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Sarah Jane Smith was my hero

April 18, 2012

Sarah Jane Smith was my hero. I first started watching Doctor Who in the 1970s to find out how she got on in her adventures with the Doctor. (Well to be honest I sat on the stairs and listened to most of the programme because back then Doctor Who was too scary to watch all the way through!)

When I was a bit older, I watched all her episodes of Doctor Who repeatedly on video. To me she was the perfect person to share adventures with. She was always brave, even when she was afraid. Plus I liked the fact she sometimes teased or challenged the Doctor and other characters. And I loved her clothes and her make up too.

My particular favourite story from the 1970s is Pyramids of Mars. Sarah Jane played a key role in defeating Sutekh. Watch it to find out how, but there is a photo below which shows her determined side to good effect!

In the mid-1990s, I was lucky enough to meet Elisabeth Sladen, the actress who played Sarah Jane Smith. I was visiting a friend in Liverpool and when I arrived at Lime Street station I bumped into another friend Paul (from the Cult TV Society), who told me to wait a few minutes and he would introduce me to Lis Sladen as he was about the escort her to a book signing.

Lis was very lovely and friendly and looked pleased when I told her how much I enjoyed watching all her episodes of Doctor Who. I’m afraid I probably gushed rather a lot, but I feel so grateful that I have that memory to look back on.

Then of course, Sarah Jane turned up in a 2006 episode of Doctor Who called School Reunion. In fact the whole episode was really about Sarah Jane and what happens to companions after the Doctor has left them behind. It was beautifully done.

Even better, Sarah Jane got her own tv show called The Sarah Jane Adventures. It could have been naff but was actually fantastic. A really good quality tv programme, aimed at children but entertaining and intelligent enough to be enjoyed by an adult such as myself. I loved it.

A year ago, I heard the sad news that Lis Sladen had died. It seemed like people who had watched Doctor Who in the 1970s and children who had recently watched The Sarah Jane Adventures were all united in shock and sadness that Sarah Jane would be no more.

This is the tribute programme that was broadcast on CBBC on 23rd April last year. It made me cry when I first saw it, and still makes me cry now. But it contains some lovely Sarah Jane moments so is worth watching.

I enjoyed watching the final series of The Sarah Jane Adventures, which was broadcast last autumn. I felt sad that there would be no more new Sarah Jane Adventures, but also that she left on a high note and that I can rewatch all the episodes again, just like I did with those 1970s Doctor Who episodes.

Sarah Jane Smith was my hero and I miss her.

Photo from the SFX Website

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Missus Tribble permalink
    April 18, 2012 2:34 pm

    What a wonderful post; Sarah Jane was my hero too. The only companions I can think of that come even close to her are Jo and Donna.

    I bawled my eyes out when I heard the terrible news; I honestly believed it was another one of those horrible Twitter hoaxes – and then it was confirmed. I immediately bought two different Sarah Jane figures – one of her with the Kudlak and the other with that beautiful floaty thing we see in the first episode of SJA.

    I’m so glad that Matt got to meet and act with her, and I always did believe that, somehow, scatty, eccentric Jo and collected, calm Sarah Jane would find a way to develop a brilliant relationship.

    I love School Reunion too; the fun never stops and it also has ASH in it 🙂

    • April 18, 2012 8:59 pm

      Thank you for your comments – it’s good to know I wasn’t the only one who felt so attached to Sarah. I don’t have any action figures but my sister Lucy got me toy versions of the SJA sonic lipstick and watch.

      I agree that ASH was great in School Reunion too. And Matt Smith’s Doctor, Jo and Sarah Jane made a great combination. (Just a shame the Brig couldn’t have been there too really)

  2. The last slayer permalink
    April 19, 2012 10:53 pm

    Having a “fictional” heroine myself, I can totally appreciate how gutted you must have been to hear Lis Sladen had passed away. I’m sure, in spite of the gushing, she must have been thrilled to hear what a role model Sarah Jane was to you. And at least no-one can ever take away all the episodes she was in and all the memories they inspire in you.

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