Doctor Who: Tin Dog Podcast
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TDP 76: Battlefiled

Battlefield


156 – Battlefield
Doctor Who serial

A meeting with an old friend
Cast
Doctor Sylvester McCoy (Seventh Doctor)
Companion Sophie Aldred (Ace)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Ben Aaronovitch
Director Michael Kerrigan
Script editor Andrew Cartmel
Producer John Nathan-Turner
Executive producer(s) None
Production code 7N
Series Season 26
Length 4 episodes, 25 minutes each
Originally broadcast September 6September 27, 1989
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
The Greatest Show in the Galaxy Ghost Light

Battlefield is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from September 6 to September 27, 1989.



Synopsis

In response to a distress signal, the Seventh Doctor and Ace materialize the TARDIS near Lake Vortigern in England. The sound of explosions leads the TARDIS crew into the acquaintance of Brigadier Bambera of UNIT, in charge of a nuclear missile convoy. Following from the encounter, the retired Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart is informed of the Doctor's return, and a helicopter is sent to his country home to collect him, against the protests of his wife, Doris.

Later, at the Gore Crow hotel, the Doctor and Ace meet a young woman called Shou Yuing, who shares Ace's love of explosives. Meanwhile, as Bambera stops to examine a blue police telephone box, she is caught in the crossfire between two groups of armoured knights, using both swords and futuristic guns.

The Doctor shows interest in a scabbard, excavated from the battlefield. The scabbard is hot to the Doctor's touch, and the hotel owner's blind wife, Elizabeth, says she can sense it waiting for something, or someone. When the archaeologist Warmsly arrives at the hotel, he dates the scabbard to the 8th century. The Doctor senses that it has been waiting for far longer.

As Ace and Shou Yuing share a talk about explosives, a knight sails through the brewery's roof, making a huge commotion. On investigation, the Doctor, Ace and Shou Yuing find the knight Ancelyn — who wakes, to recognize the Doctor as "Merlin". While the Doctor mulls the portent of this revelation, the party is surrounded by an ominous group of knights.

Bambera faces down their leader, Mordred. He is shocked to see "Merlin", who he believed bound by his mother, Morgaine. Following some vague threats from the Doctor, Mordred's knights retreat. Later, as Mordred begins an arcane ritual, the scabbard in the hotel flies across the room. Morgaine arrives on the scene through a rift in space and time; she proceeds to psychically taunt the Doctor.

The next day, Warmsly shows the Doctor where he uncovered the scabbard. They find a rune, which the Doctor translates to "Dig hole here." On further question, he replies that it is his own handwriting. Using a canister of Nitro-9, Ace blows an opening.

On arrival in Carbury, Lethbridge-Stewart's helicopter is shot down by Morgaine's sorcery. As Morgaine's knights hold a remembrance ceremony for the soldiers of Earth's world wars, Lethbridge-Stewart has a peaceable encounter with Morgaine — though she threatens Lethbridge-Stewart, in the event they should meet again.

The Doctor and Ace enter a chamber under the lake, finding the door keyed to the Doctor's voice. The Doctor tells Ace that this "Merlin" may well be a future version of himself. Presently, they realize that the chamber is part of an organic spaceship. They also find the body of King Arthur. When Ace removes a sword from a plinth, she activates a defence mechanism, unleashing a hostile, glowing entity. In attempt to hide, Ace enters an alcove. A door closes, and the alcove starts to fill with water. As Ace yells for help, the entity knocks the Doctor unconscious.

The Doctor recovers just in time to fiddle with a control panel, and eject Ace from the space ship. As Ancelyn and Warmsly stand at the shore, discussing the Lady of the Lake, Ace emerges, still grasping the sword. Ancelyn identifies it as Excalibur. The Brigadier arrives on-scene, in time to destroy the creature below the lake and rescue the Doctor.

Mordred and Morgaine go to the hotel, to retrieve Excalibur. When Lavel shoots, Morgaine simply catches her bullet with sorcery. Morgaine takes knowledge from Lavel's mind, then turns her body to dust. As she leaves, she pays Mordred's drinking tab by restoring Elizabeth's sight. Meanwhile, UNIT troops are staging an evacuation. The Brigadier shows off some of UNIT's specialized ammunition, and the Doctor inquires about silver bullets.

The Doctor instructs Ace to draw a chalk circle around herself, to protect against Morgaine's sorcery. He then drives off in his old car, Bessie, hoping to halt a battle between Morgaine's knights and the UNIT soldiers. A storm breaks outside the hotel, so Ace and Shou Yuing draw the circle around themselves and Excalibur. A localized night falls. Within the circle, Ace and Shou Yuing start to bicker. Ace nearly leaves the circle, before they realise they are being toyed with.

Just as Mordred and Ancelyn are about to fight, the Doctor intervenes. Mordred, however, reveals that this battle is merely a ruse to lure the Doctor, and that Morgaine has summoned the Destroyer of Worlds. Morgaine appears before Ace and Shou Yuing, and tries to entice them to hand over Excalibur. When they refuse, she unleashes the Destroyer.

The Doctor and the Brigadier capture Mordred, and set off for the hotel. Meanwhile, Morgaine is occupied with Ace's circle. On return, the Doctor finds the hotel in ruins yet Ace and Shou Yuing safe. He is pleased to hear that Ace gave up Excalibur to Morgaine, if doing so protected her. In the debris, the Doctor finds a portal to Morgaine's castle; he, the Brigadier, and Ace enter. On arrival, the Brigadier shoots the Destroyer, to no effect. The Destroyer's return volley sends the Brigadier flying through the window. Ace bursts through the portal, ramming into Morgaine, knocking Excalibur from her grasp.

Morgaine releases the Destroyer's bonds. In the confusion, she scoops up Excalibur and enters the gateway along with Mordred.

Outside, the Doctor readies the Brigadier's revolver and silver bullets — yet the Brigadier knocks him out, retrieves his gun, and faces the Destroyer alone. After some dialog, the Brigadier empties the revolver into the Destroyer's chest. The Doctor wakes to find the castle engulfed in flames. He spots the Brigadier's prostrate form, and begins to mourn his fallen friend — at which point the Brigadier stirs and rises, scuffed but unharmed.

Back at the convoy, Morgaine and Mordred attempt to detonate the nuclear missile. The Doctor confronts Morgaine, insisting that there is no honor to nuclear warfare. She agrees, then asks to fight Arthur in single combat. He tells her of Arthur's death, to her sadness. The Doctor prevents Mordred from killing Ancelyn, and asks Bambera to imprison Mordred and Morgaine.

Back at the Brigadier's house, Doris thumbs her nose at her husband by going for a drive in Bessie with Ace, Shou Yuing, and Bambera, leaving him and the other men to do the gardening and prepare supper.

Continuity

  • As broadcast, this story marks a costume change for the Seventh Doctor. (Initially, The Curse of Fenric was meant as the first story of the season, and an outfit reveal was built in partway through the story.) Most of his clothing is darker, most notably his coat which is now dark brown as opposed to the light grey in previous seasons. This was to represent his darker, more manipulative character. This costume would continue until the end of the classic series' run. When the Seventh Doctor next appears in the 1996 TV movie, he is wearing a completely re-designed outfit with only his hat remaining (which was owned by Sylvester McCoy).
  • It is implied that Merlin is, or will be, a future incarnation of the Doctor. It is also possible that Merlin is an alternate Doctor from the same parallel universe that Morgaine and the rest of the knights are from.
  • The Doctor mentions that they are several years in Ace's future. A £5 coin is in common circulation.
  • The Doctor, talking to the new Brigadier, mentions Yeti (The Web of Fear), Autons (Spearhead from Space and Terror of the Autons), Daleks (Day of the Daleks), Cybermen (The Invasion) and Silurians (Doctor Who and the Silurians).
  • Bessie appears for the first time since The Five Doctors, with the numberplate 'WHO 7', though the actual car used is a different model from that featured earlier; in the Doctor's personal chronology, he was last shown using the vehicle soon after his regeneration into the Fourth Doctor in Robot (in The Five Doctors the vehicle is only used by the Third Doctor).
  • This story marks the last appearance of the TARDIS console room in the classic series. The set itself which had been in use since The Five Doctors had been destroyed in between seasons so a cheap mock-up (with a curtain standing in for the wall) was used here.[citation needed] The lighting in this scene is very low to disguise this, although the console itself survived and was used.
  • UNIT itself would not appear again on television until the Ninth Doctor story Aliens of London, after which it would be seen in the Tenth Doctor's initial outing, The Christmas Invasion, and several subsequent stories. The organization was also referred to in the spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures and represented by its medical officer, Martha Jones, in Torchwood.
  • This story is the last appearance in the television series of Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart, after 21 years in the series since his first appearance in in 1968's The Web of Fear. The character has subsequently appeared in several spinoff stories, including short stories, novels and audio dramas. The canonicity of these is unclear. 'Sir Alistair' was mentioned in the 2008 episode, The Poison Sky, as still being an active member of UNIT and will reappear in the last story of the second season of the spin-off series The Sarah Jane Adventures in Enemy of the Bane.

Production

Serial details by episode:
Episode Broadcast date Run time Viewership
(in millions)
"Part One" 6 September 1989 24:06 3.1
"Part Two" 13 September 1989 24:07 3.9
"Part Three" 20 September 1989 24:13 3.6
"Part Four" 27 September 1989 24:14 4.0
[1][2][3]

Pre-production

Working titles for this story included Nightfall and Storm Over Avallion. An early version of the script was to have included the death of Lethbridge-Stewart.[4]

The Doctor refers to one of Clarke's three laws — telling Ace that sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic — to explain that Arthur's transdimensional spaceship was grown, not built, and adds that the reverse of Clarke's Law is also true. Game designer Dave Lebling wrote in the 1986 interactive fiction game Trinity, "Any sufficiently arcane magic is indistinguishable from technology."

Casting

Guest stars making return appearances include Jean Marsh, who over twenty years earlier had played Princess Joanna in The Crusade and later, companion Sara Kingdom in The Daleks' Master Plan and June Bland, who appeared in the Fifth Doctor story, Earthshock.

Archaeologist Peter Warmsly was played by the renowned actor James Ellis, best remembered for his role as Lynch in Z Cars. See also Celebrity appearances in Doctor Who.

Production

The first director approached to handle Battlefield was Graeme Harper, who had previously directed The Caves of Androzani and Revelation of the Daleks for the programme in 1984 and 1985 respectively. However, Harper was committed to episodes of the Central Television drama series Boon, and unavailable to return to Doctor Who.[5] He would, however, later return to direct episodes of the revived version of the show from 2006 onwards.

During recording of the sequence where Ace is trapped in the water tank, the tank cracked, causing Sophie Aldred to sustain minor cuts to her hands and creating a major hazard as water flooded out onto the studio floor, across which live wires were running. The moment when the tank first cracked can be seen in Part Three as the Doctor struggles with the controls and Ace is lifted clear of the water.

VHS and DVD Release

  • This story was released on VHS in March 1998 with two minutes of additional footage not shown in the 1989 broadcast.
  • It will be released on Region 2 DVD on December 29th 2008.
Doctor Who book
Book cover
Battlefield
Series Target novelisations
Release number 152
Writer Marc Platt
Publisher Target Books
Cover artist Alister Pearson
ISBN 0 426 20350 X
Release date 15 November 1990
Preceded by The Curse of Fenric
Followed by The Pescatons

In print

A novelisation of this serial, written by Marc Platt, was published by Target Books in July 1991.[6] It was the last novelisation of a televised Doctor Who serial to be published in the traditional "short paperback" format Target had been using since 1973. After one more novelisation based upon the untelevised The Pescatons, all remaining novelisations would be published in paperback editions with greater page counts and a different format.

Direct download: TDP_76_Battlefield_final_mix.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 2:14pm UTC

TDP 75: Children in need and Big Finish 8th Doctor and Lucie S2 The clip, from The Next Doctor, is online now at the BBC's Children In Need website, and shows the first two minutes of a brand new episode for the Time Lord, played by David Tennant.

This never seen before footage, is a worldwide exclusive, and will keep fans all over the globe wondering what's in store for the Doctor's next adventure.

As a bonus, you can also watch a special report on the recent Studio Tour competition days at the Doctor Who, Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures sets.

We very much hope that you enjoy both clips and that you can support BBC Children In Need.



2.1 Doctor Who - Dead London

SYNOPSIS:
Someone's playing with us. Manipulating time and space for their own ends.
 
The TARDIS lands in London. But which one? The Doctor and Lucie find themselves trapped in a maze of interlocking Londons from Roman times to the present day.
 
But they are not alone in this labyrinth: a killer is on their trail.



2.2 Doctor Who - Max Warp

SYNOPSIS:
Welcome to Max Warp! Broadcasting live from the Sirius Inter-G Cruiser Show. Hosted by outspoken columnist and media personality Geoffrey Vantage, with spaceship-guru-extraordinaire O’Reilley and daredevil pilot Timbo ‘the Ferret’.
 
When a test flight of the new Kith Sunstorm ends in disaster, the Sirius Exhibition Station is plunged into a web of murder and intrigue. Someone – or something – is trying to re-ignite a war between the Varlon Empire and the Kith Oligarchy.

As the fate of the galaxy hangs in the balance, only two investigators, the Doctor and Lucie, can hope to uncover the truth.
 
So strap yourself in, engage thrust, and prepare for... Max Warp!



2.3 Doctor Who - Brave New Town


SYNOPSIS:
It's like The Village That Time Forgot!
 
The inhabitants of the quiet seaside town of Thorington in Suffolk are living the same day over and over again.
 
What's so special about the 1st of September 1991? Why haven't the villagers noticed that the same song has been number one for years? And just where on Earth has the sea disappeared to?
 
The Doctor and Lucie must solve the mystery before the 'visitors' return...



2.4 Doctor Who - The Skull of Sobek

SYNOPSIS:
Too much perfection's dangerous.
 
On the isolated planet of Indigo 3, far out in the wastes of the Blue Desert, lies the Sanctuary of Imperfect Symmetry. It is a place of contemplation and reflection. It is also a place of death.
 
Something from another time, from another world, has found its way inside the hallowed walls. Something with a leathery hide, a long snout and sharp pointy teeth.
 
Tick tock. Here comes the crocodile...



2.5 Doctor Who - Grand Theft Cosmos


SYNOPSIS:
Here's to crime, Doctor!

The Doctor and Lucie visit nineteenth-century Sweden and become embroiled in an attempt to steal the infamous Black Diamond.

But the stone is guarded by forces not of this world...


2.6 Doctor Who - The Zygon Who Fell to Earth



SYNOPSIS:
There are no monsters this time... are there?
 
Ten years later and Aunty Pat is in her prime. She's snagged herself an ex rock star at the Kendal Folk Festival and now, in the brave new world of the early 1980s they manage together a snazzy hotel on the poetic and shingly shore of Lake Grasmere. However, still waters run deep and friends from the past are returning, intent on milking the old cash-cow...
 
Featuring the song Falling Star sung by Steven Pacey with music by Tim Sutton and lyrics by Barnaby Edwards.



2.7 Doctor Who - Sisters of the Flame


SYNOPSIS:
The richest man in the galaxy has just bought a backwards planet with no obvious mineral wealth in the outer reaches of the universe. An obscure mystical sect has been revived after centuries of neglect. A new race of aliens are hunting for prey. Why?
 
As the Doctor and Lucie attempt to discover the answer, it becomes clear that someone is attempting to resurrect the past - and they need a Time Lord to help them achieve it.




2.8 Doctor Who - Vengeance of Morbius



SYNOPSIS:
The richest man in the galaxy has just bought a backwards planet with no obvious mineral wealth in the outer reaches of the universe. An obscure mystical sect has been revived after centuries of neglect. A new race of aliens are hunting for prey. Why?
 
As the Doctor and Lucie attempt to discover the answer, it becomes clear that someone is attempting to resurrect the past - and they need a Time Lord to help them achieve it.
Direct download: TDP_75.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 10:06am UTC

TDP 74: Tennant Thoughts and S4 DVD Box Set David Tennant has announced that he will leave the award winning BBC drama Doctor Who when he has completed the filming of four special episodes which will be screened in 2009 and early in 2010.

David Tennant first appeared as The Doctor in 2005 and has gone on to star in three series and three Christmas specials as the tenth incarnation of the Time Lord. The BBC has confirmed that David will continue to play The Doctor in the four specials that will make up the 2009 series before a new Doctor takes over for Series 5. Tennant will also star in the Doctor Who Christmas Special titled The Next Doctor this year.

David Tennant comments "I've had the most brilliant, bewildering and life changing time working on Doctor Who. I have loved every day of it. It would be very easy to cling on to the TARDIS console forever and I fear that if I don't take a deep breath and make the decision to move on now, then I simply never will. You would be prising the TARDIS key out of my cold dead hand. This show has been so special to me, I don't want to outstay my welcome.

"This is all a long way off, of course. I'm not quitting, I'm back in Cardiff in January to film four special episodes which will take Doctor Who all the way through 2009. I'm still the Doctor all next year but when the time finally comes I'll be honoured to hand on the best job in the world to the next lucky git - whoever that may be.

"I'd always thought the time to leave would be in conjunction with Russell T Davies and Julie Gardner who have been such a huge part of it all for me. Steven Moffat is the most brilliant and exciting writer, the only possible successor to Russell and it was sorely tempting to be part of his amazing new plans for the show. I will be there, glued to my TV when his stories begin in 2010.

"I feel very privileged to have been part of this incredible phenomenon, and whilst I'm looking forward to new challenges I know I'll always be very proud to be the Tenth Doctor."

Russell T Davies Executive Producer of Doctor Who comments "I've been lucky and honoured to work with David over the past few years - and it's not over yet, the Tenth Doctor still has five spectacular hours left! After which, I might drop an anvil on his head. Or maybe a piano. A radioactive piano. But we're planning the most enormous and spectacular ending, so keep watching!"

Doctor Who returns to our screens on BBC this Christmas. The Next Doctor starring David Tennant, David Morrissey and Dervla Kirwan will be screened on the 25th December on BBC1.


TIME CRASH
The 2007 Children In Need scene, written by Steven Moffat.

DELETED SCENES
A collection of deleted and alternate takes including Howard Attfield's (Geoff Noble) scenes from the S4 opener and the original 'Cybermen' ending from the finale - each scene comes with an explanatory introduction from Russell T Davies. Stories that receive the additional material are: Voyage Of The Damned; Partners In Crime; Fires Of Pompeii; Planet Of The Ood; The Doctor's Daughter; The Unicorn & The Wasp; Forest Of The Dead; Turn Left; and Journey's End.

DAVID TENNANT'S VIDEO DIARIES
Two fifteen minute (approx.) segments filmed by David Tennant including the 'turn on' of the Blackpool Illuminations in 2007 and behind~the~scenes filming of the series finale.

THE JOURNEY (SO FAR)
Half hour documentary charting the return of the show up to the S4 finale. Features interviews with Russell T Davies, David Tennant, Phil Collinson and Julie Gardner.

TRAILERS
All teasers and trailers for the episodes including the 'cinema' trailers for Voyage Of The Damned and S4.

AUDIO COMMENTARIES
These are all new commentaries recorded especially for this release.

VOYAGE OF THE DAMNED: Murray Gold (Composer), Russell Tovey (Midshipman Frame) & Peter Bennett (1st Assistant Director)

PARTNERS IN CRIME: Julie Gardner (Executive Producer), Russell T Davies & James Strong (Director)

FIRES OF POMPEII
: David Tennant, Catherine Tate and Tracie Simpson (Production Manager)

PLANET OF THE OOD: Graeme Harper (Director) & Roger Griffiths (Commander Kess)

THE SONTARAN STRATAGEM: Julie Gardner, Dan Starkey (Commander Skorr) & Neil Gorton (Prosthetics Designer)

THE POISON SKY: David Tennant, RTD and Susie Liggat (Producer)

THE DOCTOR'S DAUGHTER: Catherine Tate, Georgia Moffett (Jenny) & Ben Foster (Conductor)

THE UNICORN & THE WASP: Felicity Kendal (Lady Eddison) & Fenella Woolgar (Agatha Christie)

SILENCE IN THE LIBRARY: David Tennant, Steven Moffat & Julie Gardner

FOREST OF THE DEAD: Euros Lyn (Director), Lousie Page (Costume designer) & Helen Raynor (Script Editor)

MIDNIGHT: David Tennant, RTD & Alice Troughton (Director)

TURN LEFT: Catherine Tate, Bernard Cribbins (Wilfred Mott) & Jacqueline King (Sylvia Noble)

THE STOLEN EARTH: David Tennant, RTD and Julie Gardner

JOURNEY'S END: David Tennant, Catherine Tate & RTD

DOCTOR WHO CONFIDENTIAL
Cut-down versions (in some cases less than ten minutes) of all the accompanying episodes with the exception of Time Crash.

Direct download: TDP_74_Tennant_Thoughts_and_S4_dvd.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 10:47am UTC

TDP Special: A Halloween Poem. A Special Halloween Poem

With Apologies to AEP.

The Raving (Bloke)

 

Once upon the 80’s dreary, while I watched all weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious vhs of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
`'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door -
Only this, and nothing more.'


Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
`Sir,' said I, `or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was watching television when you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you' - here I opened wide the door; -
Michael Grade, and nothing more.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before
But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered words, `Doctor Who No More!'
This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, ` Doctor Who No More?'
Merely this and nothing more.

 
Much I marvelled this ungainly felow hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning - little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing Grade at his chamber door -
Man or beast above the head of pertwee above his chamber door,
With such vermance came his word again `Nevermore.'

`Prophet!' said I, `thing of evil! - prophet still, if  BBC director or devil! –

Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted -
On this home by horror haunted - tell me truly, I implore -
Is there - is there no hope for my timelord? - tell me - tell me, I implore!'
Laughed the Controler `Nevermore!'

With just these words he few away.

 

And the BBC, never failing, still is sitting on the rights evermore, still is plotting scemeing, waiting a man, a  man to rap at my chamber door.

 

And This man, - lets call him Russel- his eyes a dreaming,  Dreaming of his common myth.
And the New controller will hold promice, dreams of blue lamp-light flashing;
And my soul rises from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Doctor Who – For ever more!

Direct download: TDP_Halloween_Poem_Raven.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 11:27am UTC

TDP 73:  Writers Tale, Doctors and Kingdom of Silver
  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: BBC Books (25 Sep 2008)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1846075718
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846075711
  • Product Dimensions: 24.6 x 19 x 4 cm
Synopsis
"Writing isn' just a job that stops at six-thirty...It's a mad, sexy, sad, scary, obsessive, ruthless, joyful, and utterly, utterly personal thing. There's not the writer and then me; there's just me. All of my life connects to the writing. All of it." A unique look into the BBC's most popular family drama, Doctor Who: The Writer's Tale is a year in the life of the hit television series, as told by the show's Head Writer and Executive Producer. A candid and in-depth correspondence between Russell T Davies and journalist Benjamin Cook, the book explores in detail Russell's work on Series Four, revealing how he plans the series and works with the show's writers; where he gets his ideas for plot, character and scene; how actors are cast and other creative decisions are made; and how he juggles the demands of Doctor Who with the increasingly successful Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures spin-offs. Russell's scripts are discussed as they develop, and Russell and Ben's wide-ranging discussions bring in experiences from previous series of Doctor Who as well as other shows Russell has written and created, including Queer As Folk, Bob and Rose, and The Second Coming.The reader is given total access to the show as it's created, and the writing is everything you would expect from Russell T Davies: warm, witty, insightful, and honest.Fully illustrated with never-before-seen photos and artwork - including original drawings by Russell himself - The Writer's Tale is a not only the ultimate Doctor Who book, but a celebration of great writing and great television.



Kingdom of Silver

Starring Sylvester McCoy
With Terry Molloy and Neil Roberts

(Duration: 120' Approx)

CAST:

KINGDOM OF SILVER: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Neil Roberts (Temeter), Kate Terence (Sara), Terry Molloy (Magus Riga), James George (Merel), Bunny Reed (Ardith), Holly King (Etin), Nicholas Briggs (Cybermen)
KEEPSAKE: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Neil Roberts (Temeter), Kate Terence (Sara), Terry Molloy (Examiner 2), James George (Corvus), Nicholas Briggs (Examiner 1)

SYNOPSIS - KINGDOM OF SILVER (A Three-Part Story):
The Doctor arrives on Tasak in search of refreshment, armed with nothing more than a kettle.  But this is a time of crisis for a civilisation about to enter an industrial age. 

Mindful that a devastating war is only recently over, the wise and revered Magus Riga will do almost anything to save his people from the follies of the past.  But the road to hell is paved with good intentions.  And the planet Tasak is host to ancient powers buried deep and long forgotten.  Can visitors from another world avert disaster or will their intervention drag this innocent world into the Orion War?
SYNOPSIS - KEEPSAKE (A One-Part Story):
Sifting through the technological junk of Reclaim Platform Juliet-November-Kilo, the Doctor discovers evidence of a personal tragedy involving some friends of his.  Where will the story of their fate lead?
AUTHOR: James Swallow
DIRECTOR:
Ken Bentley and Nicholas Briggs
SOUND DESIGN:
David Darlington MUSIC:
David Darlington
COVER ART:
Alex Mallinson
NUMBER OF DISCS:
2 CDs
RECORDED DATE:
8 & 9 May 2008 RELEASE DATE:
15 September 2008
PRODUCTION CODE:
7Z/D ISBN:
978-1-84435-321-7

CHRONOLOGICAL PLACEMENT:

This story takes place between the television adventures, Survival and the 1996 TV Movie, and after the Big Finish audio adventure The Death Collectors.
Direct download: TDP_73_Writers_Doctors_Kingdom.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:21am UTC

TDP 72:  Doctor Who Ghost Light

Ghost Light



Ghost Light was the second story of Season 26 of Doctor Who. Two stories followed it when broadcast, although it was the last story of the classic series to be produced. It was the last story filmed at the BBC studios in London.


Synopsis

The Doctor brings Ace to Gabriel Chase, an old house that she once burnt down in her home town of Perivale. The year is 1883 and the house is presided over by Josiah Samuel Smith, who turns out to be the evolved form of an alien brought to Earth in a stone spaceship that is now in the basement. Others present include the explorer Redvers Fenn-Cooper, who has been driven mad by what he has seen there, and Nimrod, Smith's Neanderthal manservant.

Smith intends to use Fenn-Cooper's unwitting help in a plot to kill Queen Victoria and restore the British Empire to its former glory. His plans are hampered by Control, a female alien whose life-cycle is in balance with his own. Ace inadvertently causes the release of the spaceship's true owner - a powerful alien being known as Light.

Light originally came to Earth to compile a catalogue of its species but, on discovering that his catalogue has now been made obsolete by evolution, he decides to destroy all life on the planet. He disintegrates when the Doctor convinces him that evolution is irresistible and that he himself is constantly changing.

Control has meanwhile evolved into a lady and Smith has reverted to an earlier, primitive form. They leave in the spaceship, along with Nimrod and Fenn-Cooper, heading for new adventure.

Plot

Part 1

Fenn-Cooper has been driven mad by Light
Fenn-Cooper has been driven mad by Light

The Doctor brings Ace to Gabriel Chase, an old house that she once burnt down in her home town of Perivale near London. The year is 1883 and the house is presided over by the mysterious Josiah Samuel Smith. It is a most mysterious place, where the serving women brandish guns and the butler is a Neanderthal named Nimrod. Other occupants include Gwendoline, the daughter of the original owners of the house who have now disappeared, the calculating housekeeper Lady Pritchard, the explorer Redvers Fenn-Cooper, who has seen something which has driven him insane, and the Reverend Ernest Matthews, opponent of the theory of evolution which Smith has done much to spread.

The TARDIS arrives at Gabriel Chase. It turns out that Ace had visited the house in 1983, and had felt an evil presence, and the Doctor's curiosity drives him to seek the answers. Something is also alive and evolving in the cellar beneath the house and when Ace investigates she finds two animated and dangerous husks.

Part 2

Josiah turns into a husk
Josiah turns into a husk

In rescuing Ace, the Doctor releases an evolving creature trapped in the cellar known as Control. The party moves to ground level and Control remains trapped in the cellar for the moment. The cellar is in fact a vast stone spaceship. The Doctor works his way through the stuffed animals in Gabriel Chase and eventually finds a human in suspended animation, an Inspector Mackenzie, who came to the house two years earlier in search of the owners. The Doctor revives him and together they seek to unlock the mysteries of Gabriel Chase.

The husks which attacked Ace were the remains of Smith, an alien who has been evolving into forms approximating a human and casting off his old husks as an insect would. For his pains Smith transforms Matthews into an ape and places him in a display case.

The Doctor helps Control release the trapped creature from the cellar, a being known as Light who takes the form of an angel.

Part 3

Light wakes up
Light wakes up

Thousands of years in the past, an alien spaceship came to Earth to catalogue all life on the planet. After completing its task and collecting some samples, which included Nimrod, the leader Light went into slumber. By 1881 the ship had returned to Earth. While Control remained imprisoned on the ship to serve as the "control" subject of the scientific investigation, events transpired such that Smith, the "survey agent", mutinied against Light, keeping him in hibernation on the ship. Smith began evolving into the era's dominant life-form - a Victorian gentleman - and also took over the house. By 1883 Smith managed to lure and capture the explorer Fenn-Cooper within his den. Utilising Fenn-Cooper's association with Queen Victoria, he plans to get close to her so that he can assassinate her and subsequently take control of the British Empire.

Light is displeased by all the change that has occurred on the planet while he was asleep. While Light tries to make sense of all the change, Smith tries to keep his plan intact, but events are moving beyond his control. Light turns Gwendoline and her missing mother, revealed to be Mrs. Pritchard, to stone in a bid to stop the speed of evolution; while Inspector Mackenzie meets a sticky end and is turned into a primordial soup to serve at dinner. As Control tries to "evolve" into a Lady, and Ace tries to come to grips with her feelings about the house, the Doctor himself tries to keep the upper hand in all the events that have been set in motion. The Doctor finally convinces Light of the futility of opposing evolution, which causes him to overload and dissipate into the surrounding house. It was this presence that Ace sensed and which caused her to burn the house down in 1983. Also, Control's complete evolution into a Lady derail's Smith's plan as Fenn-Cooper, having freed himself from Smith's brainwashing, chooses to side with her instead of him. In the end, with Smith now the new Control creature imprisoned on the ship, Control, Fenn-Cooper and Nimrod set off in the alien ship to explore the universe.

Cast

Crew

Direct download: TDP_72_Ghost_Light.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:00am UTC

THERE WILL BE NO TDP FOR A WEEK OR SO DUE TO TECHNICAL ISSUES.

I AM SORRY ABOUT THIS.

HOPEFULLY I CAN SORT THINGS OUT SHORTLY.

REGARDS

TIN DOG
Category:Information -- posted at: 4:58pm UTC

 TDP 71:  Vervoids, Foe and Steampunk Listen past the end credits for spoiler chat!

4 Topics!

1) Terror of the Verviods
2) Ultimate Foe
3) Steampunk in Doctor Who
end credits
4) Spoiler chat...


The Doctor returns to the courtroom after a recess, given to allow him to mourn Peri’s death, shown in the previous block of evidence. The Doctor begins his defence, showing events from his future on the galactic liner Hyperion III, a ship taking a supply of rare metals from Mogar to Earth in the year 2986AD. The Doctor states that many of the passengers and crew will not survive the journey to Earth, for "[someone determined to] protect a secret hidden on the space liner... will become a murderer."’’

Continuity

  • The new companion "Mel" is introduced without the typical "meeting" story, as this evidence is supposed to take place in the Doctor's future, after he has already met Mel.
  • Despite references to them having met before, the Doctor has never been shown to meet Commodore Travers on screen before this.

Production

Serial details by episode:
Episode Broadcast date Run time Viewership
(in millions)
"Part Nine" 1 November 1986 24:56 5.2
"Part Ten" 8 November 1986 24:18 4.6
"Part Eleven" 15 November 1986 24:07 5.3
"Part Twelve" 22 November 1986 24:45 5.2
[1][2][3]

Preproduction

This story segment of Trial was originally supposed to be written by Peter J. Hammond, creator of the cult science fiction series Sapphire & Steel. Hammond's story outline, titled Paradise Five, was liked by script editor Eric Saward but disliked by producer John Nathan-Turner, who rejected it and commissioned Pip and Jane Baker to do the segment instead.[4] Hammond later wrote two episodes of the Doctor Who spin-off drama, Torchwood.

Designed as a typical Agatha Christie murder mystery set on a space liner, the actual structure of the story (and its bubbly tone) are reminiscent of the series during Douglas Adams' tenure as script editor, during season seventeen. In the first episode, Professor Lasky is briefly seen reading a copy of Christie's Murder on the Orient Express.

Production

The Vervoids bear a strong resemblance to the Flatwoods monster, a common template for alien creatures.[citation needed]

Post-production

This serial marked the last time the BBC Radiophonic Workshop provided a music score for the series.

As no individual title was used onscreen or on the final scripts for this story, there has been some confusion over how to refer to the story. It was initially commissioned with the title of The Ultimate Foe. However this title was later given to the novelisation of the 13th and 14th parts of the season. Writers Pip and Jane Baker repeatedly referred to the story as The Vervoids in subsequent interviews, as have other production team members, but this title does not appear to exist on any contemporary documentation.[4] When Target Books published Pip and Jane Baker's novelisation, it was under the title of Terror of the Vervoids, which is now generally used to refer to the story (see The Ultimate Foe and Doctor Who story title controversy).

Commercial releases

  • In October 1993, this story was released on VHS as part of the three-tape The Trial of a Time Lord set.
  • It is also due for DVD release on September 29th2008[5], similarly packaged with the other stories in The Trial of a Time Lord season. Special Features include: deleted and extended scenes • "The Making of a Trial of a Time Lord - Part Three - Terror of Vervoids" • "Now Get Out of That - Doctor Who Cliffhangers" (a 28-minute feature) • "The Lost Season" (an 11-minute feature) • Saturday Picture Show archival television footage • photo gallery • and trails and continuities.


The Ultimate Foe is the generally accepted title for a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in two weekly parts from November 29 to December 6, 1986. It is part of the larger narrative known as The Trial of a Time Lord, encompassing the whole of the 23rd season. This segment is also cited in some reference works under its working title of Time Incorporated (or Time Inc.). This was the last regular story to feature Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor.

Continuity

Thanks to the paradoxes of time travel, since Mel is from the Doctor's future, she has already met him, but from the Doctor's perspective he is meeting her for the first time. Most spin-off media, including the novelisation by the Bakers, have assumed that the Doctor, at the end of the trial, takes Mel back to her proper place in time and eventually travels to her relative past to meet Mel for the first time from her perspective. That meeting, never seen on screen, is related in the Past Doctor Adventures novel Business Unusual by Gary Russell and also in his audio story He Jests at Scars, which provides a semi-sequel to this TV story.

In the new series episode Journey's End, a Magnetron (possibly salvaged during The Time War) is used to move a number of planets to another spot in the universe. Since then, the technology appears to have been modified and/or improved as the planets apparently just teleport rather than being "thrown".

[edit] The Doctor

This was the last story to feature Colin Baker as the current Doctor. Baker was fired by the BBC and John Nathan Turner was ordered, reportedly by Michael Grade, to recast the lead part for the following season. Baker was offered the chance to appear as the Doctor in all four episodes of the first story of Season 24, but he declined this and the invitation to return for the traditional regeneration sequence in Time and the Rani.

Due to Colin Baker's dismissal from the role, it would turn out that the Sixth Doctor's last lines on screen were "Carrot juice, carrot juice, carrot juice!" Although The Ultimate Foe was his last regular appearance as the Doctor on screen, the last story that Baker actually recorded was Terror of the Vervoids. Baker would reprise the role on stage, in 1989's Doctor Who - The Ultimate Adventure, and on screen in the 1993 charity special Dimensions in Time, as well as various audio adventures for Big Finish Productions.

[edit] Final appearances

This marked the last appearance to date of the Time Lords, apart from a brief flashback in "The Sound of Drums." Coincidentally, James Bree (The Keeper of the Matrix) had appeared in The War Games (albeit in a different role), which was the first serial to feature the Time Lords.

The Valeyard has not re-appeared in the television series. His sole appearance in the Big Finish Productions audios has been the Doctor Who Unbound (and therefore outside of established continuity) He Jests at Scars..., where Michael Jayston reprises the role. The character has been featured (usually in dream sequences or metaphors) in the New Adventures and Missing Adventures book ranges from Virgin Publishing and the Past Doctor Adventures from the BBC, however none of these appearances conclusively reveals his origins. The forthcoming unofficial novel Time's Champion, the late Craig Hinton's final novel completed by his friend Chris McKeon, will see the return of the Valeyard and his origins revealed.

Whereas previously Anthony Ainley's the Master had appeared in at least one story per year, it would be another three years before he returned in Survival, the final story of the show's original run.

[edit] Production

Serial details by episode:
Episode Broadcast date Run time Viewership
(in millions)
"Part Thirteen" 29 November 1986 24:42 4.4
"Part Fourteen" 6 December 1986 29:30 5.6
[1][2][3]

Robert Holmes was originally commissioned to write the two episodes. Unfortunately, he died from a chronic liver ailment after completing a draft of the first and left nothing beyond a plot outline of the second. The series Script Editor Eric Saward resigned around this time due to disagreements with the producer, John Nathan-Turner, but agreed to write the final episode based on Holmes' outline, and also rewrite Holmes' draft to tie the two together, for which he was credited as Script Editor. The original ending to this segment (and, indeed, the whole Trial story and possibly the series) would have seen the Doctor and the Valeyard in an inconclusive cliffhanger, both (seemingly) plunging into a void to their deaths as an extra "hook". However, Nathan-Turner felt this was too downbeat and believed that it was important that the season did not end on an inconclusive note since it was important after the hiatus to prove the series was back in business. Saward refused to change the ending and withdrew permission to use his script very late in the day, by which point the production team had been assembled and the segment was entering rehearsals.

John Nathan-Turner commissioned Pip and Jane Baker to write a replacement final episode. For copyright reasons they could not be told anything of the content of Saward's script (and there were lawyers observing all commissioning meetings). The only similarity between the two is the announcement that the High Council of the Time Lords have resigned, which was a natural development of the earlier scripts. The new script ended on an optimistic note, with the Doctor departing for new adventures.[4]

In keeping with this more optimistic stance, Nathan-Turner decided to amend the script at the last minute to show how Peri had not died as shown in Mindwarp but in fact, became Yrcanos's queen. Her "death" was merely a part of the Valeyard's tampering with the Matrix, with a shot from the earlier story used to show this. Nicola Bryant was disappointed to learn how the fate of her character had been changed.

Ultimately, the works of Charles Dickens are evident in the story: the fictional landscape in the Matrix resembles Victorian era Britain, and the character (and name) of Mr. Popplewick are strongly Dickensian. The Doctor also quotes the final two lines of A Tale of Two Cities, prompting Mel to chide him: "Never mind the Sydney Carton heroics!"

The working title of this story was Time Incorporated.[4] However, this title did not appear in the final scripts or on-screen.


Steampunk is a subgenre of fantasy and speculative fiction that came into prominence in the 1980s and early 1990s. The term denotes works set in an era or world where steam power is still widely used—usually the 19th century, and often set in Victorian era England—but with prominent elements of either science fiction or fantasy, such as fictional technological inventions like those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or real technological developments like the computer occurring at an earlier date. Other examples of steampunk contain alternate history-style presentations of "the path not taken" of such technology as dirigibles or analog computers; these frequently are presented in an idealized light, or a presumption of functionality.

Steampunk is often associated with cyberpunk and shares a similar fanbase and theme of rebellion, but developed as a separate movement (though both have considerable influence on each other). Apart from time period and level of technological development, the main difference between cyberpunk and steampunk is that steampunk settings usually tend to be less obviously dystopian than cyberpunk, or lack dystopian elements entirely.

Various modern utilitarian objects have been modded by individual craftpersons into a pseudo-Victorian mechanical "steampunk" style, and a number of visual and musical artists have been described as steampunk.




Direct download: TDP_71_Vervoids_and_Foe_and_Steampunk.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 10:03am UTC

 TDP 70:  Four to Doomsday

The Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Adric arrive on a spaceship which is headed for Earth. On board they meet natives of Earth from various different eras, and also three Urbankans: Monarch, Persuasion and Enlightenment. What are the aliens' intentions when they reach Earth?

Plot

The TARDIS materializes on board a vast and advanced alien spacecraft, observed by a hovering surveillance device which conveys the arrival of the Doctor, Tegan, Nyssa and Adric to an observing being that is in control of the vessel. The TARDIS crew become separated and the Doctor and Tegan reach the bridge of the vessel where the green-skinned commander introduces himself as Monarch, ruler of Urbanka, and his associates and fellow Urbankans are the Ministers of Enlightenment and Persuasion. The leader is intrigued by talk of current Earth civilisation and reveals their ship is bound for Earth. Shortly afterward Enlightenment and Persuasion seemingly regenerate into human form, dressed in garments Tegan designed to demonstrate contemporary Earth fashions.

The TARDIS crew are reunited as guests aboard the ship and it soon becomes apparent that there are four distinct human cultures represented on the vessel by a small group of humans – Ancient Greeks, the leader of whom is the philosopher Bigon; Chinese Mandarins and their leader Lin Futu; Princess Villagra and representatives of the Mayan people; and Kurkutji and his tribesmen, of the very ancient Australian Aborigine culture. The Urbankans have made periodic visits to Earth, each time getting speedier in their journeys. This time they have left their homeworld after erratic solar activity, storing three billion of their species on slides aboard their craft, and it seems the current journey is their last and they now wish to settle on Earth, which they are due to reach in four days time.

The Doctor becomes suspicious of Monarch and soon learns that the Urbankan does not plan on peaceful co-existence: instead, he has developed a virus to wipe out humanity, and this will be unleashed before the Urbankans disembark. He also finds out that the humans aboard are not descendents of the original abductees, but are the original people taken from Earth and converted into androids like the three Urbankans walking around on board. The four leaders of the peoples have been given additional circuits to help them reason, but this facility can be taken away, as Bigon learns when he crosses Monarch once too often. He explained to the Doctor that Monarch strip-mined and destroyed Urbanka in a quest for minerals to improve the ship, and now plans to do the same to Earth. Monarch believes that if he can move the ship faster than the speed of light, he can pilot it back to the beginning of time and discover himself as God…

Adric, nevertheless, is rather taken with Monarch, and tensions between him and the Doctor become very strained. It takes the truth to break the alien’s hold over the boy. The Doctor now sets about over-throwing Monarch and, with the help of the human androids led by a restored Bigon, a revolution is put into effect. Enlightenment and Persuasion are de-circuited, while Monarch himself is exposed to the deadly toxin and killed. It seems he was a product of the weak “flesh time” after all, having never, as the Doctor suspected, been fully converted into an android. The humanoid androids decide to pilot the vessel to a new home on a new world, while the TARDIS crew departs. Back in the console room, Nyssa suddenly collapses to the floor in a dead faint.

Cast notes

Guest stars in this serial include Stratford Johns as Monarch and Burt Kwouk as Lin Futu. See Celebrity appearances in Doctor Who.

Continuity

Goofs

  • The Doctor describes the Maya civilization as having reached its peak "8000 years ago"; the very earliest Maya settlements began 4000 years ago.
  • The Doctor claims the population of the Earth to be 3 Billion, where as it was around 4.5 Billion by 1980, being about 3 Billion in around 1960. [1]
  • Few non-indigenous Australians speak an Aboriginal language (of which around 200 exist) as fluently as Tegan demonstrated with her conversation with Kurkutji. It is almost certain that the language that Kurkutji spoke 40,000 years ago would have since evolved into a totally different language that his people would be using today.

Production

Serial details by episode:
Episode Broadcast date Run time Viewership
(in millions)
"Part One" 18 January 1982 23:36 8.4
"Part Two" 19 January 1982 24:11 8.8
"Part Three" 25 January 1982 24:09 8.8
"Part Four" 26 January 1982 24:53 9.4
[1][2][3]
  • The working title for this story was Days Of Wrath.
  • Although Castrovalva was the first story aired which featured Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor, this story was the first in the season to be produced.
  • It was originally decided that after Castrovalva, the Doctor would only have two companions, Adric and Tegan. As a result, the character of Nyssa was to be written out of the series at the end of this story. However, Peter Davison strongly opposed this move because he felt that Nyssa was the companion who was "most suited to his vision of the Doctor." Given this, producer John Nathan-Turner and the rest of the production team relented.

