watched the Doctors was 3-4-1-2-3-4-5-6-7 until the series restarted in the new Millennium.  Then I watched 9-10-11-8-and a couple of episodes of 12.  I used a combination of BBC America when we still had cable TV, and then I bought DVD’s to to try to fill in the blanks of what I missed.  When he went to the Marines, my oldest son bought me a Netflix account (shared with the whole family) and I have been using that to watch new episodes that I haven’t had a chance to see before… even some of the old Classic Dr. Who episodes that I had missed along the way.  I fell in love all over again with Dr. Who.  David Tennant and Matt Smith became my new favorite Doctors.

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But then came February 1st, 2016.  Contract disputes took all the BBC shows off Netflix.  I panicked.  I bought Hulu on January 30th.  Dr. Who was there up until this morning.  Apparently they no longer have Dr. Who either.

The world is darker place this morning.  My travels through time and space with the Doctor and his companions has temporarily been stalled yet again.

I hear rumors that it will be renegotiated, the way the CBS/Time Warner dispute was that took Big Bang Theory away from me for a year.  But I have no faith in the possible curbing of corporate greed and the effects it has on my imaginary life.  I mourn for now, and pray to the Doctor, hoping for relief.

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Filed under angry rant, Dr. Who, humor, Paffooney

Doctor Who

(All images in this post are borrowed from BBC, BBC America, Bowties are cool on FacebookThe Third Doctor on FacebookDoctor Who Worldwide, and Doctor Who and the Tardis fan page)

2nd DoctorThe first picture in this post is my Paffooney for the day, a picture I drew myself in pen and ink and colored pencil.  I felt it was about time that I wrote a post on Dr. Who.   And that is a pun in more than one way.    The Doctor?  Doctor Who?  Back up in time four sentences… or is that three?   I felt it was about TIME that I wrote about the Doctor.  You see, now that I am retired, I have become more than ever a time-traveler.  Really.  I mean it.  We are ALL time-travelers.  We normally go from the present into the future, traveling in one perceived direction.  But yesterday I spoke to the ghost of a teacher who taught me in 1965 and 1966.  Through the magic of memory we can revisit the past.  Through the magic of dreams we can alter what happened and how we perceived it.734086_396433387124140_1955610552_n

The first Doctor to me was John Pertwee, actually the Third Doctor.  He was on PBS Channel 9 out of Des Moines.  We watched him on Friday night, mostly my father and I, but sometimes my sisters too.  As I went to college, Tom Baker took over as the Doctor, and we watched every episode we could.  11203255_617034485107481_8543128443324658026_nPBS went all the way back to William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton and I watched those too.  I was devastated when Baker left in the 1980’s, but then was completely renewed as a fan when they chose Peter Davison to play the new Doctor.  I was completely devastated when they canceled the series.  When it came back in 2005, I could share it with my sons… though only the eldest showed any interest at all.  My younger sister still watches Doctor Who and she watches with her kids.  There is an element of this thing that runs in families.487189_253636828070464_1251421010_n

This goofy Time Lord from Gallifrey has been gallivanting through time  back and forth since 1963.  He picks up young, pretty girls, and sometimes guys, and takes them with him, totally endangering their lives and even getting them killed.  He fights malignant talking trash cans called Daleks, some dude who can also completely change out a new body called The Master, and all sorts of bizarre monsters from space and time  993039_369698143130998_890258559_n 10644907_10152529567361837_8509993788113192276_nThe stories are always complex, loaded with comedy and occasionally science fiction, and the actor doing the juggling act of the title role has so far always been a totally unique and totally eccentric individual.  The Doctor continues on now, for more than 50 years, and he keeps connecting the past to the future to the present and rewrites entire lifetimes of galaxies in the process.

I love Doctor Who, and will probably be watching it whenever I can right up to the time when I myself ultimately run out of time.  I am quirky just like he is.  I travel through time too.   And I identify with him in ways I can’t even begin to describe.  So, Who am I?  Yes, I think I am.

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Filed under autobiography, Dr. Who, humor