a real world point of view
|Aliens of London|
|Script release:||The Shooting Scripts|
|Featuring:||Mickey, Jackie, Harriet|
|Main enemy:||Slitheen family|
|Main setting:||London, 2006|
|Writer:||Russell T Davies|
|Premiere broadcast:||16 April 2005|
|Premiere network:||BBC One|
|Format:||1x45 minute episode|
|Confidential:||I Get a Side-Kick Out of You|
|Doctor Who television stories|
|The Unquiet Dead||World War Three|
|Rose||World War Three|
Aliens of London was the fourth story in the first series of Doctor Who. It was notable for featuring the first cliffhanger in the BBC Wales run, by virtue of starting the first two-part story. Keeping cliffhangers in the show allowed Davies to expand the plot and restore a well remembered part of the original series.
Narratively, the episode introduced the Slitheen, who would return to Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane Adventures. It marked the first appearances of Toshiko Sato, who would later feature as a regular character on Torchwood, and the recurring character of British politician Harriet Jones. It also reintroduced UNIT to the revived series.
One of its legacies — sometimes forgotten by writers — was offered in its pre-title sequence. As the Ninth Doctor mistakenly brought Rose Tyler one year into the viewer's future, the "present day" of Doctor Who and its two BBC Wales spinoffs were generally considered to be one year later than the year of initial broadcast.
It was also the final episode of Doctor Who to have any portion recorded at BBC Television Centre.
Rose returns home to discover that she has been missing for a whole year, although for her, it's been a couple of days. however, before she can explain her absence, a spaceship crashes into Big Ben, causing a worldwide catastrophe. Worse still, the Prime Minister has mysteriously disappeared... The Doctor's investigation puts him in the spotlight with the British government, as his long history of defending Earth finally catches up with him. But there are sinister goings on at 10 Downing Street, and journalist Harriet Jones quest to get some answers brings her into a brave new world... of aliens. Meanwhile, Rose finds trouble closer too home, as her past mistakes threaten to tear her family apart.
The TARDIS materialises on a street in Rose's council estate. The Doctor has taken Rose home to visit her mother. He tells Rose they have landed some twelve hours after she first left with him, or so he thinks at the moment. While waiting for her to return, a flyer on a nearby telephone pole catches his eye. It is a missing-persons notice with Rose's picture on it. When Rose enters her flat and casually greets her mother, claiming to have spent the night with a friend, the stunned Jackie sweeps her daughter up in a desperate, unbelieving hug. Over her shoulder, Rose notices a table covered with missing-persons flyers and posters, all with her name and picture on them. The Doctor bursts into the flat and apologetically informs Rose that she hasn't been gone for twelve hours, but for twelve months, a whole year.
Some time later, outside Jackie's flat, a young boy spray-paints the words "BAD WOLF” on the TARDIS and cycles off. Inside the Tylers' flat, a police inspector sits and listens patiently as Jackie lashes out at Rose for her thoughtlessness in vanishing for over a year without so much as a phone call. Rose says she's been travelling, but Jackie angrily points out that she left her passport behind. Rose claims she meant to phone and just forgot. The Doctor tries to explain he employed Rose as his companion — in a non-sexual sense, of course, but Jackie slaps him and accuses him of luring away her daughter for immoral purposes. Rose is embarrassed and remorseful, but despite her mother's pleas, she can't begin to explain where she's been for the past year.
Rose and the Doctor talk on the roof of her tower block. She expresses her frustration at having accidentally traumatized her mother. The Doctor states firmly that Jackie is not coming with them if Rose decides to keep travelling, mentioning in passing that he's nine hundred years old. Rose realises this is another of the many things she can't discuss with anyone. She muses that she is one of only a few people on Earth who knows that there are aliens and spaceships. On cue, a massive spaceship roars over them, trailing black smoke. The Doctor takes Rose by the hand as she says, "That's not fair", and they follow the ship. It zooms through the skies over Central London, its wing cutting through two of the sides on Big Ben, ringing the bell, before splash-landing in the River Thames near Westminster Bridge. The river is cordoned off by soldiers from the Parachute Regiment. Rose expects the Doctor to use the TARDIS to get a closer look, but he points out that the military is already busy with one spaceship — they don't need to add to the panic.
