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Brit science fiction brings students together on campus

Seven students settle down, snacking on popcorn and tea, ready for what they’ve been waiting for – this week’s episode of Doctor Who. This is a meeting of the King’s Doctor Who Society. As the name suggests, every week a handful of students get together and watch the much-loved British science fiction show. (Jan. 25, 2013)

Seven students settle down, snacking on popcorn and tea, ready for what they’ve been waiting for – this week’s episode of Doctor Who.
This is a meeting of the King’s Doctor Who Society. As the name suggests, every week a handful of students get together and watch the much-loved British science fiction show.
The Doctor Who society isn’t ratified by the KSU—it’s simply a group of students at the University of King’s College who have mandated each other to watch the show.
It all began when Hayley MacHat, a first-year King’s student, moved into residence last September. Regardless of her new setting, she had to watch the latest episode of Doctor Who.
Doctor Who is a British science fiction television series that has been airing on BBC for years. The show originally ran from 1963 to 1986 until it went on hiatus. It was revived, and it returned in 2005. The new incarnation’s seventh season, or “series,” as the Brits call it, concludes this May.
“I posted a message on the King’s Facebook group asking if anyone wanted to watch the show with me,” MacHat says.
That’s when the group took off. Even though there isn’t a president of the newly formed society, Gwendolyn Moncrieff-Gould decided to the take initiative to download each episode of Doctor Who onto her laptop, since none of the members own a television.
The show follows the Doctor, an alien who looks like a human, as he travels in his time machine through time and space visiting various planets and historical figures—like Shakespeare, Einstein and even Barack Obama.
Time defines the show in more way than one. Doctor Who has been around so long it holds the Guinness World Record for the longest-running science fiction program.
Daniel Whitten wasn’t hooked on the show at first.
“The effects were so bad, but I couldn’t stop watching it,” he says. “I found myself watching it more, and more and more until I was watching three to four episodes a day.”
So what is it about the show the group loves?
“It makes me feel really positive about the universe,” MacHat says. “It just fills me with awe and wonder… (The Doctor) is constantly showing people that they matter and that instills confidence in myself.”
Daniel Whitten loves that “they can go anywhere in space and time. You can end up in Revolutionary France or some sort of abandoned planet at the end of the universe.”
“They’ll go somewhere where there’s a problem and they fix it,” he adds. “They’ll be in the Old West and next week they’ll be somewhere in the future. It’s new every time.”
The group never misses an episode and when new ones aren’t available, they re-visit one of their favourite downloads.
Whitten says if anyone is interested in science fiction and British television in general, then the club is for them.
The society is interested in expanding in the future. They promoted themselves at this year’s society fair to grade 12 students.
In the famous words of the Doctor, “What? You’ve never been bored? Never had a long night? Never had a lot of cabinets to put up?”
If you don’t know what that means, you’ve got some Whovian homework to do.
Date submitted: Jan. 25, 2013

By David J. Shuman

David is a second-year journalism student at King's, is engagement/news editor of The Watch, and a copy editor of The Pigeon. He writes on student politics, campus happenings, and school news. 

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