It’s About Fandoms

Closely related to collecting is following the fandom with others. Yes, I think something as “high-brow” as collecting Picasso paintings can be called a fandom! And something as common as stamps or coin collecting too . Go to any shows, like a page devoted to something on Facebook, belong to any societies for the appreciation of…? See, and that kind of fandom is as old as- well- me! Older really, so nothing new about fandoms just that it is most commonly applied today to movies, television shows and the actors and actresses that are characters in them.

This page is devoted to the fandoms I have followed over the years. Some of the videos that are a part of It’s About Collecting show one way I’ve expressed my enthusiasm for these fandoms, just like you! So it seems natural now to share here how I got into these fandoms. You might want to stick around, bookmark this page, and check-in from time to time. If you’ve watched my IAC videos here at Your Hobby or on YouTube, you know some of the fandoms I’ve been devoted to and that said, let’s start with one of the oldest ones…

Doctor Who- The Fandom of My Life & Times

It all started my Junior year of high school. My friend AJ walked into class with a reeeaallly long scarf.

What is that? Said I

My mom made it. It’s from Doctor Who. Said she

Oh Said i

You simply must watch it! Said she.

And so I did…

WHO is THIS!?

So I became rather fond of this whacky British Sci-fi being broadcast on my local PBS station (the days of the BIG 3 channels, a couple of UHF and… PBS). At school I now fully understood why my friend KN was walking robot like and repeating the word “Exterminate! Exterminate!” in that oh so grating but creepy tone. I don’t recall if ‘Genesis of the Daleks’ was the first episode I saw but it made an impression. My mother started watching it with me on Sunday nights. It was on a bit late but who cared if I was tired at school! When you’re that young you can always sleep later! Then I experienced my first regeneration. When Tom turned into Peter I was like…. Whaaaat?


Back to the start?

First time I’d ever seen a main character change, ever. I’d never seen such a plot twist. Oh the things I was to learn about Doctor Who! This was weird and I really missed the Doctor…. 🙁  Though I didn’t know it at the time it was because of the good writers I stuck with it and I know it was fun having “Who-chats” at the lunch table. In time (lol) I adored Peter’s Doctor too. I like them both, both Baker and Davison were very good, but in different ways. And that nasty Master and those persistent Daleks kept me watching, along with the parade of companions human and alien alike. Don’t forget K9 either! Then when it was time for the Doctor to regenerate I was ready this time but again I was surprised. Wait… this was the mid- 80′s… why does the Doctor look like he just came out of the swinging 60′s???

All I could do was watch!

The third incarnation of the Doctor (Jon Pertwee) was who I saw and found out my Chicago public station WTTW was only able to purchase the Doctors I had seen. I soaked in the Pertwee episodes weekly and giggled a little at all the models and strings and the impossible scenarios. I took them in stride learning that this sci-fi had the ability to laugh at itself but then deliver sage advice about many subjects. I know this now but as a teenager I simply watched! Then Pertwee’s inevitable regeneration into Tom Baker came. Of course I watched them all over again! As I grew more enamored of this series the delightful news came WTTW had purchased Colin Baker’s run as the Doctor and some recently available Hartnell and Troughton episodes. Talk at the lunch table was lively as fandom for the show caused our channel 11 to cater more to us! It was Who heaven on Sunday nights. Then I met another Whovian not from my school-verse…

A New Whovian!

As I mentioned previously my mother watched the show with me. That was cool but when I got my first summer job in 1980 I met another Whovian from work to watch the show with at his house! He didn’t go to my school so he was the first “outsider” to my world of the fandom and- oh my! How he’s stuck around since then…

So, I asked my spouse of nearly four decades the other day, “Do you remember how it came up we both watched Doctor Who? That you were watching in the Boston area before you moved to the Chicago area where I was watching it?”

He said, “Not really, it just sort of happened didn’t it?”

Okay sure, but however it happened I do recall we watched the series “Cosmos”- hosted by Carl Sagan- together at his parent’s house. I also went to his house to watch the Royal Wedding of Charles and Diana. His Mom made pancakes… at 4am! So it had to be the summers of 1980 & 81 and I can only conclude we probably watched Doctor Who too and guess who was the first Doctor we both saw before we met…

Is The Doctor There?

