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Digital Subscriptions > Doctor Who Magazine > 515 > Coming Soon …

Coming Soon …

We talk to the creative talents behind the upcoming Doctor Who releases…



Paper Dolls

WRITTEN BY Simon Guerrier and Christel Dee


The costumes of Doctor Who are a strange and striking language: a means where, through clothing and accessories, you can express an almost instantaneous sense of the Doctor’s world, and those who live within it. It’s why, according to Doctor Who: The Fan Show presenter Christel Dee, “Doctor Who characters are so much fun to cosplay. They all have their own distinctive look, particularly the Doctor; whether that’s the Third Doctor’s frilly cuffs and velvet jackets, the Eleventh Doctor’s ‘cool’ bow ties or the Twelfth Doctor’s lined coats and sonic shades. I’ve been cosplaying for over ten years and I love it.”

Christel has cemented her love of Doctor Who costumes and cosplay as a contributor to Paper Dolls, a new book by writer Simon Guerrier and illustrator Ben Morris. It’s essentially a craft book; a paper doll collection of 26 characters from Doctor Who, each with a variety of costumes and swappable heads. Printed on stiff card, and accompanied by facts and captions, fans are invited to cut the dolls out and experiment. Ever wanted to dress Amy up as the Sixth Doctor? Or wondered what Peter Capaldi would look like as a cleaning lady? Well, now’s your chance!

“Many people will remember paper dolls books from their childhood,” says Ben. “It’s probably fair to say that it was more of a girl thing. But this is a Doctor Who spin on an old idea, and will hopefully appeal to both sexes and all ages. After all, the series’ time-travelling premise gives the Doctor and his friends the biggest dressing-up box imaginable! In which other show would you get the two lead actors dressed as an Edwardian dandy and a groovy hippie chick? The sheer variety of costumes is an Aladdin’s Cave for cosplayers!”

Ben worked on the idea in partnership with Simon; with their choices of costumes being dictated, primarily, by the supply of full-length reference photos. “The list changed as Ben was working,” says Simon. “It was tricky to find photos where you can see the character’s ankles and feet.” From there, Simon wrote his guide to the costumes: bite-sized facts such as sales of tweed going up 25% after the Eleventh Doctor’s costume reveal, and researched insights from actors, showrunners and costume designers. “An exception was Bill,” he explains, “whose episodes hadn’t aired at the time; so I had a very nice chat to costume designer Hayley Nebauer, who shared some details.”

But of course, Paper Dolls mainly functions as a visual reference book for both new and seasoned cosplayers. Hence the involvement of Christel, who’s not only written an introduction to cosplay, but has included her top 13 tips: from shopping to hair to getting involved in the cosplay community.

“I love the process of putting together cosplay,” she says, “from the research to making/assembling. Can I use this old school blazer for the Doctor if I cover the logo? Can I turn this old bed sheet into a Third Doctor cape? It makes you think laterally, and is a great way to celebrate the characters you love and admire. It makes me feel very proud to be a fan – it’s not much different from wearing the shirt of your favourite football team.

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About Doctor Who Magazine

Contents include: • An in-depth interview with STEVEN MOFFAT, head writer and executive, who reflects on his years working on the series • STEVEN MOFFAT writes his last-ever PRODUCTION NOTES • A look back at 20 amazing things about the STEVEN MOFFAT era of DOCTOR WHO, plus tributes from RUSSELL T DAVIES, CHRIS CHIBNALL, MARK GATISS and many more • Part 2 of the DWM interview with DOCTOR WHO writer, actor and fan, MARK GATISS • A brand-new adventure for the Doctor and Bill in Part 1 of the latest comic strip story, THE PARLIAMENT OF FEAR by Scott Gray, with art by Staz Johnson • Reviews of the 2017 series finale WORLD ENOUGH AND TIME and THE DOCTOR FALLS • THE FACT OF FICTION looks at the Eleventh Doctor’s debut episode, 2010’s THE ELEVENTH HOUR • The latest DVDs and audios are reviewed • Previews of forthcoming releases • Prize-winning competitions, the 2017 SEASON SURVEY official news, the WOTCHA! column