Fanboys was the twenty-first short story in the Short Trips anthology Short Trips: Snapshots. It was written by Paul Magrs, and continued the story of David Taylor from his novel Strange Boy. Magrs would later write a full length novel with a similar subject matter to this story, The Diary of a Dr. Who Addict, which is a sequel to this story.
Earlier, at dinner, when serving them tomato soup their mam had shouted at David and Chris for obsessing over Doctor Who. Her boyfriend, Brian, went upstairs to comfort her. Chris then had broken the silence by asking David a question about the Doctor.
The next day, as a family, the four of them go to Darlington. They eat French fries at Wimpys, and David and Chris go into WHSmith's to buy Doctor Who Target novels. Chris buys "State of Decay", which he reads in the space of a few hours.
That night, the brothers read their new novels, ignoring the TV in the background, and outside it begins to snow. At about four in the morning, Chris is gone from his bed, and the front door is open. David, and his mam and Brian fear the worst, and they head out to find him.
They head off towards the edge of the estate, trudging through thick snow, and they come to an area of overgrown and abandoned land, and they head towards the Burn - a stream that's treacherous in the dark. David's mam contemplates phoning the police, but decides against it as it would mean that her ex-husband would get involved. After searching for a while, they head off back home as they have no choice but to phone the police.
Just as they arrive back home, they notice that the neighbouring house has its lights are on, and the dad who lives there, comes out, and tells them that Chris is in his house.
- The brothers own Star Wars toys.
- There is a TV show starring Paul Daniels.
- Juliet Bravo and The Two Ronnies are TV shows.
The Doctor Who TV show
- The Wirrn, Zarbi, Sontarans, Krynoids, Zygons, Mechanoids, Yeti, and the Brain of Morbius all appear on the Doctor Who TV show.
- On that TV show, there were four "Doctors", and the Fifth Doctor was going to appear in the upcoming season.
- The Third Doctor had regenerated into the Fourth Doctor in an episode aired in 1974.
- The Fourth Doctor had been on the show for about seven years.
- State of Decay and Planet of the Spiders are novelisations of two of the TV episodes.
- The Seeds of Doom is an episode of the series.
- There is a Wimpys in Darlington.
- David and Chris visit a WHSmith's in Darlington to buy Target novelisations.
- Sampson Place, an industrial estate, and the Burn are locations in Newton Aycliffe.
- David likened the colour of the town at night to the colour of Swizzles sherbet lollies.
- Their mam bought soft white rolls from Greggs.
- Ready Brek is a breakfast food.
- David Taylor and his family previously appeared in Paul Magrs' semi-biographical novel Strange Boy. After writing Fanboys, Magrs later wrote The Diary of a Dr. Who Addict, a full-length novel set in the same period as Fanboys which also had a focus on David's love for Doctor Who. David later appeared in the DWU for a second time, in the audio drama Imaginary Boys, and again in one of the short stories in Magrs' 2020 DWU anthology Christmassy Tales.
- Doctor Who is a TV show. (TV: Remembrance of the Daleks, PROSE: Bafflement and Devotion)
- Newton Aycliffe previously appeared in PROSE: The Blue Angel, and prior to that the Phoenix Court trilogy.