The Doctor and Rose watch the events unfold on the television in Jackie's flat. Friends and neighbours join them to discuss the crash and Rose's return. The Doctor has difficulty attending to the news, even at one point fighting for the remote with a toddler trying to watch Blue Peter. The world is being put on red alert. Flights have been cancelled over North American airspace and the UN Secretary General has advised people to watch the skies. Divers recover an alien body from the wreckage of the spacecraft. It is put under military supervision under the command of General Asquith and brought to nearby Albion Hospital for analysis. Asquith examines the body and asks Dr. Toshiko Sato, the pathologist, if the creature is by any chance a fake. She informs him X-rays of the skull show wiring she has never seen before — no one could have made it up.
There has been no sign of the Prime Minister since the state of emergency was declared. Due to the gridlock and the grounding of flights, most of the Cabinet are stranded outside central London. Hence, in a surprise turn of events, the role of Acting Prime Minister has gone to Joseph Green, the rotund MP for Hartley Dale, and Chairman of the Parliamentary Commission on the Monitoring of Sugar Standards in Exported Confectionery. Escorted to 10 Downing Street, he is met by Indra Ganesh, a Junior Secretary with the Ministry of Defence. Green seems to have difficulty handling the pressure; as Ganesh tries to brief him, he breaks wind, claiming nerves are giving him an upsert stomach. Ganesh hands Green a red box containing the Emergency Protocols, all of the procedures to deal with extraterrestrial incidents. Green is met by Margaret Blaine of MI5 and Oliver Charles, Transport Liaison, each as fat as Green. Blaine reports she escorted the Prime Minister to his car this morning, but according to Charles, the car seems to have vanished. The three government officials leave Ganesh and enter the Cabinet Rooms. But once they close the door, Green drops the Emergency Protocols on the table, looks at Blaine and Oliver, and all three break out in hysterics, knowing that their evil plan is going according to schedule.
Evening settles on the Powell estate. People hold alien-welcoming parties around the area. The Doctor leaves Rose's flat, saying he is not good with people and it's hard to understand why people are talking about where to buy dodgy top-up cards for half price in the middle of a historical milestone. Rose thinks he is going to investigate the crash, but he says he is not going to interfere with humanity's first contact with extraterrestrial life. To reassure her, he gives her a TARDIS key. However, outside, he enters the TARDIS and starts it up. Mickey spots the Doctor from his own flat and rushes down, several seconds too late. The TARDIS dematerialises; Mickey crashes into a wall.
The Doctor lands the TARDIS in a storage cupboard in Albion Hospital. He opens the door, only to run into soldiers on tea break, who level their rifles at him. They hear a scream and the Doctor immediately takes charge, barking orders to lock down the perimeter. He finds Dr. Sato cowering in the corner of an operating room. The supposedly dead alien has returned to life. The Doctor spots the alien, which looks like an Earth pig in a spacesuit. The creature flees in terror, only to be shot dead by a soldier. The Doctor berates the soldier, insisting it was only frightened. Examining the carcass with Dr Sato, the Doctor tells her it is a real pig, its brain augmented by alien technology. Other aliens wanted to fake an alien crash landing, but why? By the time Dr Sato asks the question, the Doctor is gone to the echo of a dematerializing TARDIS.
Meanwhile, at 10 Downing Street, Harriet Jones, the backbench MP for Flydale North, tries to convince Ganesh to let her speak with Green. He refuses to interrupt Green's important meeting for her minor concerns. When Green, Margaret and Oliver emerge from the Cabinet office, Harriet tries to speak with Green, explaining she's come up with a scheme by which cottage hospitals don't have to be excluded from centres of excellence. Green laughs in her face and walks off with the others. Nettled, Harriet slips into the deserted Cabinet office and drops the report she's prepared in Green's briefcase. She notices he's left the Emergency Protocols booklet behind. Curious, she begins to leaf through it.
