We Came This Close to a Doctor Who Musical

If you have an opportunity to stick around for an Arthur Darvill spotlight anywhere, do so. What was billed as a Q&A turned immediately into a one-hour impromptu stand-up session by the ceaselessly funny Darvill, formerly known in my heart as Rory Pond from Doctor Who and now just known as Arthur F’in’ Darvill.

While the audience and I shared this dream of humanity, Darvill let slip that the camaraderie between him, Karen Gillan, and Matt Smith almost resulted in a Doctor Who musical, jokingly but not jokingly titled It’s Bigger On The Inside.

It was very Broadway, “kind of Beauty and the Beast. Dancing Daleks,” Darvill said. He gave us three lines, clearly meant to be an intro:

It’s bigger on the inside
He’s pushing the controls!
Who knows where we will go?

Thought it started as a spoof, the team was asked if they’d actually like to do a real musical. For various reasons, that never came together. So close!

And here’s a bit of a “Greatest Hits” from Darvill’s answers in the Q&A:

  • “I always wanted to do an episode where all the companions come back in therapy. I think Amy and Rory argue a lot. Amy takes up crocheting. Rory learns the banjo and they just while away their days. Life after the Doctor would be pretty tough and I think they’d just spend all their time in therapy.”
  • Darvill used to be in a band as a kid and now that he’s got a bit of fanbase from other things the group might get back together for a one-off gig. Even though the lead singer is now a doctor with three kids. “Thank god. I need some kind of ‘doctor’ reference in every job I do.”
  • Upon holding a tea mug and hearing that fans create Rory-themed blends of tea: “I’m just drinking a cup of ME?“
  • Describing what an Arthur Darvill blend would be like: “Strong. Powerful. Deep. With a spoon.”
  • On working out River Song’s secret: “She [Kingston] knew it for a while but I worked it out before anyone else and I want you to know that. We were sitting in a bar in Utah [filming ’The Impossible Astronaut”] and I said, ‘Is it this this?’ And she said, ‘Yes…hello daddy.’”
  • On his friend being a pirate at A-lister parties. “So he went up to Paul [McCartney] and went ‘I think…I think you’re a really brilliant musician.’ And Paul said, ‘Thanks, I think you’re a really brilliant pirate.’
  • What Who companion would he have liked Rory to meet? “Maybe Ace? I had a bit of a crush on her.”
  • On Matt Smith kissing him in that one episode. “He’s always doing that. I think he has feelings for me. He did that as a surprise in rehearsal and I just burst out laughing. The hardest thing to do when filming was not laugh. That was my reaction. It’s when I fell in love with him. Stared into his beautiful eyes and said GET OFF ME.”
  • So who’s a better kisser, Amy or the Doctor? “It’s a really hard call. They’re both as good as each other. Matt was very tender. And Karen wasn’t. It was horrible at times. There was a moment in ‘Vampires in Venice’…it’s awkward when actors have to kiss, you have to make believe it’s passionate…but there was a moment where we had a kiss on the stairs and no one told us how long we had to do it, so we did it for ages. It got really silly. We kind of finished and went, ‘Aw…sorry.’ It’s a really odd thing since it’s not real, there’s no real emotional… You’re just thinking, where’s my nose, where’s my nose? This is awkward.”
  • Has a cat called Prince Philip. “I like animals with human names. I’ve got a friend named Kieran Balley [I’ve probably missheard this name horribly, sorry.] and I want a dog so I can name it Kieran Balley. I think that would be fun for him.”
  • Even if an entire audience screams at him to reprise “Let It Go,” he will turn it around and have us sing happy birthday to someone named Elliott who might not even be real. Which is what Darvill did.
  • The adventures he wished they’d have had on the show? “I want to go back to the 60s. Meet the Beatles. “Watch them and…stalk them. Dress up as a pirate. See their last gig on the Apple roof.”
  • And also: “We didn’t do enough food-based adventures. The Planet Cake. Where the monster is defeated by water. And teeth.”
  • Favorite Doctor? “MATT SMITH. Matt will always be my man.” He’s only seen a couple of the new episodes and he’s impressed with Peter so far.
  • He would get his own face tattooed on the back of his head. “Still be looking at you, but ignoring you.”
  • What director would he like to work with? “Wes Anderson.”
  • What episode would he want to be in that he wasn’t? “I was sad, gutted, not to be in the Van Gogh episode.”
  • Stetson or Fez? “I think I prefer the fez! I love the fact that it got in the show. It’s such a weird thing and now you guys are wearing it as well. It’s kind of mind control.”
  • How many times did Karen Gillan call him “idiot” or “stupid face” in real life? “In real life quite a LOT. She’s horrible. Really nasty person.” (In case the tone doesn’t come through here, be assured that he is joking. That, in fact, this seems to be one of his favorite jokes to make.)
  • His mom’s a puppeteer and his dad’s a musician so he grew up in a creative atmosphere. His dad played keyboards with Fine Young Cannibals and he would go out on tour with his mom as part of a puppet company. He couldn’t imagine wanting to do anything else but being in a creative field like acting.
  • If he was trapped in a room with the Vashta Nerada and could call one person for help that wasn’t River or the Doctor, who would he call? “My mom and dad. With a really high voice. And tears streaming down my face.”
  • Does he prefer the season 5 or season 6 finale? He doesn’t know, and asks the questioner to note his favorite finale. They answer season 6. “I’ll have to say season 5 then.”
  • Could Rory please come back in the season 8 finale? “Yeah, no worries. I can come back as a pirate.”

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