As parents our responsibility to our children are vast. There are the things we do to keep them safe and happy, to make them grow and develop into positive humans.
Then are the things they just pick up along the way, that mean they grow to love the things we as parents participate in.
D loves Star Wars and football, purely because of exposure to them from Hubby. M has developed a musical taste that I am proud of because I always have local radio on in the kitchen and they play a great mix of music, but mostly from the 80’s and 90’s, so its stuff I sing while cooking. M is a self-confessed Byran Adams fan, and has all of his albums on his tablet, and does a brilliant rendition of Summer of ’69.
It is therefore no surprise that with all the Doctor Who excitement at the moment with the 50th Anniversary the boys have picked up on it, as both Hubby and me are proud to say we love the series. D is also spurred on by his teacher who he adores, talking about it, as she is also a bit of a sci-fi nerd – I do not use that term offensively but one I am also proud to call myself!
The boys haven’t really watched too much of the Doctor as it has been broadcast, mostly because they don’t accept that there is programming beyond the dedicated children’s channels. A while back though M found that the modern Who episodes were available on Netflix, and started to watch – I had forgotten how good Christopher Eccleston actually was in the part. This discovery of the series for themselves has led to many questions and discussions about it.
I think we all have our own Doctor, the one we love above all others. For me it is Jon Pertwee, as he was the Doctor when I young. For Hubby it was Tom Baker who he loved. The boys, like most youngster though argue about the merits of David Tennant over Matt Smith. I do however believe that when the next regeneration takes place Peter Capaldi will probably end up as their Doctor. They will have been in at his creation, and he will take them through some informative years. Time will tell though. Hubby has several DVD’s of classic episodes and the boys have been keen to watch them, and they can now happily identify the order each Doctor appeared.
Last night, D came out of school really excited because his teacher had been talking about the anniversary – yes she is this cool to engage the kids in something they relate to, and had mentioned the Doctor Who at the proms which was going to be on the telly during the evening. The boys were upstairs and in their pyjamas by 7pm – this has never happened before and I will remember it has now happened! We snuggled up on the bed, and settled down to watch. They are not unfamiliar with classical music so the idea of the orchestra was not alien to them, but it did raise questions about the different sections. The sights and sounds of the next hour and a quarter had them totally mesmerized. Questions were asked about the different monsters and in which episode’s they appeared. They also talked about the way the music made them feel, which I found interesting that they could see how it was setting the mood of terror, excitement, the chase, etc.
When it was finished they were buzzing, and it did take D a while to settle to sleep, but he had really enjoyed the experience.
After they were sleeping, Hubby and I watched the programme about the birth of The Doctor – An Adventure in Time and Space, which was really good, but quite sad to shatter the illusion of the kindly granddad character of William Hartnells Doctor. D had asked me to record this for him, but on watching it I don’t think he will enjoy it. The amount of smoking in it would drive D mad – he once asked me why people smoked and as a throw away answer I said it was because they were trying to kill themselves, and so ever since then, when he sees someone smoking he asks why they don’t like themselves and are trying to die – this shows how careful one should be when answering his questions.
This weekend we look forward to John Hurt taking centre stage, and the boys have already said we will be putting off games night to watch it!
I however want to reflect on my encounters with The Doctor.
Being the nerd I am, I have attended many conventions over the years, and therefore have met many famous people, including a few of the people behind the Doctor.
I was lucky enough to meet Mr Pertwee when he did a one man show about a year before his death. It was just him and a microphone and he talked about his life and how he became to do what we all know and loved him for. It was a fascinating evening, and afterwards he was signing autographs and chatting to the audience members. The photo I have of him, is a prized possession.
I met Peter Davidson at a cricket match. One of Hampshire County Cricket Club grounds was in Basingstoke. It was a tiny ground and one you just sat on the boundary line to watch the games. One summer, there was a charity match, the Peter Davidson XI against Hampshire. It was fun, and Mr Davidson was happy to chat and sign autographs.
I think though my biggest claim to Doctor Who fame is the day I went for a pee in the next cubicle to the wonderful Lis Sladen, aka Sarah-Jane Smith, the greatest ever companion. You can just imagine the look on my face as we both came out the loo at the same time, and she said hello to me! It is one of those moments in life you will never forget.
I think Doctor Who appeals to a lot of people because you can take it as deep or as throw away as you want. Growing up it petrified me because the stories were all set on earth, and therefore they could be happening right down the street – for a child this was far more worrying than happening on some far-flung planet.
I am glad the boys have found an interest they don’t just share with us but share with each other. D did say that at the 100th anniversary celebrations, he will tell his children how it was during the 50th that he really got hooked on it.
So, thank you Doctor for all the enjoyment over the years, and here to the next 50 years!