This is the story of my first experience with Doctor Who, as has been requested here. There aren't really any spoilers but it is a tad sentimental so enter at your own risk.
My introduction to Doctor Who came from the same place most of my influential popular culture moments came from: my mother. While the moment is not as memorable as say the first time I watched Star Wars it’s still pretty important, especially considering just how important this silly little Sci-Fi show became to me later in life.
The first time I met the Doctor was just an ordinary rainy Saturday… I am going to assume it was raining because it makes for a better story, but the reality is I probably would have been watching telly on a Saturday afternoon even if it wasn’t a sunny day outside. Honestly I’m not even sure it was a Saturday but why let the truth get in the way of a good story.
Anyway, it was a rainy Saturday afternoon and I was stuck inside with nothing to do but stare at the raindrops as the run down the window. I had run out of classic novels to read (could actually have been true but doubtful) and because of the rain we couldn’t go to the library to get more. My mother notices my melancholy mood (she’s awesome like that) and could not stand to watch me suffer so she did what any loving parent would do in this circumstance, she turned on the television.
As she flicked through the channels my mother was disappointed to find that there were no educational documentaries playing. Finally she settled on a recently made telemovie about one of her favourite fictional characters as a child – The Doctor. So we sat together (my brother and sister were probably there too but that ruins the bonding moment so let’s pretend they weren’t), ignoring the wind and rain outside, watching the 1996 television movie Doctor Who starring Paul McGann and when the credits began to roll I knew my life would never be the same again.
OK, so I might be exaggerating slightly because I don’t really remember the details (I was only about 10). What I do remember is that the first Doctor Who episode I saw was the 1996 telemovie and I did watch it with my mum. I remember I liked it, but I was pretty much already a Sci-Fi geek anyway so it didn’t really impact my life in a significant way… at least not until later almost ten years later when a selfish little girl by the name of Rose Tyler ran away with the Doctor and changed my life forever.
I could go into details about how Doctor Who changed/saved my life but there’s no point. Those of you that have watched the show will probably all have had the same or a similar experience and the same thing will happen to those of you that have yet to watch it (and I am not even interested in associating with people that refuse to watch it).
While everyone’s first experience with Doctor Who is unique the sentiment is the same. The truth is the Doctor is whoever you need him to be whenever you need him to be it. To be honest I actually do feel sorry for people that don’t watch (and love) Doctor Who because it would be like missing out on the biggest, most awesome, party in the world. To be a Doctor Who fan is to be part of a movement, a community of people that you know would drop everything to fight any aliens that might threaten this blue and white planet of ours.
So here’s to the defenders of the earth, however it is you got here, I’m just glad you did.