July 03, 2013 12:07pm PT by Graeme McMillan
'Doctor Who': Prince Charles Freestyles Dalek During Set Visit
Over 50 years, the BBC's Doctor Who has featured all manner of important historical figures: Vincent Van Gogh (who ended up inspired, of course, by the Doctor's visit), Charles Dickens (ditto) and even Queen Victoria. As part of the show's ongoing 50th anniversary celebrations, a real-life VIP dropped in for a visit and demonstrated his own fanboyish feelings toward the show by pretending to be one of the series' most famous alien threats. Yes, as surreal as it seems, Prince Charles is a Doctor Who fan -- and to prove it, he even freestyled some Dalek dialogue.
Their Royal Highnesses the Prince of Wales and his wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, toured the current set of Who on Wednesday, meeting the current incarnation of the eponymous time lord, Matt Smith, as well as current companion Jenna Coleman and showrunner Steven Moffat.
During their tour, Charles revealed that he has been watching the show since the very beginning, way back in 1963. "The Prince of Wales said he remembers watching the show when he was 15 and seemed very knowledgeable on the Who history, so it’s nice to think they are watching," Smith told reporters after the visit, adding that "showing them how to fly the TARDIS was a real treat."
It wasn't just the TARDIS that Charles got to play with during his visit; he was also given a sonic screwdriver to use, and had the chance to try out the voice modulator used to create the Daleks' familiar electronic whine. After being encouraged to try the lines "Exterminate!" and "You are our prisoners!" he ad-libbed "One false move!" amid nervous laughter from everyone around him.
"I haven't thought about how I could weave a meeting between the Doctor and the royal family," said Moffat later, "but Prince Charles' attempt at being a Dalek was great. There would be a part in the show for him if he wanted it."
And to think, there was a time not too long ago that the idea of having John Hurt play the Doctor for the show's 50th anniversary special (airing Nov. 23 on BBC America) seemed like a big deal. Obviously, salary might be a problem, but imagine if someone managed to convince Charles to sign on as Matt Smith's replacement when he departs the series this Christmas.