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Dover Library Plays Host To Doctor Who Fans

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He travels through space and time in a wooden box that's larger on the inside than the outside.

He can be as ruthless as a Mongol warrior or as gentle as a newborn fawn.

His real name is a mystery, but to friends and enemies alike, he's simply known as the Doctor.

The Doctor, of course, is Doctor Who, an alien time traveler whose weekly television adventures have fascinated people all over the world for decades.

For about a year, fervent fans of the BBC show, who are collectively known as Whovians, have been meeting at the Dover Public Library to watch episodes of the long-running series and discuss some of the finer points of each story.

The monthly meetings are part of the library's expanding outreach programs, library assistant Kerri Hollyday said.

"We talked to people about what they'd like and how we can tie that in to the collections we have at the library," she said. "We usually think of a library as a place to get books, but the library's role is changing. We love reading and literacy, but we are working to bring different programs to the community." The Aug. 26 Whovian meeting was a family affair for Stacey Lane and three of her four children, all of who are steeped in Dr. Who lore.

"I really don't know all that much about it," Lane said. "All I know is that I've got four kids who are Doctor Who junkies." The session was a special one for the fans, as it marked the highly anticipated debut of Peter Capaldi as the Doctor, the 13th actor to take on the part since the show's 1963 debut.

Part of the series' longevity can be chalked up to the Doctor's ability to regenerate his body every time he's mortally wounded. The change allows a new actor to step in and bring his own interpretation to the role.

Natalie Lane, 15, doesn't have a particular favorite, however. A history buff, she enjoys stories where the Doctor meets famous people, such as William Shakespeare.

"I like aspects of each of the Doctors that I've seen," she said. "I like that he uses his mind, not a gun, to get out of different situations." Looking at humanity from the outside, the Doctor can be unforgiving when it comes to those who violate his own tenets of morality, something the series' writers use to comment on humanity itself, said Smyrna resident Katrina Andrews, who brought her two children to the library viewing.

"To us, he can be a good guy, but sometimes he could be a bad guy," she said. "There's a bit of a hero and a bit of the villain in all of the Doctors." To soften the Doctor's hard edges, the series has given him a number of human companions over the years, Andrews said.

"It's the companions who keep him on the straight and narrow," she said.

"There's usually a moral to each story and they help guide him in the right direction." That's one of the things that attracted Holyday, who said she's more a fan of the concept of the Doctor rather than any actor who portrays him.

"The more I watch, the more I see just the Doctor, not the individual actors," she said.

Caption: Dr. Who fans (from left) Hayden Greener, Naomi Ortiz, Alex Lane, Natalie Lane, Katrina Andrews and Derek Lane (center), use the popular BBC character's sonic screwdriver, a device that can do just about anything, to fend off the Post's photographer. Andrews has a tattoo of the Doctor's signature weapon.

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  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Dover Library Plays Host To Doctor Who Fans | url= | work=Dover Post | pages= | date=2014-08-29 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=14 July 2024 }}</ref>
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