Tag Archives: Doctor Who

Comic con day 3: Q&A with Karen Gillan

6 Apr

This story originally appeared on RealTime/STL.

On the heels of Matt Smith’s Q&A with fans, “Doctor Who” companion Karen Gillan took the stage Sunday afternoon.

Gillan is well-known for her role as Amy Pond on “Doctor Who.” The TV show, which traces its roots back to 1963, was reborn in 2005 and uses a clever plot device that allows the main character, the Doctor, to “regenerate” as a different actor. The Doctor also travels with friends, known as companions. The series’ 11th Doctor was played by Matt Smith, and for two years Pond and her boyfriend (later husband) Rory Williams were the Doctor’s companions.

Fans asked several questions about Gillan’s “Who” experiences and favorite memories.

There’s a memorable scene in season six of “Doctor Who” where Amy Pond holds her newborn daughter, and she melts into a puddle of flesh.

Gillan said she was a “Doctor Who” fan before she was cast, but not as big of a fan as her mother. She’s been able to collect a lot of “Who” memorabilia.

As for the most difficult scene, that had nothing to do with stunts or subject matter.

Gillan said her “Who” connection has helped her land other parts, too.

Before she was cast, Gillan said she talked to the director via Skype and noted he was drinking coffee from a “Doctor Who” themed mug. “Oculus” is a horror film that hits theaters Friday.

Comic con day 2: Q&A with Matt Smith

5 Apr

This story originally appeared on RealTime/STL.

St. Louis is experiencing a British invasion. Instead of The Beatles, though, the city’s dealing with “Doctor Who” fans.

The TV show, which traces its roots back to 1963, was reborn in 2005 and uses a clever plot devise that allows the main character, the Doctor, to “regenerate” as a different actor. The series’ 11th Doctor was played by Matt Smith, who’s credited with making bow ties and fezzes cool. Plenty of fans were dressed accordingly during Smith’s Wizard World St. Louis Comic Con fan Q&A Saturday afternoon.

Smith’s three-year reign as the Doctor ended in 2013; actor Peter Capaldi has taken over.

Fans quoted lines from the show, gushed and shared their favorite “Who” experiences. Smith noted that American fans are very enthusiastic in their fandom than their European counterparts, calling the British “a bit more reserved.”

Before the Doctor’s last regeneration, there was speculation that the Doctor would be a woman. Smith said he would be in favor of such a move in the future.

The Doctor travels (through time and space) with a companion. During Smith’s tenure, his main companion was Amy Pond, played by Karen Gillan, and her husband, Rory, played by Arthur Darvill.

Gillan will host her own Q&A session Sunday afternoon.

Follow @ericasmith and @kgreenbaum on Twitter for Day 3 updates from Wizard World St. Louis.

Comic con day 1: Fans, feminism and psychology

4 Apr

This story originally appeared on RealTime/STL.

Comic con got off to an easy but enthusiastic start Friday afternoon. The shortest day of the three-day event, there were several costumed fans, vendors from across the nation and a handful of programs for participants.

Here are the highlights of the sessions we attended Friday night. Watch for more on Day 2 and Day 3. You can find the Wizard World Comic Con schedule here, and be sure to follow @kgreenbaum and @ericasmith on Twitter. You can follow our tweets, and those of other participants, at #wwstl.

The super-secret history of St. Louis comics

The Post-Dispatch’s Weatherbird will be at comic con Saturday and Sunday. Weatherbird artist Dan Martin will talk about the history of the paper’s front-page icon Saturday afternoon.

Geek feminism: Girl power and problems in geek culture

Panelists cited two websites that flip female stereotypes commonly seen in comics: The Hawkeye Initiative and Repair Her Armor. They also mentioned a 2012 PBS documentary about American superheroines.

Overall, the take-aways were rather obvious:

The Nerdy Girls Society continues this conversation online and in meetups.

Farewell, raggedy man

The title is a reference to “Doctor Who’s” 11th Doctor. Each panelist was a member of “Doctor Who” fan club St. Louis CIA — in this case, the Celestial Intelligence Agency.

There were several questions from the audience about characters, plot lines and the 50th anniversary special.

This was the first of several “Doctor Who” sessions. Several of Friday’s panelist will return Saturday morning for a look-back at the show’s 50 years. Matt Smith, who played the “raggedy doctor,” will make an appearance Saturday afternoon. Co-star Karen Gillan (Amy Pond) will share her experiences Sunday afternoon.

Psychology of science fiction

Psychologist Michael Mahon, who also teaches at Washington University, lead this session. Mahon knew his audience, that is clear, and his lecture turned out to be one of the most thought-provoking.

In a discussion that cited “Star Wars” and “Blade Runner,” Mahon said that to transcend, you must know what you want. “You probably like sci-fi because you want to be more than your original programming,” he said.

In conversations following the lecture, Mahon added a bit of “Terminator” to the mix.

“We have not yet created anything that is self-aware,” he said, carefully including the word yet. “Once it’s self-aware, it will evolve. The computers will evolve faster than we can. … We didn’t know Skynet was self-aware until it started dropping nukes. How do we know?”

Keep up with comic con

Catch up on the other sights of comic con, and watch for more on Day 2 and 3.

Follow all of the #WWSTL tweets: