Every fandom quickly develops its own in-house lingo, common sayings and phrases that reinforce belonging. Much of them are benign and part of developing a shared identity - but, not always. Sometimes disingenuous words and phrases can pop up and be normalised. Doctor Who fans are no different from any other group in that respect. But unlike other fan bases, there is still much dispute as to what Doctor Who fans should even be called. For Star Trek there are the Trekkies, for Twilight, the Twihards and for Glee, the Gleeks. But what of Doctor Who? Some are quite happy with Whovian (usually Stateside) but others remember the past negative connotations of that word and are strongly averse to its use. Its easy to forget that the word Christian was initially a derogatory term, from the early churchs opponents. And every group has to have a name, right? Or does it? Whatever fans elect to call themselves, there seems to be a few words within the Doctor Who subculture that have been overused and misused. Is it time to bid adieu to some of them? Here are 8 of the most cringeworthy words that ought to be consigned to the scrapheap.
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Paul Driscoll is a freelance writer and author across a range of subjects from Cult TV to religion and social policy. He is a passionate Doctor Who fan and January 2017 will see the publication of his first extended study of the series (based on Toby Whithouse's series six episode, The God Complex) in the critically acclaimed Black Archive range by Obverse Books. He is a regular writer for the fan site Doctor Who Worldwide and has contributed several essays to Watching Books' You and Who range. Recently he has branched out into fiction writing, with two short stories in the charity Doctor Who anthology Seasons of War (Chinbeard Books). Paul's work will also feature in the forthcoming Iris Wildthyme collection (A Clockwork Iris, Obverse Books) and Chinbeard Books' collection of drabbles, A Time Lord for Change.