The Doctor Who 50th anniversary convention was the reason Natalie and I went to London. Not that we wouldn’t have gone otherwise (you can read about my London obsession here), but this is something we couldn’t pass up. Ever. The convention was held at ExCel Friday-Sunday. Our tickets were for Friday, which worked out really well with the flight schedule and my days off. After taking care of our jet lag on Thursday, I was so, so ready to get this convention started.
YOU GUYS. This was my very first convention. I honestly had no idea what to expect.
We got to ExCel just before 9a and lined up with the rest in our group. The tickets sold for each day divided everyone into two groups – The Weeping Angels (us) and Ice Warriors. Both groups saw the same thing, our itineraries for the day were just flip-flopped.
Natalie and I first went to a screening of the episode Victory of the Daleks where Ian McNeice, the actor who plays Winston Churchill, gave commentary over the episode with little hints and fun facts on how they filmed the episode. It was really cool to hear him talk about some of the episode and what went on behind the scenes. For those of you who watch Doctor Who, there are people inside the Daleks and they have a code with the outside lights to let others know when they need to use the bathroom. Who would have thought?
After the screening we went to our first scheduled event. This event led us into a huge auditorium where saw past actors who played the doctors. Peter Davison, Colin Baker, and Sylvester McCoy (doctors 5, 6, 7) came out to talk to the host about the history of the show and a little bit about each of their regenerations.
They. Were. HILARIOUS. It’s cool to see the three of them interacting with each other as friends outside of the show, especially because their eras all ended a while ago. The three of them weren’t included in the 50th anniversary special so when they walked out they held up signs protesting the episode. Loved them!!
There was a 20 minute break before the next event and it was being held in the same auditorium. There was NO chance I was moving out of my seat because the next event celebrated the 11th hour where Matt Smith, Jenna Coleman, and Steven Moffat came out!! There was also another gentleman there but I honestly can’t remember who he was – sorry! I think the lead cameraman?! Anyway, they talked a lot about the past few seasons with with Matt Smith as the doctor and answered a lot of questions from people in the audience.
This was absolutely the best part of the day. Matt and Jenna are such a good doctor-companion duo so it was amazing to see them interact as friends. The chemistry between them and the writer/producer, Steven Moffat, is undeniably hilarious. Although I will be super sad when Matt leaves, I am so excited to see where the show goes, what he does outside of Doctor Who, and to watch Jenna’s character continue to develop with Peter Capaldi. If I wasn’t already completely in love with Matt Smith/Jenna Coleman before, I definitely am now.
There was a pretty big break until our last event so we went straight to the food. There was a lot of stuff to eat at ExCel but then there were smaller vendors that were a lot cheaper. I opted for a BBQ bacon hotdog and it hit the spot. I was ready for some shopping!
Natalie and I first picked up our t-shirts that we ordered with our tickets. They were only available at the convention and have all the doctors with their eras on the back. (I’m actually wearing mine as I type this 🙂 ). To avoid giant crowds, the main stores only let a certain amount of people in at a time. The line was wrapped around the place so naturally we started with the smaller vendors. I have never seem so much Doctor Who stuff in my life!! I was so happy! I ended up leaving with a Dalek sweatshirt, TARDIS themed poster, and 11th doctor sonic screwdriver pen (which I use very often). I would have bought everything if I could, but if you saw my rant about the conversion rate in the previous post you would understand :). I also only packed a carry-on bag…
Outside of the shops they had the props and costumes from the show including all 11 of the doctor’s famous outfits, the well-known companion wardrobes, and several of the monsters.
I guess I missed 8?! (Paul McGann) – 😦
At this point, Natalie and I were on a whole different level of tired. Luckily our last event quickly approached so we made our way back to the auditorium. This event was all about the special effects. It started with the head special effects man blowing up a Dalek that has been used frequently in the show. It pieces back together so it is able to be blown up over and over again.
During dinner we mapped out our plan for the next day. Let’s just say it entailed a lot of sightseeing. The rest of our night was spent watching Doctor Who specials in the hotel and getting some sleep for our last day in London. More to come!