In print

Doctor Who book
Book cover
Four to Doomsday
Series Target novelisations
Release number 77
Writer Terrance Dicks
Publisher Target Books
ISBN 0 426 19334 2
Release date 21 July 1983
Preceded by Castrovalva
Followed by Earthshock

A novelisation of this serial, written by Terrance Dicks, was published by Target Books in April 1983.

Broadcast, VHS and DVD release

  • This story was released on VHS in September 2001.
  • A DVD release has been confirmed for 15th September 2008.

Clockwork Cabaret RSS feed is
www.clickcaster.com/channels/clockworkcabaret.xml


Direct download: TDP_70_Four_to_Doomsday.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 10:03pm UTC

 TDP 69:  Mindwarp

Synopsis

Following on from The Mysterious Planet, the Valeyard and the Doctor argue about the Doctor’s involvement in those events. The Inquisitor warns them both to pay due respect to the judicial process. The Valeyard proceeds to present his second block of evidence - the Doctor's arrival on the planet Thoros Beta.

The TARDIS arrives on the planet, where the Doctor shows Peri a weapon given to him by the "Warlord of Thordon", made on Thoros Beta. He states that has come to find out how the warlords obtained such technology. They enter a cave, where Peri is grabbed by a large monstrous creature, which during a struggle the Doctor shoots with the gun.

The Valeyard accuses the Doctor of deliberately shooting the monster, but he replies that the weapon went off accidentally.

A figure arrives and accuses the Doctor and Peri of murdering the Raak, despite their protestations that it attacked them first. The figure asks if they are part of Crozier's group, and the Doctor says that he is. They flee before they can be identified as imposters, but are quickly faced by another monster, but it reacts kindly when the Doctor is nice to it. They are forced to flee further, and as they hide they see three reptilian figures being carried along by guards, the third of the figures is shown to be their old enemy Sil. The Doctor realises that Sil is probably behind the arms sales, and informs Peri that Thoros Beta is the home world of Sil's race, the Mentors.

In Crozier's laboratory, King Yrcanos is being experimented on, and the Doctor and Peri sneak inside. As the Doctor sabotages some of Kiv's equipment, Sil arrives in the laboratory. The Doctor is strapped to a table, and Crozier applies a metal helmet to his head. Crozier states that the equipment to extract the truth from a suspect, and that technique could prove fatal. He starts to probe the Doctor's mind, but Yrcanos awakes and destroys the equipment. Overpowering the guards he departs the laboratory, followed by a stunned Doctor and Peri. Yrcanos outlines his plans to attack the Mentors. The Doctor says he would enjoy that, and then collapses.

The Doctor tells the Inquisitor that he cannot remember these events. The Valeyard tells him he is in for a surprise if this is true.

Yrcanos, the Doctor and Peri go to where new slaves are brought into the base. Yrcanos plans to attack the guards and steal their weapons, but as he sneaks into the room, the Doctor calls out to the guards, giving him away. Yrcanos, unable to fight the guards, flees. Peri points a weapon at Sil, and asks the Doctor for help, but he ignores her. Peri drops the weapon and flees after Yrcanos. Sil asks the Doctor why he helped the Mentors, and he replies that the odds were on their side.

The Doctor insists that the footage is not of him, but the Valeyard tells him that the Matrix cannot lie.

Peri comes across Matrona, who allows her to join the Mentors' servants rather than turn her over to the guards. Covered with a veil, she enters the Commerce Room with Kiv's medication. The Doctor calls to her to get him a drink, so she disguises her voice to avoid being recognised. When she brings him a new drink, the Doctor uncovers her and denounces her as an enemy to the Mentors.

The Doctor tells the Courtroom that what they are seeing is all part of his ploy. He says he planned to gain the Mentors' trust so that he would be allowed to interrogate her alone, giving them a chance to escape.

Peri is lashed to rocks on the shoreline and the Doctor stands over her, accusing of being a spy. She asks why he is behaving the way he is, and the Doctor tells her that Crozier is planning to put Kiv's brain into his body unless he can help them. Crozier stops the interegation, saying that they have more effective methods of extracting the truth from Peri. As they re-enter the complex, Yrcanos attacks the guard, and threatens to kill the Doctor. However, Peri smashes the gun from Yrcanos's hands allowing the Doctor to flee. In Crozier's laboratory, the scientist prepares to transplant Kiv's brain into a recently deceased Mentor corpse with the help of The Doctor. The operation proves successful.

Meanwhile, Yrcanos, Peri and Dorf team up with members of the Alphan resistance. Agreeing to allow Yrcanos to lead them in an attack on the Mentors, they go to the resistance arms dump, but they are ambushed by Mentor guards and shot down. However, it is revealed they have merely been stunned, and they are taken to cells.

In Crozier's laboratory, Lord Kiv is rambling due to the body of the fisherman influencing his brain. Crozier makes plans to transfer the brain into another more suitable body, and suggests using Peri. The Doctor says he would prefer that she is not experimented on, but while he is trying to find another candidate, Peri is brought to the laboratory, and strapped to the operating table. Crozier begins to prepare her for the surgery.

The Doctor goes to Yrcanos's cell and tricks the guard allowing Yrcanos and Dorf to escape. Together they free the remaining resistance members. They head towards the control room from where all the slaves are mentally controlled and succeed in freeing the slaves from mental control, but Dorf is killed by a passing guard. Lord Kiv is taken to the laboratory to prepare for the operation. As the Doctor heads towards the lab, he is summoned by the Time Lords and promptly vanishes.

The Inquisitor tells the Doctor this was the result of an order from the High Council, because the result of Crozier's experiment would affect all life in the Universe.

As Yrcanos prepares his attack on the laboratory, the Time Lords capture him in a time bubble so that his attack is perfectly timed. When Kiv awakes in Peri's bald body, the time bubble dissipates and Yrcanos bursts into the laboratory. He is consumed with fury and begins firing his gun wildly.

The Doctor is shocked by what he has seen. The Inquisitor and the Valeyard tell him that it was necessary to end Peri's life to prevent the disastrous consequences of Crozier's experiment. The Doctor insists that he was fetched out of time for some other reason, and he is going to find out what.

Continuity

  • Sil appeared in the previous season in the serial Vengeance on Varos.
  • It's often debated amongst fandom[citation needed] as to what exactly happens during this story. It is stated on screen that the Valeyard has somehow distorted events, and that the actual scenes are by and large presented correctly but merely that the Doctor's performance has been distorted to show him in the worst possible light to the court. Many such scenes are prevalent throughout the story, leading fandom to great confusion as it isn't entirely clear which bits are "real" and which were concocted by the Valeyard. There are several theories:
  1. That the events seen are the true events, but distorted to show the Doctor in the worst possible light. For example, his line 'Look out behind you' is shown on screen as the Doctor giving King Yrcanos away to some guards, whereas the "true" events might very well have been the Doctor warning him of an attacker sneaking up ('Look out, behind you!'). It's all in how the line is pronounced rather than what the line is.
  2. That the Doctor was fried by the "Mindwarp" machine, which is why he exhibits 'out of character' behaviour throughout the story. The event is shown on screen, but as to whether it really occurred or not is still an event of great contention.
  3. That the Doctor is pretending to have been twisted by the "Mindwarp" machine, whilst really seeking to find a way to put things right. In the courtroom the Doctor claims this is the case, though he is at this stage unable to recall events.

Production

Serial details by episode:
Episode Broadcast date Run time Viewership
(in millions)
"Part Five" 4 October 1986 24:42 4.8
"Part Six" 11 October 1986 24:45 4.6
"Part Seven" 18 October 1986 24:33 5.1
"Part Eight" 25 October 1986 24:44 5.0
[1][2][3]

Music

Initially it was intended that the BBC Radiophonic Workshop would provide music scores for both this and the following segment of The Trial of a Time Lord; both were assigned to Malcolm Clarke to begin with, although Terror of the Vervoids got re-assigned to Elizabeth Parker shortly afterwards. However, fellow Radiophonic Workshop composer Jonathan Gibbs left early in 1986 and was not replaced until the following year, leaving the other composers backlogged and no-one free to do the incidental music for Mindwarp. It was suggested that Dick Mills could provide both the music and sound effects, but John Nathan-Turner rejected this idea and instead hired film composer Richard Hartley to create the incidental music for this segment. It would be the only time that Hartley worked on the series.

Casting

Trevor Laird returned to Doctor Who in the Tenth Doctor era as Clive Jones, father of the Doctor's companion Martha Jones. Similarly, Christopher Ryan returned in 2008 as Sontaran leader General Staal in The Sontaran Stratagem and The Poison Sky.

Commercial releases

In October 1993, this story was released on VHS as part of the three-tape The Trial of a Time Lord set. A DVD release is due on September 29th 2008, similarly packaged with the other stories in The Trial of a Time Lord season. Special Features include: deleted and extended scenes • "The Making of the Trial of a Time Lord - Part Two - Mindwarp" (a 20-minute feature) • "Now and Then - On the Trial of a Time Lord" (a 21-minute feature) • "A Fate Worse Than Death" Feature • Doctor Who Lenny Henry sketch • BBC Children in Need archival footage • TV Talkback archival footage • photo gallery • trails and continuities.

In print

Doctor Who book
Book cover
Mindwarp
Series Target novelisations
Release number 139
Writer Philip Martin
Publisher Target Books
Cover artist Alister Pearson
ISBN 0 426 20335 6
Release date 15 June 1989
Preceded by Attack of the Cybermen
Followed by The Chase

A novelisation of this serial, written by Philip Martin, was published by Target Books in June 1989 and was the final segment of the Trial arc to be adapted. Martin's novelisation adds a joke ending that gives away the revelation regarding Peri's fate in The Ultimate Foe, suggesting an entirely different outcome for the character (and for Yrcanos) than is suggested in the serial.

Direct download: TDP_69_Mindwarp.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:34pm UTC

Best Speculative Fiction Fan Podcast

Winner

Galactica Quorum

Nominees

A Different Point of View

Doctor Who: Tin Dog Podcast: Torchwood

The GeekSpin

The Signal

Category:Information -- posted at: 7:58am UTC

 TDP 68:  The War Machines

ERROR IN THE PODCAST.

FOR WHICH I AM VERY SORRY. JACKIE LANE HAS NOT PASSED AWAY AS IMPLIED IN THIS TPD.

PLEASE FORGIVE ANY PROBLEMS THAT THIS MAY HAVE CAUSED.

A FULL APOLOGY WILL FOLLOW IN THE NEXT TDP


The War Machines is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in 4 weekly parts from June 25 to July 16, 1966. This serial is the first appearance of Michael Craze and Anneke Wills as the companions Ben Jackson and Polly, as well as marking the departure of Jackie Lane as Dodo Chaplet. It should not be confused with the Second Doctor story The War Games.


Plot

Synopsis

When the TARDIS lands in London near the Post Office Tower, the Doctor is unsettled by it. There the Doctor and Dodo meet Professor Brett, the creator of WOTAN (Will Operating Thought ANalogue), an advanced computer that even knows what TARDIS stands for. On C-Day, WOTAN will be linked to other major computers to take them over, including those of the White House, Cape Kennedy and the Royal Navy.

WOTAN begins to have its own agenda and takes control of Professor Brett through a hypnotic beeping noise. WOTAN's hypnotic influence is exerted over many humans including Dodo until the Doctor breaks her out of it. He subsequently arranges for her to be sent to the country house of Sir Charles Summer, leader of the Royal Scientific Club, who has come to the aid of the Doctor.

WOTAN uses its hypnotised workforce in a secret warehouse near Covent Garden to construct an army of War Machines to take over the world. Major Green, the chief of security at the Post Office Tower, has been programmed to oversee the construction of the War Machines. He ensures that any intruders are dealt with and all humans continue working on the project until they drop. Polly, Professor Brett's secretary, is one such production line convert, though a friend of hers, Royal Navy Able Seaman Ben Jackson, evades the production line. He seeks out the Doctor, whom he met through Dodo before her conditioning, and helps flesh out what is known about the threat of WOTAN and the War Machines.

The Doctor alerts the army to the warehouse production factory, but their weapons are somehow disabled when they go to confront the War Machines. He knows WOTAN is behind the plot too, but can do nothing as humans cannot enter the Tower through the strong hypnotic beams being emitted. Given scientific and political support, the Doctor manages to capture a War Machine using an electromagnetic trap. He changes its programming and then uses it to enter the Post Office Tower and destroy WOTAN. This ends the threat and immediately releases the human slaves from the hypnosis.

Ben and Polly, the two "fab" young people the Doctor has befriended during the adventure, meet him at the TARDIS to explain that they visited Dodo, who has revealed that she has decided to stay in London. The Doctor thanks them and heads into the Police Box - followed by Ben and Polly, who enter the TARDIS with the intent to return Dodo's key to the old man. They are then suddenly whisked off into time and space...

Continuity

Naming issues

WOTAN is pronounced "Votan" – as, it is explained, the Norse god sometimes was. It stands, though, for Will Operating Thought ANalogue, which is indicative of its ability to connect to the human brain.

WOTAN refers to the Doctor as "Doctor Who" – the only time the character is ever given this name within the series' narrative (though he is often credited as such in the end titles). While there is nothing in the series that directly contradicts it, many fans see this as an error and several theories have tried to account for it, one noting that WOTAN may have been misinformed, since it also described the Doctor as "human". WOTAN also manages to discern the meaning of the acronym TARDIS; how it manages to do so is not explained.

[edit] Destination Earth

This serial is the first in the series to be completely set on a contemporary Earth. The previous landings of the TARDIS in the 1960s were either brief (the Empire State Building sequence from The Chase, several landings during The Daleks' Master Plan, the stop over on Wimbledon Common in The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve) or exceptional (Planet of Giants, where the TARDIS crew were shrunk down to the size of insects and could not fully interact with present day humans). Here, for the first time, we see the Doctor take a leading role in the protection of the planet, which becomes a regular theme for the series from here on.

The decision to set more episodes on present-day Earth was taken because the producers felt that the audience was becoming bored with the purely historical episodes that had been a major element of the show to date. As a result, this story marks the beginning of the turn away from historical stories. The next two historical stories, "The Smugglers" (which immediately follows "The War Machines") and Season 4's "The Highlanders", were to be the last historical stories until Season 19's "Black Orchid".

[edit] Synchronicity

The episode appears to be set on 20 July 1966 - Ben and Polly leave the Doctor in the Second Doctor story The Faceless Ones set in London on the same date (see the Chronology). However, the days of the week mentioned in The War Machines mean it cannot be 1966 if they're the same in Doctor Who continuity as in the 'real' world.

Curiously, at the start of the latter serial, the Doctor comments that he feels the same sensation as he felt when the Daleks were around. While this appears to be intended to equate the War Machines and WOTAN to the Daleks, it is interesting to note that the events of the serial are revealed later in the series to happen contemporaneously with the Second Doctor serial The Evil of the Daleks.

The Past Doctor Adventures novel The Time Travellers by Simon Guerrier is set in an alternate reality where the Doctor had not been around to stop WOTAN. The villain is never referred to by name, only as "the Machine", and while he was overthrown thousands were left insane by his mind-control and Britain was reduced to a technologically backward dictatorship.

A later serial that also foreshadows the internet is The Green Death, which features a very similar computer villain. The Face of Evil also sees the Doctor encountering another such being (this time having been linked with his own brain rather than that of a human) and commenting on how familiar the threat has become.

Production

Serial details by episode:
Episode Broadcast Date Run Time (mm:ss) Viewers (in millions) Archive
"Episode 1" 25 June 1966 24:01 5.4 16mm t/r
"Episode 2" 2 July 1966 24:00 4.7 16mm t/r
"Episode 3" 9 July 1966 23:58 5.3 16mm t/r
"Episode 4" 16 July 1966 23:11 5.5 16mm t/r
Source: Error: Production Code not specified.

Working titles for this story included The Computers.[1].

The idea for this story came about when Kit Pedler was being interviewed for a position as science advisor to the series. The producers asked all of the interviewees what would happen if the recently-built Post Office Tower somehow took over. Pedler suggested that it would be the work of a rogue computer that communicated with the outside world by means of the telephone system. The producers liked this suggestion and not only offered Pedler the job but developed the idea into a script (one of the few to feature a 'Story Idea by' credit).

Only one War Machine prop was actually constructed; the production team changed the numbers, to represent the different machines.

The titling style of each episode in this serial differs from the standard titles of other serials. Instead of a title overlay, after the "Doctor Who" logo has faded, the screen shifts to a solid background containing four inversely-coloured rectangles aligned down the left-hand side (reminiscent to an old-style computer punch card). The title, one word at a time, scrolls upwards - "THE", "WAR", "MACH", "INES" - with a final flash displaying the complete title on two lines. Another flash reveals the writer, the next flash reveals the word "EPISODE", and the final flash shows the actual episode number. All of the lettering displayed in this titling sequence is shown in a retro-computer font. Each of the four episodes' title sequences have slight variations to them.

Casting

  • Michael Craze provided the voice of a policeman heard in Episode four.
  • WOTAN received a credit as "And WOTAN" at the end of the first three episodes, the only time a fictional character was credited as itself in the series.
  • Jackie Lane's contract expired midway through production of this story. She does not appear again after episode two; Dodo's off-screen departure is relayed to the Doctor by Polly.
  • This is the last William Hartnell era serial, and the only serial featuring Anneke Wills and Michael Craze, to exist in its entirety.

Missing episodes

Aside from its soundtrack (recorded off-air by fans), this serial was lost in the junk of episodes in the 1970s. The master videotapes for the story were the last of those starring William Hartnell to be junked, surviving until 1974.[2] The 16mm film telerecording copies held by BBC Enterprises were also the last of their kind to be destroyed, surviving until 1978, shortly before the junking of material was halted by the intervention of fan Ian Levine.[3]

In 1978, a collector in Australia provided a copy of episode 2. Later in 1984 copies of all four episodes were returned from Nigeria. Episodes 2, 3 and 4 all had cuts to them, but most have been restored due to a combination of the other copy of episode 2, material used in a promotional item on the BBC's Blue Peter and censored clips from Australia. Some of the restored footage did not have its accompanying soundtrack, and so the missing sound was restored from the off-air recordings.

To date, only episodes 3 and 4, do not exist in their entirety as was originally intended. Episode 3 is missing a visual brief bit of dialogue with Krimpton talking. This was replaced in the VHS release with a combination of a shot of WOTAN with the accompanied dialogue from the off-air recordings. Episode 3 is also missing around 59 seconds worth of the battle in the warehouse. Episode 4 is missing only a small amount of material. The first instance occurs with the man in the telephone box. Part of the continuing closeup of the man talking on the telephone is missing, but this was compensated on the VHS release by continuing in audio-only over the top of the beginning of the high shot of the phone box. There are also two lines of dialogue missing when Polly reports back to WOTAN. This scene, however, has not been re-instated for the VHS release as it was felt that there wouldn't be enough visual material to drop into the gap.

The DVD release will have all of the episodes in their entirety.

Commercial releases

The serial was released on VHS in 1997, with an item from Blue Peter and a BBC1 "globe ident" (from the first part of the story) as extras. A DVD issue has been announced for August 25th 2008.

Also, in 2007, an audio CD of the serial's soundtrack, with linking narration by and bonus interview with Anneke Wills, was released.

In print

Doctor Who book
Book cover
The War Machines
Series Target novelisations
Release number 136
Writer Ian Stuart Black
Publisher Target Books
Cover artist Alister Pearson and Graeme Wey
ISBN 0 426 20332 1
Release date 16 February 1989
Preceded by Delta and the Bannermen
Followed by Dragonfire

A novelisation of this serial, written by Ian Stuart Black, was published by Target Books in February 1989.

Direct download: TDP_68_WARMACHINES.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 12:33pm UTC

Parsec Award 2008 Finalists Best Speculative Fiction Fan Podcast


A Different Point of View *
Doctor Who: Tin Dog Podcast *
Galactica Quorum *
The GeekSpin *



The Signal I'm aghast!

parsec awards pagehttp://parsecawards.com/node/541


Title: The Third Annual Parsec Awards


Description: Join us for the Third Annual Parsec Awards hosted by some your favorite podcasters. The Parsec Award is available for Sci-fi & Fantasy Original Content, Speculative Fiction and a variety of other categories dealing with the new frontiers of Portable Media.
Time: Sat 07:00 pm


Length: 2.5 Hours


Moderator / MC for panel


Wish I could be there!


Do you get a certificate for being listed?


Category:Information -- posted at: 11:08am UTC

Dont worry the TDP hasnt gone anywhere. I've just been busy with other projects that have taken up a lot of time and other things. There will be at least one TDP later next week.regardsTin Dog
Category:Information -- posted at: 12:25pm UTC

 TDP 67:  Trial of a Time Lord 1 - 4 Mysterious Planet The Mysterious Planet is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from September 6 to September 27, 1986. It is part of the larger narrative known as The Trial of a Time Lord, encompassing the whole of the 23rd season.

Plot

Synopsis

The TARDIS materialises in a corridor, and the Doctor steps out bewildered and alone. He walks into a room, where it is revealed that he is being put on trial for conduct unbecoming a Time Lord. The Inquisitor notes that the Doctor has been on trial previously, and the Valeyard states that he will argue that the Doctor was shown too much leniency on that occasion. The Valeyard opens the case by using the Matrix to show the Doctor's involvement on the planet Ravolox.

The Doctor and Peri arrive on Ravolox, which is virtually identical to Earth. He tells Peri that the official records state that the planet was devastated by a fireball, but they note that the forest they are walking through suggests otherwise. They are seen by Sabalom Glitz and Dibber, who attempt to shoot the Doctor; but he moves off just in time. Glitz and Dibber discuss their plan to destroy the "L3 robot" by sabotaging its light conversion system, which has been turned into a totem by a primitive tribe on the planet.

The Doctor and Peri find an apparently abandoned building and explore it. Peri discovers a sign saying "Marble Arch" — a London Underground sign, which means that they are on Earth. Peri begins to mourn for her planet.

The Doctor asks what the relevance of this is, then asks why Peri is not with him on the station. The Valeyard answers that she is where the Doctor left her, and states that the Doctor's evident temporary amnesia - a side-effect of being taken out of time - should soon pass.

The Doctor goes into the complex alone because Peri is upset, but she is captured by two masked figures. Meanwhile, Glitz and Dibber are brought before Katryca, Queen of the tribe. Glitz claims that the totem attracted the fireball that devastated Ravolox, and asks for it to be taken down. The Queen tells him that others have asked for the totem to be dismantled, and none have succeeded. Glitz and Dibber draw out their guns, but they are overpowered and locked up.

The Doctor finds an underground complex, but is caught. He is accused of spying, and sentenced to be stoned. The Doctor tries to block the rocks with his umbrella, but is knocked unconscious.

The Valeyard proposes that the inquiry into the Doctor's activities should become a full blown trial, with the penalty being the termination of his life.

Other officials arrive and break up the stoning. The Doctor is still breathing, but before he can be killed, Merdeen receives a message from the Immortal stating that he wishes to question the Doctor. The Immortal, revealed to be a huge humanoid robot, commands its two assistants to release the service robot.

Peri is brought before Katryca, who informs Peri that as there are few women, she will need to take many husbands. She is then put in the same prison as Glitz and Dibber. They tell Peri their plan to destroy the Robot. They are taken back to Katryca, who tells them that Glitz will be sacrificed because of his attempt to destroy the great totem.

The Doctor is taken to the Immortal, who introduces itself as Drathro. He commands that the Doctor work with the two assistants. The Doctor identifies the problem, and tries to leave in order to fix it, but Drathro does not allow him to leave, as his instructions were to maintain an underground system. The Doctor electrifies the robot and his assistants, and escapes. Drathro sends the service robot to track down the Doctor. Meanwhile, Peri, Glitz and Dibber overpower the guards and escape. Dibber remains behind to plant a bomb on the Black Light converter, whilst they go to the underground complex.

In Marb Station, Merdeen tells Balazar that there has been no fire for hundreds of years, and that he should leave the complex. They encounter the Doctor, and Merdeen implores him to help Balazar escape. Peri, Glitz and Dibber, pursued by tribesmen, find the Doctor, and they flee into the Marb Station, but are trapped between the tribe and the service robot. The tribesmen shoot at the service robot and disable it. The Doctor tries to re-enter the underground complex, but the tribesmen insist they all return to the village. There, The Doctor is brought before Katryca, but she is unimpressed with his explanation of the true nature of the Totem, and puts them all back in the prison cell. Glitz confirms that the planet is actually Earth.

Drathro reactivates the service robot, and send it to the village. It breaks into the building with the Doctor, stuns him and takes him away. The tribesmen disable the service robot, and decide to attack the Immortal's castle to steal his technology. Peri rescues the Doctor from the service robot, and they set off to the underground complex to stop Katryca and disable the black light system. Katryca and tribesmen arrive at the Castle, where they are confronted by Drathro,. He electrocutes Katryca, and dismisses the rest of the tribe.

The Doctor enters Drathro's domain, promising to help repair the black light system. However, he determines it to be beyond repair, and tells Drathro that he must shut down the Black Light System to prevent a massive explosion. Drathro refuses to allow that as it would mean its own destruction. The Doctor pleads with him, saying that the explosion could destroy the entire universe, but that only makes Drathro determined to allow what he thinks is a unique event.

Balazar and Peri plead with Merdeen to help them, noting that he would die if the converter exploded. Glitz and Dibber arrive and follow them into the Castle through a food chute. Drathro attempts to kill by turning on the food processing system, but Dibber shoots him through the wall. Glitz tells Drathro that they have black light on their ship, and offers to take the robot to the Andromeda Galaxy. Drathro agrees, and leaves with Glitz and Dibber.

The Doctor realises that the black light system has already begun to self-destruct, and that all he can do is prevent it starting a chain reaction. The system explodes, but the blast only destroys the Castle, and as a result Drathro collapses. The Doctor and Peri leave Merdeen and Balazar to take the remaining inhabitants to a new life on the surface.

The Doctor announces to the court that he has saved the Universe, and starts to present his defence. The Valeyard warns the Doctor that he has more evidence to come, and that the Court will demand the Doctor's life at the end.

Continuity

  • The reason why Earth has become Ravalox, as well as the reasons for the Fireball, are explained in The Ultimate Foe, the final part of the Season.
  • The relationship between the Sixth Doctor and Peri is less abrasive in this story than in the previous season. Both Colin Baker and Nicola Bryant wanted to show how travelling together had made their characters less combative and argumentative. Both this and the changes in their appearances, particularly Peri's hairstyle and mode of dress suggest a long gap between this story and their previous on-screen appearance in Revelation of the Daleks and allowing for "unseen" adventures in the spin-off media to be placed there.
  • Early in Part One, the Doctor appears to be about to reveal his surname for the first and only time in the entire series (but see The War Machines, and further discussion in "Doctor who?").
  • The Inquisitor and the Valeyard reference the events of The War Games.
  • The Doctor's claim that he cannot be on trial as he is Lord President and the Inquisitor's explanation that he had been removed were reportedly added to the script after Colin Baker noticed the apparent plot hole.
  • Recovering from unconsciousness, the Doctor briefly slips back into the personality of one of his previous selves, allowing Colin Baker to do an impersonation of Jon Pertwee. He even uses the phrase, "Reverse the polarity of the neutron flow."
  • In this serial, the First Law of Time refers to the well-documented Time Lord policy of non-interference, as opposed to specifically forbidding a Time Lord meeting a past or future incarnation and therefore interfering with his own history, as stated in earlier serials.

Production

The details available for each episode of this story are outlined in the table below[1][2][3].

Episode Broadcast Date Run Time Ratings
"Part One" 06 Sep 1986 24'57" 4.9m
"Part Two" 13 Sep 1986 24'44" 4.9m
"Part Three" 20 Sep 1986 24'18" 3.9m
"Part Four" 27 Sep 1986 24'20" 3.7m

Preproduction

In February 1985, the BBC announced that the planned twenty-third season of Doctor Who had been canceled. After vocal protests by the press and Doctor Who fans (including a charity single, Doctor in Distress), the BBC announced that the progamme was merely on "hiatus", and would return in September 1986. Several stories which had been planned or commissioned for the original Season 23 were abandoned in favour of an overarching "trial" theme, reflecting the fact that the programme itself was on trial at the BBC.[4]

This story was the last complete Doctor Who story written by Robert Holmes. Its plot is similar to Holmes' first contribution to Doctor Who, The Krotons. In both stories, an alien machine subjugates a humanoid civilization and forces its brightest young people into its service.[5]

[edit] Casting

The actor playing Merdeen, Tom Chadbon, had previously appeared in the 1979 Fourth Doctor serial City of Death.

Production

The opening model shot of the Time Lord Space Station where the trial is held throughout the season was the most expensive model shot from the classic series run (costing more than £8,000).[6] The sequence depicts the Time Lord Space Station orbiting in space then dragging the TARDIS inside via the use of a tractor beam.

From this serial onwards, all location work would be recorded on Outside Broadcast (OB) tape instead of 16mm film. This practice would continue until the end of the series. The only footage shot on film for this episode was the opening special effects shot of the TARDIS. The BBC had been encouraging the replacement of film cameras with OB cameras since the early 1980s on the grounds that they were cheaper, and mixed with studio-shot material better. John Nathan-Turner had actually wanted to switch to OB shooting as early as Peter Davison's first season in 1982, but met with resistance from the directors working on the show at the time.

Post-production

Dominic Glynn was hired to score the music for The Mysterious Planet, and John Nathan-Turner offered him the chance to rearrange the opening title music. His new score for the opening theme was the shortest lived, lasting this season alone (not counting the unused 1973 version by Delia Derbyshire and Paddy Kingsland). Some saw it as an improvement on the Peter Howell version, while others criticized it for being "too quiet" or "not scary enough". It has since been used on the majority of the Big Finish Productions audio plays featuring Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor.

Commercial releases

In October 1993, this story was released on VHS as part of the three-tape The Trial of a Time Lord set. A DVD release is due in 2008, similarly boxed with the other stories in The Trial of a Time Lord season.

In print

Doctor Who book
Book cover
The Mysterious Planet
Series Target novelisations
Release number 127
Writer Terrance Dicks
Publisher Target Books
Cover artist Tony Masero
ISBN 0 426 20319 4
Release date 19th November 1987 (Hardback)

21st April 1988 (Paperback)

Preceded by The Time Meddler
Followed by Time and the Rani

A novelisation of this serial, written by Terrance Dicks, was published by Target Books in November 1987.

External links

Reviews

Target novelisation


Direct download: TDP_67_Trial_1_Mysterious_Planet.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 11:40am UTC

TDP 66: Doctor Who Brain of Morbius

The Brain of Morbius is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from January 3 to January 24, 1976.

Contents

[hide]

[edit] Synopsis

Years ago, the Time Lord known as Morbius tried to lead a revolution but was executed for his ambition on the planet Karn. When the Fourth Doctor and Sarah arrive on the planet, they discover that, thanks to Dr Solon, the dead may rise.

[edit] Plot Summary

On the planet Karn, an insect-like alien crawls away from an escape pod. It is ambushed and killed by Condo, a large man with a hook for a hand, who takes its head to a castle and his master Solon. However, the head is unsuitable — Solon needs a humanoid, warm-blooded and with a central nervous system.

The TARDIS materialises on Karn in the middle of a lightning storm, and the Fourth Doctor rushes out, ranting at the Time Lords for diverting him to this planet. Sarah suggests that perhaps the TARDIS malfunctioned again, but the Doctor is insistent there is something going on which the Time Lords do not want to sully their hands with. While the Doctor sulks, Sarah finds the escape pod, and climbing to a higher point, sees a valley filled with wrecked spacecraft.

She comes across the headless body of the alien and gasps, which finally attracts the Doctor's attention. The Doctor identifies it as a Mutt. He also now recognises the stars — his homeworld is within a couple of billion miles from this planet. Sarah spots the castle just as it starts to rain, and the two travellers make for it, all the while observed by a girl in a strange headdress.

The girl, Ohica, reports to the elderly Maren, the leader of the Sisterhood of Karn. Maren does not believe Ohica at first, insisting that no ship could approach Karn without attracting their honed senses. Maren shows Ohica the Flame of Life, which is burning low. Without the Flame, there is no Elixir, and there has not been for over a year — the chalice stands empty. The secret of the Elixir is known only to the Sisterhood and the High Council of the Time Lords, with whom they shared the Elixir. Now, there is none left, except for the few vials they have kept for themselves. Maren fears that the Time Lords have sent agents to steal the Elixir. Maren tells Ohica to summon the other sisters to form a circle.

In the castle, Solon scolds Condo, warning him that if he does not obey him, he will not reattach Condo's arm. The Doctor and Sarah ring the doorbell, seeking shelter. Solon is delighted at the arrival of humans, and welcomes the two, complimenting the Doctor on his "magnificent" head. The Doctor notices a clay bust, but Solon quickly draws a sheet over it. When the Doctor asks Solon about the Mutt and the wrecked ships, Solon suggests that it is due to the magnetic radiation around the planet. Solon rescued Condo from one such starship, and had to amputate his arm to save his life.

The Sisterhood chant in a circle, allowing Maren to see the TARDIS reflected in her ring. Concentrating further, they make the TARDIS materialise in their shrine in the midst of a strange mist. Examining the ship, Maren identifies it as a Time Lord vessel, and concludes that the Doctor is here on their behalf to steal the elixir. The Sisterhood's powers can overwhelm most others and drive them insane, but the Time Lords are their equals in mind power. The circle continues to chant, seeking the Doctor.

The Doctor knows of Solon, who was an authority on microsurgical techniques and tissue transplants. He remarks that Solon's disappearance caused quite a stir and there were rumours that he had joined the Cult of Morbius. The Doctor now recognises the clay head — it is that of Morbius, one of the most despicably criminal minded Time Lords in history. Before he can say anything further, the drugged wine takes its effect, and the Doctor falls over unconscious as does Sarah.

Solon and Condo take the Doctor's body to the laboratory, not realising that Sarah was only feigning unconsciousness. In the laboratory, Solon's examination of the Doctor confirms he is a Time Lord. Condo is concerned about their power, but Solon dismisses them as spineless parasites. Morbius offered them power, but they rejected it, and they will now feel the power of his revenge. Needing proper lighting for the operation, Solon and Condo go to repair the generators that have been knocked out by the storm. Once they leave the room, however, the Doctor's body vanishes in the same mist the TARDIS did.

Sarah keeps hidden as Solon and Condo pass, and enters the lab. She draws back the curtain on a bed, thinking it is the Doctor, but as the lights come up, she sees a headless, patchwork creature made from various body parts. It sits up...


Sarah moves away from it quickly, but hears Solon and Condo returning to the laboratory and has to hide. Solon finds the Doctor gone, and concludes that it must be the work of the Sisterhood. Solon swears revenge, and he and Condo go to get the Doctor's body back.

The Doctor regains consciousness to find himself surrounded by members of the Sisterhood. Maren accuses him of being sent by the Time Lords to steal the Elixir. The Doctor denies this, saying that the last thing he remembers is having wine with Solon and Morbius... but Morbius is dead, executed by the Time Lords on Karn for leading a rebellion. His body was placed in a dispersal chamber and atomised. The Doctor realises that he just before he passed out, he felt the mind of Morbius. Maren refuses to believe that Morbius is alive and says that the Doctor will join him in death shortly.

Sarah trails Solon and Condo as they make their way towards the shrine. They observe the Sisters gathering wood to burn the Doctor at the stake. The Doctor points out that the Time Lords have always been friendly to the Sisterhood — they saved them when Morbius overran the planet. Maren retorts that this was out of self-interest as they needed the Elixir. Ohica reveals that the Flame is dying. The Doctor is puzzled, as the Flame is fed by gases from deep within the planet and should last for millions of years unless there has been some subterranean movement. They tie the Doctor to the stake while chanting the Song of Death. The Doctor warns them that if the gases are sealed in, the mountain could explode.

Solon and Condo interrupt the ceremony, to Maren's anger. Solon asks them to spare the Doctor, even offering Condo in his place. When that is denied, he begs them to give him the Doctor's head. While Maren dismisses Condo and Solon, a disguised Sarah sneaks up behind the Doctor and cuts his bonds. The ceremony starts again, and as the flames lick up, Maren's eyes close. The Doctor and Sarah take the opportunity to slip away, but Maren spots them, hitting Sarah with a blue bolt from her ring before they get away.

Back at the castle, Condo is angered by Solon's offer to sacrifice him, and threatens to kill Solon. Pleading for his life, Solon offers to restore Condo's arm and tells him to prepare the laboratory. Meanwhile, Sarah and the Doctor have escaped the shrine, but Sarah has been blinded by the energy from Maren's ring. She is worried that it may be permanent, but the Doctor assures her that the flash merely numbed the optic nerves and she should recover in a few hours. Despite Sarah telling him about the headless body she saw, the Doctor leads them back towards Solon's castle.

Solon speaks with a tremulous voice he addresses as Morbius. Solon asks for more time, but Morbius is impatient. Condo calls from above: the Doctor and Sarah have arrived. The Doctor asks him to examine Sarah's eyes, and they go to the laboratory. As Solon does so, the Doctor finds the headless body hidden behind the curtain. Condo escorts Sarah back to the parlour, while the Doctor speaks to Solon. Solon tells him that Sarah's retinae have been almost completely destroyed, but there is one chance: the Elixir of Life. Despite the risks, the Doctor must return to the shrine.

Solon summons Condo, who leaves Sarah in the parlour. Solon gives a note for Condo to pass to the Sisterhood before the Doctor gets there. Sarah hears Morbius's voice calling for Solon. Following the sound, she enters a hidden laboratory. As she stumbles blindly towards Morbius, who is a glowing brain in a tank, he accuses her of being a part of the Sisterhood, sent here to destroy him...


Solon enters and drags Sarah out of the laboratory. As he closes the door, Sarah hears Solon address the voice as "Morbius" and hears how Solon has sent the Doctor into a trap. Sarah locks Solon in the laboratory and, still blind, makes her way out of the castle.

In the shrine, Maren gives five of the Sisters, including Ohica, the last of Elixir. Only these five will survive when the Flame finally dies. The letter from Solon arrives, and Maren tells Ohica to warn the guards. When the Doctor enters the tunnels, a net falls on him and he is surrounded. When he explains why he came back, Maren tells him that the effects of the ray are not permanent, and Solon knows that. Maren demands to know why the Doctor is here, if it is not to steal the Elixir, and the Doctor replies that he feels something evil is brewing, something to do with Morbius.

Maren still does not believe — she saw Morbius being dispersed. The Doctor asks if Solon was here at that time, and Maren says many came to Karn at the time. Morbius led an army of mercenaries, promising them the Elixir and immortality and revealing its existence to the cosmos. The Doctor tells Maren that if she wants his help, the wrecking of spaceships simply passing by Karn has to stop. Outside, Sarah continues to work her way along the rocks and runs into Condo, who had orders to find her. He tells her the Doctor is dead and carries her, struggling, back to the castle.

The Doctor persuades Maren to let him see the Flame, the first one outside the Sisterhood to see it. The Doctor admires the process — the heat of the Flame causes oxidation of chemicals in the surrounding rocks, with the reaction of superheated gases forming drops of the Elixir. The Doctor insists the process is not mystical and with analysis, the Elixir could probably be synthesised, but the consequences would be disastrous with everyone trying to live forever. Even the Time Lords only take it in rare cases, not regularly like the Sisterhood, who because of it have become stagnant, unchanging, without progress.

The Doctor takes something from his hair and puts it in the Flame, seemingly extinguishing it. Horrified, Maren orders the Doctor killed, but the flames ignite again, brighter than ever. It was merely soot that was blocking the gases.

At the castle, Sarah is bound hand and foot and lying on a table. Solon rants about how others called him insane, and only Morbius believed in him. When Solon tells Morbius that the Doctor is a Time Lord, Morbius calls him a fool — that means that the Time Lords have tracked him down and will return in force. Morbius insists that he be transferred into the body now, and asks about the artificial brain casing Solon once constructed. Solon protests that he abandoned it because there was no way to stop the static electricity build-up, which risked severe pain and seizures. Morbius tells him that he will take his chances.

Back in the castle, Solon prepares to operate, but Condo is enraged when he recognises his lost arm attached to the patchwork body. He attacks Solon, who shoots him in the belly. As the two struggle, Morbius's brain falls to the floor. Not knowing what damage has been done, Solon places the fallen brain in the casing, releasing Sarah so she can assist in the operation. If Morbius dies, so does she.

The wounded Condo crawls into the hallway as outside, the Sisters carry the Doctor's seemingly dead body through the lightning storm. In the meantime, the operation is finished — within minutes Morbius will live again. Solon goes to answer the door bell, and sees the Sisters leaving the Doctor's body in the parlour. In the laboratory. Sarah's eyesight starts to clear, but the monstrous body of Morbius gets off the operating table and lumbers towards her...


Sarah screams as she sees the Morbius creature, and dodges out of the way. She warns Solon that the creature is loose and he runs back to the laboratory. Sarah notices the Doctor's body, but as she approaches, the Doctor wakes up and smiles at her. He is here to stop Solon, but Sarah tells him it is too late.

Morbius sees his new body in the mirror, and smashes it angrily. Solon tries to calm him down, but Morbius renders him unconscious. When the Doctor meets the creature, he too is struck down. Morbius chases Sarah, but Condo intervenes, knocking Sarah down the stairs into the cellar while he grapples with Morbius. However, Morbius is too strong, and kills Condo instead. Morbius wanders out of the castle as the Doctor regains consciousness. He carries Sarah into the secret laboratory to let her recover.

Solon, too, has awakened, and assembles a tranquilizer gun. He tells the Doctor that the operation was not complete, only the motor functions are working, the rest on an instinctual level. Knowing Morbius's hatred, he will seek out the Sisterhood. Sure enough, Morbius finds one of the sisters in some ruins nearby and kills her. The Doctor and Solon find the body and they search the ruins. Morbius attacks the Doctor, but is knocked out by Solon's tranquilizer. As they carry the creature back to the castle, the Doctor tells Solon that Morbius's brain will be detached and returned to the Time Lords.

The body of the dead Sister is brought back to Maren. Ohica reports that witnesses saw a creature and then the Doctor and Solon hunting for it. Maren realises that Solon has succeeded in his experiments and resurrected their ancient enemy. But Maren is too old and weak to leave the shrine, and she gives Ohica permission to lead the Sisters to the castle.

The Doctor gives Solon five minutes to disconnect the brain as he goes and checks on Sarah. However, Solon locks them in the secret laboratory instead and begins to repair Morbius. Using materials from the secret laboratory, the Doctor makes cyanide gas, which he then pipes through a vent that leads to the operating room above.

Solon has finished the operation, but the gas chokes him and he dies. The alien lungs of Morbius, however, are more robust and the creature walks out of the room unharmed. He goes to confront Sarah and the Doctor — he claims that when the knowledge of his resurrection spreads, his followers will rise in their millions. The Doctor and Sarah mock Morbius in an attempt to overheat his brain, and the Doctor challenges him to a mindbending contest.

They grab hold of the appropriate apparatus in the laboratory and begin. The machine's display begins to show Morbius's brain casing head, then his previous face, then the Doctor, then the Doctor's previous incarnation. Further and further back into the Doctor's past the images go, as Morbius asks, "How far, Doctor? How long have you lived?" The face of the First Doctor fades into a series of eight other faces, with the current Doctor interspersed between them looking more defiant... then Morbius's brain case shorts out. The Doctor collapses, as Morbius stumbles out in a daze.

Ohica's band of sisters finally reach the castle, and threaten Morbius with lit torches. Ohica goes down to the secret laboratory while the other Sisters herd Morbius out into the mountains. Ohica finds Sarah cradling the dying Doctor. Outside, the Sisterhood chases Morbius over a cliff, where he falls to his death.

Taking the Doctor back to the shrine, Maren says only the Elixir of Life can save him, but there is none left. However, the revived Flame has gathered enough Elixir. There is enough for the Doctor, but not for Maren, who accepts that the Doctor was right: there should be an end. The Elixir is given to the Doctor, who revives almost immediately. Maren steps into the Flame of Life, becoming younger, and then vanishes.

Ohica starts to thank the Doctor, but he stops her, saying that Sarah and he have another engagement. Before they leave, he gives her a match and touch paper in case they need to relight the Flame again. This time, the TARDIS vanishes in a puff of light and smoke...

