I just love it. Adore it. There's something wonderfully simplistic and exciting about the concept behind it - a man who can go anywhere in time, anywhere in space, takes people (and us, the audience) along for the ride, and it's thrilling, and funny, and sad, and happy, and a great big adventure, and even when the execution sometimes doesn't quite live up to the promise (*waves at Myrka...*), we can look past that 'cos it's just so fun.
And so I've stuck with it through thick and thin, from those earliest memories of Tom Baker, through Peter Davison, Colin Baker (muchly underrated), Sylvester McCoy, and the BBC bringing out loads of early stories on VHS so I was able to enjoy William Hartnell and Jon Pertwee and my absolute utter favourite Patrick Troughton, and the wilderness years when "all" we had were the novels (I'm not dissing the novels, though) and an almost constant stream of rumours (the new Doctor will be Dudley Moore...no, John Cleese...no, David Hasselhoff...no, Eddie Izzard...), and around 1993 I actually started to lose interest, but then the BBC released Doctor Who and the Silurians on VHS and I watched it for the first time and fell in love with that serial (which still remains one of my absolute favourites. Go and buy the Beneath the Surface DVD set) and back in love with the show...
And then the temporary thrill of Paul McGann careering round San Canada Francisco on a motorbike and snogging the girl (WHUT??!) before more wilderness years and more novels and Big Finish launching their range of audio plays based on the series (yay!!!) and yet more rumours that it would be back, and then that announcement in September 2003 that Russell T. Davies would be bringing the show back, and the 18 month wait (18 months is too long to wait, as Doctor Who fans are well aware...) and after all sorts of mad rumours (the new Doctor will be Paul Daniels...no, please God no...) finally learning that Christopher Eccleston would be taking the lead, and even learning that Billie Piper would be the companion didn't take the edge off (and boy how wrong I was to expect that she'd be another Bonnie Langford), and then the shock when Eccleston's departure was announced less than a week into the new series, but then David Tennant took over and the show just went from strength to strength, and now...
...now we're nearly at the dawn of a brand new era, and it's thrilling and exciting again. And there's loads of things that are exciting me. The new Doctor, Matt Smith, seems like he's going to fit absolutely perfectly into that ongoing run of people who've played my favourite hero, from William Hartnell through to David Tennant. Karen Gillan is a little harder to guage, based on just a handful of clips and an increasing amount of photos, but she seems like she should be good as Amy. And that wonderful exchange from one of the trailers - BOY: Are you afraid of monsters? DOCTOR: No, they're afraid of me!
And then there's Steven Moffat - the show's new head writer and "showrunner" is the guy who created and wrote my second most favourite TV programme of all time ever, and one of my other favourites as well. And to maintain its ties to the past - it's a continuation, not a reboot or a re-imagining or any of those things - in a clip from a future episode, the Doctor has a library card on which is a picture of William Hartnell, and my fanboy heart skips a beat with joy.
But do you know what the most exciting thing is about the new series?
From the Belfast stop of the promotional tour. It's just so perfect. So happy. So right.
Matt Smith? He's my Doctor.
Saturday is going to be wonderful. The next thirteen Saturdays are going to be wonderful.