Jones panics when she hears General Asquith approaching the room and hides in a closet. Asquith is angrily berating Green, Blaine and Charles about their inaction. Green isn't returning the White House's phone calls, he hasn't started any of the Emergency Protocols, and he's cancelled the airlift that would have brought senior cabinet members into London. To Asquith's fury, the three officials seem to find the complaints amusing and start to break wind uncontrollably, laughing hysterically. When Asquith threatens to relieve Green as Acting Prime Minister and place the country under martial law, Green takes this more seriously. He tells Asquith his latest complaint is hair raising, literally! He immediately reaches up and unzips his forehead. Asquith looks and sees Blaine and Charles doing the same. A bright blue light shines through the zippers as the three reveal their true alien forms. As Harriet watches terrified through a crack in the door, General Asquith screams as the disguised aliens advance and kill him.
Mickey enters the Tylers' flat. He is furious to see Rose sitting with the neighbours. Rose apologizes for not visiting him, but that does not satisfy Mickey. When she disappeared with no explanation, Mickey was nearly charged with her murder. He's been questioned by police five times in the past year. When Jackie blamed him, he couldn't tell her the truth. He demands that Rose admit the truth; she might as well, because the Doctor's gone without her. Rose refuses to believe this, but when she goes out to see for herself, there is no sign of the TARDIS. She angrily insists the Doctor wouldn't have left her behind — and as she speaks, the TARDIS key begins to glow in her hand. The TARDIS materialises before their eyes. Rose goes inside with Mickey. Jackie follows, but quickly runs off, overwhelmed.
The Doctor admits he suspected the crash was a fake from the start: the flight path going into Big Ben was too perfect to have been unintentional. Mickey says it's an odd way to invade a planet, putting it on red alert. They exchange barbs, but the Doctor has more important things to do. Rose apologizes for his behaviour and assures Mickey that she did miss him, even though she's only been gone for a few days from her perspective. He tells her he spent the year looking for her, and he never dated anyone else (although admittedly, the latter is because most people think he murdered Rose and hid her body somewhere). She realises that Mickey wants to pick up their relationship where they left off — but before she can decide, the Doctor announces he's finished his work. He has set the TARDIS scanner to track the spacecraft back twelve hours before the crash. It was launched from Earth. Whoever these aliens are, they have been here for a while.
Jackie huddles in her flat, trying to cope with what she's seen. When the Emergency Alien Hotline number reappears on the TV, she calls and blurts out her story, claiming that her daughter is in danger because of an alien called the Doctor who travels in a blue box called the TARDIS. Key words trigger an automated alert which Ganesh receives at 10 Downing Street.
Ganesh rushes to tell General Asquith. Inside the Cabinet Office, the alien who had been posing as Oliver Charles has put himself into the general's skin. Like the other aliens, he frequently breaks wind to fit into his tight disguise. Blaine complains that they have to do something about the gas exchange that is causing their flatulence, but Green disagrees, believing it seems human enough to him. As Asquith tosses his former skin into the closet where Harriet Jones is hiding, he considers the change of disguise a shame, regretting that he will have to leave behind Oliver's wife, his mistress and the young farmer he was seeing on the side — something he very much enjoyed. As they leave, Ganesh tells Asquith the Doctor has been spotted. When Blaine asks who this "doctor" is, Ganesh says he is the expert on aliens, one they need desperately. In the meantime, other alien experts from around the world, including the United Nations Intelligence Taskforce, are being summoned to Downing Street.
When the Doctor, Rose and Mickey exit the TARDIS, they are surrounded by armed soldiers, vehicles and a helicopter. Mickey runs away, but the Doctor and Rose are put into a limousine and escorted to 10 Downing Street. The police escort Jackie to her flat and Police Commissioner Strickland, a rotund and gassy man who seems to be uncomfortable in his skin, assures Jackie her daughter is in a position to help the country. He asks Jackie how she made contact with the Doctor. Strickland sends the other police away so he may speak to Jackie alone.