[edit] Cast notes

[edit] Continuity

  • This serial includes a scene in which the Fourth Doctor kills Solon by deliberately creating cyanide gas under the vent up to the operating theatre. Although he does this while trying to stop Morbius, this is nonetheless one of the few occasions in the series in which the Doctor directly takes the life of a human(oid) enemy. Similar incidents occur in Day of the Daleks, The Invasion of Time, The Ribos Operation, Vengeance on Varos and The Two Doctors.
  • The Doctor says that he was born a few billion miles from Karn. Since billion can have different meanings in old British and American usage, it is possible that Gallifrey is between a few thousand million or a few million million miles away and so possibly in the same star system (for comparison Pluto is six thousand million miles from the Sun). Given the Doctor's mood at the start of the story, he may not be speaking literally.[1] The New Adventures novel Lungbarrow places Karn in Gallifrey's solar system.[2]
  • Maren mentions an alien race who travel in "silent gas dirigibles". In the script it is "Muthi" but she pronounces it "Hoothi" instead. Writer Paul Cornell spelled it as "Hoothi" when he featured them in his New Adventures novel Love and War.[3]
  • The BBC Books Past Doctor Adventures novel Warmonger by Terrance Dicks is both a sequel and prequel to this story, explaining how Morbius's brain survived his execution and the Fifth Doctor's involvement in the surrounding events.[4]
  • It is explicitly stated that Morbius was the first Time Lord to be sentenced to execution in the race's history. The Doctor himself would be the second case in Arc of Infinity.

[edit] The "Morbius Doctors"

The faces appearing on the mind test machine are those of various members of the production team. After a complaint and as recompense the BBC paid a sum of money to the actors union Equity.[5] The faces are those of George Gallaccio (Production Unit Manager), Robert Holmes (script editor), Graeme Harper (production assistant), Douglas Camfield (Director), Philip Hinchcliffe (producer), Christopher Baker (production assistant), Robert Banks Stewart(Writer), and Chris Barry (director).[6]

Those same faces have caused much debate among fans because they seemingly show past incarnations of the Doctor prior to the First Doctor, contradicting The Three Doctors (which refers to the First Doctor as the earliest incarnation), The Five Doctors (which explicitly states that the Doctor is in his fifth incarnation) the fifth Doctor serial Mawdryn Undead (which numbers his current and previous incarnations) and Time and the Rani, (which has the Doctor saying that he is in his seventh incarnation). The faces are commonly referred to as the "Morbius Doctors". Alternative explanations are that the faces are Morbius' previous incarnations or the Doctor's potential future incarnations.[7][6] The brain-tank and humanoid versions of Morbius are also seen in the mind test machine. See also Other (Doctor Who) and "The Doctor's regenerations".

[edit] Production

The details available for each episode of this story are outlined in the table below[8][9][10].

Episode Broadcast Date Run Time Ratings
"Part One" 03 Jan 1976 25'25" 9.5m
"Part Two" 10 Jan 1976 24'46" 9.3m
"Part Three" 17 Jan 1976 25'07" 10.1m
"Part Four" 24 Jan 1976 24'18" 10.2m

The original script was written by Terrance Dicks, using some ideas from his script of the stage play Doctor Who and the Daleks in the Seven Keys to Doomsday; however after delivery he was out of the country when production limitations required substantial changes to the story. Script editor Robert Holmes undertook the rewrites without informing Dicks, who could not be contacted. Upon his return to the United Kingdom, Dicks learnt of the changes and disliked them; as a result, he demanded the replacement of his name on the credits with a "bland pseudonym".[6]

The American tapes appear to have been produced without an incidental music/SFX track for the first episode. This is especially noticeable in the "movie-length" edit, when the music soundtrack suddenly cuts in at the start of episode two.

[edit] Outside references

[edit] In print

Doctor Who book
Book cover
Doctor Who and the Brain of Morbius
Series Target novelisations
Release number 7
Writer Terrance Dicks
Publisher Target Books
Cover artist Mike Little
ISBN 0 426 11674 7
Release date 23 June 1977
Preceded by Doctor Who and the Ark in Space
Followed by Doctor Who and the Planet of Evil
Direct download: TDP_66_BRAIN.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:20am UTC

The Stolen Earth

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"Welcome to my new Empire, Doctor. It is only fitting that you should bear witness to the resurrection - and the triumph - of Davros, Lord and Creator of the Dalek Race."
―Davros

The Stolen Earth is the penultimate episode of the fourth series (season 30) of Doctor Who.


The Stolen Earth
Series: Series 4
Series Number: 30
Story Number: 12
Doctor: Tenth Doctor
Companions: Donna Noble
Rose Tyler
Martha Jones
Captain Jack Harkness
Sarah Jane Smith
Enemy: The Daleks
Davros
Supreme Dalek
Setting: Earth
Sol system
Shadow Proclamation
London
Cardiff
Flydale North
New York
2009
Medusa Cascade
Writer: Russell T. Davies
Director: Graeme Harper
Producer: Phil Collinson
Broadcast: 28th June 2008
Format: 1x45 minute episode
Prod. Code: 202 a
Previous Story: Turn Left
Following Story: Journey's End

Contents

[hide]

[edit] Synopsis

When the Earth is stolen from its orbit and placed in another galaxy with 26 other stolen planets, the Doctor's secret army of allies comes together to defend the Earth from the New Dalek Empire. With battles raging on the streets and in the sky, the Doctor and Donna confront the Shadow Proclamation to find the truth; however, a fearsome old enemy waits in the shadows

[edit] Plot

Having seen the signs, the Doctor and Donna returned to Earth to find everything in order. Donna pressed the Doctor for an explanation of Rose's unexpected reappearance; the Doctor says that, if Rose can cross from her parallel world to Donna's parallel world, then the walls of reality are breaking down. But, with Earth apparently safe for now, they return to the TARDIS and prepare to stop the walls breaking. The TARDIS rumbles with an apparent earthquake. The Doctor and Donna rush to the doors and fling them open--to find that they are hanging in space. The Doctor checks the readings and realizes they have not moved, but the Earth has gone missing. It has been stolen.

At the UNIT New York Base, Dr Martha Jones, regains consciousness after an earthquake to find UNIT in chaos and its personnel panicking. One hysterical colleague screams at Martha to look at at the sky. In Torchwood Three, Captain Jack Harkness blames the Rift for the brief but violent earthquake that has just devastated the Hub. After making sure that the other members of Torchwood Three -Gwen Cooper and Ianto Jones - are all right, Jack heads outside to survey the damage. Ianto and Gwen look at the computers and Ianto realizes that, whatever the problem is, "it's a bit bigger than South Wales".

At 13 Bannerman Road, Ealing, London, Sarah Jane Smith and her son Luke comment on the earthquake - and wonder why, if it was only 8 a.m., when the quake struck, it is now dark outside. They approach the nearest window and look outside. In Chiswick, London, Donna's mother Sylvia and grandfather Wilfred aren't sure what has caused the earthquake. As they step outside their home, Sylvia looks at the sky. On the street in London where the TARDIS was parked, Rose Tyler materializes. She is carrying a large gun. She looks up and, alone of the Doctor's friends, does not seem surprised. She declares that "it's only just beginning..."

The familiar Earth sky is gone. The sun is gone. The constellations have been replaced with strange new ones. And twenty-six new planets have appeared in the sky.

Aboard the TARDIS, Donna demands to know if her family are dead. The Doctor does not know, and decides they have to get help. They set a course for the Shadow Proclamation.

At Sarah Jane's house, alien supercomputer Mr Smith picks up readings of a fleet of 200 spaceships apparently headed towards Earth. At UNIT, American UNIT leader General Sanchez enters tells all soldiers and staff that UNIT commander Geneva has declared a Code Red Emergency. Martha tells him that she has tried to phone the Doctor, but the signal is dead. The number calls anywhere in the Universe, but the signal is being blocked by some unknown force. Sanchez notes that they will likely find out soon because the fleet is coming into orbit.

Martha manages to call Jack, who says that he has not heard anything from the Doctor either. Gwen calls her husband, Rhys, and tells him to stay indoors and call her mother. Meanwhile, Rose is walking along the streets of London. She threatens a pair of looters with her gun and looks at the computer screen in the bank they were robbing. She then looks at the readings.

At Torchwood Three, the team see the spaceships. Mr Smith tells Sarah Jane that the ships have a message for the human race. He puts it through. It consists of a single repeated word: 'EXTERMINATE!' The message is heard on all frequencies, including in UNIT and the speakers at Torchwood Three. The enemy are the Daleks. Upon hearing the message, both Jack and Sarah become very emotional and Jack says "I'm sorry. We're dead."

Rose hears the message and heads outside to see a massive Dalek spaceship flying over London, destroying everything in its path. Martha looks outside to see Dalek spaceships flying everywhere, destroying New York. Aboard a massive spaceship at the heart of the cluster of planets, the Daleks finalize their plans. The Supreme Dalek, a red Dalek with extra paneling, declares that the Crucible will soon be complete, and that the Daleks are the masters of Earth.

Far back across the Universe, on board the TARDIS and unaware of the unfolding destruction on Earth, the Doctor and Donna arrive at the Shadow Proclamation and are greeted at gunpoint by its rhino-headed guards, the Judoon. The Doctor manages to convince them they mean no harm and need help. A female member of the Proclamation tells the Doctor that the situation is worse than he suspects--not one but 24 planets have been stolen. Donna asks about Pyrovillia, but the Judoon captain tells her that Pyrovillia is a cold case, and it disappeared over 2000 years ago. Donna asks about the Adipose Breeding Planet and the Doctor realizes that planets are being snatched out of time as well as space. The Doctor heads over to the computer and shifts the display of the missing planets into 3D. He adds Adipose 3, Pyrovillia, and the Lost Moon of Poosh. The model rearranges itself into a perfect balance. They fit together 'like pieces of an engine'.

Back on Earth, the Daleks attack and bring down the Valiant. Jack, Gwen and Ianto try to find a way to stop them. But their efforts are futile. Daleks land in Japan and Africa as well as other countries across the world. On board the station, the Supreme Dalek orders the Daleks to prepare landings and bring the humans to the Crucible. Then he recieves a call from the control room, asking about news. The Supreme Dalek declares Earth has been subjugated. The speaker is a sinister figure in the control, with the bottom half of a Dalek but his top half hidden in shadow. He is really asking for news of the Doctor, and the Supreme Dalek replies that there are no reports of the Doctor, and that they are beyond his reach. The figure is fascinated by the Dalek's tone of what seems to be triumph, and warns him about his pride. The Supreme Dalek believes the Doctor cannot stop them. The figure replies "And yet, Dalek Caan is anxious." A light switches on to show a Dalek with its mid-section opened to reveal the creature inside, and its top half destroyed, evidently Caan. The Supreme Dalek protests "The abomination is insane!" The figure demands that the Dalek shows respect, as without Dalek Caan Earth could never be conquered. Also, everything Caan says comes true. Caan says "He is coming, the three-fold man, he dances in the universe...oh, creator of us all...THE DOCTOR IS COMING!" Then he makes a noise that sounds like laughter.

Back at the Shadow Proclamation's space station, Donna is sitting on the stairs waiting for the Doctor to work out what has happened. A Shadow Architect comes over and gives Donna some water. She then tells her that there was something on her back. The Doctor asks Donna if anything strange was happening on Earth. Donna reminds him about the bees disappearing. The Doctor realizes that this is a clue. Donna tells him some people thought it was pollution, or global warming. The Doctor tells her that in fact the bees were returning home, to the planet Melissa Majoria: The Tandoka Trail. They realize that if they follow the trail they can find the Earth. The Shadow Architect stops them, however, telling them "The planets were taken with hostile intent. We are declaring war, Doctor, right across the Universe and You will lead us into battle!" The Doctor tells her to 'Go get your key.' The TARDIS then vanishes, despite the Architect's demand that they stop.

Back on Earth, the Daleks have enslaved London are ordering that all humans leave their homes. Wilf and Sylvia are watching this happening. When a man and his children defy them and stay at home, the Daleks brutally incinerate the house, leaving no survivors. Wilf and Sylvia run out onto the street and are confronted by a Dalek. Wilf grabs a paint gun a shoots the Dalek in the eye. The paint melts away. The Dalek then prepares to exterminate them, but then, suddenly, it explodes. Behind stands Rose, who has shot it with her gun. She asks if they are Donna's family, and when they reply yes, she tells them she needs them. Wilf reveals he has tried calling her, but there is no reply. The last time Donna had phoned was from the planet Midnight, made of diamonds. Sylvia believes this is ridiculous, but Wilf tells her she cannot start denying things now. Rose tells them that they are her last hope of finding the Doctor.

Meanwhile, the TARDIS stops in the Medusa Cascade. The Doctor tells Donna he came here when he was just 30 years old, and that it was the centre of a rift in time and space. Donna asks about the 27 planets, and the Doctor tells her that they are nowhere. Donna asks what they do, but the Doctor does not reply. It becomes apparent that he has given up.

On Earth, Sarah Jane and Captain Jack have given up. At the Nobles' house, the laptop suddenly switches itself on, with a voice coming through. Sarah and Torchwood hear it too. Jack tells Gwen to leave it, but suddenly the woman who is speaking shames him, and demands that he stands to attention. She then identifies herself as Harriet Jones, former prime minister. Rose tries to talk to Harriet, but she can't hear her. Also, Wilf and Sylvia do not have a webcam. Harriet makes contact with Sarah, and then decides they should be able to talk to each other. There are four contacts: Harriet, Sarah and Torchwood. The fourth contact is having trouble getting in contact. Rose thinks this is her, but is surprised when Martha appears on screen. Martha reveals that Project Indigo brought her home, to her mother. Harriet then introduces Torchwood to Sarah. Jack has been following Sarah's work, and tells her "Nice job with the Slitheen." Sarah has been staying away from Torchwood- too many guns. Jack tells her "Looking good, ma'am." Harriet tells them that this is the Subwave Network- it contacts anyone and everyone who can contact the Doctor. Harriet wants them to form The Doctor's Secret Army. Sarah reminds Harriet that the Doctor deposed her. Harriet tells her that she has wondered ever since then if she was wrong. She has, however, stood by what she said: There would be one day when Earth would be threatened, and the Doctor would not appear. She told him so and he did not listen. Now it has happened. Torchwood realize that they can transmit using all the power of the Rift, and Luke and Sarah have Mr Smith: phones, all calling out the same number at the same time. Ianto appears beside Jack and theorizes that if transmitting slows or stops, the Subwave Network will become visible to the Daleks. Harriet understands this, but declares her life does not matter- not if it saves the world. she then tells Jack to tell the Doctor from her "He chose his companions well." Martha sends them all the number. Rose decides to call the Doctor herself. The transmitting starts. Rose, Sylvia and Wilf start to call the Doctor. Suddenly, transmitting slows, and the Daleks detect the Subwave Network. The Supreme Dalek orders that the culprit be exterminated. The figure in the control room contacts him again, telling him "I warned you, Supreme One. Just as Dalek Caan foretold, the Children of Time are moving against us. But everything is falling into place..." Gwen tells Harriet they have found her, but Harriet keeps working. She sends control to Torchwood, just as the Daleks arrive in her home. The Daleks tell her they know her. Harriet says "Oh, you know nothing of any human. And that will be your downfall." Then they exterminate her.

On board the TARDIS, the Doctor and Donna suddenly pick up signals from the Doctor's companions. The Doctor introduces Donna to all of them.

On board the Crucible, Caan says "He is here...the Dark Lord is coming..." Then, the figure says "Supreme One, I will make contact on the Subwave Network. Give me access."

Suddenly, all the contacts vanish off-screen. Donna thinks they are losing contact, but the Doctor realizes there is another contact coming through. He thinks it is Rose, but when he speaks a familiar voice says "Your voice is different, but its arrogance is unmistakable..." Suddenly, the figure glides onto the screen, and is revealed as Davros. He says "Welcome to my new empire, Doctor. It is only fitting that you should witness the resurrection and the triumph of Davros, lord and creator the Dalek race." The Doctor protests that Davros was destroyed in the very fist year of the Time War. His command ship flew into the jaws of the Nightmare Child at the Gates of Elysium. He even attempted to save Davros. Davros says "But it took one stronger than you- Dalek Caan himself." Caan says "I flew into the wild, and the fire. I danced and I died a thousand times" Davros tells the Doctor that his Emergency Temporal Shift from 1930 had taken him back into the Time War itself. The Doctor protests that the War is timelocked. But Caan had broken down the barriers and rescued Davros, albeit at the cost of his own mind. The Doctor realizes that now Davros has created a new race of Daleks. Davros says "I gave myself to them- quite literally: each one grown from a cell of my own body." He reveals that parts of his torso have been replaced by metal. His hand is also metal, but this is to replace the one blown off on Necros. As Davros says: "New Daleks...TRUE Daleks. I have my children, Doctor. What do you have, now?" Then, the Doctor says one thing: "BYE!" He then cuts transmission with Davros, and sets the TARDIS for Earth. The Supreme Dalek orders that the Daleks locate the TARDIS and find the Doctor. Davros orders the other Daleks to go to the Earth and exterminate or capture the Doctor's companions. Caan says "Death is coming. I can see it! Everlasting death for the most faithful companion..." Suddenly, the Daleks detect that the Subwave Network has been rebooted, and the new location is Torchwood. The Supreme Dalek orders that Torchwood be exterminated.

On Earth, Jack contacts Martha via phone and asks for the digits on the Project Indigo transporter. They are wavering between a 4 and a 9. These are the two digits Jack needs to reactivate his Vortex Manipulator. He grabs the re-powered defabricator, and tells Gwen and Ianto that he will come back. Then he vanishes. Sarah then heads off to find the Doctor in her car. Mr Smith protects Luke. Rose contacts the paralel Torchwood and asks them to lock her onto the TARDIS, after she sais goodbye to Sylvia and Wilf she teleports away. The TARDIS lands in a street that is deserted and trashed. The Doctor asks Donna what Rose said in the parallel earth and Donna replies by saying "Why don't you ask her yourself". The Doctor turns around and see's Rose standing down the street then they both run towards each other. As they get closer a stray Dalek apears from behind a van and spots The Doctor. The Doctor sees the Dalek but is too slow and the Dalek shoots the Doctor in the arm, sending him to the ground. However the beam only partialy hits The Doctor and doesn't kill him straight away. Captain Jack teleports into the street and shoots the Dalek to bits with his gun. Rose kneels over The Doctor as he lies on the floor diying and Jack and Donna gather around and prepare to move him into the TARDIS. Back in Torchwood Gwen and Ianto pick up guns and get ready for battle. A Dalek enters Torchwood and Gwen and Ianto open fire. Back in the Tardis The Doctor is in terrible pain. Donna asks if theres anything they can do to help him but Jack tells them to just stay away. Rose and Jack knows what will happen next but Donna is oblivious. The Doctorr lifts up his hand and it begins to glow. Sarah jane is still in her car and is driving down a street untill she nearly hits two Daleks that are on the road. The Daleks turn around and Sarah jane tries to apoligise but the Daleks do not accept it and prepares to exterminate her. Back in the TARDIS The Doctor is still in pain and Jack makes the others back away. Donna asks whats going on and Rose explains that when The Doctor is diying he can heal himself but he changes in the process. Rose doesn't want The Doctor to change as she has come a long way to find him however the process has already started so he can't stop it. As The Doctor stumbles to his feet he stands up right and bursts with a huge yellow and white energy. His hands and head explode with energy and starts to regenerate in front of Rose, Jack and Donna.

[edit] Cast

[edit] References

  • General Sanchez is heard saying "Ladies and gentlemen, we are at war." The same phrase was spoken by Jack Harkness when facing the Daleks on the Gamestation.
  • Harriet Jones has yet again introduce herself by flashing her identity card earning her the response of "Yes, I/We know who you are", even from the Daleks dispatched to her location to exterminate her.
  • Mr Smith says that the TARDIS has landed in "vector 7, grid references 666". 666 is the number of The Beast.

[edit] Daleks

  • Wilf uses a paintball gun as a weapon against the Daleks by shooting paintballs at their eye stalks, referencing the popular method of incapacitating a Dalek: blinding them. However, it seems that the Daleks have been redesigned with this weakness in mind as the paint simply melts off the eye stalk after coming into contact with it (and at the same time replying "My vision is NOT impaired").
  • Dalek Caan predicts the most "faithful" companion will die.
  • Caan referred the Doctor as "Dark Lord". (The Doctor is probably referred to in this way due to being the cause of death and destruction, from the point of view of the Daleks. ) He has also been known by the Daleks as the Ka Faraq Gatri or the 'destroyer of worlds' and also "The Oncoming Storm".
  • The new Daleks are said to be Davros's "children" as they have been grown from his own cells.
  • Davros makes a quick reference to Dalek Emperor.
Wilf fires a paintball at a Dalek
Wilf fires a paintball at a Dalek
  • The Daleks' weaponry has seemingly been updated to include a "maximum extermination" setting, capable of destroying an entire house if three Daleks fire at the same target.
  • The Daleks in this episode don't seem to have shields.

[edit] The Doctor

  • The Doctor first went to the Medusa Cascade when he was "just a child" at the age of 90.

[edit] Last Great Time War

  • Doctor says that Davros died in the very first years of the Time War, when Davros's ship flew into the "jaws of the nightmare child", suggesting that Time War lasted several years.
  • An ongoing question relating to why the Doctor can't or won't go back to the era of the Time War to make things turn out differently is addressed by the Doctor indicating that the war is time-locked; Dalek Caan, having circumvented this barrier, paid for the experience with his sanity.
  • It's revealed that Davros fought in the Time War, and the Doctor tried to save his life. This means at least two of the Doctor's mortal enemies were involved in the conflict, although the Doctor wasn't aware of The Master's involvement until much later.

[edit] Planets

[edit] Technology

  • There is reference to an object called an "Osterhagen key", but no explanation is given as to its function, origin or purpose. Significantly, while Harriet Jones is aware of its function and forbids its use, and Martha is also aware of what it can do, Jack Harkness and Torchwood have no idea what it is, even though they know about the other top-secret Indigo project, though Jack does mention this was because he 'met a soldier in a bar'. He is also from the future and seems to know the project is not fully operational, though Martha survives.
  • Harriet Jones uses the subwave network to put the Doctor's 'secret army' in contact with each other, it utilises Sub-wave communication developed by the Mr Copper Foundation. Donna compares it to Facebook.
  • The Master's beat is heard just before the subwave network comes online.

[edit] Story notes

  • This episode was the last of Series 4 to have its title revealed.
  • This is the fourth time that the Daleks have returned with a leader in a finale. In DW: The Evil of the Daleks they returned led by their emperor; in the 2005 finale, The Parting of the Ways, the Daleks were led by the Dalek Emperor; and in 2006 finale, Doomsday, Dalek Sec led the Cult of Skaro. The Other Dalek two-parter in 2007 Series was shown as the 4th & 5th Episodes of the Series (Daleks in Manhattan and Evolution of the Daleks).
  • Davros refers to the Doctor's allies as the Children of Time. Or, he might be referring to the Time Lords themselves, since he does not yet know who is operating such a powerful sub-wave transmission.
  • The Doctor starts to regenerate yet again, acting as a cliff hanger.
  • The Doctor's severed hand is seen bubbling at the end of Turn Left and during this episode as well. When in Jack Harkness's possession, the bubbling signaled the Doctor's presence, but in the Doctor's possession the bubbling has signaled the presence of other Time Lords. Could the Doctor's severed hand have a sentient mind?
  • Davros and his command ship were lost in the first year of the Time War. Dalek Caan managed to save Davros, at the cost of his own sanity.
  • The Doctor states he tried to save Davros before his ship was lost in the first year of the Time War.
  • The "To Be Continued" before the end credits is different from the others previously used. There is also no sneak peek of the next episode.
  • When Harriet Jones contacts Captain Jack, Martha Jones and Sarah Jane Smith, the contact tone is the same tone used by The Master to control the populace under the Archangel network.
  • For the first time, the opening credits incorporate not two or three names, but six, adding Freema Agyeman, John Barrowman and Elisabeth Sladen to the Tennant, Tate and Piper credits of the previous week. The typeface used for these credits is slightly different than that usually used. In addition, several "overflow" cast credits are featured over the first scene after the opening sequence, a first for the series (Penelope Wilton, Adjoa Andoh, Eve Myles and Gareth David-Lloyd). Incidentally this is the first time Elizabeth Sladen's name has appeared in the opening credits. This is the first time all of the Doctor's "main" companions since the revival of the series began (the female leads) have all been credited at the same time; it is not, however, a complete listing of all the revival-series companions as Noel Clarke, Kylie Minogue (Astrid Peth) and Bruno Langley (Adam Mitchell) are not included.
  • Russell T Davies' pattern of using the same surnames is the most notable in this episode with Martha Jones, Francine Jones, Harriet Jones and Ianto Jones. Francine and Martha are related (mother and daughter).
  • Scientist and author Richard Dawkins has a cameo as himself. Dawkins is married to Lalla Ward, the actress who portrayed Romana II. The two were introduced by Douglas Adams, who met Ward in his capacity as the show's script editor.
  • The claws of the Daleks in Crucible is very similar to ones in Doctor Who And The Daleks- Movie, but with eight fingers instead of two.
  • Dalek Caan predicts the most "faithful" companion will die.
  • The clicking sound when the Time Beetle from Turn Left was mentioned occurred when Donna was offered water at the Shadow Proclamation, accompanied by the same words used when the Time Beetle was "seen" by somebody else, "There's something on your back!"
  • The story is very similar to that of previous Doctor Who writer, Douglas Adams' story Life, The Universe and Everything, which was in itself based on an abandoned Doctor Who story Adams had written.
  • According to The Daily Mail, more than 2,500 people tried to call the Doctor's mobile phone number, despite it being a non-functioning number.[1]

[edit] Ratings

To be added

[edit] Myths and rumours

  • The presence of Davros in this episode had been rumoured for a long time before broadcast. An associated rumour suggested that the episode would reveal that Donna was actually Davros in disguise or Caan mutating himself into Davros. See this section in Journey's End for additional rumors related to Donna.
  • It was also rumoured on the fan boards that Patrick Stewart or Ben Kingsley might have been cast as Davros, given media reports of his interest in appearing in Doctor Who after it was announced that he and Tennant would perform a season of Shakespeare together in 2008. Ultimately, Julian Bleach was revealed to be playing the character.

[edit] Filming Locations

[edit] Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

  • It is not explained how the Daleks know of Harriet Jones. Presumably this is for comedic effect, serving only to continue the running gag. During the doomsday episode the Dr Singh character had his memory taken and he would have known about Harriet Jones and even though Dalek Caan is insane Davros is aware of current events.
  • After Dalek Caan says 'Death for the most faithful companions' one of the Dalek's eye piece light is not working, but then suddenly lights up.
  • Normally when a Dalek exterminates someone the beam normally hits them and disappears but when the Doctor gets exterminated you can clearly see the ray go through him and come out the other side. (The beam did not go through him: it went past him, only touching him slightly. Also, his entire body did not glow; only a portion did, which suggests that the beam did not do full damage (though still enough to cause a regeneration apparently).)
  • At the end of Turn Left Bad Wolf was on the TARDIS. It's not there now. (They've traveled to Earth, as per Rose's request. Having arrived, there's no further need for the Bad Wolf message.)
  • When Harriet Jones transfers control of the sub-wave network to Torchwood, the map circles an area in Swansea, not Cardiff. Russell T. Davies was born in Swansea, this may be an intentional error.
  • When Jones' sub-wave system seeks out those who have worked with the Doctor, only the companions of the Tenth Doctor are singled out, not other past companions and/or acquaintances who might have worked with previous incarnations.Harriet Jones states the sub wave only finds people with the capacity to contact the Doctor. Presumably this refers to the current incarnation of the Doctor (as opposed to someone trying to contact, say, the Sixth Doctor), thereby disqualifying companions such as Ian Chesterton or Tegan Jovanka, who presumably have no access to things like "superphones".
  • Donna indicates she has no idea what regeneration is, even though she was present when Martha referenced it in The Doctor's Daughter (She might not have understood what was meant at the time).
  • Why did Harriet's computer screen turn off just because she died? Presumably the computer was destroyed as well as Harriet, perhaps by the Daleks' extermination rays. They might not have 'exterminated' her, but her computer in an attempt to stop the signal. Also, if the subwave finds the people who can contact the Doctor, then it must somehow link with the people themselves. This is demonstrated by the sub-wave finding Rose, even though the nearest computer is not her own. Harriet's death would therefore have severed the connection.
  • How did Captain Jack know exactly where to teleport to shoot the Dalek that had shot the Doctor? He probably tracked the TARDIS location. The numbers 4 and 9 were to reactivate his vortex manipulator. He also appears to have arrived facing the Dalek, so his reflexes would have come into play.
  • If Rose asked her "Control" to lock on to the TARDIS and transport, why did she end up at the other end of the street? (Even a machine as good as the TARDIS can make slight errors. The control did reasonably well to land her quite near to the TARDIS, especially since we don't yet know where "Control" is located; if it's on Pete's World or Donna's World, accuracy may have been difficult.)
  • Dalek Caan didn't have emotions, so how can he laugh or go insane in the first place? Caan was a member of the Cult of Skaro, who were made to think like the enemy, i.e. having names and some emotions. As indicated in dialogue in this episode, emotions are discouraged, but still exist. There are also other examples of Daleks displaying anger, pride, and even a sense of humor (albeit sarcastic and dry) in past episodes (for an example of the last, reference the "pest control" comment directed at the Cybermen in Doomsday). Not only that, but Davros, when he created the Daleks, didn't remove all emotions: just those which he considered a weakness, such as mercy, compassion and forgiveness. Not to mention the fact that emotions are not a necessary component of insanity.
  • Ianto is seen watching Paul O'Grady, but it was said earlier in the episode that it was a Saturday. Paul O'Grady is not aired on a Saturday. A possibility is that the move of Earth has taken time or time has skipped forward since the mention of the date was prior to the move. There is clear indication that, on Earth at least, at least a few hours might have elapsed. (As this episode is set in 2009 (our future) it is possible that the Paul O'Grady show is moved at some point to Saturday evenings.)
  • When a Dalek turns around and implies, "New location, Torchwood", the blue light in it's eye is switched off as if it has been blinded and does not come on until a few seconds later.
  • The apparent death of Harriet Jones puts paid to the Ninth Doctor stating that she was destined to serve three terms as PM and lead Britain into a new golden age (DW: World War Three). In several episodes, the Doctor has stated that history can be rewritten and only certain fixed points remain unchangeable. Presumably Jones is one of those changeable points. Also, Turn Left addressed the notion of alternate timelines stemming from choices; perhaps the Ninth Doctor was referencing what turned out to be an alternate timeline created when his next incarnation set in motion the events that would end her career (DW: The Christmas Invasion). Also, it should be noted that until the events of Journey's End play out, it remains to be seen if Jones has actually been killed.
  • Television, cellphone and satellite communications continue to work, even though by rights when the planet moved anything in orbit should have been lost. Evidently when the Earth was moved whoever did it decided to include its satellites as well. One does not need satellites for ground-based television or cellphone broadcasts.
  • What about the Moon? There's no indication it was moved with the Earth, so is it going to drift away? Objects in space often move slowly relative to the Earth, so even if the moon were suddenly cut free (a la Moonbase Alpha in Space: 1999) it would take a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:46am UTC

Journey's End

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"For this is my ultimate victory, Doctor! The destruction of reality itself!!"
―Davros

Journey's End
Series: Doctor Who - TV stories
Series Number: 30
Story Number: 13
Doctor: Tenth Doctor.
Companions: Donna Noble (departs)
Rose Tyler (departs)
Martha Jones (departs)
Captain Jack Harkness (departs)
Mickey Smith (departs)
Sarah Jane Smith (departs)
K-9 Mark IV (cameo)
Enemy: The Daleks
Davros
Setting: Crucible
Medusa Cascade
Germany
Torchwood 3
Sol system
London 2009
Writer: Russell T Davies
Director: Graeme Harper
Producer: Phil Collinson
Broadcast: 5th July 2008
Format: 1x65 minute episode
Prod. Code: 202 b
Previous Story: The Stolen Earth
Following Story: Proms Special (mini-episode)
2008 Christmas special (title TBA)

This is the 13th and final episode of Series 4 and featured 7 companions of the Doctor. It is a continued on a cliffhanger from Episode 12.

Contents

[hide]

[edit] Synopsis

The entire universe is in danger as the Daleks activate their master plan, and enslave 21st century Earth. The Doctor is helpless, and even the TARDIS faces destruction. The only hope lies with the Doctor's secret army of companions– but as they join forces to battle Davros himself, the prophecy declares that one of them will die.

[edit] Plot

The TARDIS is captured
The TARDIS is captured

Following on immediately from the end of "The Stolen Earth", The Doctor is regenerating inside the TARDIS while Donna Noble, Captain Jack Harkness and Rose Tyler watch in horror. However, the Doctor transfers his regenerative energy into the container which carries his severed hand. He has healed himself, but chosen not to change his appearance. The TARDIS is transported by the Daleks to the Crucible and rendered powerless. The Doctor, Jack, and Rose leave it, but Donna is distracted because she is hearing the sound of a heartbeat and while looking back, the TARDIS door slams closed. Before the Doctor can free her, the Daleks dump the TARDIS into a waste chute where it will be destroyed in the centre-core of the Crucible. As the TARDIS interior explodes around her, Donna collapses near the severed hand, she hears the heartbeat again and while touching the container energy flows between it and her. The hand bursts out of the container, and forms as a new Doctor, although this Doctor has only one heart and has picked up some of Donna's mannerisms. With his help, the TARDIS escapes destruction and gives the new Doctor and Donna time to come with a plan.

In Torchwood Three, Gwen Cooper and Ianto Jones find themselves safely in a time lock created by Toshiko Sato, preventing the Dalek from entering but also preventing them leaving. Sarah Jane Smith is saved from two Daleks by Mickey Smith and Jackie Tyler, but in order to follow the Doctor, lay down their guns and allow themselves to be captured, taken to the Crucible. Martha Jones says her goodbyes to her mother and makes for an abandoned castle in Germany where one of five Osterhagen stations is hidden, and waits for contact from the other bases.

Aboard the Crucible, Jack creates a distraction by shooting the Supreme Dalek (Red Dalek) with his revolver, but is shot by the Daleks; as the Doctor and Rose are taken to the Vault where Davros is held, Jack's immortality allows him to escape. With the Doctor and Rose contained, Davros explains that the 27 planets form an energy pattern that is then amplified into a "reality bomb", able to break apart the forces holding everything together. Mickey, Jackie, and Sarah Jane escape a test chamber where this effect is shown to the Doctor just in time. Jack finds his way to the three, and with a locket from Sarah Jane, creates a device that will implode the Crucible. Meanwhile, Martha makes contact with two other bases in China and Liberia. The Chinese counterpart wants to get it over and done with, but Martha, knowing the Doctor, first broadcasts a signal to the Crucible to give them (probably both Earth and the Daleks) a second chance, promising to use the Ostenhagen key to detonate 25 nuclear warheads under the Earth's crust to destroy it and disable the reality bomb. However, the Daleks manage to lock onto their positions and beam Martha, Jack, Mickey, Jackie, and Sarah Jane, with the Transmat to the Vault where the Doctor and Rose are too being held captive.

the TARDIS pulling the Earth through space
the TARDIS pulling the Earth through space

The Daleks prepare to activate the reality bomb that will wipe out all matter in this and every parallel universe through the rifts in the Medusa Cascade, but the new Doctor and Donna arrive in the TARDIS. Both, however, are stunned by shots from Davros. The reality bomb countdown reaches zero, but nothing happens; Donna has manipulated the controls to disable it. The Doctor recognises that the creation of the new Doctor has had an unintended side effect: Donna is now half Time Lord herself, sharing the Doctor's intellect. Donna and the new Doctor free the others, and with the help of the original Doctor, disable the Daleks and start to send the planets back to their proper time and space. Before Earth can be sent, the machinery is destroyed by the Supreme Dalek, who is then destroyed by Captain Jack. The original Doctor races into the TARDIS to replace the functionality of the broken machine. Realising that Dalek Caan has seen the end of the Dalek race and has been manipulating time to achieve this, the new Doctor (probably not kept back by guilt due to the influence of Donna's personality) uses the remaining machinery to destroy all of the Daleks and their fleet. The rest of the companions flee to the TARDIS, and while the Doctor offers to save Davros, but he refuses, calling the Doctor the "Destroyer of Worlds". The Crucible is destroyed.

The Doctor enlists the help of the other companions, making contact with the base Torchwood and with Luke Smith, Mr. Smith and K-9, to help use the TARDIS return the Earth to its proper place. Sarah Jane says her goodbyes, as well as Jack, Martha, and Mickey, who has decided to stay in this universe. Using a retroactively closing rift, the Doctor returns Rose and Jackie to the alternate dimension and leaves the new Doctor with her, as he will now grow old with Rose, no longer able to regenerate due to the human influence. The human doctor, having the same memories and feeling as the proper Doctor, whispers into Rose's ear (most likely telling her that he loves her), and they kiss.

Returning to their universe, Donna finds she begins to have trouble thinking; the Doctor explains that the human mind cannot take in the Time Lord mental abilities. To save her, he wipes her mind of all her encounters with the Doctor, returning her home and explaining to her family, Sylvia Noble and Wilfred Mott, that she must never be reminded of her time with the Doctor or else she will die. As Donna recovers consciousness, she shows no interest in the Doctor; he leaves, though Wilfred promises he will look out for the Doctor every night while he looks at the sky. The Doctor then returns to the TARDIS, alone once again. Waiting for his next adventure........

[edit] Cast

[edit] Production crew

[edit] References

[edit] Individuals

  • Those shown in flashback who died for the Doctor are Harriet Jones, Jabe, The Controller, Lynda Moss, Robert MacLeish, Mrs Moore, Colin Skinner, Bridget Sinclair, Ursula Blake (who did not die because The Doctor was able to bring her back to life), Face of Boe, Chantho, Astrid Peth, Luke Rattigan, Jenny (who is in fact not dead, but the Doctor is unaware of this), River Song and the Hostess.
  • Both Rose and the Doctor recognise the familiar resemblance between Gwen Cooper and Gwyneth (who they encountered in Cardiff in 1869).
  • Rose and Mickey, who previously had an on again, off again relationship, appear to have drifted apart. They do not look at each other, speak to each other, or interact at all, even when they are in the TARDIS together. Mickey does not say goodbye to her (though he does say goodbye to Jackie saying he'll miss her "more than anyone") and he tells the Doctor there's nothing for him in the parallel world, "certainly not Rose".
  • Just before the Doctor is forced to erase her memory, Donna expresses a desire to meet Charlie Chaplin. This is the second finale in a row to have a character state a desire to meet a famous 20th century personality; previously the Doctor told Martha he wanted to meet Agatha Christie (DW: Last of the Time Lords); Christie subsequently appeared in The Unicorn and the Wasp; it remains to be seen if Donna's reference also serves a foreshadowing.

[edit] TARDISes

  • This is the first episode where the TARDIS is fully-staffed with six pilots, and the first time it is noted definitively that it was designed for six, after various mentions about it being made for more than a single Time Lord.

[edit] Technology

  • The purpose of the Osterhagen key is revealed in this episode. Martha's key is one of several required to set off a network of nuclear weapons buried deep beneath the Earth's surface. If detonated, these weapons would trigger the explosion of the Earth. Each key must be inserted into a control panel at an "Osterhagen station". There are apparently five around the world, but only three need to be manned with a key to initiate the detonation. Locations seen on screen are Germany, Liberia and China. The "Oserhagen Project" appears to have been in place for decades, according to the German woman who supplied food to the guards at the German station. Given the age of the German woman, and her claim that she knew of the Osterhagen key when she was in London during her youth, the "Osterhagen Project" likely dates to the days when the Brigadier was in charge of the British arm of UNIT.
The technology used to emplace the nuclear weapons at the Earth's crust could therefore be linked to the drilling project featured in DW: Inferno.

[edit] Story notes

  • Blue Peter presenter Gethin Jones operates a Dalek in this episode, returning to Doctor Who since his brief appearance as a Cybus Cyberman in The Age of Steel.
  • This was the longest series finale at 65 minutes long, longer even than most of the Christmas specials, except for Voyage of the Damned, which was 71 minutes.
  • Dalek Caan refers to the Doctor as a 'threefold man'. The meaning becomes clear in this episode with both the copy of the Doctor and 'Doctor-Donna'.
  • This episode marks the first series finale to show a preview of the upcoming Christmas Special (2008). After the credits the Cybermen are said to return in the episode. However the episode is unique for being the only series finale in the Russell T Davies era which doesn't end on a cliffhanger. It also breaks the pattern set by the previous two series by not having the Doctor exclaiming "What? What? What?" at the end. In fact it is the only finale scene of the Davies era in which no dialogue is spoken at all.
Mickey, Jackie and Sarah hide from the Daleks in a shot that demonstrates an effect nicknamed the "Harper treatment".
Mickey, Jackie and Sarah hide from the Daleks in a shot that demonstrates an effect nicknamed the "Harper treatment".
  • Graeme Harper's penchant for including a distorted image of a main character is present in this story. Though not included in every single story he's directed for BBC Wales, it's seen often enough to be considered something of a directorial "signature". Similar distortion is achieved through the use of magnifying glasses in Army of Ghosts, The Unicorn and the Wasp, and Utopia, and with mirrors in Turn Left. This time, it's Mickey, Jackie and Sarah Jane that get "the Harper treatment" under a curved window.
  • This episode tells us that Harriet Jones, former Prime Minister, actually died in the previous episode.
  • Davros named the Doctor 'The Destroyer of Worlds' and maybe a reference to Fires of Pompeii when it was said the Doctors name was sealed in the Cascade of Medusa herself or to the Doctor being the Ka Faraq Gatri.
  • The Osterhagen key would destroy the Earth. The word, Osterhagen, is an anagram of the phrase, Earth's gone.
  • This story augments the notion that Time Lords have some measure of control over the regenerative process. as seen in Last of the Time Lords. In truth, most regenerations have added at least a little to the general mythos about the process. From the notion that a particular physiognomy could be imposed upon the Second Doctor in The War Games, details have been added about how the process works almost every time one has been depicted. In this case, writer Russell T Davies builds upon his earlier idea that a Time Lord can re-grow whole body parts during "the first 15 hours" following a regeneration (The Christmas Invasion) Here he suggests that a Time Lord can stop the process prior to entering the final stage, provided that he has a matching genetic receptacle into which he can store the energy.
  • When the newly created Doctor discovers he's "part Time Lord, part human" he is shocked and refuses to admit it. This is likely a reference to the 1996 movie and fan outrage at it. It might also suggest that the Doctor was never half-human due "Human-Time Lord metacrisis"
  • The scene where the Daleks are speaking German is possibly a tongue-in-cheek reference to the fact that Terry Nation based the Daleks on the Nazis.
  • This marks the likely permanent departure of Catherine Tate (Donna Noble) and Billie Piper (Rose Tyler).
  • The story elements surrounding the destruction of the universe have some casual similarity to ideas found in Life, the Universe and Everything, a Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Universe sequel penned by former Doctor Who script editor, Douglas Adams. Everything was in turn based on an abandoned Fourth Doctor television serial had written, called Doctor Who and the Krikkitmen.
  • The recap of the previous episode uses different footage of Jack stating "you know what happens next" in the leadup to the regeneration. In The Stolen Earth he utters the line off-camera, but in the recap he is seen saying it.
  • The Doctor and Mickey perform a "fist bump" in lieu of a handshake when Mickey departs. This mirrors the way they greeted each other in Doomsday.

