Phew. I’ve just about recovered from my three days appearing at the Doctor Who 50th Celebration event at Excel. In honour of the 11 Doctors, here are 11 things I loved from the weekend:
1. Presenting the Vortex Challenge in the Arena. Basically, this was a Doctor Who version of Runaround with me in the Mike Reid role. Triffic! I’ve always been a frustrated game show host, me.
2. Being able to announce “I am the QuizMaster and you will obey me.” Repeatably.
3. Chris Johnson of CBBC fame joining me to present the Vortex Challenge on Sunday. Cue lots of fun with sonic screwdrivers. I went for the brand new (or should that be old?) sonic as sported by the War Doctor.
4. 5.15pm on Saturday. The theme tune blasting out exactly 50 years after it was first heard, followed by a rousing chorus of ‘Happy Birthday Dear Doctor’.
5. Grabbing Lisa Bowerman for an impromptu interview about playing the last monster of the ‘classic’ series (as well as Benny Summerfield, of course).
6. Seeing Sarah Jane’s cars from both the Sarah Jane Adventures and K9 and Company parked next to each other in the costume area. Luckily, the main doors hadn’t opened yet, so no-one was around to see my fannish glee (yeah, like I kept it to myself for the rest of the weekend! Who am I trying to kid?)
7. Watching The Day of the Doctor with 2,500 other fans. The audience cheered and laughed at all the right moments – especially when a certain pair of eyes appeared on the screen. Although that was nothing compared to the collective gasp when the Curator’s voice was first heard. Would anyone like a jelly baby?
8. Meeting Bernard Cribbins. Every event would be improved by the presence of Bernard Cribbins. Fact.
9. Being chased across the Arena stage by a Peg Doll. Those things freak me out!
10. Watching my eldest learning how to move like a Silurian in the Walk Like A Monster workshop. She’s still doing Silurian impressions now. I think we may have a new fan on our hands. It’s about time!
11. Catching up with so many friends over the three days. It may only be a daft old TV programme, but it has provided me with so many fantastic friendships and experiences over the years. Well done, Doctor! Here’s to the next 50 years.