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Doctor Who has experienced a big resurgence in popularity with its revamped series. Those of us that are old enough to remember the original Doctor Who series are especially excited about the new show. But, which series is better? The Escapist TARDIS Crew user group knows and can explain it to you in enough detail to write a paper that would stun any professor. And since Doctor Who is awesome, that professor would clearly you a high grade and then pinch you as he would not be able to believe someone so awesome exists.

Here are the answers to our interview questions (goes for 3 pages!):
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  • Why was The Escapist TARDIS Crew founded?

    TimeLord:
    If memory serves, it was during a discussion thread about a Doctor Who episode on The Escapist.

    *sneaks a look at Chrono212’s answer*

    During the conversation in said thread: LavaLampBamboo[1] said that we had a little TARDIS Crew going on here.

    The rest is history.

    A-Heart-Of-Gold:
    (I really don’t know about the foundations of the group! I joined later on!)

    Quaxar:
    How would I know, I was barely under the first hundred to join! But I was told it was founded to keep TimeLord sane and his hands away from the time vortex.

    LostTimeLady:
    The TARDIS crew was founded one day in a forum discussion about a Doctor Who episode as I recall, although I can’t quite remember which episode … Chrono212 or TimeLord probably could tell you exactly when it was as both can be credited with the group’s formation as far as I recall.

    As to why, well, again, as I recall, we wanted to form a fan club that was also more role play focused so we could go on day trips to Rome while still chatting about other stuff as well, a trick we pull of quite well.

    *leans against the railing in the console room*

    PoliceBox63:
    The idea behind it was to have somewhere to talk about Doctor Who … a lot!

    We were in a Doctor Who-related thread and it came down to the same few people posting, discussing with each other the topic at hand. We enjoyed it so much that Chrono212 suggested that someone make a user group and thus we were born 🙂

    Chrono212:
    Because that much awesome cannot be contained!
    Well, actually it was when me, TimeLord, Cpt Corallis and LavaLampBamboo started just talking amongst each other in the thread about Cold Blood, episode 9 from the series that has just passed. We just got chatting about the wider Doctor Who universe and the ins and outs of the most recent series and then at exactly 10:42 pm on the 29th May 2010 LavaLampBamboo said:

    We got ourselves a little Escapist Tardis crew goin’ on =)

    At which I simply said;

    That’s just asking to become user group 😛

    And TimeLord obliged shortly afterwards and the rest is history.

  • What do you see as the future of the group?

    TimeLord:
    Our TARDIS is big enough for anyone and everyone to come and discuss anything remotely Doctor Who related!

    We also have an event planned for Summer 2011 in Cardiff. Named Time Explosion.[2]

    A-Heart-Of-Gold:
    A larger group. (It is a TARDIS and we have room to spare!)

    Quaxar:
    That is a tricky question actually with a TARDIS and all. One button and our future could be our past!

    LostTimeLady:
    Well, hopefully the crew will continue to grow, after all, the TARDIS is infinitely big on the inside and the more people there are, the more exciting role plays and discussions we can have ‘cos there will be more imagination in the mix.

    PoliceBox63:
    I see the group attracting new members. In the group the regular active members have all become good friends and we plan on having a ETC holiday next year. 😀 I see us just carrying on as we are now: talking with each other, enjoying the banter, bringing news to the Group, discussing Doctor Who even more once it returns to the airwaves razzum frazzum and a whole lot of casual RP. 😉

    Chrono212:
    Anything and everything related to the Doctor Who universe, be it something to do with the spinoffs; Torchwood, the Sara Jane Adventures or whatever, or the new series proper that we are expecting next year.

    So wherever the show goes, we go.

    Also I’ve always liked the idea of some Role Playing Adventures with our own little TARDIS Crew which could be something that we do in the future and make a regular feature, plus anything else we can come up with that sounds cool at the time.

[1] LavaLampBamboo holds the position of “Companion” in the TARDIS Crew and is one of the founding members, he has since disappeared into the void and we miss him dearly
[2] Working title
  • What do you think other users could gain from the group?

    TimeLord:
    If any user is even remotely interested in Doctor Who, then we want to hear from you! Everyone is welcome! We also like to share new information on upcoming series/events/general stuff, relating to anything [I]Doctor Who, Torchwood, SJA[/i] or anything else that may come along in the future!

    A-Heart-Of-Gold:
    Knowledge about Doctor Who from people who read way too much into it. A chance to go to other worlds or just hang out in the TARIDS and just to talk constantly about Doctor Who. A place where you can say that you love Doctor Who and be accepted as a fan-boy/girl.

    Quaxar:
    The ability to travel through time and space in the comfort of their own room in the position they always dreamed of. Also, the best company to travel with (if you don’t mind the occasional zap attacks) and almost every bit of information about Doctor Who and its spin-offs … provided you ask the right people.

    LostTimeLady:
    How much fun Doctor Who really is. We’re all really passionate about Doctor Who (and temporal physics as well, actually) and that enthusiasm is infectious, I find.

    PoliceBox63:
    Well if they can stand our battiness I think fans of Doctor Who will relish the chat section talking with other members. We’ve all learned new things since we joined and made friends (cheesy but true).
    I now get all my Doctor Who news through the group and am also given creative opportunities such as video making, photoshopping pictures for jokes in the chat section or Who avatar creation.

