- Posted November 15, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
‘Doctor Who’ turns 50
- hhanks, CNN iReport producer
I suppose you could say I’m a relatively new Doctor Who fan. Relatively. Compared to other fans who have been along for the ride for most of the full 50 years, I am fresh blood. But in just these last two and a half years that I’ve been a fan, my life has been profoundly changed by Doctor Who. It’s given me direction in what I want to do with my life, how I want to live my life, and it’s even directed me to my soulmate.
My story starts in the summer of 2011 when a friend of mine insisted that I watch an episode with him. I have to admit, I was skeptical at first. I’d heard mentions of the show before, but being an American, I knew next to nothing about it. I’d never seen a Dalek before, and I only vaguely knew that a blue police box was somehow connected to the show. I knew it was sci-fi, but despite being a lifelong sci-fi fan, I avoided it because I already had so much on my To Watch list.
That changed immediately after watching Series 4’s Silence in the Library, obviously followed by the second part of the story, The Forest of the Dead. I was almost instantly hooked. I began to practically devour episodes of Eleven, Ten, and Nine – even occasionally dipping my toes into Classic Who. Somewhere along the way, I figured that I should see the 1996 Doctor Who Movie with Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor. It was his only on-screen appearance, so I thought that I could check off another Doctor in an hour and a half. I quickly found that assumption to be dead wrong, by the way.
Say what you want about the TV Movie, but the Eighth Doctor is completely wonderful and terribly underrated. I quickly fell in love with him. That led me to creating a roleplay account for him on Twitter, thinking I could write my own stories about him to deal with the lack of further television adventures. This was before I discovered Big Finish. My lovely RP friends changed that, and even led me to join Tumblr, which was where everything came to fruition.
After two weeks of easing myself into the Eighth Doctor Tumblr fandom, I came across a picture of an extraordinary Eighth Doctor cosplay. It was fantastic and the guy wearing it was quite attractive too. In true Tumblr fashion, I responded to it with the message “Marry me. Please.” That was what got us talking. It turns out that he had been a lifelong Doctor Who fan, ever since he was six years old and saw the Doctor Who Movie on television. Paul McGann was his first.
He shared Big Finish audios with me, as well as the Eighth Doctor Adventure novels and the comics. We’ve watched New and Classic Who together, and the Doctor Who Movie several times over. It’s been a wonderful journey through time and space, and it certainly didn’t take long for us to figure out that we had found soulmates in each other, even though we live on opposite sides of the Atlantic.
Of course, long distance relationships aren’t always easy, but Doctor Who brought us together, and it makes the distance just a bit more bearable. It’s something we can always share and it’s nice to know that even though we’re 3,000 miles apart, we’re only just a short TARDIS trip away from each other. Skype also helps. And airplanes. We’ve both been to visit each other and I’m going to be spending the holidays with him in London very soon. We’ve just recently celebrated our second anniversary and are looking forward to spending the rest of our lives together.
I’ll be moving to be with him in London in a year and a half, once I get my university degree. I love London. I’ve loved it since I first visited it in my senior year of high school, before I even met him. I felt at home there for some reason, and I now realize that my life has been guiding me there all along. Doctor Who is what has connected the pieces. So not only have I found my soulmate, I also get to move to a city I feel like I belong in. And one more gift Doctor Who has given me is knowing what to aim for.
I’m a writer. It’s what I do, and what I’m getting my degree in. I’ve been writing since before I could spell, and as a kid, I would make up fanfiction in my head of my favorite cartoons before I went to sleep. As I got older and increasingly more geeky, most of my story ideas have shifted towards science fiction. With my introduction to Doctor Who, I feel like the possibilities are endless for stories in my imagination. With a TARDIS encoded into words written on a page, I can go anywhere. I can take along any Doctor and companion and we can try to make sense of this crazy and wonderful universe.
I’d like to eventually give back to this show that has guided my life so profoundly. If I could one day write for Doctor Who, that would be a dream come true, whether it’s for the BBC, Big Finish, or some yet unknown medium of Gallifreyan antics. This is something for me to aim for, and I know I’ll continue to enjoy the rest of this grand adventure along the way. I have my Eighth Doctor.