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FTN at The Greatest Show in the Galaxy (includes EXCLUSIVE audio interviews & pics)

May 22nd, 2012 by Irwin Fletcher Comments


Big Phil headed to Petersborough last weekend for The Greatest Show in the Galaxy and, while he was there, he caught up with a few people you may have heard of… Doctor Who stars Paul McGann and  Sylvester McCoy, voice of the Daleks, Nigk Briggs, John Laveen, Janet Feilding, Star Trek’s Colm Meaney and Chase Masterson, as well as Terry Molloy. Phil has no fear when it comes to the interviews. We hope you enjoy them as much as we do…


Greetings my fellow Nerds and Nerdettes, once again I have been travelling to the far reaches of Nerdism (well, Peterborough actually) for this year’s Greatest Show in the Galaxy which was held on 11th and 12th May at the Peterborough Showgrounds.

With over 50 guests from such television shows and films as Star Trek Deep Space Nine and Voyager, Doctor Who (both classic, recent series and The Movie), Torchwood, Ashes to Ashes, Highlander and Spooks, along with such classic comedies as ‘Allo’ Allo and Hi de Hi. Indeed, fans of all genres would be hard pushed not to find a guest from a particular production they love.
On Saturday there were crowds as far as the Tardis could travel, with many of the public clutching their most prized possessions in the hopes that they will be able to get to meet the guest of their choice to sign them. I say “hopes” as there simply weren’t enough hours in the day to meet everyone I would have liked. Between flittering in between guest talks, signings, photo sessions and conducting interviews (this isn’t a holiday you know, lol) not to mention browsing the various stalls, I was truly in Nerd-vana.

The Star Trek THG talk


At the Star Trek Deep Space Nine Q&A were Colm Meaney, Nana Visitor, René Auborjonois, Chase Masterson, Lolita Fatjo and Robert Picardo who was conducting the discussion. These discussions lasted an hour or so and it was great to see how the cast interacted with one another, especially after the number of years since the show had finished. Among the many titbits mentioned was that at no time was there ever going to be a spin-off big screen movie. The cast were well aware of this, but were told to keep this under wraps due to the TNG crew filming the latter of their films.

The Deep Space Nine Cast talk


Onto the Star Trek Voyager chit chat, some familiar questions were asked to Jeri Ryan, Robert Beltran, Ethan Philips, Garret Wang, Tim Russ, Manu Intraymi and Robert Picardo (they were joined by Alice Kruge on the Sunday Q&A) and once again it was like sitting opposite old friends you hadn’t seen in a while. Everyone looked completely at ease and you can tell that they love hanging out with each other at these conventions.
There was also a Highlander and Doctor Who: The Movie talk, which were once again interesting for fans and non-fans alike, as was the Spooks Q&A.
So Saturday came and went, rather tired but with a smile as wide as the North Sea that I crossed to get there (especially as I had a photo session with Nana Visitor and the cast of Voyager earlier in the day) and had interviewed a number of folks (sorry, can’t drop any names but they include Doctor Who and Star Trek  – see podcast above!).
Up early on Sunday and still bright and breezy for another fun fill Nerd-tastic day and what a day it was!

Phil with the cast of Voyager. Phil's the one in the middle


Great to see more queues of eager fans (a number of whom I met the previous day) all just as eager as me (well, maybe not just as eager, lol) to get to see a great guest line-up for day two.

Phil fires up the Quattro


For some fans, Sunday was the main event day as the entire cast of Ashes to Ashes had arrived. Throw into this mix the main cast of Torchwood too and you have fans, young and old, clambering over each to meet the stars of their dreams.
Once again I had my own agenda (restraining orders permitting that is) of a list of guests to meet and interview if possible and I was not disappointed.
David Warner, the legend, the gentleman that he is allowed me to sit an chat with him for almost two hours while he was constantly signing autographs and speaking to his fans. I have been a fan of David’s since I was a child and it was truly a dream come true to sit in his presence whilst he reminisced to both his fans and myself about various parts he played and his experiences on set (full write-up and reflection coming soon).

Phil with the legendary David Warner


After breaking into a sweat (not just from running round the different stages) on more than one occasion, I found a nice spot for the highlight of the Q&A weekend for most and that was the Ashes to Ashes and Torchwood pieces.
Philip Glenister, Keeley Hawes, Marshall Lancaster, Montseratt Lombard and Dean Andrews from Ashes to Ashes all gave a fun-filled talk and answered fan questions with delight (including expletives by Mr Glenister). It was great to hear about the on set antics, particularly how certain cast members never learnt their lines whilst others were ordered to leave the set due to their carrying on!
Shortly after this there was the Torchwood Q&A which was filled with fans, especially the younger ones (and a number of ladies too) as it had John Barrowman, Eve Myles, Naoko Mori, Gareth David Lloyd, Kai Owen, Tom Price and Lachlan Neiboer. John Barrowman was without doubt the star of this Q&A and delighted fans with his antics and charisma and everyone, guests included, were clearly in awe of him.
With so much happening over the two days there are some folks I would like to give a brief mention or two. Even though this was primarily a guest signing, photo opportunity and Q&A, it was brilliant to see that there were a number of charities who really wooed the crowds over the entire weekend.
For fans of Doctor Who, there were several Daleks roaming the entire arena, though they weren’t always shouting “Exterminate!”. Indeed, there was one lonely Dalek who followed a young child who was running away from him whilst it said “No, stop, don’t run, I want to play”. They were supplied by Max Appeal which is a charity that supports families with members who have DiGeorge Syndrome.

For fans of all of the Star Trek franchise which included all of the television series and all of the films, there were numerous fans dressed impeccably in various outfits. These included Captains from Starfleet, Vulcan Ambassadors, Klingon Lords and their Lieutenants, Bajoran Security Personal and other non-commissioned Starfleet personnel. Aside from these characters, there was also a complete replica of  Jean Luc Picard’s Captain’s Chair (with buttons – yep, I pressed them, constantly!). They were from Starbase 24 and were collecting for the Macmillan Cancer Charity.

All in all, it was a totally amazing weekend meeting various guests and fellow fans alike, including meeting The Trekkie Girls, pictured above. I only hope these words can convey the excitement that I experienced and I would like to thank the staff, cast, crew and fellow guests for a wonderful convention.

Phil Wilce
(Ps Not once did security have to escort me either away from a guest of out of the building. They were either well bribed or I was more self restrained than usual)

Let us know if you’re in the pics below guys 🙂

I'm an LA journalist who really lives for his profession. I have also published work as Jane Doe in various mags and newspapers across the globe. I normally write articles that can cause trouble but now I write for FTN because Nerds are never angry, so I feel safe.