    Chrono212:
    A fun and friendly group of very knowledgeable people. Completely useless knowledge, yes, but knowledge none the less.

    Any question that you have that is related to the Whoniverse they can answer. Anything from the original 1960s episodes up to and including the very best of fan fiction.
    Ah, and a good laugh at the reasonably common occurrences of turning the chat tab into a image board of Who memes.

  • What sets you apart from other user groups?

    TimeLord:
    I’d like to say I have a great deal of respect for all the members of the TARDIS Crew, I welcome every new member personally, and keep an updated list of all “named” members and ever other member in the group on the main page. Along with links to my Discussion About Time threads and a permanent link to the ETC: 2011 thread.

    A-Heart-Of-Gold:
    The very active chat is the main thing that sets us apart. We all discuss everything and anything; you get to know your fellow members very well and everyone is friendly to you. Also, daily you get a mountain of hugs (mostly from me) and the occasional space/time cookie and other such loving things (but PoliceBox63 is the only one allowed to tuck me in to bed and give me warm milk!)

    Quaxar:
    Well, for once we are pretty much the collective hive of DW fandom on The Escapist, that’s something, right?

    Additionally, we have a fairly high activity rate compared to most other groups. If you’re lucky you can find serious discussions about episodes, related topics or who-do-you-prefers, but I’ll be honest, most of the time it’s pushing mauve buttons and waiting for something to happen or catching eloped facehuggers or Haiku Fridays. But you can bet at 3am it’s off to bed for everyone!

    LostTimeLady:
    There’s a real sense of family in the group, I feel. That may sound really cheesy but we always ask after people who haven’t been active in a while and there’s always some sweet moments like Chrono212 nuzzling up to people (he’s our resident tin dog y’see, and PoliceBox63’s pet partner in crime) or PoliceBox63 tucking in A-Heart-Of-Gold each night with a glass of warm milk.

    I’m not saying that other user groups don’t do this, it’s just really pleasant that it happens in our group.

    PoliceBox63:
    I’m not active in any other user groups, so I can’t make any comparisons. Certainly the creativity in the group is something quite special but I can tell you what I think may be unique though: Our titles are integral to the chat section. When a member gets a title it allows them to do some casual RP when chatting. For example, I’m the Master and this leads to many an amusing post in the chat 😉 All the regular chatters enjoy utilising their title to the max when posting.

    We also have “Haiku Friday”!

    Chrono212:
    We’re active! There is usually someone around and even if you don’t want to talk about anything Who-related, there is always something cool to talk about, be it just general geeky things.

  • If you could improve one aspect of the User Group area, what would you improve?

    TimeLord:
    That absolutely TINY box in to Owners Tab used for editing the main page! Seriously! The amount of info I cram into the main page and the box is only about 3 lines high! Many mistakes and anger have been had at that small box!

    A-Heart-Of-Gold:
    Errmm … Nothing!

    Quaxar:
    Uh … lasers. Lasers make everything better (except for Alderaan).

    Apart from that, they are fine the way they are, I actually think The Escapist has the best user group system of every forum I’ve been to that had this feature. I wouldn’t really change anything.

    LostTimeLady:
    Anything I could say would be nit-picking so I’d say it’s fine how it is. (Although it would be nice if older group news posts stayed on the home page a little longer, just in case you’ve been away for a while.)

    PoliceBox63:
    I would like to see an option for a thread/discussion section within a user group. Sometimes the chat section gets very crowded and it’s hard to follow what’s going on. A thread section would allow specific discussion to take place without confusion and leave the chat section for just talking to each other.

    Chrono212:
    Erm … can’t really think of anything…seems pretty good as it is!

  • Anything else you would like to add?

    TimeLord:
    Nothing more need be said.

    Except one thing …

    Fezes are cool!

    A-Heart-Of-Gold:
    So Happy we are Featured! *big hug*

    Quaxar:
    Yes. I would like to thank the academy, my parents, my friends and my sponsor “Bob’s finest fish finger custard snacks and Fez rental emporium.”

    And last but not least, a big thank you to everyone in the group for being an awesome person, for helping me waste hours and hours of my life otherwise spent productive and for more or less introducing me to a lot of great stuff.

    LostTimeLady:
    There are several phrases and group memes that could sum up The Escapist TARDIS Crew but a personal favourite of mine is something I say to the new members:

    “Make yourselves at home but don’t touch the blue boringers[1].”

    It sums it all up really, the TARDIS Crew is never boring when someone’s online.

    PoliceBox63:
    I’ll take this opportunity to thank TimeLord for making this group and to all the regular chatters who keep me entertained in the evenings. I’ve made new friends and look forward to TARDISm 2011 😀
    not to mention I got me a dog eh, Chrono212? 😉

    Chrono212:
    Even if you only have a vague interest in Doctor Who but enjoy it, then join the group! You don’t need an encyclopedic knowledge of everything (because I sure don’t).

See what I said about being able to give enough information to write an entire paper?

If you would like to nominate a user group for an upcoming Featured User Group, feel free to let me (that is, Kuliani) know through a PM!

[1] Doctor Who reference, in joke

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