At Downing Street, Ganesh has gathered all of the experts together. He meets the Doctor and Rose. Ganesh tells them their ID cards must be worn at all times and ushers them into a room. Rose is not cleared and not allowed in. Harriet Jones, who sneaked out of the Cabinet Rooms unseen, comes along and offers to take care of Rose. She takes Rose to the rooms and shows her Oliver Charles's empty skin. They find the Prime Minister's corpse stuffed in a cupboard. Ganesh enters and is aghast when he sees the body.
At the briefing headed by Asquith and Green, the Doctor reads the reports and notices that three days ago, a satellite picked up a blip of radiation under the North Sea. Before anyone could investigate, the crash happened. The Doctor realises the reason someone would fake an alien invasion is so they can gather those who have experience and knowledge in fighting off aliens together in one place. The crash is not a diversion; it's a trap!
In the Cabinet Rooms, Blaine enters, closing the door behind her. Ganesh says it's impossible for the Prime Minister to be dead. He was driven away from Downing Street that morning. Blaine smugly explains the only reason that he thinks that is because she told him and begins to unzip her head before a horrified Ganesh, Rose and Harriet.
In Jackie's flat, Jackie insists to Strickland that she knows nothing about the Doctor. That isn't good enough for Strickland. This Doctor means trouble and that means anyone associated with him is trouble, even if they barely know him. That is Strickland's job: eliminating trouble. He unzips his forehead and removes his skin-suit...
In the briefing room, Green breaks wind loudly. The Doctor turns on him for the interruption. General Asquith removes his skin suit. The enormous, green aliens wriggle out of their skins. The one inhabiting Blaine attacks Ganesh and the one posing as Strickland corners Jackie in her kitchen. In the briefing room, the unmasked Asquith identifies himself and his cohort as the Slitheen. With that introduction, Green activates a hand-held device that sends a deadly dose of electricity jolting through the experts' ID cards, including the Doctor's. TO BE CONTINUED...
- The Doctor - Christopher Eccleston
- Rose Tyler - Billie Piper
- Jackie Tyler - Camille Coduri
- Mickey Smith - Noel Clarke
- Policeman - Ceris Jones
- Reporter - Jack Tarlton
- Reporter - Lachele Carl
- Ru - Fiesta Mei Lung
- Bau - Basil Chung
- Matt Baker - As himself
- Andrew Marr - As himself
- General Asquith - Rupert Vansittart
- Joseph Green - David Verrey
- Indra Ganesh - Navin Chowdhry
- Harriet Jones - Penelope Wilton
- Margaret Blaine - Annette Badland
- Doctor Sato - Naoko Mori
- Oliver Charles - Eric Potts
- Spray painter - Corey Doabe
- Space Pig - Jimmy Vee
- Police Commissioner Strickland - Steve Spiers
- Slitheen - Elizabeth Frost, Paul Kasey, Alan Ruscoe
|Executive Producers Russell T Davies, Julie Gardner and Mal Young|
|Not every person who worked on this adventure was credited. The absence of a credit for a position doesn't necessarily mean the job wasn't required. The information above is based solely on observations of the actual end credits of the episodes as broadcast, and does not relay information from IMDB or other sources.|
- This is not the first time someone has written on the Doctor's TARDIS. (TV: The Time Warrior)
- Much as the Ninth Doctor does with Mickey, the First Doctor frequently mispronounced Ian Chesterton's name.
United Nations Intelligence Taskforce Edit
- UNIT, the United Nations Intelligence Taskforce, is mentioned as being among the experts on aliens. The Doctor mentions having worked with them in the past, but that they wouldn't recognise him now, alluding to regeneration. This is the first reference to UNIT in the revived series. The UNIT website shown on-screen in World War Three shows that United Nations Intelligence Taskforce is still the full name. In a later episode, The Sontaran Stratagem, it is revealed that UNIT's name has been changed to Unified Intelligence Taskforce.
The Doctor Edit
- The Doctor claims to have participated in drinking contests with former Prime Minister David Lloyd George.
- The Doctor says he is nine hundred years old.
