Geek Speak

A Noob Nerd in Doctor Who's Domain

The people have spoken, and I have listened. Last week, I implored you, the readers, to help me set my path for the immediate future. I offered up a menu of four well-liked and respected science-fiction series -- Doctor Who, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Farscape and Battlestar Galactica -- and asked you to choose which I would watch. You chose, and I listened. And your choice was...

Doctor Who (wait, the picture and headline gave it away, didn't it? Damn it.)

See also: Battlestar Galactica? Doctor Who? Where Will My Nerddom Take Me Next?

It wasn't even close, by the way. Over the combined breadth of my domain -- this comments section, Facebook and Twitter -- Doctor Who roared out of the gates, took the early lead and never relinquished it. Battlestar Galactica did respectable business, garnering just less than half of the votes that the good Doctor did. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine had a single, passionate advocate, and I did receive the excellent suggestion to just rewatch Firefly. No one loves Farscape, though, and there was a part of me that wanted to select it just out of spite and a sort of nerd hipsterism, but that wouldn't be right. I asked for your guidance, and your guidance I will take. Doctor Who it is, then!

This out of the way, I then was faced with a second dilemma in the form of the question, "Where the fuck do I start?" Many of you had suggestions! Alas, no two of them were the same, although the consensus was that the new/reboot ones were good, the old ones ... maybe should wait until I got the bug for real. I chose the path of least resistance -- since there was a new series of Doctor Who, complete with a brand-new Doctor, starting at almost the exact moment I was, I chose to begin there. Thus my first Doctor is the twelfth Doctor, Peter Capaldi, and my adventures through time and space started with the debut of the latest series.

Having never seen a single episode before, I can't compare the new Doctor to previous Doctors, but I can say that I like the guy. Capaldi has this sort of brusque charisma that makes you want to like him even as he's being pretty goddamn unlikable. He's the kind of guy you want to please even as he's completely pissing you off. That's my kind of guy.

The show around him is intriguing, but I can't say I'm totally hooked as of yet. The dodgy CGI raised an eyebrow, and I can't say I was expecting it to be quite as silly as it was. Not to say that I found it overly silly, but I was anticipating something more self-serious than what I got, which is probably a good thing overall. I think part of why I couldn't hang with Battlestar Galactica during my first attempt was due in large part to how deadly seriously it took itself. Doesn't look like that will be a problem here! The tone reminded me a bit of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and that's a pretty good thing, because obviously Buffy the Vampire Slayer was fucking amazing.

And, it has to be said, I am inclined to embrace anything that gives me a world where a lizard woman and her human wife and lumpy alien butler not only run around Victorian England without raising many eyebrows, but also aren't above getting suited up ninja style and using some swords to fuck up clockwork robots. That's good times.

So, thanks to all that took the time to read and vote, and here's hoping that the Doctor Who bug takes hold. I'm committed to watching the entire current season. (I guess they call them "series" in the U.K., but I don't want to confuse anyone by saying that I'm committed to watching the entire series, because holy fuck, this show has been on the air since the dawn of time, and I don't know that I have that kind of dedication.) Once it's over, I'll check back in with a report on how it all sat with me and if I have become a dedicated Whovian. Until then, thanks again for all your help!

Find me on Twitter, where I tweet about geeky stuff and waste an inordinate amount of time: @casciato.

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Cory Casciato is a Denver-based writer with a passion for the geeky, from old science fiction movies to brand-new video games.
Contact: Cory Casciato