Classic Doctor Who on the big screen? Yes, please!

So, Jennifer and I did something fun this past weekend.

On Friday, the Alamo Drafthouse at Mason Park tweeted a link to a story on the Houston Press, talking about how they would be doing a free showing of the Doctor Who serial “The Tomb of the Cybermen”. For those not aware of the format of the original series, it was a serial, with stories taking up multiple 25-minute episodes. Most Doctor Who serials were four episodes long; “The Tomb of the Cybermen” was no exception. “The Tomb of the Cybermen” features the Second Doctor (played by Patrick Troughton) as he and his companions happen upon an archaeological expedition to the adopted Cyberman homeworld of Telos. While I have the serial on DVD, I wanted to see it on the big screen, and this also gave us an opportunity to go to the Alamo Drafthouse for the first time. Jennifer was willing to go along, even though she doesn’t care for the original series.

When we got there, we found a company called 8th Dimension had set up a table selling Doctor Who-related merchandise. Jennifer and I looked over what they had, and we ended up buying me two items. The first was a full-size sonic screwdriver. While they had the Tenth Doctor’s and Eleventh Doctor’s models available, I just had to pick up the Fourth Doctor’s model once I saw it existed. We also got a miniature LED flashlight shaped like the Eleventh Doctor’s sonic screwdriver. That one is going into my laptop bag, as there’s been more than one time I’ve needed a flashlight at work. :-) Once we got our purchases settled, we went into the theater, picked our seats, and ordered our dinner: red pepper hummus as an appetizer, followed by a BBQ chicken pizza for me and a chicken caesar wrap for Jennifer. It was delicious, all told.

An unexpected prize…
Right before the serial started, the gentleman from the Houston Press who was hosting the event stood up and said a few words. One thing he said that we hadn’t realized was that BBC America was sponsoring the event, and that this was going to be the first of a monthly series. As it was sponsored by BBC America, they had provided official Doctor Who merchandise as giveaways. The host asked several related trivia questions; I answered the first question and got a Cyberman toy as a prize. :-) It was very difficult for me to stay quiet for the other questions, though, as with one exception I knew the answers to all of them. Once the giveaways were finished, and we enjoyed the serial, complete with its bad special effects and obvious wire-work. :-)

In the end, we had a great time. Even Jennifer enjoyed watching the serial more on a big screen and with an audience than she did on my plain TV set. The host did mention that this event will happen on the last Saturday of every month; it’s a shame that we already have plans for the last Saturday of November, as the announced serial for the next event is “The Claws of Axos”, one of the first stories to feature the Master. We’ll almost certainly try to go to the December one, though.

All in all, though, it was a lot of fun, and I highly recommend giving it a try if you’re interested in seeing some of the original Doctor Who.