Once Upon A Geek – Doctor Who 2023 Gallifrey One Convention


David "Ace" Gutiérrez and The Irredeemable Shag find their joy discussing Doctor Who, specifically a fantastic convention held in Los Angeles each year called GALLIFREY ONE! The episode begins prior to the convention, discussing favorite memories of past years and items we're anticipating for 2023.  Then at the end of the episode, a live recording from the conclusion of the convention recapping our misadventures from this year!

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7 responses to “Once Upon A Geek – Doctor Who 2023 Gallifrey One Convention

  1. There’s a bit of an irony in having this episode drop on March 12th, in that I started listening to it as I was coming home from *another* convention (TFCon, dedicated to all things Transformers-related), in which I ran into another cosplayer I’d met at Gallifrey One, who was dressed as the 7th Doctor, something I’d considered doing myself (it being a Transformers convention notwithstanding), and found myself glad that I’d decided against it (I wouldn’t have wanted to steal his thunder!).

    This was a particularly enjoyable episode for me, not only because of the shout-outs, but because I could recognize so many of the memories Shag and David discussed from my own experience. FWIW, I’m a bit amused to be considered a cosplayer… it’s certainly true, but while I’m proud of my 4th and 7th Doctor ensembles, they don’t hold a candle to a lot of what of other folks put together. The Drashig and “Carnival of Monsters” barker that Shag mentioned were great examples. So many amazing costumes that are outside my own skill set entirely! I really do recommend that folks check out the hashtag #gally1 on Instagram to see what we’re talking about!

    David mentioned in the “before the convention” segment that he was going to attend a kaffeeklatch, but I don’t think he mentioned how it went. I’ve been to a few over the years, and have gotten to meet Jason Haigh-Ellery, Richard Starkings, and David Gerrold, among others. The format is pretty informal. About a dozen people are in the room with the guest (or guests) for about an hour, and the conversation goes wherever the people in the room take it. Jason Haigh-Ellery, for example, asked everyone in the room to introduce themselves and give a brief account of why they were there, while others just asked if anyone had any questions. I can’t speak for how things went with David’s particular session, but I hope he was able to have an engaging conversation. The kaffeeklatches are free to attend (with a paid convention registration, of course… although you do have to get your name in during a specific window, and you may not get your first choice), and they typically don’t include the “top line” guests, but you can nonetheless rub elbows with some influential figures, and I very definitely recommend taking advantage of it. (FYI, Shag and David *did* talk a fair bit about the Friday night [in our case] reception, which *does* cost money, but I also recommend it. There are typically a few options for this over the weekend, but I think we got the best one!)

    There are two aspects of the convention I’d like to highlight that I don’t think Shag or David mentioned (if I’m forgetting, I beg forgiveness). The first is the nightly karaoke, which I haven’t actually done myself for a few years now (ask Shag about my attempt to sing Weird Al’s “eBay”), but is always a fun diversion. The other is the annual charity auction, in which one can find a variety of sci-fi and pop culture merchandise not available in the dealer room, and help raise funds for a worthy cause at the same time (this year’s charity, The Down Syndrome Association of Los Angeles, was chosen by Jodie Whittaker herself, and we raised a total of $10,000).

    Seriously, if a trip to Los Angeles in mid-February is something you can manage, and you like Doctor Who even a little bit, this is a convention you really should look into attending.

    1. Ah! The Koffee Klatch! It was interesting – and I say that as it was very much about how Lauren “Dodo” Cornelius and Stephen “The First Doctor” Noonan approached their respective roles. They spoke mainly about the process of acting and how they prepared. Noonan is a super-fan of Who! Would never challenge him in trivia! And Cornelius is just the nicest.

  2. Thanks for this love letter to Gallifrey One. And it really is a love letter in that your love for the show seeps through every word, it’s infectious as well as now I want to go to the con and I am hardly the worlds biggest Doctor Who Fan – amongst my friends I’m not sure I’d even rank about 7th or even 10th (which as I’m Scottish suits me fine). All too often we hear about conventions which are a nightmare, too crowded, too noisy, too focused on showing off rather than showing appreciation to the subject matter. Maybe smaller more focused conventions are what’s needed again. Just like the old Babylon 5 conventions i used to go to.

    Anyway you’ve sold me on attending and bringing my daughter when she is older (she’s only 11 right now) but I’ll need somewhere to stay when I get there so can you ask David if there’s space on his couch?

    Overall a real example of Finding your joy – thanks for sharing.

  3. Wow, the convention sounded like a ton of fun for both of you! Like Doug said, you could hear how much joy this brought to your lives and it was a blast to listen to. As a fairly new Who fan (not nuWho but recently started watching Who and enjoying it [almost done season 10!]), this sounds like a fandom that fully supportive of each other, which is brilliant. Even though I don’t quite get all the references, I’m enjoying just the sheer excitement the both of you have for this con.

    Well done, everyone! Keep up the great work!

  4. Glad to hear you had a great time at Galifrey One – really enjoyed listening to what you and David enjoyed about attending the convention. I had a limited affiliation with Dr Who – my first Dr Who episode was “The Impossible Astronaut” with Matt Smith. I got hooked on it and purchased DVD box sets of Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant’s Doctors. I also dived into the Torchwood series at the time. I really enjoyed the series and thought Matt Smith’s portrayal was excellent. I continued on to Peter Capaldi but I haven’t kept up with Doctor Who after Jenna Coleman left. Would love to maybe get back into it and see what Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor was like.

    Great podcast and look forward to the next one.

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