Companion Regeneration Approaches!

I’m the first to admit I was late to the Doctor Who bandwagon. Well, it would be hard for me not to be. The show aired its first episode in 1963 – long before I was even a glimmer in my mama’s eye. But even in the last year, I kept hearing these murmurs across various fandoms I was a part of:

“Are you watching Doctor Who?”

“David Tennant is SOOOO adorable.”

“Exterminate. Exterminate!”

Even the fabulous Ruby Karp sings its praises.

And people just knew what these things meant. I had no idea. I was peripherally aware. In the more than twelve years I’ve been blogging, Doctor Who had popped up on my radar a couple of times. One of my oldest online friends – no really, we “met” on LJ in 2000 and in person in 2011 – is an avid Doctor Who fan, and she was the first to show me any episodes. She’s also the first person I ever knew who dressed up as a Dalek and made it awesome. (Yes, Kait, I’m talking about you.)

But I didn’t have BBC, and I was, frankly, too lazy to go searching the internet to download old episodes of this show that everyone raved about regularly. Then I lost my job, discovered I could only spend so much time of my day writing without going completely mental, and summer hiatus came to all my other shows. Oh, and I discovered the glory that is Netflix Streaming.

I set this all up really just to impart on you all how much it took for me to sit down and immerse myself in the awesome time-traveling, immortal, space-ships exist in the form of British police boxes universe that is Doctor Who. There are also awesome companion people who help our lonely Doctor as he jumps around the galaxy putting out fires with every go. There are epic monsters, epic loves and hilarity at every turn.

This epic show – and it totally deserves the term “epic”, as it’s lasted through 11 leading men Doctors and more than 35 companions – is on the cusp of another cast shake up. Next year, we’ll see the departure of fan-favorite companions Amy Pond & Rory Williams, and a new companion will take their place. I’m not spoiling anything here. It’s been all over the web for the better part of this last week.

The new companion they announced this week will be played by Jenna-Louise Coleman. She’s adorable. I can’t wait to see her interact with Matt Smith’s Doctor.

It’s interesting to me that this show, one that is something most Americans (at least I think) consider “geeky”, is about to catapult this young woman into international fame of the sort that could someday land her on a list of National Treasures not unlike Liza Baron’s list earlier this week. Catherine Tate is already on there.

It’s not often anything geeky catapults women to fame – not in the way other things do, at least. I mean, yes, there are things that catapult women to fame that are geeky. I think I remember hearing Jeri Ryan talk about how she had fan-sites dedicated to her Star Trek character 7 of 9 that were up and active within the hour of her casting being announced on a podcast once. And you can’t really argue that portraying video game heroine Lara Croft didn’t push Angelina Jolie further towards action-star fame, but let’s face it, she was already cosmically famous at that point, anyway.

This new companion, though – man, she’s in for a wild ride of fame that I doubt anyone is prepared for. She’s going to have crazy fans, a huge internet following and be the kind of person who can only go to something like ComicCon with bodyguards or a disguise. Much like her character, who will join the Doctor on adventures and virtually leave the “real world” or Earth as it is 2012 in this space time-continuum, she’s about to jump off the deep end into fame.

I’m looking forward to the new storylines and the wrapping up of the epic Pond family saga with the eleventh Doctor. The show is frequently scary as all get out and hilariously funny. In case you, like me, have been hearing about it for years but never knew where to start in its long history, now would be a good time to put it on your calendar. You can start with the new companion and the Christmas special of 2012. I would almost guarantee you’ll be instantly addicted.

It might just become something that ruins your life.

Image via BBCAmerica’s Tumblr

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