The Knights – Essential Information

The Knights of the White Guardian (often called simply “The Knights,” occasionally called K.O.T.W.G. OR “Kot-Wigg” and sometimes erroneously called “The White Knights of Gallifrey”) was founded during the summer of 1987. Most of the members ranged between the ages of 13 and 28 and had been watching the Doctor Who television series for at least four years. The initial goals of the club were the following:

  • To create a new type of fan club where the membership would have the final say.
  • To provide members with regular meetings and 12 monthly newsletters.
  • To support Doctor Who on our local PBS station WGBY Channel 57 in Springfield, MA.
  • To arrange trips to Doctor Who events outside of our local area.
  • To encourage convention promoters to host Doctor Who events in our local area.
  • To promote cooperation amongst local fan clubs.
  • To insure the ongoing production of the Doctor Who television series.

Needless to say our enthusiam exceeded our abilities. No single fan organization could have realistically kept Doctor Who on the air. After two years of volunteering at what appeared to be successful pledge drives, WGBY dropped Doctor Who in the spring of 1989. Still we have met with relative success in all other areas.

What does the name mean?

The character of the White Guardian was introduced in the Doctor Who television episode The Ribos Operation in September of 1978. The character was the creation of script editor Anthony Read and fleshed by actor Cyril Luckham. Throughout the 16th season of the program, the Doctor travels through time and space as an agent or “pawn of the White Guardian.” As part of the Guardian’s quest, the Doctor had to collect the six segments of the Key to Time, a powerful time talisman, before he could resume his normal adventures.
The White Guardian was a popular character in Doctor Who fan fiction in the mid-1980’s and we wanted to somehow include him in the name of the club. Everyone thought “pawns of the White Guardian” sounded kind of passive so we adopted “Knights of the White Guardian” choosing a somewhat more romantic chess piece to represent ourselves.
Current Status:

Who are the Knights?

Today the Knights consists of 35+ paying members. Amongst this group are approximately 24 “active members” in the sense that they take part in club events, newsletter

Half-Life

Trix is looking for the Doctor and Fitz.  They are on an alien planet where the Earth colony is going through some tough times.  The ruler of Espero is in danger from his own wife.  There are a rash of attacks by night creatures and there is an approaching mist that will kill every living being and re-invent them.  The Doctor and Fitz have no idea what is going on because they have amnesia (Yes, it happened again!)

After an ageless story arc, Half-life seems to be the first non arced novel in quite some time.  This story really takes the time to work on the characters and relationships.  The Doctor and Fitz’s relationship is really the center piece in this story.  There is a lot of work done with both parties as they experience each others habits and such.  By the end of the story you are left with the feeling that their bond is as strong as some of the other companions of the past like Sarah Jane and Ace.

Trix is not left out of it either.  This time we see into her mind and her thoughts and personality.  For perhaps the first time we really learn about Trix.  Basically, author Mark Michalowski has given character to her.

The supporting cast suffer in no way as Camalee, Imperator Tannalis and others really make the world of Espero alive and realistic.  The back drop of religion and prejudice works perfectly.  Even the bad guys of the piece create an interesting enough story to support the characterizations of this novel.  There are other surprises in the novel as we may have had appearances by at least one previous companion (Not going to say who as this is left fairly obscure and may be important in the resolution of the 8th Doctor novel series coming up very soon.)

I guess many fans are still waiting for the Doctor to get his memories back and this novel finally gives him the ability to do it. Short of telling you the result, I think the outcome is superb and could be the final word on the amnesia subject, at least for the novels.

SPIDER-MAN 2

I want to be clear on this.  I liked Spider-man 2, a lot.  Then again I liked the first one as well, but I had one or two small problems with it.  This sequel was a better with doing things all the way around, and the story was very good too.  So you may ask, why didn’t I give the movie a four star, must see rating?  Well, in my view, the film makes one mistake that is pretty important for this character, and I just can’t buy into it.

First off let me say that the acting by all of the cast members is superior to what you usually get in a commonplace action adventure picture.  It’s not just a question of everyone hitting their marks, and saying what lines they have, no the cast members actually seem to believe in their individual characters.

The story is thought out, and I found myself hooked into what was going on from moment one.  Even though there are many elements in this adventure they all hook up and one time or another, and each link builds up to the next event.  The dual nature of Peter Parker, and Spiderman tends to take center stage in the movie, but we also get views of Mary Jane’s life choices, a look at Peter’s beloved aunt, and the slide into major anger by his former friend.  The individual, who is Doctor Ock, is also well rounded and is more of a tragic person then a complete baddie.

The special effects are better used in this picture, and the plot device of Spiderman losing his powers at certain moments in the story, actual makes his normal swinging around seem more intense if the viewer is wondering if Spiderman’s powers will keep working this time, then they have something invested in the character, and are already somewhat hooked with the story.

With all of this going on, I found myself liking the picture a whole lot.  Then it happened: the train scene.  Spiderman takes off his mask to get a better look at the threatening danger, and then allows a sizable amount of people to see his real face.  Granted, this makes for a nice scene of the common folk relating to the fact that Spiderman is a person like themselves, but the scriptwriter has now opened a box of trouble.  Mr. Parker’s character doesn’t want to risk Mary Jane’s life by having her know his secret, and thus he is almost willing to lose her forever.  However his actions in the train defeat this concept, since there are now lots of people who can describe what he looks like.  (Despite what everyone says on the train, someone will let the information slip out by accident, or if they were offered enough money.)

The comic book adventures have always stressed the importance of keeping his true identity under wraps.  (At least the stories that I have read.)  So to have his secret known to a group of people who have no vested interest in the real individual, strikes me as being a bit reckless to say the least.

Most people will say that this is only a small problem, in the story, and it shouldn’t prevent me from embracing the whole.  But this must also be weighed against the whole history of the saga.  It is my belief that certain core elements belong in the Spiderman concept.  To change one of them, for a less than important reason, in my view, takes something away from the character.  Simply put, why should Peter Parker freak out if someone finds out who he really is, when he opens the door to that danger himself?

One final point.  I am NOT upset about Mary Jane learning about who Peter is, nor his former best friend.  Both of those actions have already been dealt with in the comic books, and will also flesh out future story elements in the next film.  In fact I wouldn’t even be bothered if Peter’s aunt figured his secret out, or was told it.  That makes sense.  But random members of the city do not.  Like I said, for some people this is a minor point, but for me it is not.  Thus I can say that while I really enjoyed Spiderman 2, I didn’t LOVE it.  If they hadn’t made that one misstep, then I could be like most other people and give the movie a Four Star score.  But I must be true to my own views first.  So go out and see the picture, just remember there are one or two people who think that the film has a minor flaw or two.