Wednesday, 21 August 2013

It's Made of Wood: Cardiff, The TARDIS and all of Time and Space

On Sunday 18th August, I was very fortunate to be able to go to Cardiff and have a set tour of the actual TARDIS set that is used in the television show Doctor Who. Anyone who knows me will tell you that I am a huge Doctor Who fan, so this opportunity was like meeting royalty!

Behind those doors are all of time and space. Do you want to come with me?

In addition to the tour of the TARDIS set, we also received a location tour of the Cardiff Bay area and were shown various locations used in the show and its spin-off Torchwood, locations ranging from New York in the 1930s to the Boeshane Paninsula of the 51st Century. While in the Bay area we were also fortunate enough to see the BBC filming some of episode 3 of the third series of Sherlock - two for the price of one!


Lestrade walks into an off licence - spoiler alert!

We were also admitted into the Doctor Who Experience exhibition, but this was less of a surprise for me as I had already been to the Experience when it was first established in London in 2010. 

The Doctor and the Master. I tried dying my hair blond... it didn't work.
Three years ago, such a long time ago.

That said, they have added a few new items to the exhibition since then and it was pretty cool to be able to see these up close; of particular note was the Doctor's crib from A Good Man Goes to War!

When I was little I dreamt of the stars.

An Ice Warrior a.k.a. a Martian.

Even Timelords need to shave.

The Doctor and the monsters: you can not have one without the other.

The biggest revelation for me was discovering that the current TARDIS set and console are made from wood! This came as a huge surprise because the show is filmed in full High Definition and I had always assumed that in order to maintain the illusion that it was constructed from metal the set was in fact made from fibreglass. 


Looks can be deceiving... but this is the genuine article!
 
A replica of the first (wooden) TARDIS set.


However, the revelation that it was made of wood was by now means a let down; rather, it only strengthened my perceptions of the shows legacy. Like the TARDIS sets of the 20th century, even the 21st century ones can be made from wood; inside the show it also has a nice connection to the exterior police box as that is made from wood and much is made of that fact! 

The exterior of the TARDIS set. Clearly, the chameleon circuit was having a bit of a glitch.

 It actually feels and looks a lot smaller on the inside.


While in the TARDIS the tour guide was telling us how much power the set used... I wasn't really listening.

John and Amie (far right), two friends who invited me to see the TARDIS with them.

Everywhere and anywhere at just the touch of a button.

Under those panels are more of the TARDIS!

It turns out the TARDIS also has its own BBC sound stage!

I did not want to say goodbye and the time I had with the old girl was very brief, but it was fantastic, absolutely fantastic! One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back...