LA Day Eight: Love & Monsters

Allan kicked off the Valentine’s Day celebrations with possibly the most romantic card ever: a piece of the old Marriott LAX carpet that has been the background for so many Gally memories. A new carpet this year is the cause of much angst. It’s ironic that so many Doctor Who fans struggle with change.

The Marriott patio is swarming with Doctors, River Songs, Bills and Ponds. This year, there’s also a sprinkling of Crowleys and Aziraphales.

We’re playing Doctor Bingo – first one to collect all thirteen gets a cocktail of their choice. Nine to Thirteen are well represented, but ChloĆ« is still searching for the elusive Three (Pertwee), while Alan needs a Two (Troughton). We’ll both struggle to find an Eight (McGann), partly because he’s so easily confused with others.

We have one important task today. Our goddaughter is worried about Bill. She had a horrible time with the Cybermen before Heather whisked her off into the universe. Is she OK? Is Heather being nice to her? We reckon this reassuring message was worth the hour’s queuing. Turns out Heather is treating her like the queen she is.

The big room interview we choose for today is Tosin Cole (Ryan). He’s new to the convention scene and is charmingly unaffected. He fell into acting when a girl he liked invited him to come to a workshop. It turned out he was pretty good and, more importantly, found a place where he could explore different sides of himself. He was very honest about loving the attention and applause he gets on stage. In a few years he’ll have a store of funny, polished anecdotes, so we’re glad to have seen him simply enjoying all the new experiences.

While Allan marvelled at the future of flight with Dr Anita Sengupta, ChloĆ« sloped off to one of her favourite Gally staples, In Defence Of. Two players each have one minute to defend something generally considered to be indefensible (eg Adric’s pyjamas) and it’s run by the Verity! podcast team. This year ended with the two players leading the crowd in a rousing rendition of Defying Gravity. No one can remember what they were defending…

We end the day with Paul Cornell’s always entertaining Deathmatch. This year, every Classic Series script editor/producer and every New Series showrunner were ruthlessly pitted against one another in sudden death votes to find out who was (scientifically) the best. The winner was Terrance Dicks, to the general delight of all.

Finally, a romantic dinner at the surprisingly good hotel restaurant. Giant prawns, steak and an excellent Malbec: what’s not to love?