Bad Wolf arc Edit
- A boy spray paints the words "BAD WOLF" on the side of the TARDIS while it is parked on the Powell Estate.
Story notes Edit
- This episode had the working title Aliens of London Part One (World War Three being Part Two).
- The episode ends on a cliffhanger, the first since episode episode two of TV: Survival. The story continues in World War Three. This is also the first occasion since Invasion of the Dinosaurs in which the first episode of a serial does not share its title with the second.
- A poster announcing Rose's disappearance states that she has not been seen since 6 March, 2005. However, the BBC-produced "official" UNIT website indicates that the climactic events of Rose happened on 26 March. The same site also dates this episode at either 26 May or 28 June 2006. If the June date is accepted, Boom Town (and also The Parting of the Ways) would have to take place in late December 2006 — the same week as The Christmas Invasion (dated to 2006 by the Guinevere One website). On the other hand, if only on-screen evidence is accepted, Aliens of London would take place in March 2006, Boom Town in September, and The Parting of the Ways later in the autumn or early winter.
- The official police poster is the first reference to the Powell Estate on the television series. In whole, the notice says, "Rose Tyler has been missing from her home on the Powell Estate since 6 March 2005. Rose is described as 19 years old, 5 feet 4 inches in height, slim build with shoulder-length blonde hair. Anyone with information regarding Rose should contact 0207 946000." The photograph used is one of Billie Piper herself, rather than one of Piper playing Rose. Several other home-made posters are seen on Jackie's table, including one with a banner headline saying "WHERE IS ROSE?".
- When the Doctor complains of being slapped by Rose's mother, Rose laughingly remarks, "You're so gay!" This remark has caused some controversy in fan circles, some seeing it as an anti-homosexual slur. Davies, who is gay, wrote in an e-mail response that it was the way people talked and claimed that he was trying to provoke discussion by using the phrase.
- Another running joke, involving the Slitheens suffering from bad flatulence (due to the gas exchange) while in their human disguises, was also slightly controversial in fan circles, with some critics disapproving of the style of humour. It did, however, give rise to one of the most quoted lines uttered by the Ninth Doctor during the season: "Would you mind not farting while I'm trying to save the world?"
- The scene where the pig-like "alien" is breaking thought the metal door with Dr Sato watching in shock is reminiscent of an almost identical moment in the 1996 Doctor Who television movie, in which the newly-regenerated Eighth Doctor breaks through the metal door of the morgue, terrifying a hospital worker.
- The production team had intended to suggest that the murdered Prime Minister in this episode was current real-life incumbent Tony Blair. On the DVD commentary for the following episode, producer Phil Collinson explained that they had hired an actor to play the dead body on the understanding that the man was a Tony Blair lookalike. When the resemblance proved disappointing, they decided to avoid showing the body clearly. The suggestion that the body is Blair's remains in Harriet's, line "I'm hardly one of the babes", a reference to the large number of female Labour Party MPs who entered the House of Commons in Labour's 1997 general election victory, dubbed "Blair's Babes" by the British media. That Tony Blair was elected in the Doctor Who universe was confirmed in Rise of the Cybermen.
- The armoured personnel carrier seen outside Number 10 is a Saxon, possibly foreshadowing future events.
- According to Russell T Davies in Doctor Who Magazine, as well as Doctor Who Confidential, the decision to establish the Bad Wolf meme in the series did not occur until after the spur-of-the-moment decision to have the words "bad wolf" graffiti-painted on the TARDIS; subsequently Bad Wolf references were added to the scripts for most of the other Series 1 episodes, and notwithstanding a few minor or inferred references in the interim, returned in force in the Series 4 episodes Turn Left and Journey's End. With the origin of the meme established, the mystery that remains is exactly why the words "bad wolf" were chosen to be spray-painted on the TARDIS in the first place (as opposed to any other phrase). But then, again, perhaps the Little Pig pilot had something to do with it.
- Although not clearly seen on screen, one of the UNIT officers killed by the Slitheen at the end is wearing the name tag "Frost" (the tag is seen more clearly in publicity stills). This may have been a reference to the Doctor Who Magazine comic strip character Muriel Frost, who worked for UNIT.