[edit] Ratings

to be added

[edit] Myths and rumours

  • The week between the cliffhanger ending of The Stolen Earth and the broadcast of Journey's End included some of the most intense fan speculation and media attention in franchise history. The significance of the cliffhanger, which appeared to show the Doctor regenerating, along with previously reported speculation regarding Donna and other characters led to many speculations being circulated on fan discussion boards and the media. Among some of the most notable:
  • That David Tennant was in fact leaving the series, and that leaked photos and other information regarding him being in the 2008 Christmas special (as well as media reports the preceding week that he was negotiating to return in 2010) were either a "red herring" or that the Christmas special was to include a flashback.
  • The true nature of Donna was the subject of much speculation, with some fans suggesting her to actually be The Rani or Romana living under the influence of a Chameleon Arch, or a manifestation of the Master.
  • Concerning Donna's ring, at the end of the season 4 finale, when the Doctor says good-bye to her it glimmers briefly into the camera. Some fans theorise that the ring is a possible Chamelon Arch containing Donna's memories of her time with the Doctor. It has also been suggested that the ring resembles a ring worn by The Master in a previous episode. Others theorise that the ring is just large, black, and very shiny.
  • And the prediction that a companion would die led some to believe Donna, Martha or Rose would be the ones destined to die (since it had already been reported that John Barrowman would be returning to Torchwood and Elisabeth Sladen to The Sarah Jane Adventures, ruling out their characters' demise.)
  • The appearance of K-9 was a surprise to many as it had been previously reported that the character would not be appearing in the episode, given the fact the rights to the character are currently held by another party for the planned K-9 television series.
  • After Eve Myles, who had played Gwyneth in The Unquiet Dead was cast as Gwen Cooper in Torchwood, Russell T Davies stated in an interview in Doctor Who Magazine that the characters were unrelated. In this episode, however, Davies reversed this opinion by inserting dialogue strongly implying the two shared common ancestry.
  • There is a possibility that either The Doctor or his twin left behind on Pete's World will eventually manfiest into The Valeyard due to the escalation of pain and abandoment felt each by the other for different reasons

[edit] Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

  • If the TARDIS's power has gone, how does the monitor screen work? Strictly speaking, its power wasn't "gone"; the TARDIS was merely in a temporal prison. While this shut down most power, it clearly didn't cut everything
  • Wouldn't the nuclear warheads placed under the crust have melted? UNIT would most likely have thought about this, and provided some sort of way to protect them.
  • Why did Martha have to travel to Germany to activate the Osterhagen key when the other soldiers were in pods in their home countries? The main pod was in Germany - Martha states that she is in Osterhagen 1.
  • The moon remained in position when the Earth had moved. The moon should have locked onto the strongest gravitational force (the Sun) and been pulled towards it. There is no indication one way or the other as to the moon's position.
  • If the act of temporal shifting back to the Time War showed Dalek Caan the entire history of the Dalek race and led him to conclude the Daleks should be destroyed, why didn't he just let Davros die in the war and then kill himself? Caan was driven insane after saving Davros, therefore he had only seen the whole of time after Davros was already safe. He then began setting the course of events that would lead to the fall of the New Dalek Empire.
  • If any mention of the Doctor or the TARDIS would cause the Time Lord consciousness within Donna to reawaken and burn up her mind, isn't the Doctor taking a tremendous risk by letting Donna see him in the Nobles' house? The Doctor wishes to test the effectiveness of the memory wipe and also determine whether there are any negative effects on her.
  • Why were the controls put in the Vault where Davros could access them and destroy the Daleks as the Doctor-Donna did? It was Donna's skill that allowed this.
  • The second humanoid woman aboard the Shadow Proclamation ship/station told Donna there was "something on your back". There was no explanation concerning the cryptic phrase by the climax of Journey's End. The albino woman spoke in the past tense saying there "was something on your back"
  • If Mickey Smith was allowed to stay on the normal Earth, why did Rose and Jackie have to go back? After all, the Doctor could have brought Pete back as well, and their child. The Doctor wanted to keep the second Doctor sealed off in the parallel world where he couldn't cause any trouble, and wanted Rose to look after him.
  • With all of her memories since The Runaway Bride erased, wouldn't Donna realise that she has lost about a year and a half of of her life, and shouldn't she think it's her wedding day? The exact nature of the mind wipe is never specified.
  • Why do some Daleks have special 'cogs' instead of suckers on their right arms? The "sucker" may well be the standard right limb for a Dalek, but it has never been the only possible limb. At least as far back as DW: The Daleks' Master Plan, other appendages, like flame-throwers, have been seen.
  • When Jack got Gwen's name wrong — he said her surname was Cooper rather than Williams — why didn't she correct him? There is no definitive indication in Torchwood that Gwen took Rhys' surname after marriage.
  • If the Osterhagen key and its associated doomsday device had been around for years, why wasn't it activated during the events of Doomsday or, more to the point, The Year That Never Was (DW: Last of the Time Lords)? The Master used the anrchangel network to crush resistance. It's also probable that as the Master not only became Prime Minister, but also was involved with the top-secret weapon deployed against the Sycorax, that he was aware of the Key and took steps to prevent its use.

[edit] Continuity

  • When the Doctor sees Gwen Cooper for the first time, he asks if she comes from a long line of family from Cardiff. This is because of the similarity between Gwen and Gwyneth (DW: The Unquiet Dead), both of whom are played by Eve Myles. The Doctor and Rose both recognise the uncanny family resemblance.
  • This is the first occurrence of the Doctor's TARDIS being piloted by six people, that number first being specified in NA: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible.
  • This episode marks the last appearance of the Tenth Doctor's severed hand which first appeared in DW: The Christmas Invasion and throughout the first season of Torchwood.
  • Davros mentions meeting Sarah at the birth of his creations; this happened in DW: Genesis of the Daleks.
  • Mickey Smith and Jackie Tyler last appeared in DW: Doomsday.
  • Donna tells the Doctor how to fix the Chameleon Circuit which has been broken since DW: An Unearthly Child. The Sixth Doctor had previously attempted this in DW: Attack of the Cybermen, as had the Fourth Doctor in DW: Logopolis.
  • This is the third time a Doctor has been depicted in a way to suggest he was unclothed. The first time was in Spearhead from Space in which a newly regenerated Third Doctor took a shower. The second was during the regeneration from the Seventh to the Eighth Doctor, where he was merely covered by a sheet. The Ninth Doctor appeared shirtless during the torture scene in Dalek
  • Gallifrey is mentioned again and the first time it has been mentioned in an episode with Rose Tyler .

[edit] DVD and Other releases

Category:Information -- posted at: 8:43am UTC

TDP 65: Doctor Who 4.12 The Stolen Earth & 4.13 Journey's End Notes to follow shortly
Direct download: TDP_065_4_12_and_4_13.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

German Lesson

If you were wondering about some of the dialogue during Martha's trip to Germany, Script Editor Lindsey Alford and Kevin Myers offer these handy translations!:

FX: way off in the distance, DALEKS, in the air, gliding slowly through the trees.

DALEKS: Exterminieren! Exterminieren! Halt! Sonst werden wir Sie exterminieren! Sie sind jetzt ein Gefangener der Daleks! Exterminieren! Exterminieren!

Translation: Exterminate! Exterminate! Stop! Or you will be exterminated. You are a prisoner of the Daleks. Exterminate! Exterminate!

Martha heads off in the opposite direction. Scurrying away into the darkness. On a mission.


OLD WOMAN: Hier ist niemand. Was immer Sie wollen, gehen Sie fort. Lassen Sie mich in Ruhe.

Translation: There's no one here. Whatever you want, just go away. Leave me alone.

The OLD WOMAN's hostile, standing on the path.

MARTHA: Ich heisse Martha Jones. Ich komme von UNIT. Agentin fuenf sechs sechs sieben eins, von der medizinishen Abteilung.

Translation: I'm called Martha Jones. I come from UNIT. Agent 5, 6, 6, 7, 1. Medical officer.

OLD WOMAN: Es hiess Sie kaemen vorbei.

Translation: They said you might come.


OLD WOMAN: Sie sind der Albtraum. Nicht die anderen, Sie! Ich sollte Sie umbringen, am besten gleich jetzt!

Translation: You are the nightmare. It's not them, it's you! I should kill you right now!

MARTHA: Then do it.

And Martha just steps into the lift.

The Old Woman lowers her gun, defeated, shaking.

OLD WOMAN: Marta. Zur Hoelle mit Dir.

Translation: Martha. You're going straight to Hell.

Category:Information -- posted at: 11:23am UTC

TDP 64: Notes from a Stolen Earth

Bees are small yellow and black sociable members of the  vespiform subspecies. Hailing originally from the  planet and migrating to the planet Fintlewoodlewix over 7 million ago.

 

Mistaken by the local inhabitants as nothing more than

poorly armed Insects, with an innate ability to dance, they were largely ignored until it was discovered that they vomit was surprisingly palatable to most native species.

 

Bee’s attempts to communicate or implant their portable translation devices into the native species were usually mistaken as attempts to sting humans. 

 

This miss interpretation of events never distracted the Bees trying to make first contact despite a surprisingly high death count on the side of the Bees.

 

However. The Bees left the renamed planet – now called Earth – Galactic codex Sol 3 - shortly before its removal too the Medusa Cascade.

 

The last message from the bees was miss translated by a kindly Bee Keeper who assumed the Bee was communicating the location of a bowl of petunias to its fellow drones.

 

The message was infact.

 

So long and thanks for all the nectar.

 

 

 

Direct download: Stolen_redux.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 3:33pm UTC

TDP 63: Doctor Who 4.11  Turn Left

While visiting a market on the planet of Shan Shen with the Doctor, Donna Noble is offered a free fortune reading. The fortune-teller presses Donna to reveal her past and focuses on a point in her past on modern-day Earth where she was driving to her temporary job at H. C. Clements, despite her mother's desire that she take a permanent job nearby. As a large beetle-like creature climbs onto Donna's back, the teller convinces Donna to change her mind in the past, taking a right at the road junction per her mother's wishes instead of a left.

The narrative turns to the alternate history created by Donna's choice, far bleaker than the course of events established in previous episodes. The Doctor dies permanently during the Racnoss' attack on London ("The Runaway Bride"), killed by the water pressure before he could regenerate, because Donna was not there to convince him to leave. Royal Hope Hospital is taken to the moon and returned ("Smith and Jones"), but only one person, Martha's fellow medical student Oliver Morgenstern, survives. Martha Jones and Sarah Jane Smith are among the dead (the latter apparently having foiled Florence Finnegan's plan). The Titanic crashes into the centre of London, wiping out the city and irradiating most of southern England ("Voyage of the Damned"). In the United States, 60 million people are turned into creatures made of fat ("Partners in Crime"). The Sontarans attempt to turn Earth into a breeding world ("The Poison Sky"), which is stopped by Jack Harkness and his remaining Torchwood team of Gwen Cooper and Ianto Jones. However, Gwen and Ianto are killed and Jack is transported to Sontar.

Throughout all these events, Rose Tyler keeps appearing before Donna. Aware of the events to come, she steers Donna away from mortal danger but refuses to give her name. After the latest tragedy, Rose urges Donna to come with her, even though she will die. Donna initially refuses, but three weeks later, as she and her grandfather talk about recent events, the stars begin disappearing throughout the sky. Donna tells Rose that she is ready.

Rose escorts Donna to a UNIT base where the dying TARDIS is being used to help power a makeshift time machine. Rose uses the system to show Donna the beetle that crawled onto her back during the fortune-telling. It is in temporal flux and cannot be removed, but Rose explains that Donna herself is also a point of flux. In order to set things right, they prepare to send her back in time to stop herself from going right. Donna agrees to go, but when she asks if she will get to live this time, Rose remains silent. Donna is sent back in time, but ends up half a mile away and with only four minutes to spare. Finding herself short of the mark on the road leading from the right of the critical intersection, Donna remembers what Rose said about her death and throws herself in front of a removal van. Traffic backs up to the intersection and the past Donna turns left, unwilling to wait for it to clear. As the future Donna lies on the ground, Rose leans over and whispers two words to pass on to the Doctor.

Back on Shan Shen, the beetle falls off of Donna's back and the fortune teller flees, frightened by this unexpected development. The Doctor finds Donna and the beetle. He explains that it normally affects only the person it attaches to (the universe merely "compensates"), but in Donna's case created a parallel world. The Doctor is curious about the other alternate realities that seem to form around Donna ("Forest of the Dead"). He ponders the coincidences surrounding Donna and himself, as if something is binding them together. When Donna insists that she is nothing special, the Doctor tells her that she is brilliant, which triggers her fading memories of Rose. She tells him about Rose's warning that "the darkness is coming" and that it is affecting all worlds. At his insistence, Donna tells him the words Rose said; "Bad Wolf". Horrified, the Doctor runs outside to find that the words "Bad Wolf" are everywhere, even on the TARDIS. Inside the Cloister Bell is ringing and the TARDIS interior is glowing red. When Donna asks about the meaning of "Bad Wolf", the Doctor replies, "It's the end of the universe."


This episode revisits the events of most of the present-day stories since Donna first met the Doctor, including "The Runaway Bride", "Smith and Jones", "Voyage of the Damned", "Partners in Crime", and "The Sontaran Stratagem" / "The Poison Sky". The Doctor's absence during these events leads to the deaths of Martha Jones, Sarah Jane Smith, Gwen Cooper and Ianto Jones. Jack Harkness, who cannot be killed, is transported to Sontar.

Torchwood characters Gwen Cooper and Ianto Jones are referred to by name for the first time in Doctor Who, while a short segment of music from the soundtrack of Torchwood plays in the background. Sarah Jane Smith is mentioned for the first time since "The Girl in the Fireplace", along with the first mentions of The Sarah Jane Adventures characters Luke Smith, Clyde Langer, and Maria Jackson.

The recurring "Bad Wolf" motif, primarily from series 1, returns at the conclusion of this episode to warn the Doctor of the events that are causing Rose to return. The TARDIS's Cloister Bell, last used in "Time Crash", can also be heard at the end of the episode. Sylvia Noble mentions that the bees are disappearing, which has been mentioned by Donna in "Partners in Crime", "Planet of the Ood", and "The Unicorn and the Wasp".

Donna's father Geoff, who appeared in "The Runaway Bride", is mentioned for the first time since "The Fires of Pompeii". It is implied that he was ill during the timescale of "Smith and Jones", and had died by the time of "Voyage of the Damned". His character was intended to be used during series 4, but was retired after actor Howard Attfield died before his scenes were finished. He was replaced by Bernard Cribbins, whose previous role as an anonymous newspaper seller was merged with that of Donna's grandfather.

The "Time Beetle"[2] on Donna's back is described by the Doctor as part of "the Trickster's brigade". The Trickster was a time-altering villain in The Sarah Jane Adventures story Whatever Happened to Sarah Jane?. The beetle on her back was also referenced by Lucius Dextrus in "The Fires of Pompeii" with the line, "Daughter of London, there is something on your back!".

Sarah Jane Smith is said to write for the fictional Metropolitan magazine as previously mentioned in Planet of the Spiders.

Rose mentions the "causal nexus", which was discussed by the Doctor and the Master in "Logopolis."

Production

The episode, filmed at the same time as "Midnight", saw the Doctor with very little screen-time, while "Midnight" saw Donna with little screen-time.[3] Tennant shot all his scenes, at the episode's beginning and end, in one day, while a double stood in for the shot of the dead Doctor's arm.[2]

The appearance of the Giant Spider of Metebelis 3 that clung to Sarah Jane Smith's back in Planet of the Spiders influenced the design and concept of the "Time Beetle" that clings to Donna's back in this episode.[2]

[edit] Cast notes

Billie Piper makes her first substantial appearance on the show since "Doomsday". Interviewed for Doctor Who Confidential, Piper said her return had been planned at the time of her original departure but that around three weeks before filming she decided to rewatch some of her old episodes to refamiliarise herself with the role and ease her doubts that she could play Rose again.[2]

Clive Standen reprises the role of Private Harris (credited in this episode as "UNIT Soldier") from "The Sontaran Strategem" / "The Poison Sky". Here he is shown to have been in attendance during the Webstar crisis. Ben Righton reprises the role of Oliver Morgenstern from "Smith and Jones", in this episode the only survivor when the hospital is returned to Earth, Martha Jones having given him the last oxygen pack. Lachele Carl returns as American newsreader Trinity Wells, who previously appeared in the Doctor Who episodes "Aliens of London"/"World War Three", "The Christmas Invasion", "The Sound of Drums" and "The Poison Sky", in addition to The Sarah Jane Adventures story Revenge of the Slitheen. Chipo Chung, who plays the fortune-teller, previously appeared as Chantho in the episode "Utopia".

Reception

Based on BARB overnight returns, "Turn Left" was watched by 7 million viewers, giving it a 35% share of the total television audience.[4] The episode received an Appreciation Index score of 88 (considered "Excellent").[5]

Keith Watson for the Metro newspaper called it a "daring" episode and praised Catherine Tate's performance, which was "perfectly suited to a complex story... Doctor Who could get away with being a lot less clever. But they actually care about what they do."[6] However, Sam Wollaston of The Guardian felt Tate was overshadowed by the return of Billie Piper. "Catherine Tate really puts everything into this episode (too much, maybe). But as soon as Rose shows, Donna's a goner."[7]



201 – "Turn Left"
Doctor Who episode

In the makeshift TARDIS-powered UNIT time machine, Rose shows Donna what is on her back
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companion Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)
Also starring Billie Piper (Rose Tyler)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Russell T. Davies
Director Graeme Harper
Script editor Brian Minchin
Producer Susie Liggat
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Phil Collinson
Production code 4.11
Series Series 4
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast 21 June 2008
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
"Midnight" "The Stolen Earth"
Direct download: Turn_Left.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 8:36pm UTC

Bad Wolf

The words Bad Wolf as aerosol graffiti on the TARDIS in "Aliens of London"
The words Bad Wolf as aerosol graffiti on the TARDIS in "Aliens of London"

The first arc word of the new series, "Bad Wolf", began to crop up in various ways starting from the second episode, "The End of the World", and then grew in prominence, leading to much fan speculation over the course of the series as to what the phrase referred to and what its ultimate significance would be. In this respect, the phrase was also a form of viral marketing.

There was little clue to the meaning of the phrase until "The Parting of the Ways", where it was revealed to be a message spread by Rose Tyler throughout time after infusing herself with the power of the heart of the TARDIS. Having infused herself with the power of the time vortex, Rose gained seemingly infinite reality warping abilities with which she obliterated a Dalek fleet, before this fatal energy was removed from her by the Doctor. Describing herself as "see[ing] the whole of time and space", the extent of Rose's actions remains unclear. She revived Jack Harkness, an event which made him immortal, perhaps purposefully, and also acted as the catalyst for the Ninth Doctor's regeneration into the Tenth.

I am the Bad Wolf. I create myself. I take the words. I scatter them ... in time, and space. A message to lead myself here.

—Rose Tyler in "The Parting of the Ways".

Bad Wolf arc

The phrase first appeared in the second episode of the 2005 series, and then in every story of that series thereafter. It also occasionally appeared in the 2006 and 2007 series.

Within the 2005 series of Doctor Who, the arc comprised the following episodes:

  • "The Long Game": One of the several thousand television channels being broadcast from Satellite Five is BAD WOLFTV.
  • "Father's Day": A poster advertising a rave in 1987 has the words "BAD WOLF" defacing it.
  • "Boom Town": A nuclear power plant is dubbed the Blaidd Drwg project, which is Welsh for "Bad Wolf". The Doctor also mentions for the first time that the phrase had been following them around.
  • "Bad Wolf"/"The Parting of the Ways": The corporation that runs the Game Station (formerly Satellite Five) is called the Badwolf Corporation. It is from this corporation's logo that Rose "takes the words" to scatter throughout Time and Space, resulting in the other appearances of the phrase. It is also in scattered graffiti around Rose's council estate, including on a poster tacked to the wall behind Rose's head in the café scene and in giant letters on a paved recreation ground. The latter is faded, but still visible, in "New Earth".

Since the initial arc, the phrase Bad Wolf has reappeared in the background of many other scenes. 2007 series episode "Gridlock" features the Japanese word Akurō, Japanese for "evil wolf", labelled on poster in a car. Torchwood episode "Captain Jack Harkness" featured the phrase as graffiti in a Welsh dance hall, and in Torchwood book Another Life by Peter Anghelides, a large part of the plot revolves around the Blaidd Drwg nuclear power station. In a re-creation of classic Second Doctor serial The Invasion , the animators slipped a Bad Wolf on the wall where Zoe scribbled the phone number. Other allusions since "The Parting of the Ways" include the 2006 series episode "Tooth and Claw", in which the Host mentions that Rose has "seen [the wolf] too", and that there is "something of the wolf about [her]".

The phrase reappeared in the 2008 series episode "Turn Left": At the end of this episode all text turns into "Bad Wolf", including the backlit signs and the board on the front of the TARDIS. This is described by the Doctor to be the end of the universe. There was an earlier visual reference in the 2008 series: one of the drawings by the little girl (in episode "Forest of the Dead") featured a blonde girl and a wolf.

The phrase was similarly used as a precursor explanation of possible inconsistencies, such as in "Love & Monsters",[4] effectively attributing them to the actions of Rose as the Bad Wolf during "The Parting of the Ways". As the phrase is a reminder of the connection between the Doctor and Rose, it appears explicitly in their final farewell; in "Doomsday", the Doctor projects an image to say goodbye to Rose on a beach in the Norway of the parallel Earth called "Dårlig ulv stranden", which she translates as "Bad Wolf Bay". (In actuality, it can be translated to "Bad Wolf Beach").

Also on the Doctor Who website, the Captain Jack monster file for Judoon, there is a advert for good wolf insurance.

Other media

The tie-in websites set up by the BBC to accompany the series also featured appearances of the phrase. The "Who is Doctor Who?" site featured a clip from "World War Three" with an American newsreader. This clip differed from the one shown in the broadcast version in only one respect: the newsreader was identified as "Mal Loup", French for "bad wolf". At one point, the Doctor is described as being off "making another decision for us, all 'I'm the big bad wolf and it's way past your bedtime.'"

The UNIT website also used "badwolf" as a password to enter the "secure" areas of the website. The Geocomtex website's support page has BADWOLF transcribed in Morse Code, and its products page make mention of Lupus and Nocens variants for their "node stabilisers" (lupus nocens is Latin for "wolf who harms"). They also offered "Argentum Ordnance", argentum being Latin for "silver" — silver bullets being traditionally used for killing werewolves.

In the background image of the BBC Doctor Who website's TARDISODE page, the words "BAD WOLF" can be seen scrawled behind Mickey Smith.[5] The graffiti can also be seen in the background of Rose Tyler's character page.[6]

In one of the areas in the Ghostwatch game, "BAD WOLF" is written as graffiti on a wall.

The phrase occurs in some of the New Series Adventures, the BBC Books range of spin-off novels based on the new series. The Ninth Doctor Adventures run concurrently with the 2005 series.

  • In The Deviant Strain, also by Richards, a psychic character tells Rose that he fears "The bad wolf... The man with the wolf on his arm." Later, this character is indirectly killed by another character who has a tattoo of a wolf on his arm.

The phrase also appears in later Tenth Doctor novels, such as Peacemaker a character says the Doctor is 'the man who defeated the Bad Wolf'.

There were two "Bad Wolf" references in the Doctor Who Magazine Ninth Doctor comic strips. In Part Two of The Love Invasion (DWM #356, May 2005), there is a poster on the wall of a pub reading "Bad Wolf". In Part One of A Groatsworth of Wit (DWM #363, December 2005), a tavern sign in Elizabethan London features a picture of a wolf's head and the initials "B.W."

A motorcycle gang in the Torchwood Magazine comic Jetsam is named Blaid Drwg.

Category:Information -- posted at: 9:22am UTC

 No       Title            Original airdate

1          An Unearthly Child            23 November–14 December 1963

            aka 100,000 BC    

            aka The Tribe of Gum    

2          The Daleks  21 December 1963–1 February 1964

            aka The Mutants    

            aka The Dead Planet  

3          The Edge of Destruction            8–15 February 1964

            aka Inside the Spaceship        

            aka Beyond the Sun           

4          Marco Polo     22 February–4 April 1964

            aka A Journey Through Cathay

5          The Keys of Marinus            11 April–16 May 1964

            aka The Sea of Death  

6          The Aztecs  23 May–13 June 1964

7          The Sensorites            20 June–1 August 1964

8          The Reign of Terror            8 August–12 September 1964

            aka The French Revolution       

                       

Season 2 (1964-65)                   

                  

No       Title            Original airdate

9          Planet of Giants            31 October–14 November 1964

10        The Dalek Invasion of Earth            21 November–26 December 1964

            aka World's End    

11        The Rescue 2–9 January 1965

12        The Romans            16 January–6 February 1965

13        The Web Planet            13 February –20 March 1965

            aka The Zarbi        

14        The Crusade            27 March–17 April 1965

            aka The Lionheart  

            aka The Crusaders 

15        The Space Museum            24 April–15 May 1965

16        The Chase   22 May–26 June 1965

17        The Time Meddler            3–24 July 1965

                       

Season 3 (1965-66)                   

                     

No       Title            Original airdate

18        Galaxy 4          11 September–2 October 1965

                       

19            "Mission to the Unknown"            09-Oct-65

            aka "Dalek Cutaway"        

20        The Myth Makers            16 October–6 November 1965

                       

21        The Daleks' Master Plan      13 November 1965–29 January 1966

                      

22        The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve      5 February–26 February 1966

            aka The Massacre  

23        The Ark      5 March–26 March 1966

24        The Celestial Toymaker            2 April–23 April 1966

                       

25        The Gunfighters            30 April–21 May 1966

26        The Savages[b]            28 May–18 June 1966

                       

27        The War Machines            25 June–16 July 1966

                       

Season 4 (1966-67)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

28        The Smugglers            10 September–1 October 1966

                       

29        The Tenth Planet            8–29 October 1966

                       

                       

Second Doctor            

                    

Season 4 (1966-67) — continued                     

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

30        The Power of the Daleks  5 November–10 December 1966

                       

31        The Highlanders            17 December 1966–7 January 1967

                       

32        The Underwater Menace            14 January–4 February 1967

                       

33        The Moonbase            11 February–3 March 1967

                       

34        The Macra Terror            11 March–1 April 1967

                       

35        The Faceless Ones            8 April–13 May 1967

                       

36        The Evil of the Daleks  20 May–1 July 1967

                      

Season 5 (1967-68)                   

                     

No       Title            Original airdate

37        The Tomb of the Cybermen            2–23 September 1967

38        The Abominable Snowmen            30 September–4 November 1967

                       

39        The Ice Warriors            11 November–16 December 1967

                       

40        The Enemy of the World  23 December 1967–27 January 1968

                       

41        The Web of Fear            3 February–9 March 1968

                       

42        Fury from the Deep            16 March–20 April 1968

                       

43        The Wheel in Space            27 April–1 June 1968

                       

Season 6 (1968-69)                   

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

44        The Dominators            10 August–7 September 1968

45        The Mind Robber            14 September–12 October 1968

46        The Invasion            2 November–21 December 1968

                       

47        The Krotons            28 December 1968–18 January 1969

48        The Seeds of Death            25 January–1 March 1969

49        The Space Pirates            8 March–12 April 1969

                       

50        The War Games            19 April–21 June 1969

                       

Third Doctor               

                       

Season 7 (1970)             

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

51            Spearhead from Space            3–24 January 1970

52        Doctor Who and the Silurians            31 January–14 March 1970

            aka The Silurians    

53        The Ambassadors of Death            21 March–2 May 1970

                       

54        Inferno            9 May–20 June 1970

                       

Season 8 (1971)             

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

55        Terror of the Autons            2–23 January 1971

56        The Mind of Evil            30 January–6 March 1971

                       

57        The Claws of Axos            13 March–3 April 1971

58        Colony in Space            10 April–15 May 1971

59        The Dæmons            22 May–19 June 1971

                       

Season 9 (1972)             

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

60        Day of the Daleks            1–22 January 1972

61        The Curse of Peladon            29 January–19 February 1972

62        The Sea Devils            26 February–1 April 1972

63        The Mutants            8 April–13 May 1972

64        The Time Monster            20 May–24 June 1972

                       

Season 10 (1972-73)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

65        The Three Doctors[c]            30 December 1972–20 January 1973

66            Carnival of Monsters            27 January–17 February 1973

67        Frontier in Space            24 February–31 March 1973

68        Planet of the Daleks            7 April–12 May 1973

                       

69        The Green Death            19 May–23 June 1973

                       

Season 11 (1973-74)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

70        The Time Warrior            15 December 1973-5 January 1974

71            Invasion of the Dinosaurs [d]            12 January–16 February 1974

                       

72        Death to the Daleks            23 February–16 March 1974

73        The Monster of Peladon            23 March–27 April 1974

74        Planet of the Spiders            4 May–8 June 1974

                       

Fourth Doctor             

                   

Season 12 (1974-75)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

75        Robot            28 December 1974–18 January 1975

76        The Ark in Space            25 January–15 February 1975

77        The Sontaran Experiment            22 February–1 March 1975

78        Genesis of the Daleks            8 March–12 April 1975

79            Revenge of the Cybermen            19 April–10 May 1975

                       

Season 13 (1975-76)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

80        Terror of the Zygons            30 August–20 September 1975

81        Planet of Evil   27 September–18 October 1975

82            Pyramids of Mars            25 October–15 November 1975

83        The Android Invasion            22 November–13 December 1975

84        The Brain of Morbius            3–24 January 1976

85        The Seeds of Doom            31 January–6 March 1976

                       

Season 14 (1976-77)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

86        The Masque of Mandragora            4–25 September 1976

87        The Hand of Fear            2–23 October 1976

88        The Deadly Assassin            30 October–20 November 1976

89        The Face of Evil            1–22 January 1977

90        The Robots of Death   29 January – 19 February 1977

91        The Talons of Weng-Chiang            26 February – 2 April 1977

                       

Season 15 (1977-78)                   

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

92        Horror of Fang Rock            3–24 September 1977

93        The Invisible Enemy            1–22 October 1977

94        Image of the Fendahl            29 October–19 November 1977

95        The Sun Makers            26 November–17 December 1977

96            Underworld   7–28 January 1978

97        The Invasion of Time     4 February – 11 March 1978

                       

Season 16 (1978-79)                   

                    

No       Title            Original airdate

98        The Ribos Operation            2–23 September 1978

99        The Pirate Planet            30 September–21 October 1978

100      The Stones of Blood   28 October–18 November 1978

101      The Androids of Tara     25 November–16 December 1978

102      The Power of Kroll            23 December 1978–13 January 1979

103      The Armageddon Factor  20 January – 24 February 1979

                       

Season 17 (1979-80)                   

                    

No       Title            Original airdate

104      Destiny of the Daleks            1–22 September 1979

105      City of Death   29 September–20 October 1979

106      The Creature from the Pit   27 October–17 November 1979

107            Nightmare of Eden            24 November–15 December 1979

108      The Horns of Nimon  22 December 1979–12 January 1980

109            Shada[e]         Unaired

                       

Season 18 (1980-81)                   

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

110      The Leisure Hive            30 August–20 September 1980

111      Meglos            27 September–18 October 1980

112      Full Circle   25 October–15 November 1980

113      State of Decay  22 November–13 December 1980

114            Warriors' Gate  3–24 January 1981

115      The Keeper of Traken 31 January–21 February 1981

116            Logopolis         28 February–21 March 1981

                       

Fifth Doctor                 

                     

Season 19 (1982)             

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

117            Castrovalva      4–12 January 1982

118      Four to Doomsday            18–26 January 1982

119      Kinda            1–9 February 1982

120      The Visitation            15–23 February 1982

121      Black Orchid  1–2 March 1982

122            Earthshock      8–16 March 1982

123      Time-Flight    22–30 March 1982

                       

Season 20 (1983)             

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

124      Arc of Infinity  3-12 January 1983

125            Snakedance     18-26 January 1983

126            Mawdryn Undead            1-9 February 1983

127            Terminus         15-23 February 1983

128            Enlightenment   1-9 March 1983

129      The King's Demons            15-16 March 1983

130      The Five Doctors[f]            23-Nov-83

                      

Season 21 (1984)             

                

No       Title            Original airdate

131            Warriors of the Deep            5–13 January 1984

132      The Awakening            19–20 January 1984

133            Frontios           26 January–3 February 1984

134            Resurrection of the Daleks  8–15 February 1984

                       

135      Planet of Fire  23 February–2 March 1984

136      The Caves of Androzani            8–16 March 1984

                       

Sixth Doctor                

                      

Season 21 (1984) — continued                     

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

137      The Twin Dilemma            22–30 March 1984

                       

Season 22 (1985)             

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

138      Attack of the Cybermen            5–12 January 1985

139            Vengeance on Varos            19–26 January 1985

140      The Mark of the Rani     2–9 February 1985

141      The Two Doctors            16 February–2 March 1985

142            Timelash          9–16 March 1985

143            Revelation of the Daleks  23–30 March 1985

                       

Season 23 (1986)             

                       

Main article: The Trial of a Time Lord                   

                     

No       Title            Original airdate

144      The Mysterious Planet   6–27 September 1986

145            Mindwarp       4–25 October 1986

146      Terror of the Vervoids            1–22 November 1986

            aka The Vervoids   

147      The Ultimate Foe            29 November–6 December 1986

            aka Time Incorporated   

                       

Seventh Doctor                       

                      

Season 24 (1987)             

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

148      Time and the Rani            7–28 September 1987

149            Paradise Towers            5–26 October 1987

150      Delta and the Bannermen            2–16 November 1987

151            Dragonfire       23 November–7 December 1987

                       

Season 25 (1988-89)                   

                       

No       Title            Original airdate

152            Remembrance of the Daleks  5–26 October 1988

153      The Happiness Patrol   2–16 November 1988

154      Silver Nemesis            23 November–7 December 1988

155      The Greatest Show in the Galaxy            14 December 1988–4 January 1989

                       

Season 26 (1989)             

                      

No       Title            Original airdate

156            Battlefield        6–27 September 1989

157      Ghost Light     4–18 October 1989

158      The Curse of Fenric            25 October–15 November 1989

159      Survival            22 November–6 December 1989

                       

Eighth Doctor              

                       

Category:Information -- posted at: 10:18am UTC

TDP 62: Doctor Who 4.10 Midnight

"Midnight" is the tenth episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was first broadcast on BBC One on 14 June 2008.


Synopsis

The Doctor and Donna take a holiday on the crystalline planet Midnight, which orbits close enough to its sun that the Xtonic radiation exposure would vaporise any living thing walking unprotected on its surface. Donna opts to relax at a spa while the Doctor takes a four-hour shuttle bus ride to the Sapphire Waterfall. Other passengers include the Cane family — Val (Coulson), Biff (Ryan), and their teenage son Jethro (Morgan) — Professor Hobbes (Troughton) and his assistant Dee Dee Blasco (Antoine), and businesswoman Sky Silvestry (Sharp). The staff are the driver Joe (Bluto), trainee mechanic Claude (Henry), and a steward who is only referred to as 'the Hostess' (Ayola).

The trip initially goes smoothly despite the shuttle being rerouted to a new course, but suddenly the shuttle stops. The Doctor checks with the shuttle's driver and mechanic, confirming that there's nothing wrong with the vehicle. He convinces them to open the shutter to look outside, and the mechanic believes he sees a shadow moving towards the bus. The crew calls for a rescue vehicle while the Doctor returns to the main cabin.

A few moments later, something begins knocking on the shuttle's hull, copying the passengers when they knock back. The knocking moves around the shuttle, making its way towards Sky Silvestry, apparently the most frightened of the lot, and dents the door she is standing by. The lights then temporarily fail and the shuttle is violently rocked. When the lights are restored, the seats near Sky have been ripped off the floor and she is cowering in the corner. An attempt to speak to the cabin crew reveals that their cabin has also been ripped away, exposing Joe and Claude to the deadly sunlight.

Sky initially remains motionless, but is coaxed into turning around by the Doctor. Attempts to get her to speak only cause her to repeat what she is told, making it clear that Sky is no longer in control. The delay between Sky's repetitions becomes shorter, until eventually she begins speaking in exact unison with the passengers. Cabin fever sets in, and the passengers contemplate throwing her outside. The Doctor's attempts to calm the situation fail when the passengers become suspicious of him, especially when he is unwilling to reveal his name. This is only amplified when Sky focuses solely on repeating the Doctor's words.

As the Doctor tries to reason with Sky, she begins speaking his words first, and the Doctor quickly becomes the one doing the repeating. Most of the passengers reason that whatever was in Sky has now passed into the Doctor, while the hostess and Dee Dee reason that this is just the next step: stealing the voice of another. The other passengers refuse to listen and begin to drag the Doctor towards the nearest door after being goaded by Sky. However, the hostess realises that Sky is not talking in her own voice when she uses two phrases the Doctor had used earlier. Before the other passengers can throw the Doctor out, she sacrifices herself by dragging Sky out of another door. The Doctor slowly recovers, and as the passengers wait for the rescue shuttle, he realises that no one knew the hostess' name. At the spa, a mournful Doctor reunites with Donna.

Continuity

Rose Tyler appears on one of the shuttle's television screens shortly after the lifeform attacks the transport, echoing a similar appearance in "The Poison Sky". In both instances, she silently shouts for the Doctor, who is not there to see the image in the first instance and is looking the opposite way in this episode. Rose is also mentioned by the Doctor by name along with Martha and Donna.

This is the first story since Genesis of the Daleks where the TARDIS does not appear.

This is the second full story featuring the Doctor without a companion in the main narrative, the first being The Deadly Assassin (Mission to the Unknown in 1965 featured neither the Doctor nor his companions). It is also the only time where the adversary is neither seen nor given a name.[2]

When the Doctor is asked for his real name, he lies and replies with the name "John Smith", a common alias of his, which is not believed. The mystery behind the Doctor's name and the use of a simple alias is a recurring theme in the series' revival.

Two of the Tenth Doctor's common phrases are used to identify his voice: "allons-y" and "molto bene", first used in "Army of Ghosts" and "The Runaway Bride" respectively.[2]

Production

This episode is the fiftieth episode filmed for the revived series, and was filmed at the same time as "Turn Left". Donna has a minor role in the episode (appearing in only the pre-credits sequence and the final scene), while the Doctor has a minor role in "Turn Left".[1][3][4]

Cast notes

David Troughton, cast here as Professor Hobbes, was a late replacement for Sam Kelly, who broke his leg and had to withdraw from the production. Troughton joined the rest of the cast in Cardiff with just two days notice. An actor now known for his stage work with the RSC as well as television, he is the son of Patrick Troughton, who portrayed the Second Doctor. He had a long association with the early series in the 1960s and early 1970s, appearing as an uncredited extra in the first, fifth, and sixth episodes of the Second Doctor serial The Enemy of the World as Private Moor in the sixth episode of the Second Doctor serial The War Games[, and as King Peladon in all four episodes of the Third Doctor serial The Curse of Peladon. [8][9] More recently he has appeared as the Tinghus in the Doctor Who audio adventure Cuddlesome.

Reception

Based on BARB overnight returns, "Midnight" was watched by 7.3 million viewers, giving it a 38% share of the total television audience. [] against ITV's live coverage of a UEFA Euro 2008 international football match. The episode received an Appreciation Index score of 86 (considered "Excellent").

The Guardian's TV reviewer Sam Wollaston described the episode as "great... it's tense and claustrophobic, and gnaws away at you." He praised the fact that all the action happened in one confined space with an unseen enemy, saying "this is psychological drama rather than full-blown horror; creepy-unknown scary, not special-effect-monster scary." The Times's reviewer Andrew Billen was more critical, writing that Tennant's Doctor was becoming "increasingly irritating". He called the episode "sheet upon sheet of dialogue" that "felt too much of a writing exercise to be really scary" and a case-in-point of how the 2008 series "fails as often as it succeeds". Billen did, however, praise the episode for its claustrophobic atmosphere and for showing the series was "not afraid of variety [and]... dead scared of repetition".



200 – "Midnight"
Doctor Who episode

Sky Silvestry synchronises with the Doctor
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companion Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Russell T. Davies
Director Alice Troughton
Script editor Helen Raynor
Producer Phil Collinson
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 4.10
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 14 June 2008
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
"Forest of the Dead" "Turn Left"
Direct download: Midnight.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 10:15pm UTC

To get a replacement disc you need to send your current one to:

DVD Support
2Entertain
33 Foley Street
London
W1W 7TL

 

The just released K9 Tales DVD set has a problem at the end of Episode 3 of The Invisible Enemy that causes scenes to play out of order.

the fault kicks in at around 21' 10, when Tom says "Get out of my head!" - there is a leap to the final lab scene where the "shrimp" appears. this continues to 22' 07 and the beginning of the "sting" when we return to the scene in Tom's head, until 22'27, when the credits kick in suddenly. this is all too noticeable and makes the end of the episode total nonsense.

 

 

Category:general -- posted at: 2:39pm UTC

TDP 61: Doctor Who 4.08 & 4.09 Silence in the Library - Forest of the Dead

"Silence in the Library" is the eighth episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who, first broadcast on 31 May 2008.[1] It is the first of a two-part story by Steven Moffat, followed by "Forest of the Dead


Plot

Synopsis

The Doctor and Donna arrive in the 51st century at a planet-sized book repository simply called "The Library", summoned by an anonymous request for help on the Doctor's psychic paper. However, they find it completely devoid of humanoid life, and the Library's computers even claim as such, though when the Doctor widens the search for non-humanoid life, the Library's computers claim over "a million million lifeforms" exist. A Node, an information drone which presents a donated human face to the user to facilitate communication, warns them to count the shadows, which appear despite the lack of objects to cast them. As they try to search for answers, they meet a team of explorers, led by archaeologist Professor River Song, who have come to ascertain the meaning of the Library's final communication, which states "4022 saved, no survivors". River Song seems to know the Doctor, has a diary with a cover matching the Doctor's TARDIS, and even possesses a sonic screwdriver. She also later displays knowledge of the TARDIS' "emergency program one". She only admits that she will know the Doctor in his relative future, refusing to disclose more for fear of "spoilers". Professor Song also recognises Donna's name, but avoids explaining why Donna was not present when she knew the Doctor.

The Doctor organizes the team to make sure the area is well lit as he explains that they are surrounded by Vashta Nerada, microscopic carnivorous creatures that disguise themselves as shadows to hunt and latch onto their prey. He notes that they are usually nowhere near as aggressive or numerous as the ones here seem to be. Before he can fully explain, however, one of the explorers wanders off and is stripped to the bone in moments. The Doctor and Donna learn that the exploration team wears communication devices which link to their nervous systems for thought-based communication. As a side-effect, these devices tend to pick up an imprint of the user at the moment of death, creating a short-lived "Data Ghost" of that person's consciousness.

Curiously, the Library's operations seem to be tied to the imagination of a young girl; she sees the Doctor and Donna through the eyes of a security camera when they first break into central room, the exploration team appears on her television when the Doctor attempts to hack the Library computers, and books fly from the shelves when she fiddles with the television's remote control. The girl is under the observation of Dr Moon, a child psychologist, at the request of her dad, but Dr Moon insists to the girl that what she imagines in her nightmares is in fact real, while the "real" world is a lie. He also states that there are people in her library who need to be saved.

The team's investigation is interrupted when a shadow of Vashta Nerada latches onto the pilot, Dave. Although the Doctor attempts to save him by sealing him inside his suit, the creatures manage to get inside, eat him alive, and then animate his suit in order to chase the other explorers. The Doctor attempts to teleport Donna back to the TARDIS while he leads the rest of the team to safety, but something goes wrong with the teleport and Donna fails to materialize properly. As the team races away from the possessed suit, the Doctor is horrified to find a Node with Donna's face on it, which claims that Donna has left the Library and has been "saved". The show ends in a cliffhanger as the Doctor is forced to leave the Node behind, but is trapped by the approaching suit on one side and the Vashta Nerada shadows on the other.

Continuity

As shown on the BBC Doctor Who website, there are a number of books in the library either written by former Doctor Who writers or featured in previous episodes. Among those seen are the operating manual for the TARDIS, Origins of the Universe (Destiny of the Daleks), The French Revolution (An Unearthly Child), the Journal of Impossible Things ("Human Nature"/"The Family of Blood"), The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy (written by Douglas Adams, former Doctor Who writer and script editor), Everest in Easy Stages (The Creature from the Pit) and Black Orchid (a book first seen in the Fifth Doctor serial of the same name).

The Doctor mentions that "emergency program one" will send Donna home should she be left alone in the TARDIS for five hours. In "The Parting of the Ways", this program was activated by the Ninth Doctor to send Rose Tyler home.

According to Steven Moffat, the squareness gun used by Professor River Song to help the party escape from the impending Vashta Nerada is intended to be the same sonic blaster that was used by Jack Harkness in the episode "The Doctor Dances". Moffat suggests that it was left in the TARDIS after "The Parting of the Ways", and taken by River Song in the Doctor's future. The name "squareness gun" was coined by Rose in the earlier episode.

The psychic paper has previously summoned the Doctor to a location in "New Earth", where the Face of Boe called the Doctor to his supposed deathbed.

The Doctor also mentions that he loves "a little shop", a sentiment previously expressed in the episodes "New Earth" and "Smith and Jones".

Broadcast and reception

"Silence in the Library" was scheduled against the final of ITV's talent contest Britain's Got Talent and suffered in the ratings as a result. Overnight viewing figures suggested that the episode was watched by 5.4 million viewers, although this increased to 6.27 million when adjusted for time shifting. Britain's Got Talent was viewed by 11.52 million in comparison. This was the first time since the series' revival in 2005 that Doctor Who did not have the largest audience share in its timeslot.

However, the episode did receive an Appreciation Index score of 89 (considered "Excellent")[, the joint highest figure the new series has received alongside "The Parting of the Ways", "Doomsday" and the following episode "Forest of the Dead". BBC Three's repeat of the episode was watched by 1.35 million viewers, almost double the figures for the equivalent repeat of the previous episode, "The Unicorn and the Wasp".

Production

Certain scenes were filmed at the Old Swansea Central Library and the Brangwyn Hall in Swansea, Wales.


