Saturday 22nd April 2017 saw the world of the Mr. Men and Little Miss collide with the Doctor Who universe. To celebrate the release of the first four books in the Mr. Men and Doctor Who crossover series a special event was held at the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff. BlogtorWho was in attendance to cover this spectacular product launch…

As with all good events, timings get thrown out of the window. Central to the event was the opportunity to purchase and read the first four books, Dr. First, Dr. Fourth, Dr. Eleventh and Dr. Twelfth. Capturing the essence of the Mr. Men and the World of Hargreaves is a series of new Doctor Who stories which are simply a joy to read. The characters, in particular, are wonderfully realised on the page. In attendance at the event was Adam Hargreaves, son of Mr. Men and Little Miss creator Roger Hargreaves, who has written and illustrated this exciting new range of books. Throughout the day he drew characters in the recognisable Hargreaves style and signed copies of the first four books.

Adam Hargreaves and Luke Spillane, World of Hargreaves @ the Doctor Who Experience 22nd April 2017 Photo Credit Bedwyr Gullidge

Adam Hargreaves Q&A

During the event, three Q&A sessions were held with Adam Hargreaves. Presented by Luke Spillane, from Doctor Who The Fan Show, a number of areas were covered beginning with the birth of the Mr. Men themselves. As an inquisitive child, Adam asked his Dad what a tickle looked like. Roger Hargreaves in response drew Mr. Tickle and wrote a story about him. The rest, as they say, is history. Roger sadly passed away in 1988 but Adam continued the Mr. Men and Little Miss series. Taking questions from the audience Adam Hargreaves admitted that when learning how to draw the Mr. Men he found Mr. Happy the most difficult because he is basically one large circle. His favourite to draw is actually Mr. Bump with Mr. Silly’s stories the most enjoyable to write. Now, 29 years on, Adam Hargreaves brings the universe of Doctor Who and the World of Hargreaves together.

Adam Hargreaves and Luke Spillane, World of Hargreaves @ the Doctor Who Experience 22nd April 2017 – Photo Credit Bedwyr Gullidge

The World of Hargreaves and Doctor Who

Adam Hargreaves explained how the new series of books has combined two iconic British brands. Both the Mr. Men and Little Miss range of books and Doctor Who share a very British sense of humour. Hargreaves described how any initial scepticism at the prospect of combining these two icons dissipated when he began working on the caricatures for the Doctors. As a child, his Doctors were Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker. His personal memories of Tom Baker as The Doctor, therefore, made recreating the Fourth incarnation into the Mr. Men world a real thrill. Of the Doctors, he found Dr. Twelfth the trickiest, largely due to the hair. Daleks, on the other hand, were easier to draw because they naturally lent themselves to the traditional Mr. Men shapes. They were also a favourite Doctor Who baddie as a child.

World of Hargreaves @ the Doctor Who Experience 22nd April 2017. Doctor Who/Mr. Men (c) Puffin Books

Recreation of real life people and characters into Mr. Men form can be difficult. As a rule, the Mr. Men have no clothes so the focus begins on the shape of the nose or a hairstyle. Adam Hargreaves also revealed that the colours of the Doctor Men characters came from discussions with the BBC but also with reference to the clothing that they wear. For example, Missy, notable for her purple outfit, is a purple character. Hargreaves also provided advice for any budding artists and illustrators; Practice as much as possible and study the subject carefully to interpret the 3-dimensional into 2 dimensions. Repetition is also important. Adam Hargreaves was a superb guest. He provided fascinating detail regarding the process of his work, was wonderfully approachable and ensured everyone who wanted autographs was catered for.

Adam Hargreaves book signing, World of Hargreaves at © the Doctor Who Experience. 22nd April 2017 – Photo Credit Bedwyr Gullidge

Signings and Other Activities

When the opportunity came for kids of all ages to have autographed copies of the first four books the queue stretched far across the exhibition floor. The new books were a hit! Within the exhibition space were also a number of additional activities. Those visiting the Experience’s photo booth had the chance to immerse themselves into the World of Hargreaves and Doctor Who with five special backgrounds available for one day only. These included the four Doctors First, Fourth, Eleventh and Twelfth, a Weeping Angel and Dr. First at his TARDIS console. In the Experience’s Gallery, a number of original drawings from the books were displayed. These black and white drawings intermingled with covers of Doctor Who Magazine that remain exhibited at the venue. Also dotted around the exhibition were Dr. Men characters from the new series including Cybermen, Weeping Angels and the Doctors.

World of Hargreaves @ the Doctor Who Experience 22nd April 2017. Doctor Who/Mr. Men © Puffin Books – Photo Credit Bedwyr Gullidge

World Exclusives

Most excitingly of all were not one but two world exclusives. First was the exclusive world premiere screening of an animated version of Dr. Twelfth, narrated by Michelle Gomez. This animation will be released later this week and is well worth a watch. Michelle Gomez provides some superb narration, adding to the excitement of her upcoming appearance in Series 10. Secondly came the exclusive world-first reveal of the next four Doctor Who meets The World of Hargreaves books…

Dr. Second, Dr. Seventh, Dr. Eighth, Dr. Ninth. Doctor Who/Mr. Men © Puffin Books

These were revealed to be; Dr. Second, Dr. Seventh, Dr. Eighth and Dr. Ninth. Adam Hargreaves, in another world exclusive, also hinted that Dr. Eighth will face the Sea Devils. These titles will be released 29th August 2017 and should be available to preorder shortly. To finish the day on a high a special cake was brought out to celebrate a very successful event and the wonderful new books.

Celebration cake. Doctor Who/Mr. Men (c) Puffin Books – Photo Credit Bedwyr Gullidge

BlogtorWho would like to thank Adam Hargreaves, Puffin Books, Luke Spillane, BBC Worldwide and all the team at the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff for a wonderful event.

The first four books are available now wherever books are sold. Exclusive Doctor Who and the Mr Men merchandise is also available.

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