All posts by William Ritter

[GUEST POST] A Newcomer’s Viewing Guide to Doctor Who


William Ritter lives and teaches in Springfield, Oregon. The Sherlock Holmes–style adventure Jackaby is his first novel. He began writing Jackaby in the middle of the night when his son was still an infant. After getting up to care for him, Will would lie awake, his mind creating rich worlds and fantasies—such as the one in New Fiddleham. Follow William at his website and on Twitter as @Willothewords.

Doctor Who Distilled

by William Ritter

Your fervent, occasionally unhealthy enthusiasm for Doctor Who has finally piqued the interest of your last non-Whovian friends. You’ve been scribbling “Bad Wolf” in the margins of their history books for years, freaking them out by staring unblinkingly at every stone angel you see, and answering their legitimate questions, such as “What have you done with all of my left shoes?” with a cheeky “Spoilers!” Well, congratulations, all of your hard work has finally paid off—they’ve reached out an arm and given you the chance to pull them aboard the TARDIS!

One problem—that big Peter Capaldi party you’ve been planning is right around the corner! Your Whovian hold-out doesn’t have time to sit down and start from the beginning! You need to cherry-pick the best of the best. (Trust me, don’t leave them to their own devices. My brother-in-law tried “giving it a go” three times on network television. By pure chance he got “The Girl in the Fireplace” EVERY time. He is a fan now, but he’s developed a Pavlovian response and weeps uncontrollable whenever he hears the opening credits.) I don’t recommend starting a newbie with the classic series either—not because it isn’t worthy, but because fine wine is wasted on an unrefined palate. So where to begin?

Without further ado, because I know you’ve got darling little Dalek cupcakes and Cybermuffins to bake before the big day, here is Doctor Who Distilled. In just 5 hours of screen time, these episodes showcase the breadth of Doctor Who. They feature Eccleston, Tennant, Smith, and Hurt’s incarnations of The Doctor, and introduce viewers to Rose, Martha, Donna, Amy, Rory, Jack, River, and Clara.
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