"Forest of the Dead" is the ninth episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was first broadcast by BBC One on 7 June 2008. It is the second of a two-part story, following "Silence in the Library".


Plot

Synopsis

Immediately following the events of the previous episode, "Silence in the Library", the Doctor and the exploration team manage to escape the Vashta Nerada and take refuge in a well-lit room. As they work out a plan, the Doctor is concerned about how he can trust River Song, so she whispers a single word in his ear which convinces him: his real name. Donna Noble finds herself at a care home named "CAL", apparently two years later, with Dr Moon treating her. He introduces her to another man, Lee, and is later seen visiting the married Donna and her family. However, Donna keeps noticing that something is wrong; she seems to skip from one place to another at a whim, only to be reminded of the journey by Dr Moon, who does this frequently by ending his sentences with "...and then you remembered/forgot"). Meanwhile, the little girl watches both the Doctor and Donna by switching channels on her television.

In the library, the Doctor discovers that the moon is sending out electromagnetic signals that are interfering with his sonic screwdriver. Strackman Lux explains that the moon is a virus scanner for the planet-side computer core. The Doctor briefly interrupts this signal, and suddenly appears in Dr Moon's place next to Donna; Dr Moon is quite literally the "doctor moon". The Doctor then understands that the message "4022 saved" did not mean they were rescued, but that their teleport patterns were saved to the library's hard drive. They are found once more by the Vashta Nerada suit and forced to flee, but the Doctor stays behind to reason with it. Through the communicator on the suit, the Vashta Nerada explain that the library is their "forest"; the paper of the countless books in the library was made from trees filled with Vashta Nerada spores, from which they hatched after being shipped to the library. They manage to kill Other Dave and resume the chase. River still laments the non-appearance of the Doctor she knew, recalling him making whole armies run away and opening the TARDIS with a snap of his fingers. Anita notices she has two shadows, and the Doctor uses his sonic screwdriver to tint her visor to attempt to trick the Vashta Nerada into thinking they are already in there.

In the computer core, the truth of the situation is revealed to Donna by none other than Miss Evangelista. She reveals that her Data Ghost was captured by the library's wireless internet, but was corrupted and caused her face to become severely disfigured while increasing her intelligence, leaving her "brilliant but unloved" and able to see the false reality for what it really is. She points out that all the children are merely identical copies, and gets Donna to remember the library. However, the young girl, watching from her television, does not want Donna to know and uses her television remote control to injure one of Donna's children as a diversion. Donna leaves Miss Evangelista behind, but her acceptance of the simulated reality is nevertheless shaken, and her invented children disappear when confronted with the fact that they do not exist. The little girl, increasingly frustrated by events, "switches off" her father and throws the remote control to the floor, activating the computer's self-destruct mechanism. Dr Moon attempts to protect the girl as he is programmed to do, but he is also switched off.

Professor River Song gives her life in place of the Doctor.
Professor River Song gives her life in place of the Doctor.

To stop the self-destruct, the Doctor, River Song, and Lux make their way to the computer core. Here, Lux reveals the meaning of CAL: it is an acronym for the name Charlotte Abigail Lux, his grandfather's daughter, who was wired into the computer as a child because she was dying. In this manner, Charlotte could live forever with the sum total of human knowledge to pass the time. However, storing the patterns of 4022 unique people has filled her computer core, and is preventing normal operations. The only way to set things right is to reintegrate them in the library. As CAL cannot do this alone, the Doctor prepares to wire his own mind into the system as extra memory, though it will surely kill him. As he works, he uses his screwdriver to un-tint Anita's visor to reveal a skeleton inside - she had been dead for some time now. He insists that in exchange for getting to keep their forest, he will get to save the people in the computer core. They initially refuse, but when the Doctor tells them to search for his name in the library's archives, they immediately reconsider and give him a day to clear the planet. River, unwilling to let the Doctor die, which would rewrite history and erase their time together, knocks him out and takes his place, rescuing those trapped in the computer at the cost of her life instead of his.

As the rescued humans are teleported home, Donna meets up with the Doctor. Having been unable to find her husband from the virtual world, the pair walks to the TARDIS, unaware that he is in the next group being teleported out. As the Doctor mournfully leaves River's diary and her sonic screwdriver in the library, he realises the reason why his future self gave her the sonic screwdriver in the first place: it holds a communication device with a Data Ghost. He uses it to bring River back to life inside the computer. After returning to the TARDIS, he decides to test what River Song said about his future: he opens and closes the TARDIS doors by snapping his fingers, then continues his adventures. Meanwhile, River Song appears in the virtual world, where she is greeted by Charlotte and Dr Moon. Anita, the two Daves and Miss Evangelista (her face restored) also appear, their Data Ghosts having been saved by Charlotte and brought into the computer for eternity. Josh and Ella, the homogeneous children from CAL's world, are seen to live with Charlotte and River.

Continuity

Multiple items from previous episodes are reused here. The wedding dress Catherine Tate wears in this episode is the same dress she wore in "The Runaway Bride". According to Steven Moffat, the squareness gun used by Professor River Song to help the party escape from the impending Vashta Nerada at the beginning of the episode is intended to be the same sonic blaster that was used by Jack Harkness in the episode "The Doctor Dances". Moffat suggests that it was left in the TARDIS after "The Parting of the Ways", and taken by River Song in the Doctor's future. The name "squareness gun" was coined by Rose Tyler in the earlier episode. The Bad Wolf motif (seen throughout series one and in other places) is alluded to once more: a picture of blonde girl and a wolf is visible in Charlotte's house.

There are some similarities between River Song and Bernice Summerfield, a character created by Paul Cornell as a companion of the Seventh and late Eighth Doctors in Virgin New Adventures series of novels in the 1990s.[4] Both characters are archaeologists from the future who came to be the Doctor's most trusted companion.

Professor River Song uses the Doctor's name (not heard by the viewer) in order to gain his trust. The secret behind the Doctor's true name was also explored in "The Girl in the Fireplace" (also by Steven Moffat), "The Shakespeare Code" and "The Fires of Pompeii", and later referred to in "Midnight".

 Production

"Forest of the Dead" was initially announced under the title "River's Run", before its name was changed relatively late in production.[

Several scenes from this episode and "Silence in the Library" were filmed at Swansea's Brangwyn Hall. These include the library reception area where the TARDIS arrives, and the staircase where the Doctor and Donna look out over the empty library. The climactic scenes of the episode (in the library core) were filmed in an electrical substation of a disused Alcoa factory in Waunarlwydd, Swansea.

Josh and Ella, Donna's two children in the computer-generated world, were named after Steven Moffat's son and his son's friend.[8]

Reception

Based on overnight returns, it is estimated that Forest of the Dead was watched by 7.1 million viewers, giving it a 40.0% audience share; the highest in Series Four and the highest in its timeslot.[9] The episode received an Appreciation Index score of 89 (considered "Excellent"), the joint highest score the programme has achieved alongside "The Parting of the Ways", "Doomsday" and the preceding episode "Silence in the Library".


199a – "Silence in the Library"
Doctor Who episode

The Doctor, Donna and the explorers find the skeleton of one of their companions.
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companion Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Steven Moffat
Director Euros Lyn
Script editor Helen Raynor
Producer Phil Collinson
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 4.8
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 31 May 2008
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
"The Unicorn and the Wasp" "Forest of the Dead"
199b – "Forest of the Dead"
Doctor Who episode

Donna discovers that Miss Evangelista was corrupted when she was uploaded to the data core.
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companion Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)
Guest stars
  • Alex Kingston – Professor River Song
  • Colin Salmon – Dr Moon
  • Harry Peacock – Proper Dave
  • Steve Pemberton – Strackman Lux
  • Jessika Williams – Anita
  • O-T Fagbenle – Other Dave
  • Eve Newton – The Girl
  • Mark Dexter – Dad
  • Jason Pitt – Lee
  • Eloise Rakic-Platt – Ella
  • Alex Midwood – Joshua
  • Talulah Riley – Miss Evangelista
  • Jonathan Reuben - Man
Production
Writer Steven Moffat
Director Euros Lyn
Script editor Helen Raynor
Producer Phil Collinson
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 4.9
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 7 June 2008
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
"Silence in the Library" "Midnight"


Direct download: library_wip.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 10:30am UTC

TDP 60: Doctor Who and Torchwood DVD Round Up DVD round up for the summer of 2008!
Direct download: TDP_60_DVD_Roundup.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:35pm UTC

TDP 59: Doctor Who 4.07 The Unicorn and the Wasp

"The Unicorn and the Wasp" is the seventh episode in the fourth series of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was aired by BBC One on 17 May 2008 at 7:00pm.[2][3] Perhaps due to its later broadcast, it received an overnight audience rating of 7.7 million, making it the most successful episode this series since "The Fires of Pompeii".[4] The episode is a pseudohistorical story set in 1926, in a manor owned by a character named Lady Eddison in which crime fiction novelist Agatha Christie is visiting, and is a comedic episode with a murder storyline.[5]


Plot

Synopsis

The episode sees the Doctor (David Tennant) and Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) arrive at a dinner party hosted by Lady Eddison (Felicity Kendal) and her husband, Colonel Hugh (Christopher Benjamin). One of the guests is none other than Agatha Christie (Fenella Woolgar). Looking at a newspaper, the Doctor finds that it is the day of Agatha Christie's famous unexplained disappearance (December 8, 1926). Just as this revelation is made, another guest, Professor Peach (Ian Barritt), is found by Eddison's friend and companion Miss Chandrakala (Leena Dhingra) in the library, murdered with a lead pipe; Donna alludes to the similarity to the boardgame Cluedo. The Doctor finds morphic residue on the floor while examining the scene, meaning that one of the guests isn't human.

Aided by Agatha, the Doctor interviews the guests while Donna goes looking for clues. She investigates a locked room, which the butler explains Lady Eddison had sequestered herself in while recovering from a bout of malaria contracted in India forty years earlier and they had left locked after her recovery. Donna is attacked by a giant wasp after tracing a buzzing sound to a window. She scares it off with a magnifying glass. It escapes and apparently retakes human form before they can catch up, killing Miss Chandrakala along the way. Her last words are "The poor little child." At this point it becomes clear that the murder is being played out like one of Agatha's novels.

While the three mull over the evidence they've gathered thus far, the Doctor is poisoned with cyanide; however, it is not as fatal for him as it is for humans, and an odd combination of ingredients with a shock (in the form of a kiss) from Donna allows him to detoxify himself. In return, the Doctor "poisons" the guests' dinner with pepper; naturally this is not harmful to humans, but it acts as an insecticide to wasps. A buzzing sound can be heard moments later, to which Lady Eddison exclaims, "It can't be!" The lights are blown out by a sudden wind and they again fail to ascertain the identity of the alien. Roger Curbishley (Adam Rayner), Lady Eddison's son, is murdered in the confusion, and Lady Eddison's necklace, 'The Firestone,' is stolen.

In the sitting room, the Doctor and Agatha reveal several secrets about the guests and hosts. Robina Redmond (Felicity Jones) is a thief called 'The Unicorn' who coveted the Firestone and stole it in the confusion. Colonel Hugh is not actually wheelchair bound as he appears to be; he faked the condition to make sure Lady Eddison did not leave him. The truth of Lady Eddison's bout of malaria is also revealed; she was actually made pregnant by an alien known as a Vespiform, who gave her the Firestone necklace. The necklace is psychically linked to her son, whom she had given up for adoption and never saw again. Her son is actually the Reverend Golightly (Tom Goodman-Hill), who had come to associate Agatha Christie's novels with the way the world must work because Lady Eddison had been reading one when his alien biology was awakened in a moment of anger, and had killed those who were working against him in the manner of one of her novels.

Golightly, now enraged once more at being discovered, transforms into his wasp form. Agatha snatches the Firestone, and Golightly pursues her since she is now linked to it. The Doctor and Donna follow after her. Agatha leads the creature to the lake, where Donna throws the necklace into the water. Golightly follows it in and thus drowns. Still linked to the necklace, Agatha nearly dies as well, but Golightly chooses to release her as his last act. The trauma causes amnesia, and the Doctor deposits her at the Harrogate Hotel ten days later, explaining her disappearance.

In the TARDIS, the Doctor produces one of Agatha's novels, Death in the Clouds, and points to the copyright page in the front. The publication date is listed as the year five billion; Agatha Christie is quite literally the most popular novelist of all time. The cover features a giant wasp, suggesting that the amnesia was not total (although the wasp in the novel is in fact of the normal variety).

Continuity

When the Doctor meets Agatha Christie for the first time, he mentions that he was just talking about her the other day, saying "I bet she's brilliant". This comes from the end of "Last of the Time Lords", when he was suggesting places where he and Martha could go after the Master's defeat.

Several previous episodes are referenced by both the Doctor and Donna. The Doctor produces items from a chest of items beginning with C, including a Cyberman chest-plate from "The Age of Steel" and the crystal ball in which the Carrionites are trapped from "The Shakespeare Code".

Donna mentions that meeting Agatha Christie during a murder mystery would be as preposterous as meeting "Charles Dickens surrounded by ghosts at Christmas", unknowingly referencing the events of "The Unquiet Dead". When Donna attempts to use 1920s lingo, the Doctor tells her to stop, just as he did with Rose Tyler (in "Tooth and Claw") and Martha Jones (in "The Shakespeare Code" and The Infinite Quest) when they tried to mimic local speech; the first slang phrase Donna uses ("Topping day, what!") is also used by the Third Doctor when interacting with 1920s characters in the 1973 serial Carnival of Monsters. When poisoned, the Doctor runs into the kitchen and asks for ginger beer. The Fourth Doctor was seen drinking ginger pop throughout The Android Invasion and the dislike of it by companion Sarah Jane Smith becomes a major plot point.

Donna refers to her own failed marriage in "The Runaway Bride", comparing it to Christie's husband's infidelity. She notes that her husband was colluding not with another woman but with a giant spider. She also mentions the disappearing bees, following on from previous mentions in "Partners in Crime" and "Planet of the Ood".

The Doctor has a flashback scene when unravelling motives with Agatha Christie. In it he's carving through Belgium with a bow and quiver of arrows on his back. His voiceover explains he looking for Charlemagne who was "kidnapped by an insane computer." Christie interrupts before he can paint a full picture; however the events are fully explored on Doctor Who's BBC website in the short story "The Lonely Computer."[1]

The first episode of this series was called "Partners in Crime" - the title of one of Agatha Christie's books.

Outside references

There are numerous references to either Agatha Christie's novels or to Christie herself. In a similar manner to the running gag between the Doctor and William Shakespeare in "The Shakespeare Code", both Donna and the Doctor refer to novels which Agatha has yet to write, ideas which she naturally finds to be intriguing — particularly Murder On The Orient Express, which Donna mentions. Other novels referenced are Why Didn't They Ask Evans, The Murder at the Vicarage, Cards on the Table, Appointment with Death, N or M?, The Body in the Library, The Moving Finger, Sparkling Cyanide, Crooked House, They Do It With Mirrors, Cat Among the Pigeons, Endless Night, The Secret Adversary, Nemesis, Taken at the Flood, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, And Then There Were None, Death Comes as the End, Dead Man's Folly and Death in the Clouds. When the body of Professor Peach is found, the Doctor remarks that the time of death was quarter past four. This is a reference to Agatha Christie's novel, "The Clocks" where there are clocks frozen at 4:13. Donna also mentions Miss Marple (whom Christie had not yet created), and the novelist remarks that she would make for an interesting character. The episode also claims that Agatha Christie is the best-selling novelist of all time (literally), which is true today as her novels have sold an estimated four billion copies. (The works of Shakespeare and the Bible have sold more copies overall, but are not novels.)[6] The Doctor also makes a slight faux pas when he addresses Christie as "Dame Agatha", a title which she had yet to receive at the time the episode is set in.

The script also makes multiple references to the murder mystery board game Cluedo. The first murder took place in the library, one of the rooms on the Cluedo board, with a lead pipe, one of the suspected weapons in the game. The victim's name is Professor Peach, a reference to Cluedo's Professor Plum. The episode also features a colonel (Colonel Mustard), a woman wearing blue (Mrs Peacock), a reverend (Reverend Green) and a woman in red (Miss Scarlett).

Production

The episode is written by Gareth Roberts, who previously wrote the pseudohistorical episode "The Shakespeare Code". Roberts was given a fourth series episode to write after executive producer Russell T Davies reviewed Roberts' script for "The Shakespeare Code". Several months later, he received an email from the production team which said "Agatha Christie".[7]

Roberts, a self-confessed fan of Christie's works, made the episode into a comedy, the first Doctor Who story to do so since Donald Cotton's serials The Myth Makers and The Gunfighters, in 1965 and 1966, respectively.[5] Roberts based the episode on his favourite Christie works: Crooked House, which focuses on secrets within an aristocratic society, and the 1982 film adaptation of Evil Under the Sun. Speaking of both works, Roberts noted that it was "quite strange writing a modern Doctor Who with posh people in it. We don't really see posh people on television anymore, except at Christmas", and "there's something funny about the veneer of upper class respectability and the truth of any family underneath". He also stated that "there's really nothing nicer than watching a lot of English actors hamming it up in a vaguely exotic location... and then somebody's murdered!" The episode's title was deliberately chosen to sound "vaguely Christie-ish", but Roberts admitted that "[Christie] never used 'the blank and the blank' construction".[7]

In writing the episode, Roberts aimed to make the episode a "big, fun, all-star murder mystery romp". He was influenced by advice given by Davies, who wanted Roberts to "go funnier" with every draft, and former Doctor Who script editor Douglas Adams' advice that "a danger one runs is that the moment you have anything in the script that's clearly meant to be funny in some way, everybody thinks 'oh well we can do silly voices and silly walks and so on', and I think that's exactly the wrong way to do it". Using this advice, he used the adage that in comedy, the characters do not realise the humour, and cited Basil Fawlty's mishaps in Fawlty Towers as an example.[7]

In an interview with Doctor Who Magazine, Roberts stated that "to a certain extent [there was less pressure]" in writing the episode. He was pleased with the success of "The Shakespeare Code" and the The Sarah Jane Adventures story "Whatever Happened to Sarah Jane?", but likened himself to Corporal Bell, a member of the administrative staff at the fictional Doctor Who organisation UNIT, in saying that he did not wish to be "in the middle of things" or writing episodes "where big, pivotal things have happened to [the Doctor]".[7]

Cast notes

Actor Christopher Benjamin, who plays Colonel Hugh, previously starred in two serials of the original Doctor Who series, playing Sir Keith Gold in Inferno (1970) and Henry Gordon Jago in The Talons of Weng-Chiang (1977). David Tennant's father Alexander McDonald played a footman in one of the early scenes, after being asked to act when visiting David on set.[8] He had no lines.

The casting of Fenella Woolgar as Agatha Christie was made at the suggestion of David Tennant, who had previously worked with her on Bright Young Things.[8]

Music

Although the opening notes of the gramophone record playing at the garden party have an apparent similarity to the Doctor Who theme, it is in fact the opening of Twentieth Century Blues, originally from Noël Coward's 1931 play Cavalcade. The recording used here, edited together with other "period music," is a 1931 recording of Ray Noble and the New Mayfair Orchestra, featuring vocalist Al Bowlly.

Locations

The Harrogate Hotel where the Doctor leaves Agatha is fictitious. In actuality, the hotel where she was found was the Swan Hydro (now the Old Swan Hotel), a somewhat less imposing building than the one depicted in the episode.



Doctor Who episode

Having followed her to the lake, the titular "Wasp" is controlled by Agatha Christie (Fenella Woolgar) using the Firestone - the object sought after by the titular "Unicorn" - as the Doctor runs forward with Donna to plead with it to spare Christie's life.
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companion Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Gareth Roberts
Director Graeme Harper
Script editor Lindsey Alford
Producer Susie Liggat
Executive producer(s) Russell T Davies
Julie Gardner
Phil Collinson
Production code 4.7
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 17 May 2008
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
"The Doctor's Daughter" "Silence in the Library"
Direct download: agathas_wasp.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:12am UTC

TDP 58: Grand Moff will succeed Russell T Davies Steven Moffat to be Doctor Who Lead Writer and Executive Producer Category: Wales; TV Drama; BBC One Date: 20.05.2008 Printable version BBC Wales and BBC Drama has announced that BAFTA and Hugo Award-winning writer Steven Moffat will succeed Russell T Davies as Lead Writer and Executive Producer of the fifth series of Doctor Who, which will broadcast on BBC One in 2010. Moffat has penned some of the series' most unforgettable and acclaimed episodes, including Blink, with its terrifying weeping angels, for which he was awarded the BAFTA Writer Award 2008 on Sunday 11 May. His previous work on Doctor Who includes The Girl In The Fireplace for series two, which earned him his second Hugo Award. His first was for the series one two-parter The Empty Child, which became famous for its terrifying refrain "Are you my mummy?" For the current series, Moffat has written Silence In The Library, a two-parter starring Alex Kingston which transmits on 31 May and 7 June 2008 on BBC One. Steven's career began with the landmark ITV children's drama Press Gang in 1989, for which he won his first Bafta. Coupling, the hugely popular and award-winning sitcom he created and wrote for BBC Two, began in 2000 and ran for four seasons. Jekyll, his six-part thriller starring James Nesbitt and Michelle Ryan, transmitted on BBC One last year. Steven will continue as one of the directors on the board of Hartswood Films which produced Coupling and Jekyll, where he is also working on his new comedy Adam & Eve with wife Sue Vertue. He has just delivered the screenplay for Tintin – the first instalment of the trilogy of films featuring the iconic Belgian comic-strip hero – to Steven Spielberg who will direct it for DreamWorks. Thomas Sangster and Andy Serkis will star. Steven Moffat says: "My entire career has been a Secret Plan to get this job. I applied before but I got knocked back 'cos the BBC wanted someone else. Also I was seven. "Anyway, I'm glad the BBC has finally seen the light, and it's a huge honour to be following Russell into the best - and the toughest - job in television. I say toughest 'cos Russell's at my window right now, pointing and laughing." Lead Writer and Executive Producer Russell T Davies says: "It's been a delight and an honour working with Steven, and I can't wait to see where his extraordinary imagination takes the Doctor. Best of all, I get to be a viewer again, watching on a Saturday night!" Jane Tranter, Controller, BBC Fiction, says: "Scripts and writers are at the heart of what BBC Drama is all about, and especially at the heart of Doctor Who. The past four series have been brilliantly helmed by the spectacularly talented Russell T Davies. "As Lead Writer and Executive Producer, he has overseen the creative direction and detail of the 21st century relaunch of Doctor Who and we are delighted to have his continued presence on the specials over the next 18 months. "But the challenge and excitement of the fifth series is now being handed to Steven Moffat. The Tardis couldn't be in safer hands. Steven's talents on both Doctor Who and beyond are well known. He is a writer of glittering brilliance, comedy and depth, with an extraordinary imagination and a unique voice. "Steven has a wonderful mix of being a committed Doctor Who fan and a true artist, and his plans for the next series are totally thrilling." The announcement follows the news that Piers Wenger will take over the role of Executive Producer from Julie Gardner on series five of Doctor Who. Piers Wenger says: "The challenge of taking Doctor Who to a new future is a huge and thrilling one and BBC Wales is blessed to have someone with Steven's extraordinary talent in charge. "His imagination and creativity have already given birth to some of the series' most unforgettable monsters though in this instance no-one need fear; time, space and the future of The Doctor are safe with him." Wenger and Moffat are already working closely together on the planning of the series. Menna Richards, Controller, BBC Wales, says: "BBC Wales is very proud of Doctor Who's phenomenal success. Steven Moffat is an extraordinary talent and we are very much looking forward to him joining the Doctor Who team." Series four has achieved some of the show's highest audience figures to date and forthcoming episodes feature a stellar line-up of guests including Lesley Sharp, Lindsey Coulson, Alex Kingston, Colin Salmon and Michael Brandon. Freema Agyeman and Billie Piper – The Doctor's two former companions – have also returned to assist The Doctor in series four. Doctor Who will return in 2009 with four specials, and the full-length fifth series is currently scheduled to be broadcast on BBC One in Spring 2010. SH
Direct download: rtd_wip.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 4:00am UTC

TDP 57: Doctor Who 4.06 The Doctor's Daughter & The Invasion of Time DVD

















 "The Doctor's Daughter"


The Doctor, Donna, Jenny and Martha find the "Source", a terraforming device, being both the source of life, and the war between humans and the Hath on Messaline.
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companions Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)

Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones)[1]
Guest stars
Production
Writer Stephen Greenhorn
Director Alice Troughton
Script editor Lindsey Alford
Producer Phil Collinson
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 4.6
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 10 May 2008
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
"The Poison Sky" "The Unicorn and the Wasp"
IMDb profile

"The Doctor's Daughter"[2] is the sixth episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was broadcast on BBC One on 10 May 2008.[3]


Synopsis

Following on from the end of "The Poison Sky", the TARDIS takes the Doctor (David Tennant) and his companions Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) and Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman) to the planet Messaline in the midst of a generations-long war between humans and the Hath, fish-like humanoids. Upon leaving the TARDIS, armed men working for General Cobb (Nigel Terry) force the Doctor's hand in a progenation machine, which uses his DNA to create an adult soldier within moments — Jenny (Georgia Moffett), the episode's titular character. Martha is subsequently captured by the Hath, whereas the Doctor, Donna, and Jenny are imprisoned by the humans because of the Doctor's pacifist attitude. Each of the primary characters learns about the war from its belligerents; the Hath and humans were initially meant to live on a peaceful colony, but were divided over a dispute about "the Source", believed by each side to be the breath of their creator. When the Doctor unwittingly reveals the location of the Source, the two sides race to claim it first.

The Doctor is initially dismissive of Jenny, his biological daughter, but becomes enamoured as the episode progresses. Donna is also distracted from the war by a series of numbered plaques on their journey. When they reach the location of the Source, a colonising spaceship, Donna and the Doctor discover that the plaques represent the date building was completed, which was a mere seven days previous; the humans and Hath have bred so many generations through the progenation machines that their own history degraded into myth. The original casus belli was a power vacuum caused by the death of the mission commander.

Both the human and Hath forces converge at the Source concurrently. The Doctor declares the war to be over, and releases the terraforming agent; everyone present releases their weapons, with the exception of Cobb, who tries to shoot the Doctor but Jenny steps in the way. Dying in the Doctor' arms, he finally tells her she is his daughter and that they have only got started. He tells her that they can go anywhere, if she holds on. She dies in his arms. Enraged, the Doctor holds Cobb at gunpoint, but refuses to shoot, asking the colonists to create a pacifist society.

At the end of the episode, the Doctor takes Martha home. Martha warns Donna that life with the Doctor can be dangerous, but Donna nevertheless resolves to stay with the Doctor indefinitely. Concurrently, on Messaline, Jenny revives in front of Cline and a Hath. She escapes Messaline, resolving to follow in her father's footsteps by resolving disputes and fighting villains.

Continuity

In "Fear Her" the Doctor mentioned to Rose he "was a dad once".[4] The only other member of the Doctor's family seen in the series has been Susan Foreman, the Doctor's granddaughter, whose last appearance in the television series was in The Five Doctors.

Just prior to Jenny's reanimation she exhales a golden-green mist reminiscent of similar expirations the Doctor displayed shortly after his regeneration in the 2005 Children in Need scene and "The Christmas Invasion"; this mist also resembles the terraforming gas seen earlier in the episode.

Production

Writing

Russell T. Davies has stated that this episode "does exactly as it says on the tin",[2] although at least one reviewer has stated that Moffett's character is not a daughter in the usual sense.[5] Having Jenny come back to life at the end of the episode was Steven Moffat's idea.[6]

[edit] Casting

Jenny shortly after emerging from the Progenation Machine.
Jenny shortly after emerging from the Progenation Machine.

Georgia Moffett, who plays Jenny, is the real-life daughter of Fifth Doctor actor Peter Davison and The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy star Sandra Dickinson.[2] David Tennant described the episode by saying "We get to see the Doctor's daughter, played by the Doctor's daughter."[7] Moffett had previously auditioned for the role of Rose Tyler in 2004 and a role in "The Unicorn and the Wasp" in 2007. Her role as Jenny was not chosen because of her father; it was entirely coincidental but nevertheless a "great PR coup" for the series[6]. Moffett previously appeared alongside her father in the Big Finish audio story Red Dawn and drama series Fear, Stress & Anger. In Doctor Who Confidential, Peter Davison stated that after he finished filming "Time Crash", he said to Georgia "[now] it's your turn".

Broadcast and reception

Unofficial figures show that "The Doctor's Daughter" was watched by 6.6 million viewers, giving it a 38.4% share of the total television audience. While most programmes received lower figures than the previous week, Doctor Who had increased its audience to bring it back over the 6 million mark. The top rated programme was still ITV1's Britain's Got Talent although its audience was down by a million at 7.5 million. Doctor Who was the highest rated programme on BBC1 for the day and had the biggest share of any programme on Saturday. The episode receieved an Appreciation Index score of 88 (considered "Excellent").[8]

"The Doctor's Daughter" has received mixed reviews. Martin Anderson of Den of Geek! stated that it was "rather good - though badly plot-holed". He noted that it was yet another episode of Doctor Who "undermined by Murray Gold's incessant music". He also described the episode as "quite redolent of Tom Baker-era Who, with plenty of dark and cheap corridors to run down and two under-manned warring factions for the Doctor to bring peace to".[9] For SFX's Ian Berriman, the running up and down corridors was reminiscent of Lenny Henry's 1985 Doctor Who spoof featured on The Lenny Henry Show. Berriman described the episode as "underwhelming", citing that because one "always suspect[s] she's a redshirt" it is difficult to care for Jenny. Although "reasonably diverting", Berriman argues that budgetary constraints make "the story feel so enclosed" and that the episode's plot, likened to "old-school Trek", seems too similar to that of the Sontaran two-parter immediately prior to this adventure because both involve militarism and cloning.[10] Newsround's Lizo Mzimba also notes the similarities with "The Sontaran Stratagem" and "The Poison Sky". Mzimba asserts that the episode's "biggest problem" is that it tries "to cram an enormous amount into 45 minutes" with most of the "interesting" and new ideas not getting "the attention they deserve" resulting in the audience not caring about either the human fighters or the Hath and thereby limiting a "sense of danger or menace".[11]

Mzimba observes that since her return in "The Sontaran Stratagem", Martha shares little onscreen time with the Doctor therefore reducing the emotional impact of her departure in this episode. He describes Moffett as "superb",[11] with Berriman calling her "cute as a button".[10] Berriman praises Tennant's performance,[10] but Anderson suggests that Tennant shouts too much. Anderson asserts that "Donna's role as the Doctor's conscience is beginning to take shape" describing this as "refreshing" in a companion and noting that "Tate has toned down the grating voice a tad".[9]



The Invasion of Time

 The Invasion of Time DVD


The Sontarans invade the Citadel of the Time Lords
Cast
Doctor Tom Baker (Fourth Doctor)
Companions Louise Jameson (Leela)

John Leeson (K-9 Mk. I)
Production
Writer "David Agnew" (Graham Williams and Anthony Read)
Director Gerald Blake
Script editor Anthony Read
Producer Graham Williams
Executive producer(s) None
Production code 4Z
Series Season 15
Length 6 episodes, 25 mins each
Originally broadcast February 4March 11, 1978
Chronology
← Preceded by Followed by →
Underworld The Ribos Operation

The Invasion of Time is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in six weekly parts from February 4 to March 11, 1978. This serial features the final appearances of Louise Jameson as the 


Synopsis

The Doctor returns to Gallifrey, having claimed the Presidency. His behaviour is unusual and has Leela thrown in jail and then expelled from the Capitol Citadel. However, the Doctor is doing this to prevent a Sontaran instigated disaster.

Plot

The Fourth Doctor returns to Gallifrey after meeting a group of aliens in space, bringing Leela and K9 with him. He is behaving very strangely and when the Chancellory Guard under their Commander, Andred, arrive at the Panopticon Chamber to interrogate him, the Doctor demands to be taken to Chancellor Borusa, who is now in charge of the Time Lords. The Doctor claims the vacant Presidency of Gallifrey having previously been a candidate and, after the demise of Chancellor Goth, is now automatically elected. Under law this request cannot be refused. The Doctor then chooses a Presidential chamber and asks it be decorated with lead lining throughout. Shortly afterward a ceremony is held to swear him in as President of Gallifrey and he is presented with the various trappings of office. However, when the circlet connecting him to the Matrix, repository of all Time Lord knowledge, is placed on his head, the Doctor collapses in pain.


The Doctor is taken to the Chancellor to rest and recover. When he regains consciousness he reminds the Time Lords that no aliens are allowed on Gallifrey and instructs that Leela be expelled from the Capitol Citadel, where she will have to fend in the wastelands. She tries to avoid banishment, but the Doctor is serious about this banishment. The Doctor now retreats to the TARDIS where he shares a secret plan with K9, but is obviously very concerned about the situation he has found himself in. He is planning to aid an invasion of Gallifrey itself and to this end sets about destroying the induction barrier that defends the planet from external threat. K9 sets about this task while the Doctor returns to the Panopticon, the great hall of the Time Lords, and laughs cruelly as three alien beings start to materialise.


The invading beings are known as Vardans. They appear as shimmering manifestations who made an alliance with the Doctor some time ago, and the Doctor advises the Time Lords, including the stubborn Borusa, to submit to their new and powerful masters. The Doctor then asks Borusa to meet him in his office, and when this happens the Doctor explains he has had the lead walls installed to prevent the Vardans entering the room on thought waves and reading his mind. He sent Leela away to protect her, he explains, and is now able to work with Borusa to defeat the Vardan threat. A new problem has emerged, however, with the ascendancy of the obsequious and compliant Castellan Kelner, who is being far too co-operative with the Vardan occupation. The toadying yet ambitious Castellan soon has Borusa placed under house arrest and starts a process of expelling trouble-making Time Lords from the safety of the Capitol.

Leela has meanwhile kept her faith in the Doctor and reasons that if he wishes her to leave the Capitol it is with good reason, so she departs for the wastelands. She is accompanied by Rodan, a Time Lady who previously maintained the transduction barrier. Theyare welcomed warily by a tribe of outsiders who have rejected Time Lord society and live in the wastelands. Their leader, Nesbin, explains some of the background to his tribe. Back in the Capitol, however, things are looking grim for the Doctor when Andred corners him and decides to execute him in the name of liberty.


K9 helps the Doctor overpower Andred, and then explains the danger and abilities of the Vardans to Andred, with his TARDIS providing a shield to his thoughts. The Doctor is hoping to persuade the Vardans to reveal their true form so that he can time loop their planet. Leela has also organised her own resistance movement in the wastelands, comprising Nesbin’s people and the exiled Time Lords, all of whom are drilled into a fighting force which soon launches an assault on the Capitol.

The aliens and Kelner have meanwhile decided the Doctor is behaving in an untrustworthy manner. The Doctor reaffirms his loyalty to them by agreeing to dismantle the final force field protecting Gallifrey from attack. He does not fully disable it, but rather places a large hole in it. The Vardans use the hole to properly invade Gallifrey and appear as humanoid warriors. Their manifestation enables K9 to track down their home planet and supply the Doctor with the correct co-ordinates. He uses this to beam the Vardans back to their home world and then traps it in a time loop. At about the same time Leela and her warriors reach the Panopticon, but celebrations are shortlived when a Sontaran warrior appears in the chamber.


Gallifrey has now been invaded by the Sontarans, led by Commander Stor, who finds Kelner ever ready to pledge support, even if the other Time Lords remain resistant. The Doctor and his party escape and the Doctor uses his freedom to try and pressure Borusa into revealing to him the location of the Great Key of Rassilon, a missing item of the Presidential regalia. They then regroup at the TARDIS where Rodan is put to work using the TARDIS’ controls to repair the hole in the forcefield. However, Kelner imperils their resistance when he manipulates the stabiliser banks of the Doctor’s TARDIS to try and destroy the resistance force within by hurling them to the heart of a Black Star.


The Doctor manages to override the threat, so their enemies change tack. The Sontarans, assisted by Castellan Kelner, gain access to the Doctor's TARDIS and try to hunt down the President and his friends, pursuing them through the labyrinthine corridors. Stor is after the Great Key too, knowing the Doctor has now persuaded Borusa to yield it to him. The Doctor uses distractions to buy time while he kills the remaining Sontaran troopers. On the Doctor’s instruction, a hypnotised Rodan and K9 construct a special forbidden Time Lord weapon: the Demat Gun. Powered by the Great Key itself, the Demat Gun erases its victims from time itself. The Doctor takes the Gun and confronts Stor in the Panopticon. Stor intends to destroy the Eye of Harmony with a bomb, but the blast is cancelled out by the Doctor with the Demat Gun which obliterates Stor, wipes the Doctor’s mind of recent events, and also destroys itself. Kelner is arrested and Borusa begins the process of rebuilding Gallifrey.

The Doctor is ready to leave, but Leela decides to stay on Gallifrey because she has fallen in love with Commander Andred, leader of the Chancellory Guards. K-9 decides to stay behind to look after Leela. The TARDIS dematerializes and the Doctor reveals he is not alone: he pulls out a box labeled K-9 Mk II and, breaking the fourth wall, looks directly at the camera and grins mischievously.

Cast

Cast notes

Gai Smith, now Gai Waterhouse, who played Presta, is now an extremely successful thoroughbred horse trainer based in Sydney, Australia.

Continuity

  • Though Leela and K9 Mark I left the Doctor in this story, their characters would return in the Virgin New Adventures novel Lungbarrow by Marc Platt, and encounter the Seventh Doctor. Louise Jameson and John Leeson also returned to play Leela and K9 in the 'Gallifrey' series of audio plays by Big Finish Productions.
  • In addition, in his next on-screen visit to his home planet, the Doctor is heard to ask after her: "Tell me, what of my former companion Leela?" He is informed that she is "well and happy". However, in the revived series, we learn that Gallifrey has been destroyed and the Doctor thereafter makes many references to all his family and friends having being killed.
  • The Vardans also appeared in the Virgin New Adventures novel No Future by Paul Cornell, in which Bernice Summerfield refers to this story by dismissing them as "the only race in history to be outwitted by the intellectual might of the Sontarans".
  • This story is one of the few to contain an extended sequence inside the TARDIS (1964's The Edge of Destruction notwithstanding). The majority of the final episode comprises a chase inside the TARDIS, which appears to have extensive brick-walled areas beyond the more familiar roundells-on-white look, plus the spa/pool area ('bathroom') and art gallery. The Doctor had been seen earlier in the season in an artist's smock, apparently 'redecorating'.
  • In one of the few times in the series that the Doctor directly kills anyone, he uses the de-mat gun to disintegrate the Sontaran warriors. This is unusual given that the Fourth Doctor has a particular and stated aversion to firearms.
  • In the Virgin New Adventures novel, Timewyrm: Genesys, it is revealed that during the events of the episode the Doctor uses the Matrix to send a message to his future self about the Timewyrm, a recurring villain from the novels.

Production

  • The script is credited to David Agnew, a pseudonym often used by the BBC for work produced "in house" by contracted production team members. On this occasion it masks the authors Anthony Read (the series' script editor) and Graham Williams (series producer).
  • This story was written as a replacement for another story, The Killers of the Dark by David Weir, which was considered too expensive and complex to shoot. The script was written in just two weeks, with four days for rewrites. Additionally, when asked about the unused script at a convention, Graham Williams, having forgotten the exact title, made up the name "Gin Sengh", as in The Killer Cats of Geng Singh (or Geng Singh — the spelling being indeterminate), resulting in the fan myth that this was the original title.[1]
  • An industrial strike, which was eventually resolved before production, forced the studio sets to be constructed within St Anne's Hospital as BBC's Christmas holiday specials were given priority in the regular studios.[1]
  • As a result of the industrial strike, Graham Williams was given the option of not producing the final six episodes of the season and have the money rollover into the next season. Williams rejected this because of the additional problem of inflation that year and didn't want the budgeted money to depreciate even further.[1]
  • Louise Jameson, who had already announced her departure from the show, reportedly wished for her character, Leela, to be killed at the end of the series, and was disappointed that Leela instead opted to stay behind on Gallifrey with Andred, even though nothing in the script suggests a romance between the two characters. The producers decided that killing off her character would be too traumatic for younger viewers.
  • The Sontaran costumes were cumbersome and limited the field of vision of the actors wearing them, so much so that they are often seen tripping through and over props. At one point, a Sontaran (ironically played by the actor Stuart Fell) nearly takes a fall after missing a short jump and landing on a pool chair. As the aliens originate on a planet of notably high gravity, however, their clumsiness is easily explained
  • It was Robert Holmes who suggested to Graham Williams that this story be split into two segments, the first four episodes being based around the Vardans and the final two episodes being based around the Sontarans who come into the story at the end of episode 4.

In print

Doctor Who book
Book cover
Doctor Who and the Invasion of Time
Series Target novelisations
Release number 35
Writer Terrance Dicks
Publisher Target Books
Cover artist Andrew Skilleter
ISBN 0 426 20093 4
Release date 21 February 1980
Preceded by Doctor Who and the Underworld
Followed by Doctor Who and the Stones of Blood

A novelisation of this serial, written by Terrance Dicks, was published by Target Books in February 1980.

Broadcast, VHS and DVD release

  • This story was released on a two tape VHS set in March of 2000
  • It was released onto DVD on May 5th 2008 with special features; The Rise & Fall of Gallifrey, The Elusive David Agnew, Out of Time; a making of mini documentry, Photo Gallery, Trails and Continuity, new CGI effects and a Coming Soon to DVD Trailer of The K9 boxset featuring The Invisible Enemy and K9 and Company.

It has also has been released in a boxset Bred for War (The Sontaran Collection) along with The Time Warrior, The Sontaran Experiment and The Two Doctors.

Direct download: Doc_Daughter_WIP_1.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:19pm UTC

TDP 56: Doctor Who 4.04 & 4.05 Sontaran Stratagem: The Poison Sky




















The Sontaran Stratagem

196 – "The Sontaran Stratagem"
Doctor Who episode

A Sontaran introduces himself to the Doctor as General Staal, "the undefeated".
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companions Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)

Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Helen Raynor
Director Douglas Mackinnon
Producer Susie Liggat
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Phil Collinson
Production code 4.4
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 26 April 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"Planet of the Ood" "The Poison Sky"
IMDb profile

"The Sontaran Stratagem" is the fourth episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was broadcast on BBC One on 26 April 2008. The episode features the return of former companion Martha Jones, as well as the return of the alien Sontarans to the series. It is the first of a two part story, followed by "The Poison Sky". This is the Sontarans' first appearance since the 1985 Colin Baker story The Two Doctors.


Plot

Synopsis

Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman) calls the Doctor (David Tennant) to ask for assistance during an investigation by UNIT. Minutes after the TARDIS materialises in contemporary Britain, Martha authorises the raid of an ATMOS (Atmospheric Omission System) factory. The Doctor introduces his companion Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) to Martha and UNIT; Donna instantly befriends Martha, but is concerned about UNIT's ethics and asks the Doctor why he is associated with them; the Doctor ambiguously replies he used to work for them in the late twentieth century.

ATMOS is marketing a satellite navigation system developed by child prodigy Luke Rattigan (Ryan Sampson). The system also reduces carbon dioxide emissions to zero; UNIT requested the Doctor's help because the technology is not contemporary and potentially alien. UNIT are also concerned about fifty-two deaths occurring spontaneously and contemporaneously several days before the narrative. The Doctor travels to Rattigan's private school to investigate the system, and discovers that the episode's events are being influenced by the Sontarans.

The Sontarans depicted in the episode are part of a battlegroup led by General Staal, "the undefeated" (Christopher Ryan). Instead of an instant invasion, they are tactically approaching an invasion with a combination of human clones, mind control, and ATMOS; Martha is captured by two of the controlled humans and cloned to provide a tactical advantage against UNIT.

A subplot depicts Donna returning to her home to warn her mother Sylvia (Jacqueline King) and grandfather Wilfred Mott (Bernard Cribbins) about the Doctor. Concerned about the implications of telling the truth, Donna reneges from warning her mother. At the end of the episode, the Doctor investigates the ATMOS device attached to Donna's car and discovers a secondary function: the device can emit a poisonous gas. Wilfred attempts to take the car off the road, but is trapped when Staal activates all 400 million installed in cars worldwide. The episode's cliffhanger depicts Donna shouting for help while the Doctor stares helplessly at a street full of cars emitting the gas.

