Doctor Who made its debut on television screens throughout Britain, on Saturday, November 23, 1963, at exactly 5:15 p.m. The format may have been entirely unfamiliar to its British audience but something about the series was obviously appealing as the original show ran for almost thirty years and remains, to this day, one of the most popular shows on the BBC. To the delight of fans everywhere, Dr. Who was relaunched in 2005 and continues to be one of the most popular science fiction shows on the air. According to the official BBC Dr. Who website, "in its 50th anniversary year, the series is watched by an estimated 80 million viewers in 206 countries. It has been honoured by Guinness World Records as both the longest running and most successful science-fiction series in the world". Those are pretty impressive statistics.
If you are unfamiliar with the show, you are missing something special. The series portrays the exploits of a Time Lord—a humanoid alien referred to as the Doctor who travels through space and time. He explores the universe in his TARDIS which stands for Time and Relative Dimension in Space. Now, while some may think that it is simply a spaceship of sorts, it isn't. In fact, it is a sentient time-travelling space ship. The exterior of the TARDIS presents itself as a blue British police box, which was a common sight in Britain in the early sixties when the series first aired. Now a regular functioning TARDIS is capable of blending in with its surroundings using the ship's "chameleon circuit". However, in the series, the Doctor pilots a professedly unpredictable, obsolete TT Type 40, Mark 1 version. Unfortunately, the chameleon circuit is broken, leaving it stuck in the shape of a 1960s-style London police box after a visit to London in 1963. The interior of the TARDIS is much larger than its exterior. One of the most well known catch phrases used by anyone seeing the inside of the TARDIS for the first time is, "It is much bigger on the inside." Throughout all the years and all the different Doctors, a common element has been that of a companion or two who journeys with the Doctor as he faces numerous adversaries while working to save various planets and/or civilizations, in addition to helping ordinary people and righting wrongs along the way.
Today marks the 50th anniversary celebration of everything Dr. Who. Now while I didn't actually start watching the show until the 9th Doctor showed up, I have become a real fan. It is funny because I remember when I was little and the show would come on our local public television station out of Toronto, TVO, and if I happened to be flipping through the channels and land on Dr. Who, I didn't understand it at all and of course, at that age, thought it was stupid. Now I only wish I could back and watch those earlier shows. Unfortunately, unless you buy the seasons, and they are not all available, there seems to be no way of catching up. Besides, who could afford to purchase them when three episodes from that very first year cost $151.00 and another special boxed set, this time with two feature length episodes and a documentary, can cost upwards of $255.00! I did manage to see the very first episode broken up into 6 parts on You Tube a couple years back but unfortunately I may never get to see anymore of those earlier episodes. I suppose that I will just have to settle for my fill of all the new Doctors--the ever suave 9th Doctor played by Christopher Eccleston, the dreamy and not to mention, my favourite of the three, the 10th Doctor David Tennant, and the quirky yet lovable 11th Doctor, Matt Smith. We are also about to meet a 12th Doctor in the very near future as Matt Smith's final episode will be in the Christmas Special. Male or female? Young or old? Whoever they get to step into the role of the Doctor will have some pretty big shoes to fill.
Even if you are not a fan of the show, you may have heard some of the enigmatic catch phrases that have emerged from it. Each incarnation of the Doctor is known for at least one catch phrase. Here are the ones that have deemed to be the most memorable.
“Mm? What’s that, my boy?”
"Come along, my dear!"
"We can't change history!"
“When I say run, run. (pause) RUN!”
"Oh, my giddy aunt!"
“Reverse the polarity of the neutron flow.”
"Did I ever tell you about the time..."
"My dear chap!"
“Would you care for a jelly baby?”
"You might be "a doctor" I am "the doctor", the definite article you might say."
"There’s no point being grown-up if you can’t be childish sometimes."
“Brave heart, Tegan.”
"What's the problem, old girl? Why this compulsion for planet Earth?"
"There’s always something to look at if you open your eyes."
“Mmm I wonder…Aha!”
