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It's about time (Newsday)

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  • Publication: Newsday
  • Date: 2014-11-06
  • Author: Stacey Altherr
  • Page: B2
  • Language: English

'Doctor Who' travels to LI (with companions) for sci-fi shindig

It won't take a circa-1960 time-traveling British police booth to get to the "Doctor Who" convention. In fact, it's this weekend, just off the Long Island Expressway.

Now in its second year, after a 25-year hiatus, the convention at the Clarion Hotel in Ronkonkoma is bigger than last year, with many of the iconic British science-fiction TV show stars, including two former Doctors (12 actors have played the central character throughout its 50-plus-year run), as well as sidekicks, called companions, from the BBC show.

But, alas, the convention is already sold out. Just like last year, passes for the full three-day event were gone faster than the good Doctor's time travels.

But fans can still dress up as their favorite incarnation of the Doctor, or as one of the aliens and companions, and attend a concert devoted to the show tonight at MacArthur Airport.


A time-traveling, benevolent time lord, the Doctor saves worlds from alien monsters. Known for its campy acting and moralistic code, the BBC show has lasted so long, despite cultural changes, by cleverly replacing the Doctor through incarnations over the decades. One thing remains constant, however: the iconic blue British police booth, called TARDIS, that works as a time machine.

Much cozier than the recent Comic Con at Javits Center in Manhattan, this convention sold only 1,100 passes to lend a more intimate experience, says Ken Deep, its main organizer.

"The event is run for fans, by fans," he says.


Even if you can't get into the convention, there's a consolation prize, and something "Doctor Who" to do.

The party starts tonight at MacArthur Airport's atrium with "Time Flight Concert - A Celebration of Long Island Doctor Who." Dress up as your favorite "Doctor Who" character, or come as you are. The bar-restaurant will be open, and a full-size TARDIS replica will fly in to adorn the space, too.

Former "Who" companion Daphne Ashbrook, who has a soon-to-be released album titled "All Good Dreamers," will sing. British composer Dominic Glynn will perform the theme song, along with other recognizable "Doctor Who" tunes.

Time Crash, a band from Chicago, is flying in to perform its own brand of "Who"-inspired music. Tickets, $10-$15, are on sale on the convention website or at the door.


This year's convention panels will feature two Doctors Whos and two companions, as well as script writers.

"All the geeks and freaks, and wallflowers and extroverts, big eagles, little eagles. We're all invited," says Ashbrook, who played Dr. Grace Holloway, the only American companion to Doctor Who in the 1996 movie of the same name, and who will speak on several panels.

Also on hand will be Paul McGann, who played the eighth incarnation of the Doctor in the movie, and Colin Baker, who played the sixth Doctor, from 1984 to 1986.

Nicola Bryant, companion for Baker's Doctor, will be on panels along with Yee Jee Tso, who was in the 1996 movie.

Terrance Dicks, 79, a script writer and editor from the early days of the classic series, is the guest of honor. "He's written some of the most iconic scripts of the series," says Andre Tessier, who will be moderating several of the panels.


"Costuming is a big part of 'Doctor Who' fandom," says Tessier.

A chronological parade of costumes - from the first "Doctor Who" show to the most current - starts off the revelry on Friday night. Costume contests are scheduled both Saturday and Sunday, with prizes for the most original and the best craftsmanship.

In addition to evil alien costumes, also trending are women who "feminize" the eccentric Doctor by wearing a skirt or more ladylike scarf.

"It's really extraordinary," says Deep.

Long Island's 'Doctor Who' Convention

WHEN/WHERE Friday-Sunday at the Clarion Hotel, 3845 Veterans Memorial Hwy., Ronkonkoma. Pre-convention concert 8 tonight at Islip MacArthur Airport, Ronkonkoma.


COST Passes to the convention are sold out. Tickets to the concert are $10-$15.

GRAPHIC: 1) Getty Images-Colin Baker, left, emerges from the TARDIS time machine with Tom Pearcy. Video: Photos by Chris Ware-2) David Howe, left, a "Doctor Who" historian from England, chats with Kitten Slatko and Jennifer Drucker, both of Queens, at last year's convention. The 2014 "Doctor Who" confab will be this weekend in Ronkonkoma. 3) Suki Kimok, of Woodstock, socializes at last year's convention.

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  • APA 6th ed.: Altherr, Stacey (2014-11-06). It's about time (Newsday). Newsday p. B2.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Altherr, Stacey. "It's about time (Newsday)." Newsday [add city] 2014-11-06, B2. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Altherr, Stacey. "It's about time (Newsday)." Newsday, edition, sec., 2014-11-06
  • Turabian: Altherr, Stacey. "It's about time (Newsday)." Newsday, 2014-11-06, section, B2 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=It's about time (Newsday) | url= | work=Newsday | pages=B2 | date=2014-11-06 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=14 July 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=It's about time (Newsday) | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=14 July 2024}}</ref>