[edit] Production

The episode features the return of the Sontarans, who last appeared in the 1985 serial The Two Doctors, a centric appearance by UNIT, and Martha Jones, who had last appeared in "Last of the Time Lords" and made special guest appearances in the Torchwood episodes "Reset", "Dead Man Walking", and "A Day in the Death"; the brief executive producer Russell T Davies gave to writer Helen Raynor included the terms "Sontarans", "military", and "Martha's back".[1][2]

Martha's departure allowed Davies to change the character's personality. In her reappearance, she is more mature and equal to the Doctor in comparison to falling in love in the third series.[1] Several aspects of her character were debated: in particular, her status and reaction to Donna. Raynor elected to emphasise Martha's medical career over her military career, and avoided a "handbags at dawn" scenario because she felt it would rehash Rose Tyler's (Billie Piper) initial opinion of Sarah Jane Smith (Elisabeth Sladen) from the second series episode "School Reunion".[2]

The episode is the first centric appearance of UNIT since the show's revival. Their name has changed from United Nations Intelligence Taskforce to Unified Intelligence Taskforce at the request of the United Nations, who cited the political climate and potential "brand confusion" as reasons for disassociation. The new acronym was coined by Davies after several meetings among the scriptwriters. The UNIT privates Gray and Wilson were specifically written as "alien fodder".[2][3] The episode refers to inconsistencies in dating UNIT stories when the Doctor is unsure whether he worked for UNIT in the 70s or 80s.[4]

This episode continues the pattern of having monsters from the classic series return in the new one. Davies commented that the Sontarans were "always on his list" of villains to resurrect.[5] The time and location of the episode was deliberately chosen because every Sontaran story except for The Invasion of Time was set on Earth.[5]

When interviewed on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, Catherine Tate stated that she had been filming alongside ten actors playing Sontarans for two weeks before she realised that there were actors inside the Sontaran costumes. She had assumed the Sontarans "ran on electricity". It was not until an actor removed his helmet to reveal his real face that she realised her mistake. She stated she was "freaked out" by this and said she "nearly died".[6]

Raynor initally envisioned the poisonous gas would be emitted by factories, but changed it in later drafts to cars for several reasons: the episode would provide social commentary and the idea of an "evil satnav system" was "much more engageable" and "irresistible"; Davies thought the concept was "so very Doctor Who".[5][2][1] Because the series was produced out of order, the "ATMOS" subplot was seeded in the episode "Partners in Crime".[7] In the episode, a system installed in a UNIT jeep undramatically explodes; originally, Raynor wanted it to be a large explosion, but reduced the explosion to several sparks to reduce costs and to lampoon an action movie cliché.[2] The opening scene, which depicts the system driving its occupant into a canal, was filmed at Cardiff's docks. The scene was the first time a car-cannon had been used since 2005, and was required to be completed in one shot. The car fired into the canal was removed immediately afterwards to clear the shipping route.[1]

The episode, like "Aliens of London" and "The Lazarus Experiment", properly introduces the lead companion's family. Unlike the Tyler or Jones families, both Sylvia Noble and Wilfred Mott had met the Doctor before (in "The Runaway Bride" and "Voyage of the Damned", respectively), providing Raynor with an additional subplot. Expository dialogue explains Mott's absence from "The Runaway Bride" as the character having Spanish flu. Wilfred's positive opinion of the Doctor is different to Sylvia, who "joined a long line of mothers that don't get the Doctor"; Davies had wanted a family member who trusted the Doctor since the show's revival.[1]

Despite the Sontaran's clone culture being asserted in the classic series, "The Sontaran Strategem" is the first episode to depict cloning. Originally, all of the factory workers were to be clones, but Raynor reduced it to only Martha to solve continuity problems with the second part. The template clone was portrayed by Ruari Mears, who wore a prosthetic mask which took longer to apply than any mask he had worn.[2] The scenes involving the cloning tank were filmed in a Welsh shampoo factory and reused a prop from "The Fires of Pompeii" as the tank which contained the clone. Davies and Agyeman enjoyed scenes set in the cloning room; Agyeman enjoyed playing an "evil companion", who she and Davies felt made the real Martha "warmer", and Davies thought Privates Gray and Harris discovering the tank in a darkened room was "classic Doctor Who".[1]


"The Poison Sky" is the fifth episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was broadcast on BBC One on 3 May 2008. The episode features both old companion Martha Jones and the alien Sontarans.[3] It is the second of a two part story, following "The Sontaran Stratagem".


Plot

Synopsis

Following from the previous episode, Sylvia Noble (Jacqueline King) manages to free Wilfred Mott (Bernard Cribbins) from the car by smashing the window with an axe. The Doctor (David Tennant) sends Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) back to the TARDIS while he sets off to figure out what the Sontarans are up to. After studying the gas, UNIT determines that it will need to reach 80% density to become lethal. Elsewhere, Martha Jones's clone (Freema Agyeman) helps the Sontarans to seize the TARDIS. Realising that he is trapped, the Doctor attempts to goad General Staal (Christopher Ryan) into revealing their plan: Staal is smart enough not to fall prey to this ploy, but the Doctor does trick him into moving the TARDIS out of the main war room, placing Donna in a position to help.

Against the Doctor's advice, UNIT decides to use nuclear weapons against the Sontarans; however, Martha's clone has covertly copied the launch codes, and stops every attempt they make to fire the weapons. This in itself shows a hidden agenda, since a nuclear strike would not have harmed them in the first place. This, combined with the unidentifiable elements in the gas, suggest that the Sontarans have an interest in keeping anything from disrupting the atmospheric conversion. At the same time, the Sontarans mobilize a contingent of troops to protect the factory. With the Sontarans' ability to jam most conventional firearms by expanding the copper-lined bullets, the UNIT troops are quickly slaughtered and the factory is secured.

Luke Rattigan (Ryan Sampson) leaves the Sontaran mothership to gather his students, explaining that he plans to have the Sontarans take them to another planet and begin the human race anew. The students merely laugh him off, even when he brandishes a gun. When he returns to report his failure, the Sontarans likewise ridicule his efforts, admitting that they never intended to take him or his students anywhere. Rattigan teleports back to his mansion before they can kill him, and the Sontarans lock the teleport pods behind him.

Meanwhile, the Doctor instructs Donna on how to reopen the teleport pods. As she makes her way through the ship, UNIT begins a counterattack, loading their weapons with non-copper bullets and using the aircraft carrier Valiant to clear the gas. The counterattack is a success, and the UNIT troops are able to put the Sontarans on the defensive. The distraction allows the Doctor to make his way to the cloning room where Martha is being held. Having figured out long before that the clone wasn't the genuine article, he severs its connection to Martha, leaving it to die. Martha convinces the clone to betray the Sontarans in its last moments, and the clone reveals that the poison gas is actually "food" for Sontaran clones: they are converting the planet into a giant breeding world. With Donna's help, the Doctor is able to reactivate the teleport pods, allowing him to rescue Donna, steal back the TARDIS, and teleport into Rattigan's mansion.

With the terraforming equipment Rattigan's students built, the Doctor builds his own atmospheric converter, igniting the atmosphere to clear out the poison gas as shown in the picture. However, he knows the Sontarans won't accept defeat so easily, and teleports to their ship with the converter, planning to give them the choice between retreat or death. Staal chooses the latter, content with the knowledge that the Doctor will die with them. At the last moment, Rattigan teleports himself to the Sontaran ship and brings the Doctor back to Earth, sacrificing himself to destroy the Sontarans.

With the day saved, Martha says goodbye to Donna and the Doctor in the TARDIS and prepares to head home. However, before she can leave, the TARDIS suddenly springs to life, locking the doors and piloting itself to an unknown destination as the jar containing the Doctor's severed hand bubbles.

Continuity

Production

This episode and the previous episode were filmed over five weeks, beginning in September 2007. Post-production was completed a week before the first part aired.[7]

During production, director Douglas Mackinnon intended to have the episode's climatic scene in the TARDIS show the moveable column in the center console move up and down much more rapidly than normal. However, when attempting to accomplish this, Mackinnon ended up breaking the prop, which took thirty minutes to repair.[8]

When interviewed on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, Catherine Tate stated that she had been filming alongside ten actors playing Sontarans for two weeks before she realised that there were actors inside the Sontaran costumes. She had assumed the Sontarans "ran on electricity". It was not until an actor removed his helmet to reveal his real face that she realised her mistake. She stated she was "freaked out" by this and said she "nearly died".[9][10]

When the Doctor interrupts the Sontarans' transmission, animated footage from CBeebies's part live action, part animation[11] eco adventure show Tommy Zoom is brought up on screen featuring the villanous Polluto disguised as a magician and the heroic Tommy and his dog Daniel as his audience.[12]

As in many previous episodes of the revived series, supposed BBC News 24 footage is used featuring reports of unfolding events. However, as with the more recent appearances of such footage in Doctor Who, the channel is simply captioned on screen as 'News 24' devoid of the BBC logo. Since this episode was produced, the BBC News 24 channel was rebranded in real life as BBC News.[13]

"The Poison Sky" marks the first time all three of the Tenth Doctor's primary companions — Donna Noble (Catherine Tate), Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman), and Rose Tyler (Billie Piper) — have appeared in the same episode, though Rose's appearance was extremely brief. Piper received screen credit, although her appearance is less than a second in duration.

Broadcast

Unofficial figures show that "The Poison Sky" was watched by 5.9 million viewers, giving it a 32.5% share of the total television audience. Although dipping below the 6 million mark, the programme was still the second most watched of the day, being beaten by ITV1's Britain's Got Talent, which got 8.5 million viewers. It was the highest rated programme on BBC1 for the day. The programme is currently the 19th most watched of the week and received an Appreciation Index score of 88 (considered "Excellent").[14]


Direct download: SON_DOUBLE_WIP.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 8:03pm UTC

ive had a few emails from people who dont know much about the returning villain for this weeks show so heres some information ive gathered together to help.

(This is only text - no audio version as Ill be covering a lot of this in the podcast review of Time Warrior DVD)

Sontaran



The original Sontarans
Sontarans
Type Cloned humanoids
Affiliated with Sontaran Empire
Home planet Sontar
First appearance The Time Warrior

Appearances

Television

The Sontarans made their first appearance in 1973 in the serial The Time Warrior by Robert Holmes. There, it was explained that they are a race that reproduces by means of cloning rather than by means of sexual reproduction. They live in a militaristic society obsessed by war. Sontarans are humanoid, with a squat build and distinctive dome-shaped head. They come from a high-gravity world named Sontar in the "southern spiral arm of the galaxy", and are far stronger than humans. They recharge their energy through a "probic vent" at the back of the neck rather than by eating food; they also use this vent in their reproduction process. The Sontarans have been at war with the Rutan Host for thousands of years. In the episode The Invasion of Time, the Sontarans successfully invaded Gallifrey, but were driven out again after less than a day.

Although physically formidable, the Sontarans' weak spot is the probic vent at the back of their neck; they have been killed by targeting that location with a knife (The Invasion of Time) and an arrow (The Time Warrior). They are also vulnerable to "coronic acid" (The Two Doctors).

At some point, the Sontarans encountered the equally expansionist Rutan Host. The war between the Sontarans and the Rutans continued for several millennia, with both sides remaining fairly evenly matched and neither side interested in negotiating for peace. It was still ongoing at the time of The Sontaran Experiment, which takes place at least 10,000 years beyond the 30th century. The episode Horror of Fang Rock, set during the early 20th century, hinted the Sontarans had gained the upper hand, but this proved merely a temporary setback for the Rutans. Thus far in the program's history although both the Sontarans and the Rutans have been seen, they have never been seen together in the same story.

All the Sontarans depicted in the original television series have monosyllabic names, many beginning with an initial 'st' sound (e.g., Styre in The Sontaran Experiment, Stor in The Invasion of Time, Stike in The Two Doctors and Staal in The Sontaran Stratagem). Subdivisions of the Sontaran military structure mentioned in the series include the Sontaran G3 Military Assessment Survey [1], the Ninth Sontaran Battle Group [2], and the Fifth Army Space Fleet of the Sontaran Army Space Corps [3]. In a televised trailer for the 2008 episode The Sontaran Stratagem, a Sontaran character is heard to identify himself as "General Staal of the Tenth Sontaran Battle Fleet" [4].

The Sontarans appeared in a skit for the BBC children's programme Jim'll Fix It titled "A Fix with Sontarans", along with Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor and Janet Fielding as Tegan Jovanka.

On October 2, 2007 the BBC's official Doctor Who site revealed that the Sontarans will return in series 4, with Christopher Ryan playing the Sontaran leader, General Staal.[5] This will be in a two-part story, entitled "The Sontaran Stratagem"[6]/"The Poison Sky". The BBC later revealed promotional images which featured the new Sontaran design.[7]

They are mentioned in Eye of the Gorgon, an episode of The Sarah Jane Adventures. Sarah Jane Smith meets Bea Nelson-Stanley, an elderly lady suffering from Alzheimer's disease who recalls her husband describing the Sontarans as looking like potatoes and that they were "quite the silliest creatures in the galaxy".

Games

The new 2008 design of a Sontaran, beside the Tenth Doctor and Martha Jones
The new 2008 design of a Sontaran, beside the Tenth Doctor and Martha Jones

The origins of the Sontarans have not been revealed in the television series. The Doctor Who role-playing game published by FASA claimed that they were all descended from the genetic stock of General Sontar (or Sontaris), who used newly developed bioengineering techniques to clone millions of duplicates of himself and annihilated the non-clone population. He renamed the race after himself and turned the Sontarans into an expansionist and warlike society set on universal conquest. However, this origin has no basis in anything seen in the television series. The Sontarans have also appeared as a character in the PC game Destiny of the Doctors released on 5 December 1997 by BBC Multimedia. They can be defeated by firing the occupants of an angry beehive at them.[8]

Other Appearances

Other appearances by the Sontarans include the spin-off videos Mindgame, Shakedown: Return of the Sontarans and Do You Have A License To Save This Planet?; three audio plays by BBV: Silent Warrior, Old Soldiers and Conduct Unbecoming; the Faction Paradox audio The Shadow Play; and a cameo appearance in Infidel's Comet. Shakedown marks the only occasion in which the Sontarans and their Rutan foes appear on screen together, and was adapted into a Virgin New Adventures novel.

They have also appeared in several spin-off novels, including Lords of the Storm by David A. McIntee and The Infinity Doctors by Lance Parkin. In The Infinity Doctors, the Doctor negotiated a peace between the Sontarans and the Rutan Host when two of them were left trapped in a TARDIS for several hours and got to talking due to their inability to kill each other. General Sontar also made an appearance in that novel. In The Crystal Bucephalus by Craig Hinton, the name of their planet was given as Sontara.

Comic books

The Sontarans have also appeared several times in the Doctor Who Magazine comic strip, both as adversaries of the Doctor and in strips not involving the Doctor. In The Outsider (DWM #25-26), by Steve Moore and David Lloyd, a Sontaran named Skrant invaded the world of Brahtilis with the unwitting help of Demimon, a local astrologer. The Fourth Doctor faced the Sontarans in Dragon's Claw (DWM #39-#45), by Steve Moore and Dave Gibbons, where a crew of Sontarans menaced China in 1522 AD. In Steven Moffat's short story "What I Did on My Christmas Holidays by Sally Sparrow" (the basis for the Tenth Doctor episode "Blink") the Ninth Doctor has a rooftop sword fight with two Sontarans in 21st century Istanbul, defeating them with the help of spy Sally Sparrow, apparently before the events of "Rose" in his personal timeline.

The Sontaran homeworld was destroyed in Seventh Doctor strip Pureblood (DWM #193-196) but the Sontaran race pool survived, allowing for further cloning; the strip introduced the concept of "pureblood" Sontarans not born of cloning. The Sontarans also feature in the Kroton solo strip Unnatural Born Killers (DWM #277) and the Tenth Doctor's comic strip debut The Betrothal of Sontar (DWM #365-#368), by John Tomlinson and Nick Abadzis, where a Sontaran mining rig on the ice planet Serac comes under attack by a mysterious force.

TIME WARRIOR

Synopsis

A Sontaran named Linx, trapped in the Middle Ages, uses crude time travel technology to kidnap scientists from the 20th Century to help repair his spacecraft.

Plot

In the Middle Ages, the bandit Irongron and his aide Bloodaxe together with their rabble of criminals find the crashed spaceship of a Sontaran warrior named Linx. The alien claims Earth for his Empire then sets about repairing his ship, offering Irongron “magic weapons? that will make him a king in return for shelter. They strike a bargain, though Irongron remains suspicious.

The Doctor and Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart are investigating the disappearance of several scientists from a top secret scientific research complex. They do not know Linx has used an Osmic Projector to send himself forward eight hundred years and has kidnapped the scientists then hypnotized them into making repairs on his ship. The Projector only lets him appear in another time for a brief period. While the Doctor investigates he meets an eccentric scientist called Rubeish and a young journalist called Sarah Jane Smith, who has infiltrated the complex by masquerading as her aunt. Later that evening Rubeish disappears and the Doctor uses the data he has gathered to pilot the TARDIS back to the Middle Ages.- not realising new companion Sarah has stowed away on board.

Irongron is a robber baron who has stolen his castle from an absent nobleman, and relations with his neighbours are appalling. Indeed, the mild Lord Edward of Wessex has been provoked into building an alliance against him and, when this is slow in developing, sends his archer Hal on an unsuccessful mission to kill Irongron. The robber baron is in a foul mood when a captured Sarah is brought before him. His mood improves when Linx presents him with a robot knight which is then put to the test on a captured Hal. The archer is only saved when the Doctor intervenes from afar, shooting the robot control box from Irongron’s hands. The ensuing confusion lets both Hal and Sarah flee, and they head for Wessex Castle.

Meanwhile the Doctor has realised both that Sarah is in the time period and has been captured, and also that she previously supposed him to be in league with Irongron. The next morning the robber baron and his troops assault the castle using rifles supplied by Linx but the attack is repelled by the Doctor’s cunning. The failure further sours the relationship between Linx and Irongron, which has deteriorated since the robot knight fiasco and the point at which the robber saw the Sontaran’s true visage beneath his helmet.

The Doctor now decides to lead an attack on Irongron’s castle, and he and Sarah enter dressed as friars. He makes contact with Rubeish and finds the human scientists in a state of extreme exhaustion. Linx catches the Doctor in the laboratory once more, but this time is rendered immobile when a lucky strike from Rubeish hits his probic vent – a Sontaran refuelling point on the back of their necks which is also their main weakness. Rubeish and the Doctor use the Osmic Projector to send the scientists back to the twentieth century. Sarah now invites herself into Irongron’s kitchen, using the opportunity to drug the food, thereby knocking out Irongron’s men.

A recovered Linx now determines his ship is repaired enough to effect a departure. Once more he encounters the Doctor, and they wrestle in combat. A crazed and half drugged Irongron arrives and accuses Linx of betraying him: the Sontaran responds by killing him. As Linx enters his spherical vessel Hal arrives and shoots him in the probic vent, and the Sontaran warrior falls dead over his controls, triggering the launch mechanism. Knowing the place is about to explode when the shuttle takes off, Bloodaxe awakes and rises the remaining men and tells them to flee, while the Doctor hurries the last of his allies out of the castle. It explodes moments before the Doctor and Sarah depart in the TARDIS.


The Sontaran Experiment


Synopsis

On a future Earth recovering from devastating solar flares, the Fourth Doctor, Harry Sullivan, and Sarah Jane Smith discover Styre, a Sontaran warrior, conducting experiments on astronauts he has captured during their investigation of the rejuvenated Earth.

Plot

Following on from The Ark in Space, the time travellers teleport down from the Nerva Space Station to Earth, ostensibly uninhabited. However, the system is not functioning well, and the Doctor begins repairing it. The other two explore the surrounding area, but Harry falls down a crevasse and Sarah goes to seek the Doctor's help. He is nowhere in sight.

Roth, an astronaut, finds Sarah. He is obviously distressed, and explains that he has been tortured by an alien that lives in the rocks, together with its patrolling robot. He takes Sarah towards the astronauts' campsite, but refuses to approach the campsite, suspecting the astronaut Vural of collusion with the alien.

Three of the astronauts have captured the Doctor. They believe Nerva to be a legend, and tell him in turn that they had picked up a distress signal from Earth. They came to investigate, but their ship was vaporised when they emerged, leaving nine of them stranded. Then they began to vanish one by one. They blame the Doctor for this. Roth appears and the astronauts chase him, while Sarah frees the Doctor. Roth loses the others and meets up with Sarah and the Doctor. The Doctor also falls down a crevasse, and the robot returns, capturing Roth and Sarah and bringing them to the alien's spacecraft. The alien is Field Major Styre of the Sontaran G3 Military Assessment Survey, who has been experimenting on, and killing, the astronauts. Roth tries to escape but is shot dead by Styre.

Styre reports back to his Marshal via a video link. The Marshal is impatient for the intelligence report (without which an invasion of Earth cannot take place), but Styre admits that he has been delayed in his experiments.

Styre subjects Sarah to a series of terrifying hallucinations. The Doctor, free from the hole, has reached her and rips off a hallucinogenic device from her forehead, but she falls unconscious. The Doctor, enraged, attacks Styre, but the Sontaran easily fends him off. Styre shoots him unconscious (believing it to be fatal) when he runs away.

The robot, having captured the three remaining spacemen, brings them to Styre's ship, where it is revealed that Vural had tried to make a deal with Styre in exchange for his own life. However, Styre intends to experiment on Vural anyway. The Doctor recovers, disables the robot, and meets Sarah and Harry. He confronts Styre, goading him into accepting hand-to-hand combat. While the two fight, Sarah and Harry free the three astronauts, and then Harry climbs towards Styre's ship to sabotage it. Styre almost wins the fight, but Vural attacks him, saving the Doctor at the cost of his own life. Styre, now low on energy, heads back towards his ship to recharge, but the sabotage causes it to kill him.

The Doctor informs the Marshal that not only has Styre's mission failed, but that the invasion plans are in human hands. This is enough to ward off the invasion, and the three can return to Nerva.

The Invasion of Time
Synopsis

The Doctor returns to Gallifrey, having claimed the Presidency. His behaviour is unusual and has Leela thrown in jail. However, the Doctor is doing this to prevent a Sontaran instigated disaster.

More when I review the DVD.

The Two DoctorsSynopsis

The Second Doctor and Jamie are on a mission for the Time Lords that goes horribly wrong, and Jamie sees the Doctor being tortured to death. However, if the Doctor died in his second incarnation, what does that mean for the Sixth Doctor and Peri?

Plot

The Second Doctor and Jamie McCrimmon land the TARDIS on board Space Station Camera in the Third Zone, on a mission for the Time Lords, who have also installed a teleport control on the TARDIS that grants them dual control for the occasion. The Doctor explains to Jamie that the station is a research facility and they are here to have a discreet word with Dastari, the Head of Projects. The TARDIS materialises in the station kitchen, where they meet Shockeye, the station cook. Shockeye is an Androgum, a member of a primitive, emotionally and ethically bestial humanoid race which acts as the station's workforce, and is confrontational until the Doctor reveals he is a Time Lord. Suddenly deferential, Shockeye eyes Jamie hungrily and offers to buy him from the Doctor as the main ingredient for a meal. The Doctor, shocked, refuses, and takes Jamie away to see Dastari. As they leave, however, they hear the sound of the TARDIS dematerialising. This is observed by Chessene, an Androgum technologically augmented to mega-genius levels. Chessene has plans of her own, involving someone named Stike who will be arriving in force soon, once Shockeye's poisoned meal to the scientists takes effect. She has also taken possession of the Kartz-Reimer module.

The Doctor speaks to Dastari in his office, telling him that the Time Lords want the time experiments of Kartz and Reimer stopped. The Time Lords have an official policy of neutrality, and so have sent the exiled Doctor to maintain deniability. Dastari introduces Chessene, but the Doctor is sceptical as to whether such augmentation can change Chessene's essential Androgum nature, and he considers such tampering dangerous. Meanwhile, three Sontaran battlecruisers appear near the station, on an intercept course. Before the station's defences can be activated, Chessene incapacitates the technician on post and opens the docking bays. Back in the office, the Doctor warns that the distortions from the Kartz-Reimer experiments are on the verge of threatening the fabric of time, but Dastari refuses to order them to cease, accusing the Time Lords of not wanting another race to discover the secrets of time travel. As the argument grows more heated, Dastari grows faint and falls into a drugged stupor. Energy weapons fire begins to sound in the corridors and the Doctor orders Jamie to run as a Sontaran levels a gun at the Doctor.

Somewhere else, the Sixth Doctor and Peri Brown are on a peaceful fishing trip. When they return to the TARDIS, Peri is startled as the Sixth Doctor sways and collapses — just as, back on the station, Jamie spies the Second Doctor in a glass chamber, writhing in agony as a Sontaran manipulates controls. In his TARDIS, the Sixth Doctor awakens, somehow having had a vision of himself as his second incarnation being put to death. He realizes that this is impossible, since he is still alive, but he is also concerned that he may have died in the past and only exists now as a temporal anomaly. He decides to go and consult his old friend Dastari to see if he can enlist his help.

The TARDIS materializes on the station, but everything is dark, and the smell of decay and death is everywhere. The station computer demands the Doctor leave, and when he refuses, tries to kill him and Peri by depressurising the passageway. The Doctor, however, manages to open a hatch and drag his unconscious companion through to another section. In Dastari's office, the Doctor discovers the scientist's day journal and the Time Lords' objections to the Kartz-Reimer experiments, but refuses to believe his people are responsible for the massacre. Peri suggests someone is trying to frame the Time Lords and drive a wedge between them and the Third Zone governments. They leave the office to enter the service ducts, work their way to the control centre and attempt to deactivate the computer before it succeeds in killing them.

On Earth, Chessene, Shockeye and a Sontaran, Major Varl, take possession of a Spanish hacienda by killing its aged owner, Doña Arana. Varl sets up a homing beacon for the Sontaran ship, while Chessene absorbs the knowledge of the old woman's mind, discovering that they are in Andalucia, just outside the city of Seville. Varl announces that Group Marshal Stike of the Ninth Sontaran Battle Fleet is in descent orbit. Meanwhile, two people, Oscar Botcherby and Anita, are approaching the grounds. Oscar, an ex-English stage actor who is managing a restaurant in the city, is here to catch moths, armed with a net and a cyanide killing jar in his backpack. He and Anita see the Sontaran ship zoom overhead, and observe through binoculars Dastari and another Sontaran carrying an unconscious Second Doctor towards the hacienda. Anita pulls Oscar along, thinking that they are victims of an aeroplane crash and need help.

Down in the bowels of the station, the Sixth Doctor tries to disconnect the main circuit. Suddenly, Peri is attacked by a humanoid in rags, and when her cries distract the Doctor, he is hit by a gas trap and falls unconscious, becoming entangled in the wires.


Peri knocks out her attacker and frees the Sixth Doctor, who saved himself by shutting off his respiratory passages. He disconnects the computer's main circuit, and the two find that Peri's attacker was a half-delirious Jamie, who has been hiding all the while. Jamie moans that "they" killed the Doctor, and under hypnosis, tells the Sixth Doctor what has transpired, giving a description that the Doctor recognizes as the Sontarans. Returning to the office to examine the station records, the Doctor suddenly sees Peri in the glass tube, writhing in pain. As he frantically works the controls to free her, the person in the tube changes from Peri to Dastari to the Second Doctor and even to himself. When Jamie and Peri return to the office, the Sixth Doctor explains that what Jamie saw was an illusion designed to make people believe the Doctor was dead and not investigate further (the animator had been left on and captured Peri's image), which means the Second Doctor is being held captive somewhere. The Sixth Doctor theorises that the Sontarans kidnapped Dastari as well because Dastari is the only biogeneticist in the galaxy who could isolate the symbiotic nuclei of a Time Lord that gives them the molecular stability to travel through time. If given time travel, the Sontarans will be unstoppable. The Sixth Doctor decides to put himself into a telepathic trance to try and determine where his past incarnation is being held. He awakens having heard the sound of the Santa Maria, the largest of the 25 bells at the Great Cathedral of Seville.

In the cellar of the hacienda, Dastari and Chessene set up equipment, keeping the Second Doctor drugged and passive. Dastari questions why they have come to Earth, and Chessene explains that it is conveniently situated for an attack Stike wishes to make on the Madillon Cluster against the Rutan Host, and that Shockeye also wanted to taste the flesh of humans. Dastari heaps scorn on Shockeye's primitive urges, and urges Chessene to remember that she is beyond those, now. The TARDIS materialises on the grounds near the hacienda, and Oscar approaches it as the TARDIS crew emerge, thinking it is a real police box and that the Doctor and his companions are plain-clothes police officers. Taking advantage of the mistake, the Doctor asks that Oscar lead him to the hacienda.

Dastari reveals his plan to dissect the Second Doctor's cell structure to isolate his symbiotic nuclei and give them to Chessene. The Second Doctor calls him mad, and protests that her barbaric Androgum nature, coupled with the ability to time travel, will mean that there will be no limit to her evil. The Sixth Doctor asks Peri to create a distraction at the front door of the hacienda while he and Jamie make their way into the cellar via a passage in the nearby ice house. Peri calls out, interrupting Dastari's operation. She poses as a lost American student, but Chessene is suspicious, having read thoughts of the Doctor in her mind. Chessene gets Shockeye to bring the Second Doctor, strapped into a wheelchair, through the hall, to see if Peri reacts. She does not, as she has never seen the Second Doctor before. Peri makes her excuses and leaves, but Shockeye chases her anyway, eager for a meal.

Meanwhile, the Sixth Doctor and Jamie are in the cellar, where the Doctor examines the Kartz-Reimer module, a prototype time machine modelled on Time Lord technology. He explains to Jamie that once the briode nebuliser of the module is primed with his symbiotic nuclei — the Rassilon Imprimatur — it will be safe for anyone to use. Unfortunately, the Sontarans have heard him. Outside, Shockeye also catches up to Peri.


Shockeye knocks Peri out and brings her back to the hacienda kitchen. In the cellar, Stike threatens to kill Jamie unless the Sixth Doctor gets into the module and primes it with his symbiotic print, and the Doctor does so. Stike is about to execute Jamie anyway, but Jamie stabs Stike's leg with a concealed knife, and the Doctor and he run off upstairs, where they find the Second Doctor. Before they can release the Second Doctor and escape the hacienda, however, Shockeye shows up with the unconscious Peri. The Second Doctor feigns unconsciousness while the others hide.

While the Sixth Doctor and Jamie watch from their hiding place, they hear Chessene voice her concern that now that a second Time Lord is involved, the other Time Lords will be arriving as well. However, she has a contingency plan. She asks Dastari to implant the Second Doctor with some of Shockeye's genetic material, turning the Doctor into an Androgum and under her thrall, following which they will eliminate the Sontarans. However, Dastari and Chessene are unaware that the module is now primed, and that, outside, Stike is preparing to leave in it once Sontaran High Command has been notified and leave no one alive when he does so. Stike orders Varl to set the Sontaran battlecraft's self-destruct mechanism.

Interrupting Shockeye as he is about to slaughter Peri, Chessene gets him to bring the Second Doctor to the cellar. Once there, she stuns Shockeye so that Dastari can remove his genetic material. The Sixth Doctor revives Peri in the kitchen and ushers her and Jamie away. The Sixth Doctor tells them that what he revealed about the Imprimatur in the cellar was not strictly true — he had heard Stike approaching and the speech was for the Sontaran's benefit. The machine worked for the Doctor, but will not for them because the Doctor has taken the briode nebuliser.

Dastari has implanted the Second Doctor with a 50 percent Androgum inheritance, and when Shockeye wakes in a rage, he finds a kindred spirit in the transformed Doctor. They decide to go into the town to sample the local cuisine. In the meantime, Dastari lures the Sontarans into the cellar, where Chessene attacks them with two canisters of coronic acid. Varl is killed, but Stike, though wounded, manages to escape. He tries to use the module, but without the nebuliser, it severely burns him instead. Stike staggers towards his battlecraft, forgetting about the self-destruct. The ship explodes, taking him with it.

The Sixth Doctor, Peri and Jamie follow the Second Doctor and Shockeye into Seville, hoping to cure him before the change becomes complete and affects the Sixth Doctor as well. Dastari and Chessene are also seeking the two of them, knowing that unless the Second Doctor undergoes a second, stabilizing operation, he will eventually reject the Androgum transfusion. The Second Doctor and Shockeye go to Oscar's restaurant, ordering gargantuan amounts of food. When Oscar demands that they pay, Shockeye fatally stabs Oscar, just as the Sixth Doctor and the others arrive. Shockeye leaves the Second Doctor behind, who slowly reverts back to normal. As all of them leave the restaurant and the distraught Anita, however, Chessene and Dastari appear, taking them back to the hacienda at gunpoint.

Chessene and Dastari find the nebuliser on the module missing, and the Sixth Doctor tells them how he primed the machine for Stike. To test the truth of the Doctor's claim, they replace the nebuliser and send Peri on a trip with the module, and she survives. Chessene gives permission for Shockeye to eat Jamie, and the Androgum takes him up to the kitchen. Left alone for the moment, the Sixth Doctor smugly confirms the Second's suspicions — the nebuliser is sabotaged, with a thin interface layer so it would only work once for Peri. Flipping the table over on which the key to their chains rests, the Doctors retrieve the key. The Sixth Doctor frees himself first, and runs up to save Jamie. He encounters Shockeye in the kitchen, and the Androgum wounds him with a knife. Shockeye pursues him through the grounds, but the Sixth Doctor finds Oscar's pack and his cyanide killing jar. The Doctor ambushes Shockeye, covering his head with Oscar's butterfly net and pressing the cyanide-soaked cotton wool to his face, killing him.

The sight of the Time Lord's blood on the ground is too much for Chessene, who falls to her knees and starts licking it, to Dastari's disgust. He realizes that no matter how augmented she may be, Chessene will always be an Androgum, and decides to free the Second Doctor and his companions. When Chessene sees this, she shoots and kills Dastari. She tries to shoot the Second Doctor and Peri as well, but Jamie throws a knife at her wrist, making her drop the gun. Chessene goes into the module, hoping to escape, but the module explodes, molecularly disintegrating her and turning her back into a common Androgum in death.

The Second Doctor uses a Stattenheim remote control — which the Sixth Doctor covets — to summon his TARDIS. He and Jamie say their goodbyes and leave. As the Sixth Doctor and Peri make their way back to their own TARDIS, the Doctor tells her that from now on, it will be a healthy vegetarian diet for both of them.


Category:Information -- posted at: 1:25pm UTC

TDP 55: Doctor Who 4.03 Planet of the Ood









Planet of the Ood"
is the third episode of the fourth series of British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was broadcast on BBC One on 19 April 2008.

The episode features the return of the Ood, last seen in "The Impossible Planet" and "The Satan Pit". In the narrative, the Doctor (David Tennant) and his companion Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) investigate why the Ood are happy to serve. They become horrified at the alterations humans perform on the Ood, and resolve to free them. The episode received several positive reviews for its central theme of slavery.


Plot

Synopsis

The Doctor uses the TARDIS to land at a random point in time and space. On leaving the TARDIS, he and Donna find a dying Ood, a species the Doctor previously encountered in "The Impossible Planet" and "The Satan Pit".Before dying, the Ood's eyes turn red and it attacks the Doctor. The Doctor muses that the last time he met them, they were being influenced by the Devil, so their docility is being influenced by a different and closer being. The Doctor and Donna find an industrial complex controlled by Ood Operations, who are selling the Ood as a servant race. The Doctor locates their position: the Ood-Sphere in the 42nd century.

The "Red Eye" phenomenon is affecting other Ood on the planet: several people have been killed in the weeks prior to the narrative. During the outbreak, the Ood state that "the circle must be broken". Ood Operations noted an increase in the phenomenon, and considered it to be similar to foot-and-mouth disease; CEO Klineman Halpen (Tim McInnerny) tells the Doctor the method of killing is identical.

Throughout the episode, Donna becomes sympathetic to the Ood and is horrified by their status as slaves. The Doctor also takes an interest in the Ood noting that no species could naturally evolve to serve. He also feels he had overlooked them on their previous encounter. He and Donna travel through the complex and finds a batch of uncultivated Ood. Instead of a translation sphere, they hold a "hind brain" that gives them individuality; the Doctor derides Halpen for lobotomising them.

The Doctor and Donna are captured by Ood Operations' security force. Shortly after, the Ood begin a mass revolution, and the complex is evacuated. The Doctor follows Halpen to a locked warehouse. The warehouse contains a large brain, which completes the Ood's collective conciousness. The brain's control of the Ood is limited by a circle of pylons emitting a forcefield. Halpen plans to kill the brain, and by extension, all of the Ood, but is stopped by a joint effort between the Doctor, Donna, Dr Ryder (Adrian Rawlins), and Halpen's personal Ood, Ood Sigma(Paul Kasey); Ryder lowered the telepathic field gradually over ten years, while Ood Sigma used Halpen's hair-loss medication to slowly convert Halpen into an Ood.

The Doctor shuts down the circle, freeing the Ood and allowing them to all rejoin in a telepathic collective. Before leaving, Ood Sigma promises to include the Doctor and Donna in the Ood's song and honour their names forever, but comments that the Doctor's song may soon end.

Continuity

The "red eye" phenomenon is present in all three "Ood" episodes, as an effect of being possessed; in the former, they were under the Beast's control. In "Planet of the Ood", the Doctor gives a time frame for all three episodes: the 42nd century, during the Second Great and Bountiful Human Empire; the fourth incarnation was mentioned in "The Long Game" and "Bad Wolf". The Ood-Sphere is in the same solar system as the Sense-Sphere, the location for the 1964 serial The Sensorites;[ the Sensorites and Ood are visually similar.

 Production

We wanted to know more about [the Ood's] background. This time around, they're centre stage. The story is about them. Why they are the way they are. What makes them tick.
Keith Temple

The episode was written by Keith Temple and directed by Graeme Harper. Executive producer Russell T Davies had envisioned the Ood's return because their previous appearance, the 2006 two-part story "The Impossible Planet" and "The Satan Pit", had been overshadowed by the appearance of the Devil. Davies subsequently provided Temple with a brief for the episode which included the terms "ice planet" and the storyline of a business selling the Ood as a commodity] Temple's drafts of the episode were described as "too dark" and "too old Doctor Who"; Temple stated on the episode's commentary that he "wrote a six-part [serial] in 45 minutes".

Temple and Davies thought that the episode was not a "fun reappearance" of an old monster; instead, they felt that there was "an actual story to tell". Temple emphasised in his script that the Doctor overlooked the Ood in lieu of the Devil, and the character had to see his shortcomings. Temple's script also emphasised the Ood's slavery; both Temple and lead actor David Tennant commented that the existence of a species born to serve was complicated, the latter stating complications with Richard Dawkins' "selfish gene" theory.[3][10] Donna's role in the episode was to further humanise the Doctor, and her opinion changing from visual disgust to empathy was deliberately important.[10] Susie Liggat cited the writing as part of Doctor Who's importance—she thought the story about "liberating oppressed people" could be applied domestically or globally.

The episode's antagonist, Klineman Halpen, is portrayed by Tim McInnerny. Davies considered his character—"a middle manager who's out of his depth"—a perfect villain. Temple described him as "narcissistic", "preening" and "ruthless ... without sentiment". McInnerny said "It's always nice to play a bastard... I'm glad Halpen's a three-dimensional bastard! That makes him interesting!" Temple epitomised Halpen in a scene where he kills an operative for the activist group "Friends of the Ood"; Davies and Tennant felt that his "disgusting" and "gothic" Edgar Allen Poe-esque fate would not be deserved otherwise.

Filming for the episode took place in August 2007. The opening and closing outdoor scenes were filmed in Trefil Quarry in the Brecon Beacons, the external scenes of the complex in a caramel factory, and the scenes in the "battery farm" were filmed in a hangar at RAF Saint Athan.[10][9] Very little CGI was used in the episode; the snow was paper snow adhered by water, and the Ood heads contained complex animatronics.[10][9] McInnerny wore a prosthetic head with removable flaps for the shot where Halpen transforms into an Ood. Instead of McInnerny, the production team's best boy provided motion capture for the computer-generated profile of the appendages coming out of his mouth.

Reception

Overnight figures estimated Planet of the Ood was the most watched programme in its timeslot, with 6.9 million viewers (33.4% of the total audience). The episode was the second most-watched programme of the day, beaten by Britain's Got Talent, and was the fifteenth most watched programme of the week. The episode's Appreciation Index was 87 (considered Excellent).

Scott Matthewman, writing for The Stage, gaved a mixed review of the episode. He thought that "pretty much the only surprise in the way the humans who made up the Ood Corporation were presented came as PR girl Solana (Ayesha Dharker) escaped with the Doctor and Donna, only to betray their position by calling for the guards," and "the revelation that Ryder (Adrian Rawlins) has been working to infiltrate the Corporation is thrown away... as quickly as it is revealed." However, he thought Donna was becoming "fast ... one of the strongest and most well-rounded companions in the series’ history", and "there were some nice interpretations of the Ood’s natural development". Caitlin Moran of The Times thought the episode was "really really good ... – one that will have you staring at your screen and asking, once again, 'How can something so good be happening so early on a Saturday night, in my own front room?'". She enjoyed the scene where the Doctor and Donna talk about slaves in contemporary culture, saying that Tate "really, really isn’t that bad when she says ["We don't have slaves"]". Ben Rawson-Jones of Digital Spy gave the episode five stars out of five. Rawson-Jones opened his review by saying "Doctor Who can occasionally transcend the properties of a mere family television show to reach out and give viewers a poignant, beautiful epiphany and greater sense of the world they inhabit.", citing Donna's reaction on seeing the uncultivated Ood as the moving part of the episode. He thought the episode as a whole "exemplifies just how powerful and emotive Doctor Who can be when writing, direction and performance are all harmonious and complete their own Ood-like circle", and was appreciative of the acting. The episode's only flaw was when Donna said "Why do you say 'Miss'? Do I look single?", but was otherwise "an extremely impressive, contemplative examination of the abhorrent nature of humanity".


4.03 – "Planet of the Ood"
Doctor Who episode

An unprocessed Ood shows his "hind" brain to the Doctor.
Cast
Doctor David Tennant (Tenth Doctor)
Companion Catherine Tate (Donna Noble)
Guest stars
Production
Writer Keith Temple
Director Graeme Harper
Script editor Lindsey Alford
Producer Susie Liggat
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Phil Collinson
Production code 4.3
Series Series 4
Length 45 mins
Originally broadcast 19 April 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"The Fires of Pompeii" "The Sontaran Stratagem"

Direct download: PLANET_OOD_New.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 11:02pm UTC

TDP 54: Doctor Who 4.02 The Fires of Pompeii The Fires of Pompeii" is the second episode of the fourth series of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was broadcast on BBC One on 12 April 2008.

The episode takes place during the 79AD eruption of Mount Vesuvius. In the episode, the Doctor is faced with a moral dilemma: whether to recuse from the situation or to save the population of Pompeii. The Doctor's activities in Pompeii are impeded by the rock-like Pyrovile, and their allies, the Sybilline Sisterhood, who are using the volcano to convert the humans to Pyroviles.

The episode was filmed in Rome's Cinecittà studios, and was the first time the Doctor Who production team took cast abroad for filming since its revival.[1] The production of the episode was impeded by a fire near the sets several weeks before filming and problems crossing into Europe.

Critics' opinion regarding the episode were mixed. The premise of the episode—the moral dilemma the Doctor faces—and Donna's insistence that he save the population of Pompeii were universally praised. However, the episode's writing was criticised, in particular, the characterisation of the supporting cast: the dialogue was described as "one-dimensional"[2] and Peter Capaldi's and Phil Davis's dialogue as "whimpering and scowling".[3]


Plot

Synopsis

The Doctor (David Tennant) and Donna Noble (Catherine Tate) arrive in what the Doctor believes to be first century Rome. After an earthquake, he realises he has materialised in Pompeii on 23 August 79, one day before the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. When he returns to the TARDIS' location, he is told it was sold to a Lucius Caecilius Iucundus (Peter Capaldi), a marble sculptor.

The episode's antagonists are the Pyrovile, giant rock-like creatures resembling golems whose home planet was destroyed. They operate secretly; the Sybilline Sisterhood act as their proxies. They use the Sisterhood, which is comprised of a high priestess (Victoria Wicks), Spurrina (Sasha Behar), and Thalina (Lorraine Burroughs) to make prophecies while converting them to stone. The Sisterhood is inducting Caecilius' daughter Evelina (Francesca Fowler) and is allied to the local augur Lucius (Phil Davis). The Doctor is disturbed by their knowledge of his and Donna's personal lives, and by Lucius' latest commission, a marble circuit board.

The Doctor breaks into Lucius' home and discovers that he is creating an energy converter. He is accosted by Lucius, who sends a Pyrovile to kill the Doctor. The confusion allows the Sisterhood to kidnap Donna briefly; the Doctor follows them and frees Donna. They escape into the Sisterhood's hypocaust system and travel into the centre of Mount Vesuvius.