- The TARDIS key began as an ordinary-looking Yale key, then changed during the Third Doctor's last season into a more alien looking one, which was also used for the first two seasons of the Fourth Doctor's tenure. It then reverted to the Yale key for the rest of the run of the original series. The alien key made one last appearance in the Doctor Who television movie. It has now returned to looking like an ordinary key, except that it starts to glow when the TARDIS is arriving.
- The Doctor repeatedly refers to Mickey Smith as "Ricky." In TV: Rise of the Cybermen, it is discovered that Ricky Smith is the alternate version of Mickey in Pete's World.
- As is routine for post-2005 Doctor Who, a "NEXT TIME" trailer for the next episode is shown at the end of the episode.
- Eric Potts (Oliver Charles) would later play Lothar Ragpole in AUDIO: Nocturne.
- 7.63 million viewers
Filming locations Edit
- The Cardiff Royal Infirmary provided the setting for the fictional London Albion Hospital.
- The entrance to the Prime Minister's residence was a redress of a similar-looking door in Central London.
- Cardiff Royal Infirmary, Newport Road, Cardiff
- Westminster Bridge, Westminster, London (News report on the crash)
- Tower Bridge, London (seen as the Slitheen's ship flies over it)
- The Queens Walk, Westminster, London (seen when the Slitheen's ship crashes into the Thames)
- Hensol Castle, Glamorgan, Wales (Interior of Downing Street)
- Bute Street, Cardiff (when Rose are taken to Downing Street in the limo)
- John Adam Street, Westminster, London (Exterior of Downing Street)
- Belvedere Road, London
- Whitehall / Parliament Street, Westminster, London (seen as the Slitheen ship flies over the top)
- Brandon Estate, Kennington, London (Long shot exterior of Powell Estate)
- Channel View Flats, Cardiff (Closer shots of Powell Estate)
- Unit Q2, Imperial Park, Imperial Way, Newport
- BBC Television Centre (Studio TC4), Shepherd's Bush, London
- HTV Wales Studios (Studio 1), Culvershouse Cross, Cardiff
- BBC (Kendal Avenue), Kendal Avenue, Acton
Production errors Edit
- When Jackie Tyler punches the Doctor it is a clear miss.
- When the alien announcements appear on the TV, they appear slightly blurry, as a screen would really be if taped. However, when the channels are changing, the image shown has no blur.
- The close-up shots of the Palace of Westminster clock tower (a.k.a. "Big Ben"), as it is destroyed by an alien ship crashing into it, show the clock faces back-to-front. This is because the director wanted the ship to move across the frame the other way.
- The clock tower on Big Ben appears to keep running even after being struck by the spaceship. The time reads roughly 10:55 when the spaceship strikes it, but reads roughly 6:10 when the clock is later seen on a news broadcast. (The shot is flipped)
- Around 26:32, when Mickey appears at the party, the BBC News broadcast in the background can be heard talking about how, "with no head of state", "it falls to Harriet Jones to form an emergency government". This didn't happen until the subsequent episode. Additionally, the Prime Minister is the head of government not the head of state (which is HM The Queen).
- At one point, a news reporter is standing by the Thames, citing an alien body being found, however, after the channel is changed to Blue Peter for around 30 seconds, once it's changed back to the news, the same reporter is now standing in an entirely different location. It's impossible that he would've had enough chance to move in such a short space of time.
- When Jackie has called the police to her flat the Doctor alternates between shots, sometimes having his hands in his pockets, other times having his arms crossed.
- In one close-up of a photographer taking pictures outside 10 Downing Street the scene is reversed to provide an opposite angle. You can see the "Nikon" nameplate is reversed on the front of the camera.
- When the Doctor is kneeling over the Slitheen's engineered Pig Mutant, the seam of the plastic mould of the costume is clearly seen.
- In the close up shots of the Pig Mutant, the Pig is clearly seen still breathing.
- When Rose enters the TARDIS after the Doctor returns from the hospital, the Powell Estate is clearly not outside the door; it is simply a black background.
