Doctor Who: Eighth Doctor actor Paul McGann perfectly sums up the importance of fandom

Sometimes, it can be hard to describe just how important being a fan can be, but Paul McGann – best known to Doctor Who fans as the Eighth Doctor – summed it up perfectly in a recent interview.

There’s nothing quite like being a fan. This isn’t just limited to Doctor Who, or even sci-fi series in general. Virtually everyone’s a fan of something, whether it’s TV, books, sports, artists etc. It’s essentially what FanSided was built on.

And we’re always so passionate about it, too. Which is great in its own way, but it can be a negative thing, at times. When something’s not quite to our taste, we find it so easy to be negative about it and focus on what we don’t like rather than on the stuff we do love.

However, sometimes, being a fan can be more important than we realize. Not just for ourselves, but for others, too. It can be hard to describe sometimes just how much being a fan matters. However, in an interview with The Guardian yesterday, Paul McGann – best known to Doctor Who fans as the Eighth Doctor – summed up the importance of being a fan in the following quote.

With Doctor Who, there’s so much to talk about, years and years of it. You’ll see somebody to whom it really matters; it helped them through something. You end up sitting them down, just being kind to them. Give them a couple of minutes. Those conversations are really touching. You’re reminded of the power of stories and myths and heroes, and how people invest in all of it.

Whether it’s meeting our heroes or even others who enjoy our favorite show, being a fan can bring so many special moments to so many people.
(Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

What being a fan means

This quote right here sums up the joys of being a fan much better than I can. I’ve heard quite a few stories of people getting through the darkest or most difficult points of their lives, thanks to having something to escape into. Something that speaks directly to them.

More than that, being a fan can also lead to our happiest times in life. It can help us to connect with other fans, make new friends, or even new relationships. Speaking personally, just being a fan of the Eighth Doctor was enough to help me meet some amazing people in my life. It also encouraged me to dive into the world of audio drama, thanks to the regular releases from Big Finish Productions.

I felt this quote was worth sharing because it’s important to remember what being a fan means, and how it can make a difference to our lives. At the same time, it shows how at least some of the people who portray our favorite heroes recognize that importance.

What does being a fan mean to you? Has becoming a fan of Doctor Who – or anything else, for that matter – improved your life? Let us know in the comments below.