Mount Vesuvius is being used by the Pyrovile to convert the human race to Pyroviles. The Doctor realises the volcano will not erupt if the energy converter is running, and subsequently switches it off, triggering the eruption of Vesuvius. Despite Donna's efforts, she and the Doctor are only able to save Caecilius' family, who watch Pompeii's destruction from a vantage point.

The last scene takes place six months later in Rome. Caecilius' family are shown to be successful: Caecilius is running a profiting business, Evelina has a social life in comparison to her seclusion in Pompeii, and his son Quintus (Francois Pandolfo) is training to become a doctor. Before Quintus leaves, he pays tribute to the family's household gods, the Doctor and Donna.

Continuity

The Doctor refers to the eruption as "volcano day", a phrase used to refer to the eruption by Jack Harkness and the Ninth Doctor in "The Empty Child" and "The Doctor Dances".[4][5] The Shadow Proclamation, an intergalactic code invoked in "Rose", "The Christmas Invasion", and "Partners in Crime" is used by the Doctor when speaking to the Pyrovile.[6][7][8] The Medusa Cascade, first mentioned by the Master in "Last of the Time Lords", is referenced;[9] executive producer Russell T Davies stated that the Cascade would "come back to haunt us".[10] The Doctor also alludes to the events of the 1965 serial The Romans, admitting "a little" responsibility for the Great Fire of Rome, which was depicted at the end of that story.[11] Writer James Moran deliberately included the reference. The sale of the TARDIS as "modern art" was also included as a reference to Moran's favourite serial, City of Death.[12] The location and historical significance are also shared by "The Fires of Vulcan", a Big Finish audio play from 2000 starring Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor.

Production

Writing

How does [the Doctor] decide who lives, who dies, when to intervene, and when not to? If you do save them, where do you stop? Do you remake the universe according to what you think is right and wrong?
James Moran[13]

Executive producer Russell T Davies originally planned to include a serial set in Pompeii in the first new series of Doctor Who, after seeing the documentary Pompeii: The Last Day.[14] That episode's position was given to Boom Town[14] and the idea was shelved for three years.

The episode was written by James Moran, who previously wrote the film Severance and the Torchwood episode "Sleeper". Moran had difficulty writing the episode, and had to rewrite the Doctor's opening line over twenty times.[1] The Pyrovile were also edited during writing: they were previously called Pyrovillaxians and Pyrovellians.[12]

Moran worked closely with Davies because of the constraints imposed by filming.[13] Davies encouraged Moran to insert linguistic jokes similar to those in the comic book series Asterix, such as Lucius Petrus Dextrus ("Lucius Stone Right Arm"), TK Maxximus, and Spartacus; the use of the phrase "I'm Spartacus!" refers to the 1960 film.[15][12] Moran based the ancillary characters of Metalla (Tracey Childs) and Quintus from Caecilius' family in the Cambridge Latin Course; the character of Evelina was the only member of the family created by Moran.[15][12] The line "Don't worry, she's from Barcelona" was a reference to an apologetic catchphrase from Fawlty Towers, attributed by the production team to Sybil Fawlty.[12]

The episode was heavily based on a moral question posed to the Doctor by Donna: whether to warn the population of Pompeii, or to recuse from the situation.[13][15] Moran also had to deal with the intensity and sensitivity required when writing about the eruption.[15] Davies and Moran both appreciated Catherine Tate's performance, and cited Donna's ability to humanise the Doctor and help him deal with "lose-lose situations" as the reason the Doctor travels with companions.[13]

Filming

"The Fires of Pompeii" was filmed at the Cinecittà studios in Rome.
"The Fires of Pompeii" was filmed at the Cinecittà studios in Rome.

The episode was filmed at the Cinecittà studios in Rome in September 2007.[15] Other locations suggested were in Malta and Wales, but the size of the project, the biggest since the show's revival, resulted in production taking place in Italy.[15] This was the first time the majority of the episode was filmed abroad, and the first time the cast had filmed abroad;[15] pick-up shots were made in New York City for "Daleks in Manhattan".[15] Cinecittà had accepted the BBC's request despite the show's small budget to promote the studios.[13]

Filming an episode abroad had been suggested in 2004,[13] but the episode was the first such occasion.[15] Planning began in April 2007, before Moran had written the script, and continued until the production team travelled to Italy.[15] Several weeks before filming started, a fire disrupted the production team.[16][17] Moving to Rome caused problems for the production team: the equipment truck was delayed for several hours at the Swiss border; the special effects team were delayed for twenty-four hours at Customs in Calais.[15] The production team only had 48 hours to film on location. The aftermath of the eruption was filmed on the same night as the location shots. To create the falling ash, the special effects team used a large mass of cork, with a "constant supply of debris raining down".[1]

Broadcast and reception

Tate perfectly portrayed Donna’s anguish as she forlornly appealed for people not to run to the beaches and certain death. For me, that short scene was the emotional highpoint of a series of heart-rending scenes, each with Donna at their heart.
—Scott Matthewman, The Stage[2]

Overnight figures estimated the episode was watched by 8.1 million viewers, with a peak of 8.5 million viewers. The episode was the second most watched programme on 12 April; Britain's Got Talent was viewed by 8.8 million people. The episode was the eleventh most-watched programme of the week.[18][19]

The episode received several mixed and positive reviews. Ian Hyland, writing for News of the World, said that Tate "was almost bearable this week". He also complimented the "TK Maxximus" joke. He was ambivalent to Donna's reaction to the Doctor leaving Caecilius' family to die: he criticised her acting, comparing her to The Catherine Tate Show character Joannie "Nan" Taylor, but said "top again if that was intentional". He closed saying "this week was a hundred times better than that lame opening episode. Scarier aliens, stronger guest stars and a proper adult-friendly storyline involving sisterhoods and soothsayers."[20] Scott Matthewman of The Stage said that Donna's insistence to change the past "formed the emotional backbone of this episode, producing some truly heartbreaking performances". He liked the joke about the TARDIS' translating the Doctor's and Donna's Latin phrases to Celtic, saying it was "subtly played throughout the episode [...] in a way that builds the joke without trampling it into the ground". His favourite part was Donna's attempts to divert the population of Pompeii away from the beach; the scene was "the emotional highpoint of a series of heart rendering scenes". However, he criticised Moran's writing, specifically, Quintus' and Metalla's dialogue, saying the former "remained pretty much one-dimensional throughout".[2] Alan Stanley Blair of SyFy Portal gave a positive review. He was highly appreciative of Tate, saying "[she] moved even further away from her "Runaway" character that initially joined the show." The phrase "TK Maxximus" and the Doctor's use of a water pistol to subdue the Pyrovile was complimented, as was the special effects used to animate the Pyrovile. However, he disapproved of the use of Cockney colloquialisms in the episode, most notably the Stallholder (Phil Cornwell) saying "lovely jubbly".[21] Ben Rawson-Jones of Digital Spy gave the episode three stars out of five. His opening said "Fantastic effects and a well developed moral dilemma bolster 'The Fires Of Pompeii', although the episode fails to erupt." Rawson-Jones felt that Moran's script took "too long to actively engage the viewer and tap into the compelling premise of the time travellers arriving in the doomed city shortly before 'volcano day'." and that "the subplots are unsatisfyingly muddled for the majority of the narrative." He also complained about the characterisation of the supporting cast, saying that "Peter Capaldi and Phil Davis [deserved] better". However, he said the moral dilemma the Doctor faced was "compelling" and the Doctor's use of the water pistol "adds a pleasing sense of fun to counterbalance the impending stench of death and harks nicely back to the Tom Baker era of the show." Overall, he appreciated the premise of the episode, but thought the episode "deserved better writing".[3]

Direct download: 4_02_Pompeii.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 6:05am UTC

TDP 53: Doctor Who 4.01 Partners In Crime












Partners in Crime 4.01 (30.1)



Synopsis

Donna Noble is determined to find the Doctor again – even if it means braving the villainous Miss Foster. But when the alien threat escalates out of control, can Donna find her Time Lord before the march of the Adipose begins at last?

Plot

Donna Noble is walking down a street on the way to Adipose Industries, as she is investigating them on their weight-loss drug. The Doctor is doing the same but they fail to see each other as they do different things at the same time. They are in an a conference room posing as Health and Safety when a reporter starts asking Miss Foster what this drug does she fails to tell her and the meeting ends. The Doctor and Donna ask different employees for customer addresses.

Donna goes to a woman named Stacey Campbell's house while the Doctor goes and interviews a man called Roger Davey about his use of the drug. Roger tells the Doctor that his burglar alarm keeps going of at 1:30 AM. While Donna is talking to Stacey, Stacey tells Donna that she has lost a lot of weight and can't wait to dump her boyfriend. So Stacey goes to the bathroom only to find that her stomach starts moving and a tubby piece of fat comes out her body. Donna while down stairs is fiddling with a capsule like necklace with the end shaped like a pill. As she turns it another fat thing comes out of Stacey's body. As Donna plays with the necklace more of Stacey's body explodes into more pieces of fat and dies. Donna breaks into her bathroom and as an Adipose waves to her it jumps out the window. Miss Foster senses it via her computer and she scans the CCTV with her henchmen only to find a reporter from earlier called Penny Carter. The Doctor senses what has happened to Stacey and runs up to her house only to find nothing there. He then runs off to the TARDIS. Donna cancels Stacey's cab and goes home only to find her mother nagging at her so she goes off to see her grandfather Wilfred Mott who is gazing at the stars at the allotments. He says to Donna to find the right man as she talks to him about missing the trip with the Doctor. The Doctor is in the TARDIS and talks to himself about the Adipose (He is thinking he has got Martha with him only he realises that he does not).

The next day Donna takes the car to Adipose industries only to be criticized by her mother because she needs the car for going out. Donna hides in the toilets and the Doctor hides to investigate. All day Miss Foster is looking for Penny Carter who is hiding in the same toilets too. Donna thinks that she has been caught but it turns out to be Penny, who is then tied up. Donna follows only to find that the Doctor is also watching Miss Foster. He Spots Donna watching through the door and mouths to her and she mouths back. They are both unaware that they are being watched by Miss Foster and everybody in her office. Miss Foster asks her two henchmen to get them and they chase after Donna. But she runs up to the roof. Handily for the Doctor he was on a pully for the window cleaner he pulls him self up to rescue Donna as they get in he locks the roping device with the sonic screwdriver so that he can get down. But to his surprise Miss Foster has a sonic pen which she sends them down flying as she cuts the rope with it Donna almost falls but the Doctor climbs up a rope and squeezes into a window. Goes down a floor to Miss Foster's office. Only to find that Penny is locked in there. He then opens her window with his screw driver and saves Donna.

Miss Foster then uses a device (possibly another sonic pen) which opens a sliding door to reveal an Inducer which along with her capsule helps her to begin the birthing process of one million Adipose from her customers bodies. Meanwhile the Doctor breaks into a secondary Inducer ,hidden inside a cupboard, with his Sonic screwdriver. There he manages to temporarily disable the process by unscrewing his capsule and attaching it to a wire connected to the Inducer. While he is doing this Donna asks the Doctor that he looks older. She also asks if he's still on his own; he replies that he had this friend called Martha but he ruined her life but she's fine, he also says that Rose is still missing. Miss Foster notices he has tried to hack into the system and increases the power to double strength on her Inducer. The Doctor realises he can't save them and is really upset, that is until Donna pulls out her capsule from her jacket pocket and the peoples lives are saved. Miss Foster plans have failed but she says that one million Adipose will have to do and calls upon the Nursery Ship to take them home. The Doctor listens to an incoming signal from the Adiposian family that identify Matron Cofelia as a criminal for breeding on a Level 5 planet. The Doctor runs onto the rooftop to try and save her and Donna suggests blowing them up though the Doctor replies that they're just children and can't help from where they came from. Donna says that Martha must have done him good and he's says, with arrogance that she fancied him. He offers Matron a hand but she refuses just as the tractor beam switches off and she falls to her death, the Adipose leave the planet and zoom off into space.

The Doctor bins the sonic pen and Donna drags him off to the TARDIS. Once there she unpacks her belongings from her car (which is just a few feet from the TARDIS) the Doctor warns that it is a hard life but accepts her saying that he just wants a mate, she takes this literally and says that he is just an alien streek of nothing. Donna then takes her car keys and puts them in a bin on Brook street, 30 yards from the corner. She then tells a strange girl with blonde hair to tell her mother: 'that bin there', it turns out the girl is Rose Tyler and she has just missed the Doctor hoping to catch him at the event. She walks off down the street and dissapears. Donna tells the Doctor to materialise two and a half miles that way to say goodbye to her Grandad, he cheers her on.

Cast

The Sinister Miss Foster
The Sinister Miss Foster

Production crew

References

Story notes

  • This episode is broadcast much earlier at a 6.20 timeslot. It is also fifty minutes long rather than forty five, as the TV listings state it is from 6.20 to 7.10.
  • A certain shot shows an army of Adipose in the streets of London, this was extremely complex and took the CGI team (The Mill) more time than most shots used for the series to complete.
  • A scene was shown the day before airing on GMTV, showing The Doctor and Donna Noble on a suspended window washing platform breaking in while Miss Foster cuts the cable with her Sonic pen.
  • Pointing a sonic screwdriver and a sonic pen at one another creates a sonic feedback in the surrounding area.

Ratings

  • Unofficial overnight ratings - 8.4 million viewers

Myths

  • It was rumoured that Miss Foster was The Rani. (This turned out to be false)
  • Rose's fading away at the end of the episode indicates that there may be an unstable linkway between Earth and Pete's World. The way Rose fades away echoes that of the guerillas and the Ogrons in Day of the Daleks where those who came from the 22nd century faded away and returned to their own century a short time after arriving in the 20th century.
  • Due to their appearance, the Adipose are said to be the cloning incubation of the Sontarans.

Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

When Miss Foster cuts the first cable, she is clearly cutting the one on the Doctor's side of the cradle. However, it is the cable on Donna's side that snaps.

Continuity

  • Donna declined the Doctor's offer to travel with him in The Runaway Bride.
  • Wilfred Mott is Donna's Grandfather who appeared in Voyage of the Damned as the Newspaper dealer.
  • This is the first episode since Doomsday that Rose Tyler has appeared as a present character.
  • The effect of pointing the sonic pen and sonic screwdriver at one another is remarkably similar to an effect of a sonic device in TW: Fragments.
  • The Doctor says he's met 'cat people' before, he may be referring to the cat people he met in New Earth and Gridlock, or during Survival.

Direct download: 4_01_Partners_in_crime_2.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 1:00pm UTC

TDP 52: Torchwood Double 2.12 Fragments AND 2.13 Exit Wounds













Fragments



2.12 – "Fragments"


Tosh, Jack, Rhys, Gwen, Ianto and Owen watch the holographic message depicting Gray and Captain John.
Production
Writer Chris Chibnall
Director Jonathan Fox Bassett
Script editor Gary Russell
Producer Richard Stokes
Chris Chibnall (co-producer)
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 2.12
Series Series 2
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast 21 March 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"Adrift" "Exit Wounds"
IMDb profile

"Fragments" is the twelfth and penultimate episode of the second series of British science fiction television series Torchwood, which was broadcast by BBC Three on 21 March 2008.


Plot

After the team gets signs of an unidentified life form, they (apart from Gwen, who is running late) go to investigate. Searching an abandoned building, the team discover it is a trap and the building is bombed. The resulting explosion causes the team to be trapped under piles of concrete rubble. Gwen and Rhys arrive (Rhys having given Gwen a lift), and as they dig everyone out, the team's lives flash before their eyes revealing how Jack, Ianto, Owen, and Toshiko got recruited to Torchwood.

In the Victorian era, Jack is picked up by two women - Alice Guppy and Emily Holroyd - who have noticed his immortality and his references to the Doctor. They examine him, which includes attempting to kill him. Jack recognizes that the technology being used in his interrogation is more advanced than Earth technology of the time. They identify themselves as being part of Torchwood and offer Jack a job with them. Jack initially declines the offer learning that they view the Doctor as a threat. He agrees to the assignment after being told that if he doesn't cooperate he will be treated as a threat himself. He takes an initial assignment which is to track down and capture an alien. While they have the alien in a small cell one of the officers pulls out a gun and shoots the alien in the head without any warning. Jack disagrees with this policy and refuses the next assignment they try to give him. Jack goes to a bar when a young female fortune teller comes to his table and offers to read his cards and doesn't listen to Jack's refusal. She tells him that he will not meet the Doctor for another century. He returns to the Torchwood office and opts to join Torchwood for that century.

He is still working for Torchwood in 1999, when he comes back to the Hub on New Year's Eve to find that one of the team has murdered the rest out of fear for the future. He has in his hand some locket or pendant, and he claims to have seen the future in it and killed the rest of the team out of a sense of mercy that the immortal Jack cannot benefit from. Based on the vision from the locket, he states that the next century is when everything changes and that Torchwood isn't ready for it. He then commits suicide, leaving Torchwood to Jack as a "reward for a century of service." With the rest of the team dead, Jack will have to recruit a new team.

Toshiko's flashback takes place five years ago when she was working for the Ministry of Defence. One night after her boss leaves she immediately breaks into the security room where she obtains secret files for a Sonic Modulator. At home, she begins constructing a mock version, and once complete, takes it to a secret base. She gives it to a woman, one of her mother's captors, in the hope of her mother's release, but in seeing Tosh's potential, they decide to have her work for them. Tosh refuses, and so the captors set off the Sonic Modulator, sending an ear-piercing sound around the room that brings Tosh and her mother to the floor as their blood vessels begin to pulse violently. At that point however, UNIT soldiers break in and arrest both the captors and Toshiko and her mother. Tosh is locked in a plain empty cell and told that she will have no communication with anyone, and they refuse to answer her questions to her mother's whereabouts. After living in solitude for some time, she is visited by Jack. Jack chats to her and states that she'll be imprisoned indefinitely. He recognises, however, Toshiko's talent and high intelligence in building the fully operational device from plans that could not possibly work and offers her a pardon if she takes a job at Torchwood.

In Ianto's flashback, he first meets Jack by helping him fight a Weevil. Ianto asks for a job, but is rejected by Jack. The next morning, Ianto gives Jack a coffee outside Torchwood. Jack recalls a large amount of knowledge about Ianto, stating that he researched him after he was able to identify a Weevil. Ianto again asks for a job as his old job was lost when Torchwood One was destroyed. Jack states that he had severed all ties with Torchwood One. That night, Ianto steps in front of the SUV, and once more asks for a job. After Jack threatens to erase his memory, he tells Jack that he is pursuing a pterodactyl. After a long battle, the pair of them capture it, and Jack tells Ianto that he expects to see him at work the following morning.

Owen's flashback shows him before he was employed in Torchwood, working as a regular doctor and planning a marriage. His fiancée, Katie, begins to exhibit signs of Alzheimer's Disease and is taken in for a brain scan. The doctors, in fact, state that it is a tumor, and decide to operate. While Owen waits outside, he hears a loud noise in the operating room, and enters to find all of the surgeons dead on the floor. Jack enters, and states that there is an alien parasite residing in his fiancée's brain that gives off a toxic gas when threatened. Jack attempts to take the brain, but Owen protests, and so Jack knocks him out with chloroform. Owen wakes up in a hospital bed, but because Jack has erased all evidence of himself, there was no proof of Owen ever seeing him and telling him about the alien. The doctors come to the conclusion that Owen is traumatised and they prescribe him 3 months of rest. Visiting his fiancée's grave, Owen sees Jack and confronts him for answers, saying that he was right and Jack was not just a figment of his own imagination. Seeing Owen's potential, Jack convinces him to start up at Torchwood as a medic for the team.

When the team reunites, they discover that the SUV is missing. Jack receives a holographic message, as pictured, from Captain John Hart, who reveals himself to be behind the bombs and shows Jack an image of his long-lost brother Gray. He then vows to tear Jack's world apart, so Jack would spend time with him.

Cast

Cast notes

Continuity

  • The tarot card reader girl reappears in this episode. She was last seen in the episode "Dead Man Walking".
  • Toshiko's mother, as played by Noriko Aida, reappears in this episode, having last been seen in "End of Days".
  • Toshiko's "sonic modulator" device based on stolen design plans bears superficial similarities to the Doctor's sonic screwdriver, and its ear-splitting effect is similar to that produced by holding together two similar sonic devices in Partners in Crime.
  • This is the first time the Doctor has been explicitly named in the series.
  • A blowfish alien, similar to the one seen in "Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang", appears in flashback sequences involving Jack's first mission for the Torchwood Institute.
  • Captain Jack radios orders to an offscreen Suzie Costello in Ianto's flashback, although Ianto's arrival in the scene prevents the character from being given any lines. Suzie was last mentioned in the episode "Dead Man Walking", and last seen upon her resurrection in series one episode "They Keep Killing Suzie".
  • In his flashback, Ianto Jones refers to his girlfriend, Lisa Hallett, as having died during the Battle of Canary Wharf. Lisa is seen again as a partly-converted Cyberman in the series one episode "Cyberwoman".


Exit Wounds


2.13 – "Exit Wounds"
Torchwood episode

Gray encounters Jack in the Hub.
Production
Writer Chris Chibnall
Director Ashley Way
Production code 2.13
Series Series 2
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast 4 April 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"Fragments"
IMDb profile

"Exit Wounds" is the thirteenth and final episode of the second series of British science fiction television series Torchwood, and was broadcast on BBC Two on 4 April 2008.[1]


Plot

Following the previous episode directly, the Torchwood team goes to sites of rift activity. Gwen goes to the police station where the four most senior officers have been killed by Weevils. Tosh and Ianto head to the central server building to deal with "ghosts" that appeared in the building. The ghosts turn out to be humanoid beings in cloaks holding scythes who look very like the Grim Reaper, but Tosh and Ianto easily end the threat by shooting them. Tosh mentions that the server building houses servers for the military, police, NHS and the nearby nuclear power station. Owen heads to St Helen's Hospital where a Hoix was found chewing on cables and subdues it with a sedative. With the rest of the team away dealing with their respective crises, Jack returns to the Hub alone and encounters John Hart, who after a brief conversation with Jack kills him, then strips him of his weapons and restrains him while he proceeds with his task.

John gets the Torchwood members to approach the rooftops of their respective buildings to watch as he sets off 15 major and well placed explosions in Cardiff. The team try to cope with the workload of a crippled city. John, who is watching the mayhem in Cardiff Castle with a captive Jack takes him through the rift to the future site of Cardiff city in the year 27 AD. There John explains that he has not been acting of his own free will and shows Jack that his wristband has been molecularly bonded with his skin (rendering it unremovable) which is equipped with surveillance and remote detonation circuits to ensure his obedience. Before John can explain further he is interrupted by the arrival of Gray, Jack's long lost brother. Jack hugs him tearfully, happy to see him alive, only to have Gray stab him in the chest. When Jack comes to, Gray explains that he was tortured mercilessly for years by the aliens who captured him in his childhood, and that he blames Jack for what he had to endure. Gray taunts Jack saying that his grave will be the foundation of Cardiff and that his blessing of life is his curse. He then forces John to bury Jack alive as punishment for this. Before he begins his task John throws a ring into the grave, claiming that it is of sentimental value. He then proceeds to fill the grave, trapping Jack in a cycle of asphyxiation and revivification.

John, now gone free and released from his obligation to Gray, returns to the present to help undo the mess he caused. Gwen encounters him and they call everyone back to the Hub except Owen, who is trying to contain the nuclear power plant meltdown--a result of the explosions John had previously set up. Unbeknownst to them, Gray is lurking in the Hub with them. He eventually traps Gwen, John, and Ianto in Weevil cells, and then shoots Toshiko, leaving her for dead. A loud banging noise is heard by everyone and Gray goes to investigate. The sound leads him to the morgue where a light can be seen coming from one of the compartments. Gray opens the compartment to find Jack waking in a cryochamber.

The scene then flashes back to 1901 where Jack is discovered by Torchwood personnel because the ring that John dropped was in fact a beacon and Torchwood had picked up the signal. They dig him out and place him in the cryochamber at the Hub, with a timer set to wake him up in 2008. After incapacitating his brother, Jack frees Gwen, John, and Ianto. While this has been happening, Toshiko had been helping Owen to try to prevent a meltdown; despite her life-threatening injury. After sucessfully averting disaster by venting the flow channels into the room Owen is in, she also sets a time delay so Owen can escape. However, a power spike triggers an emergency lockdown and Owen is trapped. Before long the radioactive material is sent to Owen's location and the scene fades out back to the Hub. Jack discovers Toshiko who dies in his arms.

As Ianto registers Owen and Toshiko's deaths on the Hub computer, a pre-programmed pop-up video of Toshiko appears, in which she says goodbye and confesses her love for Owen as well as thanking Jack for freeing her from the UNIT prison and showing her the many possibilities of the universe. The episode and second series closes with the devastated city recovering, and Jack, Ianto, and Gwen standing together in the Hub.

Cast

Cast notes

This episode marks the last episode starring Naoko Mori as Toshiko Sato and Burn Gorman as Owen Harper. In the Torchwood: De-Classified that covers this episode, Burn Gorman who plays Owen Harper jokingly remarks that Owen either is truly dead or will transform into the "king of the Weevils".

A story at GEOS correctly predicted that Tosh and Owen would leave the series.[2]. It also predicts that Martha Jones would become a Torchwood regular and that Captain Jack's role would be reduced.

Continuity

  • A Hoix creature, from the parent series Doctor Who in its 2006 episode "Love and Monsters" appears in this episode. This is the first time it is named onscreen.
  • Owen refers to his status as "King of the Weevils", first mentioned in "Dead Man Walking" and seeded in "Combat".
  • When Owen Harper and Toshiko Sato are discussing their early days together, Tosh descibes pretending to be a medic in Owen's second week, to cover for him having a hangover. Owen asks if this was "the space pig", referring to Naoko Mori's appearance as Doctor Sato, a presumed pathologist in the Doctor Who story "Aliens of London".
  • Jack tells Gray "I forgive you", infuriating Gray. The Doctor said this to the Master in similar circumstance in "Last of the Time Lords", and Jack himself spoke the phrase to Owen Harper following his resurrection in "End of Days".
  • In the video played after her death, Toshiko tells Captain Jack "I wouldn't have missed it for the world." Rose Tyler said this to the Doctor facing her death in the Doctor Who episode "Dalek".

Direct download: TWDouble3_S2_12_13_USE_ME.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 9:13am UTC

TDP 51: The Black Orchid Black Orchid (Doctor Who) 121 – Black Orchid Doctor Who serial Ann Talbot, who bears a remarkable similarity to Nyssa Cast Doctor Peter Davison (Fifth Doctor) Companions Matthew Waterhouse (Adric) Sarah Sutton (Nyssa) Janet Fielding (Tegan Jovanka) Production Writer Terence Dudley Director Ron Jones Script editor Eric Saward Producer John Nathan-Turner Executive producer(s) None Production code 6A Series Season 19 Length 2 episodes, 25 mins each Originally broadcast March 1–March 2, 1982 Chronology ? Preceded by Followed by → The Visitation Earthshock Black Orchid is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in two parts on March 1 and March 2, 1982. This story was the first purely historical adventure for the Doctor — featuring no science fiction elements save for the TARDIS — since The Highlanders. Synopsis The Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Adric arrive in England of 1925. At a masked ball at Cranleigh Hall a series of murders begins, and Ann Talbot, who is the spitting image of Nyssa, is abducted. The Doctor must uncover the secret the Cranleigh family is hiding from the world. [edit] Plot In an English country house two figures are seen struggling before one of them, a servant, falls dead. A young woman is seen sleeping as a figure enters her room. The figure is then seen tied to the bed guarded by an Indian with a large ring distending his lower lip. It is June 11, 1925, and as a train departs Cranleigh Halt railway station, the TARDIS materialises. The crew disembark before receiving an explanation of the basics of the steam train from the Doctor. He says that he has always wanted to drive one. Leaving the station, they encounter the chauffeur of Charles, Lord Cranleigh, who has apparently been expecting the arrival of "the Doctor". He stares at Nyssa as if he recognises her. They are driven to a cricket match where Lord Cranleigh's team is batting but not faring very well. Lord Cranleigh greets them and seeing Nyssa exclaims the she is exactly like his fiancée in appearance. They discuss cricket, the Doctor says that he is a fast bowler. The Doctor goes into bat and scores a plethora of runs. When Nyssa is introduced to his mother Lady Cranleigh, she also exclaims how extraordinary a resemblance between her and Ann, but is surprised that she is not a "Worcestershire Talbot" Nyssa proudly declares that she is from the Empire of Traken. The Doctor takes a turn at bowling and proves equally prodigious managing to get several players out. Lord Cranleigh congratulates him on a ripping performance and invites him home to meet his mother. When introduced, Lady Cranleigh asks "Doctor who?" but Lord Cranleigh says he deserves to remain incognito after his fine cricketing performance. Sir Robert Muir, the chief constable of the county, also congratulates the Doctor, saying that his performance was "worthy of the Master". The Doctor looks momentarily alarmed until he explains that he is referring to "the other Doctor", W. G. Grace. Lord Cranleigh asks if they would mind staying to the annual ball - a fancy dress party - on behalf of sick children. Tegan says that they have no costumes, to which Sir Robert comments that he was thinking how charming their outfits were. Lord Cranleigh has a selection costumes that they can use. They are introduced to Ann Talbot, Lord Cranleigh's fiancée, and she looks identical to Nyssa. Ann also enquires if Nyssa is from Worcester, and when Nyssa says that she is from Traken, Sir Robert says that he believes it is somewhere near Esher. Ann wonders if there could be Talbots from Esher. Lady Cranleigh thinks not as the "hunt is not good enough". When Lord Craneligh offers them a drink, the Doctor asks for lemonade. Tegan asks for a screwdriver, but when Nyssa asks for "the same" the Doctor coughs in disapproval, so instead Lord Cranleigh offers her orange juice. Nyssa tells Ann that she doesn't know where Esher is, to which Lady Cranleigh comments this demonstrates great taste, and that she should stop probing into Nyssa's background. When Tegan admires a curious black flower in the study, Lady Cranleigh explains that it is a Black Orchid and that it was found on the Orinoco by her eldest son George. Tegan recognises the name immediately as George Cranleigh, a famous botanist and explorer. Lady Cranleigh goes on to say that George never returned from his last expedition into the Brazilian forests. Ann had been engaged to George before his disappearance. Meanwhile, the bound figure struggles against his bonds. The Indian goes to the secret room to inspect the figure, but he sees the untied ropes before he is hit on the head from behind. The Doctor picks a Harlequin outfit to wear to the ball. When he tells Lord Cranleigh that Adric is from Alzarius, Lord Cranleigh says that he could never remember all those Baltic bits. Tegan and Nyssa discuss the Charleston, with Tegan giving a demonstration. Nyssa says that dancing on Traken is much more formalised and that she learnt how to dance as part of her training. Ann comes to their room, and presents Nyssa with a dress identical to her own, so that the ball attendees will not be able to tell them apart. Ann reveals the only difference between them is that she has a mole on her left shoulder. As the Doctor gets himself ready for the ball, a figure enters his room from a secret passage. On hearing a noise, the Doctor returns to the room but sees no one, only the newly revealed opening. He enters the opening and finds the secret passage, but the panel slams closed behind him, trapping him. The figure reenters the Doctor's room and with his deformed hands takes away the Harlequin mask and costume. In the gardens, the ball has now started and the guests have arrived. Nyssa asks Adric to dance with her, to his consternation, while Tegan dances with Sir Robert, who is amused by some of her colloquialisms. Lord Cranleigh is dancing with Ann. Nyssa and Ann run inside the building and emerge — now nobody knows which of them is which. They resume dancing with their partners, but Adric stops dancing saying he would rather eat. Lady Cranleigh spots the Indian and goes aside to talk to him. He informs her that his "friend" has escaped. Tegan gets to show her Charleston. When one of Ann and Nyssa starts dancing, Adric turns to the other believing it must be Nyssa as Nyssa would not know how to do that dance. She confounds him by joining in. The figure wearing the Harlequin costume arrives at the party and begins to dance with the girl that it thinks is Ann. The Doctor finally finds his way out of the passage and finds a room full of botany textbooks. Trying to ascertain his whereabouts, he finds a staircase and ascending them he finds the secret room where the figure had been bound. Searching it, he finds a book written in Portuguese. When he leaves the room, he wanders down the corridor, examining the cupboards, and in one of them he discovers a corpse. Meanwhile the Harlequin figure enters the building with Ann. Ann tells it that they should return to the party, but when it rasps at her and she queries who it is, it grabs her by the wrist and will not let her go. Ann screams for help and a butler rushes to her assistance. The Harlequin grabs him by the throat and starts to throttle and kill him, causing Ann to faint as the Harlequin lurches over her prostrate body… The Doctor returns to the secret room and finds, to his surprise, Lady Cranleigh and the Indian, who she introduces as Latoni — an old friend from Brazil. The Doctor informs them that he has found a dead body and when he shows it to her, she identifies it as one of the servants. She requests that he does not alarm the other guests by informing them. The figure is seen returning the Harlequin costume to the Doctor's room. It goes to a room where Ann is lying, and a hideously deformed face is revealed. Ann awakes and seeing the figure flees outside the room where Lady Cranleigh and Latoni are waiting. Latoni enters the room and gathering some rope advances on the deformed figure. At the party Adric is berated by Nyssa for eating so much food. The servants inform Lord Cranleigh of events inside the house. He finds the body of the dead butler, and Ann's discarded mask. The Doctor arrives now wearing the Harlequin costume, but when Ann also arrives, she points him out as the man who attacked her. Ann implores Sir Robert to arrest the Doctor, and Sir Robert assumes control of events. He asks Lord Cranleigh to tell the remaining guests to go home. The Doctor insists on his innocence, and suggests that someone else has an identical costume. However, as Ann was in charge of the costumes, she knows that there was only one Harlequin. He looks to Lady Cranleigh to provide an alibi but she stays silent. Sir Robert questions the Doctor as to his true identity, which he replies would be rather difficult to explain. He says he is a Time Lord and that he travels in time and space, in a time machine, like that from the works of H. G. Wells. Again looking to Lady Cranleigh he mentions the other body, but she denies seeing it. Showing Sir Robert the cupboard, the body has vanished and has been replaced by a doll. Lord Cranleigh receives a telephone call from his friend "Smutty" Thomas who he thinks sent the Doctor to the cricket game, and he realises it is not the right man. Lord Cranleigh informs Sir Robert that the Doctor is an impostor, and that the real doctor missed his train. The Doctor is arrested on suspicion of murder, and his companions are accused of being accessories. They are driven off to the police station. The Doctor asks the police sergeant to divert to the railway station to show Sir Robert the TARDIS, but to his dismay it is no longer on the platform. However, when they arrive at the police station, they find that the TARDIS has been brought there. Back at the house Lady Cranleigh tells Lord Cranleigh about the other body, that of Digby the servant. Realising that the Doctor must be innocent, he argues with her. When Ann approaches them he informs her that there is something she must know. In the secret room, the bound figure once again slips his ropes, and attacks and kills Latoni, but not before he hides the room key between the floor boards. Not able to find the key, the figure starts stuffing newspapers under the door, and then sets them on fire. The Doctor unlocks the TARDIS and allows Sir Robert and the police sergeant to enter. Sir Robert is astounded by what he sees and offers the Doctor an apology, but he is still concerned about the murder. Lord Cranleigh telephones the police station and informs them of the second body. The Doctor uses the TARDIS to get them all back to Cranleigh Hall as quickly as possible. After furiously denouncing her parents, Ann runs out of the house and throws her arms around Sir Robert. The secret room is now ablaze with the fire started by the deformed figure, who breaks out, and goes to the main hall where Lord and Lady Cranleigh are talking. He backs away from them, but the Doctor's group arrive from behind. The figure grabs hold of Nyssa and throttling her, drags her upstairs. The Doctor cannot follow him due to the fire which has now spread to the corridors. Sir Robert demands to know what the deformed figure is, and Lady Cranleigh reveals that it is her eldest son George, which the Doctor had already worked out from seeing the Black Orchid and Latoni. She insists that George would not harm Ann, but the Doctor points out that he has the wrong girl. Running outside, they see George carrying Nyssa out onto the roof. The Doctor asks Lord Cranleigh to hold George's attention, whilst he tries to find a way through the house to their position. Lady Cranleigh confesses the truth to Sir Robert: George's hideous injuries were caused by the Kojabe Indians, who also cut out his tongue because they held the Black Orchid sacred. Losing his mind, he was rescued by another tribe of Indians, of which Latoni was a member. She admits that George killed Digby. Lord Cranleigh climbs onto the roof to confront George, and the Doctor has also reached the roof. The Doctor implores him to release Nyssa, telling him to look down and see Ann on the ground. Seeing it to be true, he releases Nyssa. Charles approaches his brother to thank him. George recoils, but he is too close to the edge. He trips and falls, and is killed. After the funeral, the Doctor departs. Ann has given Tegan and Nyssa their costumes as a present, and Lady Cranleigh presents the Doctor with a copy of George's book: Black Orchid. Cast * The Doctor — Peter Davison * Adric — Matthew Waterhouse * Nyssa / Ann Talbot — Sarah Sutton * Tegan — Janet Fielding * Lord Cranleigh — Michael Cochrane * Lady Cranleigh — Barbara Murray * The Unknown / George Cranleigh — Gareth Milne * Sir Robert Muir — Moray Watson * Sergeant Markham — Ivor Salter * Constable Cummings — Andrew Tourell * Latoni — Ahmed Khalil * Brewster — Brian Hawksley * Tanner — Timothy Block Cast notes * Michael Cochrane, who plays Lord Cranleigh, also appears in the 1989 Seventh Doctor serial Ghost Light. * To avoid giving away the plot surprise, Gareth Milne was credited as "The Unknown" for Part One and in Radio Times, and as "George Cranleigh" for Part Two. Continuity * The character of Ann Talbot reappears in the spin-off novel The Sands of Time by Justin Richards as Lady Ann Cranleigh. * This story was the first two-part serial since The Sontaran Experiment (1975); each Peter Davison season would include at least one two-parter. * This was the first purely historical serial (with no science fiction elements beyond the Doctor and his TARDIS) since The Highlanders in 1966-67; unlike previous ones, it does not revolve around a well-known historical event. To date, it is also the last purely historical story. The next televised story taking place within the Doctor Who universe to contain no science fiction or supernatural elements at all is Countrycide, an episode of the spin-off series, Torchwood, broadcast in 2006 and taking place in the present day. Production * The working title for this story was The Beast. * Producer John Nathan-Turner had originally considered directing this story himself, thus become the first producer to do so since Barry Letts during the early 1970s. However, due to time constraints, Nathan-Turner abandoned the idea and hired Ron Jones to direct. In print Doctor Who book Book cover Black Orchid Series Target novelisations Release number 113 Writer Terence Dudley Publisher Target Books Cover artist Tony Masero ISBN Release date September 1986 (Hardback) 19th February 1987 (Paperback) Preceded by The Seeds of Death Followed by The Ark A novelisation of this serial, written by Terence Dudley, was published by Target Books in September 1986. It was the final Fifth Doctor story to be novelised, but did not complete the Fifth Doctor's era - Resurrection of the Daleks has to date not been novelised due to disputes with the estate of Terry Nation. Broadcast, VHS and DVD release * This story was released in a twin VHS set with The Visitation in July of 1994. * Black Orchid will be released on DVD on April 14th 2008 with; Now & Then special feature of filming locations • 4 Deleted scenes • an Easter Egg • a Blue Peter item • Stripped for Action a feature on comics of the Fifth Doctor • Poinst of View • a Coming Soon Trailer for the The Invasion of Time DVD.
Direct download: blackorchid1.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 2:28pm UTC

TDP 50: Torchwood Double 2.10 From out of the Rain and 2.11 Adrift

From out of the Rain


Synopsis

After the old cinema "Electro" re-opens, the old scenes of a black and white film are interrupted by mysterious sequences which show a travelling company in the early 20th Century before the age of cinema. The Ghostmaker (the leader of the company) and Pearl ("the mermaid woman"), once captured on film, manage to escape it. Ianto witnesses the escape, noticing that two characters have suddenly disappeared from the film, and informs Captain Jack Harkness.

The escaped characters start roaming the streets of Cardiff. They steal the last breath of innocent people, keeping their breath in a silver flask, leaving the victims only half alive with a heartbeat, but no breath. Torchwood starts investigating the casualties and begins research on these old travelling companies. Jack used to be a member of one of the companies, performing the act of "the man who couldn't die". He tells of the "Night Travellers", who perform only during night, and the mythology surrounding them, saying that 'young children were told to hold their breath while the travelling show passed by'.

The ghosts begin to bring all their other travelling carnival fellows to our reality at the old cinema but, finally, it occurs to Jack that, being filmed again, the loosened entities may be recaptured onto celluloid. Effectively, Jack manages to achieve this with a home movie camera, filming all the phantasmagoric creatures. He exposes the reel to the sun then, vanishing the carnival ghosts for ever. However, for its last act before disappearing, the Ghostmaker throws the open silver flask and, despite Ianto's quick catch, most of the human souls are lost in the air, so the coma-like affected victims of Cardiff die, except for a child. The silver flask ends up being stored by Jack in his safe at Torchwood.

Though the threat of the Night Travellers has been stopped now, Jack speculates that there could be more films with their ghosts trapped inside, confirmed by a scene at a boot-sale where a man and his son purchase an old film reel. The metal case of the film is briefly opened and, back at the Hub, Jack hears a sliver of the Night Traveller's carnival music.

Cast

Cast and credits notes

  • The episodic title credits were missing in the BBC HD broadcast of this episode.
  • Gerard Carey received a closing credit as Greg, a character from the earlier episode, "Meat". Neither the actor nor his character appeared in this episode.
2.10 – "From Out of the Rain"
Torchwood episode

One of the Night Travelers steps out of the film, into reality.
Production
Writer Peter J. Hammond
Director Jonathan Fox Bassett
Script editor Brian Minchin
Producer Richard Stokes
Chris Chibnall (co-producer)
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 2.10
Series Series 2
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast 12 March 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"Something Borrowed" "Adrift"
IMDb profile

Adrift


Synopsis

Jonah Bevan is walking home when a bright light appears over him. One second later he is gone. Seven months later, at the instigation of PC Andy Davidson, Gwen is investigating the disappearance of Jonah. Her research reveals there are more cases that resemble Jonah's disappearance. Toshiko discovers that these disappearances happen during a negative spike in the rift activity, which were previously discarded as background noise. Gwen is able to compile a list of all missing persons and informs Jack. However, Jack tells Gwen that nothing can be done and instructs her to stop the investigation, which she refuses.

The investigation slowly turns into an obsession and takes a toll on the relationship between Gwen and Rhys. When Ianto secretly gives Gwen a GPS device with a stored hidden location, Gwen finds a facility on Flat Holm. It harbours 17 of the missing people that the rift took and subsequently brought back, including Jonah, the boy she has been looking for. However, he has aged 40 years and is very deformed. Gwen also finds Jack there, and she demands access to Jonah. Jonah tells how he was stuck on a "burning planet" and how he was taken into a building that was actually a rescue craft, from which he witnessed the burning of a solar system. Afterwards, Jack reveals that he set up the facility when he first took command of Torchwood, in order to care for the victims of the rift, who had previously been locked away in the vaults.

Gwen brings Nikki, Jonah's mother, in to see him. At first she is horrified, believing it to be a cruel joke, but Jonah starts telling her things that only he would know. Nikki calms and they hug for a moment, but one of the staff tells Nikki to get away from him. She resists and says that she can take care of him. However Jonah starts screaming, a scream so horrible that everyone flees. In a voiceover, Gwen reveals that he screams like that for 20 hours a day because he looked into the heart of a Dark Star, which drove him insane.

A week later, Gwen goes to see Nikki, who implores her not to show the island to anyone else. Gwen takes down her notes over the missing and Nikki packs up Jonah's room. At home that night, Gwen prepares a romantic candle-lit dinner for Rhys, who lets her cry into his chest.

Cast

Outside references

  • When Andy is showing Gwen the security camera photos from the night Jonah went missing, he refers to Jack as 'Mulder', from The X-Files.
  • During the first meeting for the missing persons support group, PC Andy quotes the line "If you build it, they will come", from the film Field of Dreams.
  • The prophet Jonah was swallowed and later regurgitated by a large fish; this episode's Jonah is taken and returned by the Rift.
  • When Nikki clears the shelves of video tapes, several book titles are visible including Snap Happy by Fiona Walker, The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum and A Grand Affair by Charlotte Bingham.