- When the Doctor and Dr. Sato are looking over the body of the Pig Mutant, the chest can be seen rising and falling.
- When the TARDIS lands in Albion Hospital, the "BAD WOLF" graffiti has disappeared, only to return when the TARDIS lands back at the Powell Estate.
- Dr. Sato later reappears in the Torchwood spin-off series, where her full name is revealed as Toshiko Sato. (TV: Everything Changes)
- UNIT makes its first appearance on screen since TV: Battlefield. The Doctor spells out the acronym -- United Nations Intelligence Taskforce. This would be the final on-screen use of this name, as by the time the full name of the organisation was uttered again in TV: The Sontaran Stratagem, it has been changed to Unified Intelligence Taskforce. (Apparently the UN objected to the use of its name in the fictional organisation, even though it had been used as such since at least 1968). 
- Mickey notes that he found out on the Internet that the Doctor had worked before for UNIT, among other things. A notation at WEB: http://www.whoisdoctorwho.co.uk/ implies that Mickey is the one who has been updating Clive Finch's website since the latter's death in TV: Rose.
- The TARDIS was previously defaced with chalk scribblings in TV: The Time Warrior and The Leisure Hive, graffiti in Paradise Towers and pink paint in The Happiness Patrol.
- The Doctor revisits Albion Hospital in 1941. (TV: The Empty Child,The Doctor Dances)
- In TV: Love & Monsters the crash sequences (and the events that follow) are seen from an entirely different point of view.
- The Doctor tells Rose he is 900 years old, but in TV: Time and the Rani he was 953, in PROSE: Set Piece he was 1000 and in PROSE: Vampire Science he was 1,012. The Doctor spent 100 years on Earth (PROSE: The Burning to Escape Velocity) which makes him at least 1,112 (this isn't counting all the intervening time during adventures either). The given age of 900 has been the baseline for all future references to the Doctor's age (such as 903, given in TV: Voyage of the Damned). The discrepancy with the earlier stated age during the Sylvester McCoy era has yet to be addressed on screen, though numerous fan-generated theories exist. There have reportedly been a couple of attempts made to have the Doctor address this on screen (the gist being he cannot remember his age anymore) but these lines of dialogue have ended up cut. (See The Doctor's age.)
- This is the first episode to examine deeply the impact which the departure of a companion with the Doctor can have on those left behind. In this case, Rose's family believed her to have been murdered, and her boyfriend Mickey had become a suspect. The impact of a companion's travels with the Doctor on family and friends back on Earth becomes a recurring theme throughout the Russell T. Davies era.
- Beginning with this episode (broadcast in 2005, but set in 2006), most "modern day" Earth stories are said to take place approximately one year after the year in which they were broadcast. As noted above, this has not been applied consistently. This displacement also applies to the later Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures spinoff series, and has been applied fairly consistently, although some discrepancies have been noted. This would continue until TV: The End of Time, at which point "modern day" stories once again synched up with the year in which they were aired, and explicitly followed for Series 4 of The Sarah Jane Adventures and Series 3 of Torchwood (and implied for SJA Series 3).
Home video releases Edit
- Aliens of London together with World War Three and Dalek were released in a collection in both DVD and UMD format in the UK in 2005. The DVD version was released in North American in 2006.
- This was also released as a vanilla release along with the next two episodes.
- It was also released as part of the Series 1 DVD box set.
- This was also released with Issue 2 of the Doctor Who DVD Files.
See also Edit
- BBC - Doctor Who - Episode Guide - Aliens of London
- Aliens of London at the Doctor Who Reference Guide
- Aliens of London at Shannon Sullivan's A Brief History of Time (Travel)
- The Discontinuity Guide to: Aliens of London at The Whoniverse
- Aliens of London at The Locations Guide
- Five-Minute Aliens of London — Parody version
- Doctor Who Confidential - Episode 4: I Get a Side-Kick Out of You
- Official BBC Next Time Trailer
- Mock report from BBC News 24 (used in Aliens of London)