Susan Morrison: Taking Doctor to another dimension

: Peter Capaldi bursts on to the screen as Doctor Who. Picture: PA
: Peter Capaldi bursts on to the screen as Doctor Who. Picture: PA
Share this article
Have your say

The last time I watched Doctor Who there was a long scarf involved. There were also purple velvet loon pants.

For younger people, I should explain that loon pants were sort of turbo-charged bell bottoms. It was customary to wear the waist to knee section really, really tight and then from the knee down there would be enough material to comfortably create floor to ceiling curtains for a maisonette in Livingston.

My own, for example, were so voluminous that I had to take at least four steps before the hem of the legs started to shift. I lived in terror of a high wind, heck, even a gentle breeze, least my loon pants formed sails and I was swept away doon the water and wound up in Gourock, or heaven forbid, Rothesay.

Like all adults who can still remember your mum and dad doing the Twist in the living room at Hogmanay to the sound of a young Tom Jones singing It’s Not Unusual, I have vivid memories of Daleks, Cybermen and the view behind the mustard mock leather couch. I know, why be scared of aliens when there’s mustard fake leather in the living room?

It was the Seventies, what can I say? The fabric has not withstood the test of time, mainly, I think, as a result of the fact that you couldn’t sit on it without creating a strange bottom-burpy noise.

Anyway, I grew up, and the Doctor regenerated and every time he did they seemed to cut the budget and he got increasingly rubbish and the baddies descended from the mighty Daleks to one episode where you didn’t even see the aliens at all, people just pointed, screamed and described them to each other, instead of doing the obvious thing, which was to run away quite quickly.

So, somewhat reluctantly, I thought I’d catch up with the new Doctor, Peter Capaldi, a man I have secretly loved since he waded into the sea after Jenny Seagrove at the end of Local Hero. A man I idolised when he verbally scorched egos in The Thick Of It.

Now here is a Doctor to take on the Cybermen, armed with nothing but his sonic screwdriver and that accent. At last. A doctor who sounds like a doctor. Oh yes, I’m a fan again. Might just dig out that long scarf my mum knitted for me. I’ll body-swerve the loon pants, though. They were well ticht over the bahookie.

No need to walk along Great Junction Street whilst people behind me point, scream and describe the monster.

Clock’s ticking on Time Lords

This new incarnation of the doctor is a revelation. I didn’t even get on in the reboot version with Eccleston, Tennant, Smith and whoever else there’s been. Has Benedict Cumberbatch done it? He’s done everything else...

Is it my imagination or do Doctor Whos wear out quicker? I am fairly certain that in my young day you got more than a few years out of them.

Now they just last long enough for the complete range of action figures to get on the shelves and bam! Time for a new face Doctor.

Daleks facing ups and downs

NATURALLY, I look forward to seeing the Doctor take on the Daleks. Those tinny-voiced laser-toting wheelie bins will soon face a man who knows how to use a screwdriver. Yes, that’s right. A Scotsman, who has the user guides for absolutely everything mechanical pre-loaded into his very DNA. And if he doesn’t, too bad, that won’t stop him.

Daleks, you will not be exterminated, but you will be recycled into those really annoying voices that tell you what floor the lift is on and that the door is open. Not so scary now, eh?

Great Festival clean up doesn’t all come out in the wash

Ah well, festival wise it’s all over bar the shouting and the firework display. Back to real life, which means catching up on the laundry.

Don’t get me wrong, the Yorkshire husband is a domestic wonderbloke, capable of cooking full Christmas dinners and ironing his own shirts, but for some reason my laundry tends to gravitate to the bottom of the basket.

Of course, the teen son must have his clothes cleaned on a very regular basis. The hormones do tend to create a remarkably pungent odour. The husband’s work shirts must be whiter than white, so they get special treatment and priority. These two parallel phenomena may explain why at the end of the Fringe, a layer of my stuff forms like some sort of geological strata under the shirts and jammies.

Just accessing the motherlode of mum’s unwashed requires a combination of the skills of an archaeologist and North Sea diver – that laundry basket is deep, you know, and short Glaswegian-heighted persons could just vanish into its depths

Ach, you know what? I think I’ll just go completely mad and treat myself to new unmentionables.