We really had to wonder, my husband of merely three years (in 1986). And it was an after thought (for shame!) to his burning desire to move to Florida. Somewhere in the wedding vows I missed it- apparently. “Love, honor and… move to Florida?!” So I obeyed but not without reminding him about Doctor Who. 

“Do they show it down in Florida?”, I ask

“Don’t know”, he says 

What to do? I’ll tel you…we spent the next six months recording as much of the show as possible! All on videotape! Just in case the FL PBS station wasn’t as attune to our taste in sci-fi. When we got to FL we watched our videotapes for a while then life started happening. You know, jobs, career, house, pets and… in 1993 a brand new (hopefully) Whovian we named Dan… 

Guess Who’s Back!

A HUGE gap ensued as the two Whovians (plus 1) lived life in FL. I do need to  mention the sidetrack to Star Trek Next Gen (we are original Trek fans as well). Though we enjoyed the occasional dip into our videotapes of Doctor Who the show had left our television screens in 1989. In our defense too, I must say variety IS the spice of life. Not only did we fandom on all things Trek-ish through the 90′s and early 2000′s but also on other Sci-fi shows like X-files, Fringe, Babylon 5, Farscape… yeah you get the idea. Don’t think we were aware of the 1996 movie Doctor Who BUT my husband and our son regularly watched the Sy-fy Channel. So he definitely became aware of our old “friend” one night in 2006. When I came home from work that night he was excited to tell me what he knew… “Guess what show is back on T.V.!”

“I have no idea, what show?”

“Doctor Who!”   

Not Just a Passing Fab…

Upon hearing the news my husband so excitedly relayed, you’d suppose I was all over watching the show with him and our son. Yes, I was pleased but I was very wrapped up in another fandom at the time…REALLY wrapped up! I was all absorbed into a little four member band that was quite popular the same year Doctor Who hit the screens in the UK, 1963. This same band showed up in the US in February 1964. They were the beginning of what would become known as the “British Invasion”. Yep- The Beatles were dominating my world in 2006 and had been since 1995 when the Anthology had aired in November that year.

That’s nine solid years! (and an entire fandom page of its own)

So it wasn’t surprising to me when I went to visit a friend up north (also a huge Beatles fan) in November of 2006 that- even as I watched the episode School Reunion (being repeated on the Sy-Fy channel that week)- that I was merely amused. After the episode I reminisced a little with my friend about the days when Sarah Jane ran with my favorite Doctor- Tom Baker. During our chat she made a comment I found strange and still do to this day- she said, “the look of this new Doctor kinda reminds me of John.” (as in Lennon) I never did get why she thought that and I never thought much more about it. BUT! -it was not the last time I thought about the 10th Doctor…

Seeds of the Voyage to come!

It’s 2008 now in my journey of fandom with the Doctor. Yes, true enough I had already missed the 7th and 8th Doctor’s regenerations at this point. Though, I was also not quite in full fandom pursuit as I was in my high school days. Don’t worry it’s coming- obviously or this blog wouldn’t have the title it has. But every story has its build up; that’s why 2008, late February to be exact. In that year I went with my very Beatley minded friend to Liverpool (second time) and dipped down to London for a day to walk that famous crosswalk and other FabFour related sites- I know- it was just one big cleche’ of a trip in the Beatles sense but there was a standout Doctor Who moment.

While I was Beatling to my heart’s content my 14 y/o son had been digging on things Whovian and you know who was the Doctor at this point. As I was shopping gifts to bring home from that musically famous city of Liverpool, I went into a toy shop and purchased a very accurate metal TARDIS model of the 10th Doctor’s and the current issue at the time of Doctor Who magazine; in case he or my spouse wanted other Whovian delights from across the pond after I came home. They both loved my gifts.

Okay here’s where I admit I did intently watch the 2007 Christmas episode “Voyage of the Damned” on YouTube after coming back from Liverpool. Not sure why my memory is fuzzy on the timing but I do know we watched it on YouTube the only way you could back in 2008. Never mind you can’t “pirate” upload entire episodes at all today. But in 2008 there were still rogue posters but episodes were loaded up piece-meal. Cleverly, my son set up two instances of YouTube one to watch as the next bit loaded on the other instance to provide some sense of flow. It was delightful and I think this episode was likely the one that “stuck” in my brain (albeit the subconscious part of it)…