Dr Who Live is at Birmingham's NIA. But where is Who? Lifelong fan Daniel Wainwright reports
Daleks, Cybermen, Judoon, Ood and Silurians don't cut it.
The only way to enjoy this show properly is to take children. For a lifelong superfan like me it doesn't really work.
The Doctor, played by Matt Smith, only appears on the giant video screen and the rest of the performance is taken up mainly by Nigel Planer (Neil from the Young Ones) prancing around like a panto villain while a bunch of people dressed up as the monsters from Doctor Who wander around and glare up close at a few children.
Going as an adult with no child companion, it's an expensive let-down.
Planer plays Vorgenson, the descendant of a baddie from an old story featuring Jon Pertwee's Doctor who happens to have a fanboy-style obsession with the Time Lord. He's a warning of what people like me could turn into — middle aged and still trying to play the dandy in a big coat.
The live orchestra, however, is wonderful and really brings out the power of Murray Gold's incredible soundtrack.
There were some clever special effects in the form of a flying Dalek and a smaller screen that did its best to beam in incumbent Matt Smith's tweed-clad Time Lord.
But beyond that any self-respecting adult will be wondering what they forked out the best part of £40 for. People like me, just barely the right side of 30, would end up questioning their social circles as they come face to face with people of a certain age wearing floppy hats and long scarves.
But it was the children in the audience who made this the experience show writer Steven Moffat intended.
Little boys barely taller than my knee were running around in pinstripe suits and trainers to emulate the Tenth Doctor or in full silver suits to be mini Cybermen.
For hardcore fans of the show this is simply a depressing reminder that we're still obsessed with something that is to all intents and purposes a children's show.
To the youngsters this is one of the most exciting nights they will have all year.
* Doctor Who live is at the NIA in Birmingham again tonight and tomorrow with tickets priced £25 to £38.50 plus booking fee on 0844 847 1963,