"The TARDIS, when working properly, is capable of many amazing things. Not unlike myself!"
“Somewhere there’s danger, somewhere there’s injustice, somewhere else, the tea’s getting cold.”
"I have made a graaave error of judgement!"
"If we fight like animals, we die like animals."
Who am I?
"I was there..."
“I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.”
"Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey."
"Trust Me. I'm the Doctor."
“Bow ties are cool.”
"Come along, Pond!"
Many celebrations have been planned over a three day period to honour the amazing 50 years of Dr. Who. Part of this celebration is the unveiling of a special 75 minute, 50th anniversary celebration episode entitled, "The Day of the Doctor" which will be aired at the same time around the world, not only on television but also in select theatres in several different countries. The episode will feature Matt Smith (current Doctor) , David Tennant (Tenth Doctor), John Hurt and Jenna Louise Coleman (current companion). We will also see the return of the Daleks, a dark foe throughout many seasons of the series, and Billie Piper as Rose Tyler (the companion to the 10th Doctor). All of reality is said to be in peril as the Doctor's dangerous past comes back to haunt him. I for one, cannot wait until the airing of this episode later today. I've spent the last week catching up on the last few episodes of the past season that I still hadn't seen, in anticipation for today's unveiling.
Now, why am I bringing you all this information about Dr. Who, besides the obvious reason that I am a such a super fan? Well, it just so happens that Sandy has created a couple images, perfect for Dr. Who fans everywhere. While technically, the images aren't actually the TARDIS and the Sonic Screwdriver (our fearless leader would never do anything that impinges trademark law or copyright status), they do bear a strong resemblance and if you, or someone you know is a super Dr. Who fan like me, then sending them a card using one of these images would make their day, I'm sure!
First up we have #833, the Blue Police Booth...
Next we have #836, the SScrewdriver...
Now while this next image, isn't specifically related to Dr. Who icons, it is an image that is often seen in England and since Dr. Who is based in Britain, it seems fitting I introduce it today as well. So, check out #835, the Red Phone Booth...
If you click on each of the images above, they will take you to their locations in the store.
Now while these images are great for Dr. Who fans, they are also great for non fans alike. Know someone who is a Police Officer, or someone needing assistance? The blue police booth would be perfect on a card for them. Know anyone interested in science or gadgetry? Every Mr. or Ms. Fix It you know, could make use of the SScrewdriver, the multi-tool that should be in everyone's tool box. Want to connect with someone you haven't talked to in awhile, or just say hello? Then the red telephone booth is just the image you need. You don't have to love Dr. Who to make use of these particular images.
So many digitals, so many possibilities!
Well guys, that is it for this one. I hope you all have a fabulous weekend and week ahead.
Allonsy-y! It is almost time for the special to begin!
Until next time!
Please note that all references to anything Dr. Who related, i.e. the TARDIS, Sonic Screwdriver, etc., are Trademarked and owned by the BBC.
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Author Unknown. (N.D.). list of catch phrases from Doctor Who. Available: http://www.catchphrases.info/doctorwho.php. Last accessed 21st Nov 2013.
Author Unknown. (N.D.). Doctor Who. Available: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctor_Who. Last accessed 21st Nov 2013.
Author Unknown. (N.D.). TARDIS. Available: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TARDIS#cite_note-ScienceDW-6. Last accessed 21st Nov 2013.
McAlpine, Fraser. (2012). ‘Doctor Who’: Ten of the Doctor’s Most Memorable Catchphrases. Available: http://www.bbcamerica.com/anglophenia/2012/04/ten-of-the-doctors-most-memorable-catchphrases/. Last accessed 21st Nov 2013.
Various. (N.D.). Does Every Doctor Have a Catch Phrase?. Available: https://plus.google.com/+Thedoctoriscool63/posts/AzN5D6V1xRB. Last accessed 21st Nov 2013.
Various. (N.D.). Does every Doctor have a catchphrase? If so what are they?. Available: http://scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/12685/does-every-doctor-have-a-catchphrase-if-so-what-are-they. Last accessed 21st Nov 2013.