Falling For Doctor Who

For the last seven years, there have been signs everywhere that I should be watching Doctor Who:

  • The ethereal police blue box popping up on my Tumblr dashboard, always glorious and mysterious, beckoning you to uncover her secrets. (Yes, her.)
  • The constant all around praise for the rotating cast of Doctors and Companions.
  • The constant feeling that people who watch Doctor Who are part of a community bigger than the show itself — a community built on decades of filmmaking dedicated to keeping an international sci-fi legend alive; a community that believes in the Doctor beyond the hour of entertainment the show provides for thirteen weeks a year.

I finally decided to give into the temptation and watch the damn show. And not that this is a suprise of any kind, but two seasons and over thirty episodes in, I am officially a whovian, a fangirl, an DW addict, and all the words you can find to describe what loving Doctor Who is like.

I’m not sure why it took me so long to get here. What I do know is that I don’t think there will ever be a more perfect time for me to have fallen in love with the show.

I recently had to come home after living abroad for five years. When you’ve been away for so long, your new country doesn’t just become your second home — it is your home. The best part is that no matter how long you’ve lived there, no matter how settled down you are, every day is like an adventure. You speak a different language, navigate a different culture, and everything is a challenge you tackle every morning knowing that there is nowhere else in the world you would rather be.

And then it ends.

Needless to say, when *SPOILER ALERT* the Doctor has to leave Rose behind at the end of Season 2, I sobbed so hard I could barely breathe. My heart hurt for Rose because I knew exactly how she felt. The unfamiliarity that had helped her become the woman she was was all going down the drain. She wasn’t just losing the adventure, the company, the excitement. She was losing a part of herself.

That’s why I love Doctor Who so much. I get to travel along with the Doctor. I get to feel like I’m not stuck at home anymore. I get to feel like anything is possible again even though I was forced to leave the life I had built for myself.

I have to admit, some early episodes of the show left me a little skeptical. The show often defies logic and explains it away with disarming convenience. Some villains are one-dimensional archetypes. But then you realize,  it’s part of the charm. Because for every Return of the Jedi-looking special effect, there is a resonant metaphor on modern days issues, from parenting to pollution to faith. For every episode where you think the Doctor cannot possibly feel as happy as he presents himself to be, a small, minuscule window into his past is open and you fall for him even more.

Perhaps what I love most about Doctor Who is the Doctor’s loyalty. For a Time Lord who’s lost his home planet and is the last of his kind, for someone who travels through time and space every day without any true constant save for his companions, for an alien in a human form, the Doctor is a stellar human being. Loyal to a fault. Brave. He would never give up on anything, or anyone.

That, above all, is why I love the show. It teaches me to keep fighting. And to do with it a smile.

I can’t guarantee Doctor Who won’t break your heart (and stomp over it repeatedly, like all British shows eventually do.) What I can guarantee is that it will be worth every second of it.

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