2.11 – "Adrift"
Torchwood episode

Gwen has compiled a list of all people that have disappeared during a negative rift spike.
Production
Writer Chris Chibnall
Director Mark Everest
Script editor Lindsey Alford
Producer Richard Stokes
Sophie Fante
Chris Chibnall (co-producer)
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 2.11
Series Series 2
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast 19 March 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"From out of the Rain" "Fragments"
IMDb profile

Direct download: 2_10_and_2_11_TW.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:52pm UTC

Date And Time

Date And Time

Series Four premiere details confirmed.

We're delighted to officially announce that Series Four of Doctor Who will commence with Partners In Crime at 6.20pm on Saturday 05 April 2008, BBC One.

Tell all your friends, cancel any prior engagements and settle down for what promises to be the most spectacular series of Doctor Who yet!

As always, Doctor Who Confidential will be going behind-the-scenes with the cast and crew, starting at 7.10pm on BBC Three.

Partners In Crime will be repeated on Sunday 06 April at 8pm on BBC Three. Doctor Who Confidential follows at 8.45pm.

As always, we'll be supporting the show with extensive online coverage, both in the run up to and immediately after each episode.

Category:Information -- posted at: 5:58pm UTC

TDP 49: Torchwood Double 2.8  A Day in the Death & 2.9 Something Borrowed





















A Day in the Death

2.8 – "A Day in the Death"
Torchwood episode

Owen holds on to "the Pulse" as it is about to explode.
Writer Joseph Lidster
Director Andy Goddard
Script editor Gary Russell
Producer Richard Stokes
Chris Chibnall (co-producer)
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 2.8
Series Series 2
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast February 27, 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"Dead Man Walking" "Something Borrowed"
IMDb profile

"A Day in the Death" is the eighth episode of the second series of British science fiction television series Torchwood, which was broadcast by BBC Three on February 27, 2008.[1] This episode is the last of three to feature Doctor Who companion, Martha Jones, and also features guest star Richard Briers.

Plot

The opening of the episode is narrated by Owen Harper, who tells of his life and his death, which he is currently living through. Although everyone else believes he is fine, Owen knows that he is not. He is seen on top of an apartment building with a suicidal woman, asking her if she is ready to jump.

After showing the woman his gunshot wound and revealing he is already dead, Owen begins to tell her about the days since his death, shown as a series of flashbacks. Firstly, Captain Jack relieves Owen of his duties as a way of monitoring his condition and keeping him safe. Owen is angry that Martha Jones is taking his position as head medic, and further disheartened when Jack gives him Ianto's old job of making the coffee. He feels useless, conscious that he has always been alone while each one of the Torchwood team has or has had someone in their life (Ianto and Jack, Gwen and Rhys, Martha and her boyfriend, Tosh and Tommy). Ianto challanges him as to whether he is really going to let this problem beat him, after all that he’s been through.

After Martha concludes from her tests that Owen is 100% human yet will not age, the team meets to discuss a series of unusual energy spikes coming from the estate of a reclusive collector of alien artifacts, Henry Parker. Parker hasn’t been seen since 1986, leading the team to wonder what he has inside his house. They devise a plan to find out the origin of the energy spikes, excluding any involvement from Owen.

Back on the roof, Owen recounts suicide statistics to the woman, who asks him who he actually is. Owen replies that he is a ‘bloody brilliant doctor’, which takes us back to the autopsy room, where he is conversing with Martha. As he carelessly toys with a scalpel, Martha tries to reassure him that she does not want his job. While talking, she realizes that he has sliced his hand open with the scalpel - a wound he can't feel, and that won't heal. Owen takes over the stitching, realizing he will need to get used to doing it himself.

As we come back to the roof, the woman chastises Owen for refusing help, and he asks her if her boyfriend dumped her because she was so annoying. In flashback, the effectively unemployed Owen heads home, where he sits around aimlessly and then clears out his fridge - he no longer needs food or drink. Tosh arrives and starts to tell him about her morning, as Owen zones out completely. On the roof, the woman states that Owen and Tosh sound like an old married couple. She tells him about how her husband died, also glimpsed in flashbacks, in a car accident an hour after they were married. She asks Owen if things get better when you die, and we come back to Owen’s apartment, where he is still zoned out. He asks Tosh why she is there, and becomes angry when she says she wants to help, since in reality she can’t. He directs his anger at Tosh, accusing her of wanting someone as screwed up as himself - which he has finally become.

After breaking his finger to show Tosh how ‘broken’ he is, Owen tries to drown himself, but fails because despite his ability to talk, he no longer needs to breathe. At the Hub, the team are discussing the security heat-sensors used at Parker’s estate, making it virtually impossible for them to gain access. When Owen points out that he has no body heat, Jack agrees to let him take on the mission. Tosh returns Owen's apartment keys and carries on with the task at hand.

The woman on the roof can’t get over why Tosh wasn’t angry at him and Owen explains that it was Tosh’s way: always professional. The woman becomes upset and Owen rushes her to the edge, where she pulls back from jumping. She asks him how he got from where he was to the roof...

At the estate, Martha tells Owen not to engage in any physical combat as he will not recover. After breaking security both on the outside and inside the house, Owen reaches Parker who is an old man linked up to many ventilators and medical machines. The man reveals that he has suffered a failed bypass and three heart attacks, but is being kept alive by a glowing object he calls ‘the Pulse’. Owen tells him that the object isn’t doing anything to keep him alive; that it is actually hope that is doing the job. Owen promises to help Parker face his fear of death, but the man soon suffers another heart attack. Unable to draw breath himself, Owen is unable to perform the kiss of life, and Parker dies.

Tosh tells Owen through the earpiece that ‘The Pulse’ is going to explode and there’s nothing they can do about it. Owen holds the object, telling the team he’s going to try to absorb it. They all protest, and Owen begins to say his goodbyes, praising Martha as an ideal replacement, and apologising to Tosh for his behavior. Tosh says she loves him and as the object begins to glow ever so brightly, Owen hugs it.

On the roof, the woman looks at Owen incredulously, asking what had happened next. Owen says that life is sometimes not as bad as we think, and retrieves ‘The Pulse’ from his backpack. The team had falsely identified it as a bomb, whereas in fact it was a reply to one of humanity's satellites, launched in the 1970's, to make contact with alien life. The object produces a beautiful light and Owen answers the woman's earlier question: that it does get better.

In flashback, after the team say their goodbyes to the departing Martha, Tosh makes Owen promise to open up to her in future; to tell her when he’s feeling bad about anything. He agrees, admitting that he’s scared of the darkness, and of becoming trapped. We see him walking along a footpath and pick up a photo of the woman on the roof, which had fallen from a building above. This is what had brought him to her: not to jump himself, but to try and save her.

In the present, Owen tells the woman that if she can really see that there is nothing for her, then she should jump; but that if she can see even a glimmer of hope then it must be worth taking a chance. She tells him that her name is Maggie, and Owen holds her hand as they watch the lightshow.

Cast

Cast notes

Continuity

  • One of Henry Parker's purchases was a Dogon Eye, an item last seen in "Random Shoes". The official website states that he has recently purchased a Cyberman arm and chest unit.
  • In the opening scene, archive footage of Louise Delamere as Diane Holmes, Owen's first series love interest, is shown. Also in the opening montage, clips from episodes such as "Everything Changes", "Ghost Machine", "Out of Time" and "Meat" can be glimpsed.
  • This is the second episode in which Owen is relieved of his duties. He was previously dismissed by Jack after he opened the rift in "End of Days".

[edit] Outside references

  • Owen says that Torchwood filed Henry Parker as "Mostly Harmless," a reference to the book by the same name by Douglas Adams, who used to write for Doctor Who. "Mostly Harmless" was the revised entry for planet Earth in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, also written by Adams. The original entry for Earth was "harmless".
  • Owen criticises Ianto for liking Tintin. Owen thinks Tintin is weird, and reckons "he was shagging the dog" (his pet Snowy). Later in the episode, Owen is given a Tintin T-shirt. Doctor Who writer Steven Moffat is currently writing a screenplay for a forthcoming Tintin movie.
  • In reference to his reclusiveness, Parker is stated to be "a bit Howard Hughes".
  • The symptoms of Owen's death (numbness, inability to heal) have similarities to leprosy, as suffered by the protagonist of Stephen R Donaldson's The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant. The alien words spoken by Owen in the "Dead Man Walking" (melenkurion, abatha, duroc, minas, mill and khabaal) were also taken from Donaldson's novels.
  • The song playing in Owen's apartment is "Atlas" by Battles.

Something Borrowed (Torchwood)



2.9 – "Something Borrowed"
Torchwood episode

The female Nostrovite takes the shape of Rhys's mother and holds Gwen's mother hostage.
Writer Phil Ford
Director Ashley Way
Script editor Gary Russell
Producer Richard Stokes
Chris Chibnall (co-producer)
Executive producer(s) Russell T. Davies
Julie Gardner
Production code 2.9
Series Series 2
Length 50 mins
Originally broadcast March 5, 2008
Chronology
? Preceded by Followed by →
"A Day in the Death" "From out of the Rain"
IMDb profile

"Something Borrowed" is the ninth episode of the second series of British science fiction television series Torchwood. It was broadcast by BBC Three on 5 March 2008 and repeated on BBC Two one week later.


Plot

Just hours before her wedding night, Gwen chases down a shape-shifting alien, eventually engaging him in a fight wherein he bites her arm before he is killed by Jack. The next morning they discover that the alien had transferred its eggs into Gwen, which has matured inside her body to the point where she now appears pregnant. Gwen and Rhys, at the insistence of Gwen, decide to have their wedding anyway, with Gwen's condition being explained away as her being pregnant with Rhys's child, as they do not want to have to explain about aliens or Torchwood.

During an autopsy of the alien creature, the team discover that it is a Nostrovite, a race of carnivourous shape shifters who hunt in pairs and mate for life. After fertilisation, the female passes the eggs on to the male, who then transfers them to a host to act as an incubator until the time is right. The female then tracks the host down, and when the egg is ready to hatch she tears the host apart to free the offspring. They realise that the mother must still be out there and that they need to hurry as it is out looking for Gwen.

The female Nostrovite tracks Gwen to the hotel where she is having her wedding. Her presence is soon detected, at which point the team tries to catch her while at the same time minimalise any information leaking out to the public. They decide to use the singularity scalpel to destroy the eggs incubating within Gwen. Rhys and Gwen flee to the stable, where Rhys removes the egg using the scalpel, which infuriates the female Nostrovite that followed them. She attacks Rhys who fends her off with a chainsaw, but it stalls. At that moment, Jack enters and kills the creature.

Rhys and Gwen’s wedding resumes, and the couple are successfully wed. At the reception, and just before Rhys and Gwen leave for their honeymoon, they realise that Jack has retconned the entire wedding party to wipe their memories of the Nostrovite. Jack offers the couple the amnesia pills, and Gwen declines stating that there’d be no secrets in their marriage. They say their goodbyes and leave whilst Jack and the others proceed to clean up. Alone at the Hub, Jack retrieves an old tin box, containing old pictures from his past. He looks at them, reminiscing, and comes across a particular one of him and his bride at his own wedding.

Cast

Cast notes

Continuity

  • On the Torchwood website Jack receives an email from Martha Jones after the events in "A Day in the Death" saying she is sorry for not going to Gwen's wedding implying she was invited to the wedding. The canonicity of the email is unclear.

Direct download: TW2_8_and_9_TDP.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 4:42pm UTC

TDP 48: Big Finish Recommendations One (sorry about the voice) : Big Finish Recommendations One

Firts off sorry about my voice but I didnt want to let you guys down with no show even if I did do 3 last week... so heres you are.

Notes on 5 of the Best Big Finsh CDs... Ill do more recommendations soon.



34. Doctor Who - Spare Parts - Download


Price: £11.99





Technical Details
Cast:
   
Peter Davison (The Doctor); Sarah Sutton (Nyssa); Sally Knyvette (Doctorman Allan); Pamela Binns (Sisterman Constant); Derren Nesbitt (Thomas Dodd); Paul Copley (Dad); Kathryn Guck (Yvonne Hartley); Jim Hartley (Frank Hartley); Ann Jenkins (Mrs. Ginsberg); Nicholas Briggs (Zheng / Cyber Voices / Radio Announcer / Citizen / Nurse); Alistair Lock (Minister / TV Commentator); Gary Russell (Philpott / Nurse)
Writer:
    Marc Platt    
Recorded:
    26 and 27 March 2002
Director:
    Gary Russell    
Released:
    July 2002
Music:
    Alistair Lock    
No. of Discs:
    2
Sound Design:
    Alistair Lock    
Duration
    Disc 1 (59' 08"); Disc 2 (73' 50")
Cover Art:     Clayton Hickman    
Production Code:
    6C/E
           
ISBN:
    1-903654-72-6
Synopsis

On a dark frozen planet where no planet should be, in a doomed city with a sky of stone, the last denizens of Earth's long-lost twin will pay any price to survive, even if the laser scalpels cost them their love and hate and humanity.

And in the mat-infested streets, round tea-time, the Doctor and Nyssa unearth a black market in second-hand body parts and run the gauntlet of augmented police and their augmented horses.

And just between the tramstop and the picturehouse, their worst suspicions are confirmed: the Cybermen have only just begun, and the Doctor will be, just as he always has been, their saviour...
Chronological Placement
This story takes place between the television adventures, Time-Flight and Arc of Infinity and after the Big Finish audio drama

STORM WARNING

Cast:
    Paul McGann (The Doctor), India Fisher (Charley Pollard); Gareth Thomas (Lord Tamworth); Nicholas Pegg (Lt-Col Frayling); Barnaby Edwards (Rathbone); Hylton Collins (Chief Steward Weeks); Helen Goldwyn (Triskelion); Mark Gatiss (Announcer)
Writer:
    Alan Barnes    
Recorded:
    18 May 2000
Director:
    Gary Russell    
Released:
    January 2001
Music:
    Alistair Lock    
No. of Discs:
    2
Sound Design:
    Alistair Lock    
Duration
    Disc 1 (50' 34"); Disc 2 (67' 11")
Cover Art:     Clayton Hickman    
Production Code:
    8B
           
ISBN:
    1-903654-24-6
Synopsis

October, 1930. His Majesty's Airship, the R1010, sets off on her maiden voyage to the farthest-flung reaches of the British Empire, carrying the brightest lights of the Imperial fleet. Carrying the hopes and dreams of a breathless nation.

Not to mention a ruthless spy with a top-secret mission, a mysterious passenger who appears nowhere on the crew list, a would-be adventuress destined for the Singapore Hilton... and a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey.

There's a storm coming. There's something unspeakble, something with wings, crawling across the stern. Thousands of feet high in the blackening sky, the crew of the R101 brace themselves. When the storm breaks, their lives won't be all that's at stake...

The future of the galaxy will be hanging by a thread.
Chronological Placement
This story takes place after the 1996 TV Movie.


THE ONE DOCTOR

Technical Details
Cast:
   
Colin Baker (The Doctor); Bonnie Langford (Melanie Bush); Christopher Biggins (Banto Zame); Clare Buckfield (Sally-Anne Stubbins); Matt Lucas (Cylinder / The Jelloid); Stephen Fewell (Councillor Potikol / Assembler 2); Nicholas Pegg (Citizen Sokkery / Mentos); Jane Goddard (The Questioner / Queen Elizabeth); Adam Buxton (Assembler 1); Mark Wright (Guard); Alistair Lock (Guard)
Writer:
    Gareth Roberts and
Clayton Hickman    
Recorded:
    28 and 29 April 2001
Director:
    Gary Russell    
Released:
    December 2001
Music:
    Alistair Lock    
No. of Discs:
    2
Sound Design:
    Alistair Lock    
Duration
    Disc 1 (49' 03"); Disc 2 (73' 39")
Cover Art:     Clayton Hickman    
Production Code:
    7C/R
           
ISBN:
    1-903654-56-4
Synopsis
When the evil Skelloids launch an attack upon the seventeen worlds of the Generios system, its peace-loving inhabitants face total destruction.
 
So it's fortunate that the famous traveller in time and space known only as the Doctor is in the area, and doubly lucky that, with the help of his pretty young assistant, Sally-Anne, he manages to defeat the deadly creatures and save the day.
 
But now it looks as though the Doctor¹s luck has run out.
 
Who is the mysterious, curly-haired stranger who insists on causing trouble? What role does the feisty redhead Melanie play in his scheme? And what have they to do with the sinister alien cylinder approaching Generios?
 
One thing is certain: for the Doctor and Sally-Anne, there¹s deadly danger ahead ...
Chronological Placement
This story takes place between the television adventures, The Trial of a Time Lord and Time and the Rani.



KINGMAKER

Technical Details
Cast:
   
Peter Davison (The Doctor); Nicola Bryant (Peri); Caroline Morris (Erimem); Arthur Smith (Clarrie); Michael Fenton-Stevens (Mr Seyton); Stephen Beckett (Richard; Duke of Gloucester); Marcus Hutton (Henry; Duke of Buckingham); John Culshaw (Earl Rivers); Chris Neill (Sir James Tyrell); Katie Wimpenny (Susan); Linzi Matthews (Judith)
Writer:
    Nev Fountain    
Recorded:
    20 and 21 November 2005
Director:
    Gary Russell    
Released:
    April 2006
Music:
    ERS    
No. of Discs:
    2
Sound Design:
    ERS    
Duration
    Disc 1 (69' 57"); Disc 2 (75' 46")
Cover Art:     Stuart Manning    
Production Code:
    6Q/I
         
ISBN:
    1-84435-161-0
Synopsis

Dr Who encounters one of the most notorious characters from the past, as he journeys through time to solve the great Historical Mysteries...

Not surprisingly the Doctor becomes mixed up with Richard the third himself, as he tries to unravel the perplexing problem of who exactly killed the Princes in the Tower.

Peri and Erimem also encounter a suspicious time traveller. Someone from the Doctor's own past. Someone who shouldn't really be there at all.

So who did murder the Princes in the Tower? Perhaps it's best not to ask a question like that.

You might not like the answer...
Chronological Placement
This story takes place between the television adventures, Planet of Fire and The Caves of Androzani and after the Big Finish audio adventure, .


NIGHT THOUGHTS

Technical Details
Cast:
   
Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor); Sophie Aldred (Ace); Philip Olivier (Hex); Bernard Kay (Major Dickens); Joanna McCallum (The Bursar); Andrew Forbes (Dr O'Neil); Lizzie Hopley (Sue); Ann Beach (The Deacon); Duncan Duff (Joe Hartley)
Writer:
    Edward Young    
Recorded:
    7 and 8 November 2005
Director:
    Gary Russell    
Released:
    February 2006
Music:
    ERS    
No. of Discs:
    2
Sound Design:
    ERS    
Duration
    Disc 1 (61' 38"); Disc 2 (63' 51")
Cover Art:     Lee Binding    
Production Code:
    7W/C
         
ISBN:
    1-84435-167-X
Synopsis

I warn you, things could get very nasty here before they get better.'

A remote Scottish mansion. Five bickering academics are haunted by ghosts from their past. Reluctantly they offer shelter to the Doctor and his companions Ace and Hex.

Hex, already troubled by a vivid nightmare, is further disturbed by the nighttime appearance of a whistling, hooded apparition.

Ace tries to befriend the young housemaid, Sue. Sue knows secrets. She knows why the academics have assembled here, and she knows why they are all so afraid. But Sue's lips are sealed, preferring to communicate through her disturbing toy, Happy the Rabbit.

And then the killing begins. Gruesome deaths that lead the Doctor and his friends to discover the grisly truth behind the academics' plans, and ­ as the ghosts of the past become ghosts of the present ­ to recognise that sometimes death can be preferable to life.
Chronological Placement
This story takes place between the television adventures, Survival and the 1996 TV Movie, and after the Big Finish audio adventure, .



Direct download: BIG_FIN_1.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 4:17pm UTC

hope you enjoyed the anniversary special.

there wont be a cast this week (there were 3 last week) as ive got a cold.

There will be a double Torchwood cast about 2.8 and 2.9 soon too

HOWEVER.

I did get my review copy of Black Orchid yesterday so there will be a show on that and I have started work on a big finish recommendations podcast.

I am thinking of recommending and talking about

The One Doctor
Spareparts
Kingmaker
Project Lazarus
Storm Warning.
Night Thoughts

any thoughts... on those choices? the TDP will return once i've got my voice back 100%

be seeing you...
Category:Information -- posted at: 11:56am UTC

TDP 47: First Birthday Special

TIN DOG INTRO MUSIC

 


To celebrate the first birthday of the Doctor Who TIN DOG Podcast (and my own birthday on March 4th), I present a short episode of Torchwood for your enjoyment.


And thanks for listening to me ramble on for a year.


 


TIN DOG:

This story is meant with the greatest and fondest respect to the works of Oliver Postgate , Peter Firmin, Russel T Davies and everyone else who has kept the blue light flashing. No breach of copyright is meant in any way. Please enjoy this special anniversary story to celebrate the Tin Dog Podcasts first Birthday.

I present a one of Audio story with those lovely people from the popular secret organisation “Torchwood?.

 

NARRATOR:

In the bottom left hand comer of Wales, a meeting is taking place around an ikea table.

Lets listen in…

 

IANTO:

I have been monitoring activity around the hell mouth... er anomaly.. erm... I mean.. Rift and its been surprisingly quiet which means we can re-investigate some of the unsolved Torchwood files.?

 

NARRATOR:

The thin one with the dry whit gets out a file and blows dust off it in the sort of way Eric Morecambe would look at Ernie Wises wallet.

 

GRAMS FX- blow... cough

 

IANTO:

This is one that dates back decades. The winged monsters of Tan-y-gwlch.

 

 

OWEN

you know the rules we do not investigate anything we can't have sex with... apples and pares – queen mother – gawd bless her.

 

IANTO:

ah but.. Monkey boy... but this is season two and we seem to be moving away from pointless sex scenes so I thought we might look at this.

 

GWEN:

BUT this isn’t happening in Cardiff... and you know the only time we leave Cardiff’s in unseen adventures and spin off novels... oh and Audio Books... as a rule we don't ever set foot outside Cardiff... Couldn't we just send UNIT?

 

NARRATOR

said Gwen

 

IANTO:

This IS an Audio adventure which gives us an unlimited travel budget..

I have rang UNIT and they are apparently busy denying any links with the United Nations then they are all booked up recording a spin off story for Big Finish... which only leaves only US... Jack do you want to do the voice over?

 

JACK:

Torchwood. Outside the Government, Beyond the police, Of Junction 21 next door to Comet electrical.

 

IANTO:

Quickly... to the Torchwood Mobile... and on to North Wales.

GRAMS MUSIC: Ivor the engine Music.

 

NARRATOR:

Oh hello ivor..

 

IVOR:

Ba Baaaa!

 

NARRATOR:

Having a busy day

 

IVOR:

Ba Baaaa!

 

NARRATOR:

What are you upto today? Taking coal to grumby town? New shoes for a new hat for Mrs Dinwiddy? Saving sheep from the snow?

 

IVOR:

Ba Baaaa!

 

NARRATOR:

Oh I see... You're off to see your friends Idris and Blodwin the dragons.

 

NARRATOR:

Oh look Ivor... you have visitors...

 

IVOR:

bo bo bbbooooo...

 

NARRATOR:

No there not the English coming to stay in their cottage for one week of the year and drive up house prices... its those pesky Torchwood lot... yes Ivor the famous secret organisation.

 

IVOR:

ba ba

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Oh hello Mister Harkness. Can I ask you a question

 

NARATOR:

asked the hither too silent Jones the Steam

 

JACK:

Sure

 

JONES THE STEAM:

How come you get to walk the streets with a Webly Mark Four on your hip and no one bats an eyelid. This is the Wales after all you know not down town LA or something.

 

 

JACK:

It helps us sell the show to Americans. I mean who would watch a show where the heroes didn’t have a gun and solved things using their intellect and cunning...

 

GRAMS: FX Few bars of Doctor Who music

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Oh I guess you have a point. I just assumed you were over compensating for something.

How can I help you today?

 

GWEN:

Flying Lizards

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Ah you mean the Dragons...

 

IVOR:

Booo Baa Baaa..

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Quite right Ivor...

I mean you mean the non-excitant Dragons on the extinct volcano.

 

IVOR:

Booo Baa Baaa..

 

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Oh you and your fast talking city ways. I obviously mean the non-existent dragons that defiantly don’t live anywhere round here…because they’re not real...

 

JACK:

How are we doing for time Gwen?

 

GWEN:

Well were past over half way through the episode... so I think were just about to come up with a working hypothesis. So I recon that the Dragons are real and that they are in the extinct volcano... the one over there in fact – Boyo.

 

OWEN:

Jack. I hate to be the one to say this but theres been no homosexualist kissing so far...Apples and pairs

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Oh is that what you think? Me and Di station have been doing little Britain “only gay in the village? jokes all morning... mind you I'm sure you lot do those all the time down there in Cardiff... and not you lot are here its just going to become a joke too far if I bring that up again.

 

DI STATION:

Good point Jones.

 

 

JACK:

Lets go to the mountain.

 

IVOR:

Booo Baa Baaa..

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Ivor says he can give you a lift if you want... I must say thats very good of you Ivor.

 

IVOR:

Booo Baa Baaa..

 

JONES THE STEAM:

ah... so you think the plot is flagging and you want to move things along.

 

JACK

Lets leave the Torchwood Mobile here and head out.

 

GRAMS: Ivor travel music.

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Gwen. I have a question for you. “Why doesnt your hair EVER move? Is it a wig? Come on you can tell me...

Oh. look ivor.. were here.

 

GRAMS : steam fx

 

JACK:

Tosh. You’ve been quiet… Oh you have a sore thought and the narrator doest think he is up to doing your voice, well he is butchering any attempt at mine. Anything on the tricorder… I mean non copyright breaching scaning device?..

GRAMS FX – Bleeping

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Do you think its noticed those dragons?

 

GWEN:

What the red heraldic ones spinning meters above us?

 

JACK:

Gwen? What’s that flashing? is it one of those anomalies from primeval?

 

GWEN:

No it’s a tourists camera.

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Ah so you have found out our little secret. Every so often the dragons come out for the tourists and get their photo taken. The pictures are blurred because they move so fast so there’s not actual risk of anyone believing the pictures are real.  Those dragons saved out town.  You’re not going to take them away from us are you Mister Harness?

 

 

 

JACK

No but it is likely that Owen will try and snog one of them

 

OWEN

I’d resent that remark if I hadn’t seen the rest of the story ark.

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Look Mister Harkness one of them wants to ask you a question.

 

IDRIS THE DRAGON: (as sample)

do you know land of my fathers?

 

JACK:

No it’s abide with me or nothing

 

GWEN:

You know that still doesn’t solve the real mystery.

 

JACK:

You mean  how Ivor – a steam engine – speak?

 

IANTO:

oh that’s easy.  Ivor was made from a living  metal that came through the rift at the end of the tea time war.

IANTO:

sorry...

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Did i say too much?  I mean he is magic.

 

GWEN:

Ahhh.

 

JONES THE STEAM:

Tell you what…lets all go home for a nice cup of tea.

 

OWEN:

That’s hardly a satisfying end to the narrative. Can’t we blow something up? or lose a loved one through time.

 

JONES THE STEAM:

if you like

 

IANTO:

will that help with the fan base?

 

JONES THE STEAM:

No not really….  Ill just go and  put the kettle on

 

IVOR:

boo baaaa.

 

MUSIC. (Ivor the engine theme as base under the narrators final speech)

 

NARRATOR:

And so we must leave this quiet corner of Wales and journey back to podcast land

thanks for listening to my pointless ramblings over this last year.

 

Be seeing you

 

MUSIC TDP Closing music





NOTE: Some of you have never seen Ivor the Engine and this wont have helped so here is a youtube First Episode for you to enjoy!



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Direct download: Ivor_Torchwood.mp3
Category:podcast -- posted at: 5:00am UTC

TDP 46: The Five Doctors

The Five Doctors was a special feature-length episode of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, produced in celebration of the programme's twentieth anniversary. It aired in the United Kingdom on November 25, 1983, although it had its world premiere in the United States, on the Chicago PBS station WTTW-TV and various other PBS affiliates on November 23, the anniversary date.

Synopsis

Someone is plucking all the incarnations of the Doctor out of time, and placing them in the Death Zone on Gallifrey where they will meet old friends and enemies and play out the deadly Game of Rassilon, for the ultimate prize. But to lose is to win, and he who wins shall lose...

Plot

The Fifth Doctor, Tegan and Turlough are taking a break on the Eye of Orion, one of the most tranquil spots in the universe, when the Fifth Doctor suddenly collapses. Tegan and Turlough bring the Fifth Doctor back into the TARDIS, where they discover to their distress that he is literally fading away. The Fifth Doctor manages to set the TARDIS controls for a destination and the ship dematerializes.

In a hidden chamber, a dark figure is manipulating the controls of a time scoop and kidnapping the Doctor's previous incarnations out of the time stream along with some of his former companions. The First Doctor is taken while he is walking in a rose garden, the Second Doctor and Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart from a UNIT reunion and the Third Doctor while he is out driving his roadster, Bessie. Also taken out of time are Sarah Jane Smith and the Doctor's granddaughter Susan Foreman. The Fourth Doctor and Romana are taken while punting along the River Cam, but whoever is doing this is frustrated as the two are trapped in the time vortex by a time eddy and unable to rematerialize. All of them, save the Fourth Doctor and Romana, are deposited on a desolate, rocky landscape — the Death Zone on Gallifrey.

Meanwhile, in the Capitol on Gallifrey, the High Council of Time Lords, headed by Lord President Borusa and consisting of Chancellor Flavia and the Castellan, watches in concern. The Eye of Harmony is being drained by whoever is taking the Doctor out of time, endangering all of Gallifrey. Despite Borusa's misgivings, the High Council has unanimously voted to call in the Master to assist by going into the Death Zone to help the Doctors. Offered a pardon and a new cycle of regenerations, the Master accepts, and is given a copy of the Seal of the High Council by the Castellan to prove his bona fides, and a matter transmitter (transmat) recall device. He is then teleported via transmat to the Death Zone.

In the Zone, the Doctors face various dangers. The First Doctor and Susan are pursued by a Dalek through a hall of mirrors, finally escaping when they push the Dalek into a dead end, where the discharge of its energy weapon ricochets back and destroys it. The Second Doctor and the Brigadier escape from a squad of Cybermen, and the Third Doctor rescues Sarah from her fall down an embankment. Sarah is mildly confused, as she had seen the Third Doctor regenerate into the Fourth (Planet of the Spiders), but is glad to see the Doctor she once knew. The Second and Third Doctors explain to their companions that in Gallifrey's past, known as the Dark Time, the Time Lords misused their powers. A device called the Time Scoop was used to pluck beings out of their times and place them in the Death Zone, where they would fight each other in a sort of gladiatorial game. The Doctors' goal now is to reach the Dark Tower, where the Time Lord founder Rassilon is entombed, although there is some doubt as to whether Rassilon is actually dead.

The Master meets and tries unsuccessfully to convince the Third Doctor that he is there to help. He is then forced to flee when thunderbolts fall from the sky. The Third Doctor only sees this as confirmation that this is all a plot of the Master's. The First Doctor and Susan find the TARDIS and the presence of the First Doctor seems to stabilize the Fifth for the moment. Together, they scan the tower and find three entrances — one at the apex of the tower, the main gate at the base, and one underground, but a force field prevents the TARDIS's entry. The Fifth Doctor takes Tegan and Susan to go to the main gate, but encounters the Master, who has no better luck convincing the Fifth Doctor than he did the Third. At that moment, the two are surrounded by Cybermen, and when they try to run away, the Master is knocked out by a cybergun blast. The Fifth Doctor finds the Master's recall device on his unconscious body, and transmats himself to the Capitol. The Master, confronted by the Cybermen, offers himself as a guide to the Tower.

In the Capitol, the Doctor is informed of the situation by the High Council. The Doctor realizes not only that he has done the Master an injustice, but also that they were found too easily by the Cybermen. He opens the recall device and finds a homing beacon inside. The Castellan, who gave the Master the device, is arrested and his quarters ordered to be searched. There is found a box containing the Black Scrolls of Rassilon — forbidden knowledge from the Dark Time. Borusa destroys the scrolls before anyone can examine them and orders the Castellan taken to the mind probe for interrogation. However, as the Castellan is escorted outside, there is a shot. The Doctor rushes out to find the Castellan dead, and the Captain of the guard reporting that he was shot while trying to escape. The Doctor voices his concerns to Chancellor Flavia: the Castellan was stubborn, but not a traitor. There is more to this than meets the eye.

The Second Doctor and the Brigadier are exploring a series of caves when they encounter a Yeti left over from the games. Taking refuge in an alcove, the Doctor tries to chase the Yeti off with a firework, succeeding only in maddening it, and causing it to collapse the entrance to the alcove. However, the Doctor detects a breeze from further back and discovers the underground entrance to the Tower.

On the surface, the Third Doctor and Sarah come across a Raston Warrior Robot, according to the Doctor the most perfect killing machine ever devised. Able to move with blinding speed and fire bolts of metal at its targets, it detects its victims by motion. The Doctor and Sarah are unable to move without attracting the robot's attention, but luck is on their side when a squad of Cybermen come over the ridge and are rapidly eliminated by the robot. Taking advantage of the distraction, the Doctor and Sarah run past the robot's position, taking some rope and spare bolts from the robot's cave. Reaching a cliff face just above the Tower, the Doctor uses the rope and bolts to form a grappling hook, and he and Sarah abseil across to the top of the Tower.

Tegan and Susan have told the First Doctor what happened to the Fifth Doctor. The First Doctor decides to head for the main gate himself, with Tegan insisting on accompanying him. Opening the main gate through the means of a keypad hidden under a bell, they find a chessboard floor pattern blocking their way. The First Doctor determines that the chessboard is a trap — electrical bolts will destroy anyone attempting to cross unless they find the safe path. The Master appears at this point, warning them that the Cybermen are close behind. While the Doctor and Tegan hide, the Master lures the Cybermen onto the chessboard where they are killed. The Master tells the Doctor, "It's as easy as pie", then blithely steps across the board and moves into the Tower. The Doctor realizes that the Master means the Greek letter pi, and that the safe path is calculated by means of the mathematical constant. He and Tegan make their way across the trap. In the Zone, the TARDIS is being surrounded by Cybermen who start to assemble a bomb to blow it up. Inside, Turlough and Susan watch helplessly.

The Second and Third Doctors encounter more obstacles while moving separately through the Tower, with the mind of Rassilon exuding an intensifying feeling of fear. They also encounter what appear to be their previous companions: the Third meeting Captain Mike Yates and Liz Shaw; the Second meeting Jamie McCrimmon and Zoe Heriot. The Doctors soon realize that the 'companions' are just phantoms designed to impede their progress through the Tower, and the spectres vanish with a scream. Finally, all three Doctors reach the tomb where Rassilon's casket lies. While the Brigadier, Sarah, and Tegan get re-acquainted, the three Doctors try to translate an inscription written in Ancient Gallifreyan on a pedestal near a control panel.

The Fifth Doctor finds that Borusa has vanished from the Council chamber, but the guards insist that the President could not have gotten by them at the only entrance. The transmat is out of power, so the Doctor deduces that there must be a secret door. He finds it hidden behind a painting of Rassilon playing the harp. The key to opening the door is a series of notes played on the actual harp standing before the painting — notes indicated by the sheet music in the painting itself. The Doctor enters the secret chamber, finding the dark figure that had taken his other selves out of time: Borusa. The Lord President is not satisfied with ruling Gallifrey for his lifetimes — he wants to be President Eternal. Borusa has determined that Rassilon discovered the secret of immortality, and he means to claim it, sending the Doctors into the Zone to clear the way for him. Using the Coronet of Rassilon, Borusa overwhelms the Fifth Doctor's will, thus forcing the latter to obey his commands.

In the tomb, the Doctors have deciphered the inscription: Rassilon had discovered immortality and will share it with whomever overcomes the obstacles to the tomb and takes the ring from his body. However, one line troubles the First Doctor: "To lose is to win and he who wins shall lose." The Master steps out of the shadows to claim immortality for himself, yet is jumped from behind by the Brigadier and tied up by Sarah and Tegan. The Third Doctor fixes the control panel by reversing the polarity of the neutron flow, allowing the TARDIS to transport itself to the tomb (just seconds before the Cybermen's bomb detonates).

The Second Doctor contacts the Capitol and the Fifth Doctor answers, still under Borusa's control. He tells his other selves to await their arrival. He and Borusa transmat over to the tomb. Borusa paralyzes the Doctors' companions with a command and tries to control the minds of the Doctors as well, but fails as all four Doctors combine their wills against him. However, a booming voice echoes through the chamber — the voice of Rassilon, demanding to know who disturbs him. Borusa steps forward to claim immortality and while the other Doctors protest, the First Doctor holds the others back and says to the projection of Rassilon that Borusa deserves the prize. Borusa takes the ring from the body and puts it on. He finds himself paralyzed, then transformed into one of several stone faces carved into the side of the casket. Rassilon sends the Master back to his own time, then frees the Fourth Doctor from the time vortex and returns to eternal rest. The First Doctor smugly tells the Fifth that he finally understood the proverb. The 'prize' was yet another trap — a means for Rassilon to eliminate whoever sought immortality.

The Doctors and the companions say their good-byes to each other and re-enter the TARDIS save for the Fifth Doctor, Tegan, and Turlough. As those three watch, the others are transported back to their proper times. Chancellor Flavia arrives with guards and tells the Doctor that with Borusa's disappearance, the Council has appointed the Doctor as President. The Doctor appears reluctant, but Flavia tells him he cannot refuse an order of the Council or it will attract the severest penalties. The Doctor orders Flavia back to the Capitol, saying that he will travel there in his TARDIS and that she has full powers until his return. Once in the TARDIS, though, he reveals to Tegan and Turlough that he has no intention of returning. Tegan asks if the Doctor really intends to go on the run from his own people in a rickety old TARDIS. The Doctor replies, smiling, "Why not? After all, that's how it all started."

Cast

Cast notes

  • The role of the First Doctor was played by Richard Hurndall, as William Hartnell, who originally played the role, died in 1975. William Hartnell does make an appearance, however, in a pre-titles sequence taken from the end of The Dalek Invasion of Earth.
  • Tom Baker declined to reprise his role as the Fourth Doctor, as he did not want to reappear in the series so recently after his departure (a decision he would later say that he regretted); so his appearance in the story was pieced together from footage filmed for the unaired serial Shada.
  • The scene with Jamie and Zoe was originally written with Zoe and Victoria Waterfield in mind. The Doctor would have realised the truth when Victoria called Lethbridge-Stewart "Brigadier", since Victoria had only met the Brigadier when he was a Colonel in The Web of Fear. However, Deborah Watling was unable to make the filming dates. Frazer Hines was able to free himself up for a day's shooting, so Jamie was written in instead.
  • In the original drafts of the script, the Doctor/companion combinations were very different. Before Tom Baker decided not to appear, the Fourth Doctor would have been paired with Sarah, the Third Doctor with the Brigadier and the Second Doctor with Jamie.[1] When Baker declined to appear and Frazer Hines was unable to meet the production dates due to other commitments, the scripts had to be altered. However, Hines was able to step in later for a cameo appearance, as noted above.
  • John Levene was asked to appear as Sergeant Benton but objected to the way in which the character interacted with the Second Doctor and declined to participate. The scene was filmed with an unnamed sergeant in place of Benton.[2]

Continuity

  • This is only the second time in the series' history that there was a pre-credits sequence. Castrovalva (1982) was the first such story. Subsequently, Time and the Rani (1987) and Remembrance of the Daleks (1988) also featured pre-credits teasers. The pre-credits sequence became a regular occurrence starting with the 2005 series episode The End of the World.
  • This serial also featured the debut of the new TARDIS console and room, the first redesign since 1977. This console would remain until the end of series production in 1989.
  • This serial ended fan speculation as to whether or not Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee's Doctors were regenerations or merely "changes of appearance". It also explicitly indicated in dialogue that the Davison incarnation of the Doctor was in fact the fifth, officially contradicting the Morbius Doctors speculation that had circulated since the The Brain of Morbius serial that there had been additional incarnations of the Doctor prior to Hartnell.
  • When asked by the Third Doctor as to whether he has regenerated again, the Master says, "Not exactly", referencing his stealing of Tremas's body as seen in the Fourth Doctor story The Keeper of Traken (1981).
  • This is the first time it is suggested that a new cycle of regenerations can be bestowed on a person (in this case the Master), implying that it could be possible to circumvent the twelve-regeneration limit established in The Deadly Assassin. However, the Master is occupying a non-Time Lord body, so whether this can be applied to a Time Lord who has already reached his thirteenth incarnation is unclear. Years later, however, the episode "Utopia" shows the Master regenerating and in the following episode "The Sound of Drums" indicates that he had been "resurrected" (the Master's own word, left unexplained) by the Time Lords to fight in the Time War, suggesting a new regeneration cycle was indeed bestowed upon him.
  • Three incarnations of Borusa previously appeared in The Deadly Assassin, The Invasion of Time and Arc of Infinity.
  • Dinah Sheridan makes a guest appearance as Flavia. The character has subsequently been mentioned in spin-off fiction as becoming President of the High Council and then subsequently removed from office due to a scandal (as detailed in the New Adventures novel, Happy Endings). In the new series, a musical cue composed by Murray Gold with ethereal sounding vocals is jokingly referred to as "Flavia's Theme" by the production team, who say it is Flavia's voice singing out from the time vortex.
  • One of the jewels from the Coronet of Rassilion would later play an important part in the Big Finish Productions Bernice Summerfield adventure The Crystal of Cantus.
  • No explanation is given for companion Kamelion's absence from this story.
  • The First Doctor does not quite recognise the Master ("Do I know you?"), and has to be reminded of their time at the Academy together. The Third Doctor does recognise him, however, though it seems not as easily as usual.
  • The Mind Probe would later be used as a plot device in the Torchwood episode Sleeper.

Retroactive perspectives

  • This story takes place after The Dalek Invasion of Earth from the point of view of the First Doctor and Susan, given Susan's mature appearance and the implication that they have been separated for some time.
  • Although it is never made clear exactly where this story takes place within the Second and Third Doctors' chronology, it is made clear that it takes place after the events of The Three Doctors. The Second Doctor mentions Omega while reminiscing with the Brigadier, and also makes a comment about his own replacement being "unpromising" when he is in UNIT headquarters and meets Lethbridge-Stewart's successor. The Third Doctor also refers to “that fellow in the check trousers and black frock-coat? when he meets the illusions of Mike Yates and Liz Shaw. The familiar and mock-antagonistic way that the Second and Third Doctors interact also suggests that The Five Doctors takes place after the events of The Three Doctors for them both. Since the First Doctor refers to the Second as "the little fellow", it is reasonable to assume that the story takes place later in his chronology as well.
  • The Second Doctor's method of determining that Jamie and Zoe are phantoms, which references the events of The War Games, is, seemingly, a continuity error, (subsequently rendering the Second Doctor's earlier meeting with the Brigadier in this story a continuity error). The memories of Jamie and Zoe's travels with the Doctor, as opposed to their respective initial adventures with him in their own home eras (The Highlanders and The Wheel in Space) were wiped in The War Games when they were returned to their own times at a moment just after they had left in the TARDIS. There are various fan explanations for this and it is noted that it is the Brigadier only that they should not have recognised as neither of them would remember meeting him in The Web of Fear and The Invasion respectively. (see Season 6B)
  • This story takes place some time between The Time Warrior and Planet of the Spiders from the Third Doctor's point of view, as he recognises Sarah Jane, for whom events take place after K-9 and Company.
  • The Third Doctor reacts to Sarah's mimed description of the Fourth Doctor by saying, "Teeth and curls?" and telling her the change has not happened yet for him. Although the Third Doctor may just be interpreting her gestures, his accuracy has led some fans to believe that it implies a previous unseen encounter with the Fourth Doctor. According to Terrance Dicks on the DVD commentary, the line was supposed to be Sarah's, but Pertwee negotiated with Elisabeth Sladen for him to say it instead, leading to the problem. In the short story The Touch of the Nurazh by Stephen Hatcher from the anthology Short Trips: Monsters, an injury makes the Third Doctor begin to regenerate into the Fourth but the process is reversed. This is witnessed by Jo Grant, and the theory is that she subsequently describes the Fourth Doctor's appearance to the Third.
  • This story occurs after Mawdryn Undead from the Brigadier's point of view, given that he recognises Tegan and later the Fifth Doctor.
  • At the start of the episode, Sarah Jane Smith is shown with K-9, a direct reference to the spin-