Wikia

TARDIS Index File

Death of the Doctor (TV story)

Talk60
39,491articles in progress

Redirected from Death of the Doctor

This article is written from a real world point of view
Death of the Doctor
76
Novelised as: Death of the Doctor
Main character(s): Sarah Jane, Luke, Clyde, Rani, Mr Smith
Featuring: Jo, Santiago, Haresh, Eleventh Doctor
Main enemy: Claw Shansheeth, Tia Karim
Main setting: Ealing, 2010
UNIT Base 5, 2010
The Crimson Heart, 2010
Key crew
Writer: Russell T Davies
Director: Ashley Way
Producer: Brian Minchin
Release details
Story number: 21
Season/series: 4
Premiere broadcast: 25 - 26 October 2010
Premiere network: BBC One
Format: 2x30-minute episodes
Navigation
←Previous Next→
SJA television stories
The Vault of Secrets The Empty Planet

Death of the Doctor was the third story in the fourth series of The Sarah Jane Adventures. It contained the first televised meeting between classic-era companions Sarah Jane and Jo Grant (through her marriage, now known as Jo Jones), and the first televised appearance of Jo since her 1973 swansong. It also contained the only appearance of the Eleventh Doctor on SJA, since he was never included in any flashbacks during the remaining serials the programme had yet to broadcast.

It was also narratively important for the changes it made to other stories. It added to The End of Time by stating that the Tenth Doctor had visited all his former companions, not just the original-to-BBC Wales companions seen in that story. It established something not strongly asserted in Sarah's first season: the Third Doctor and members of UNIT had vividly described Jo, such that Sarah was able to recognise her in this story without ever having met her before.

Behind the scenes, it was the only time that Russell T Davies wrote for the Eleventh Doctor for television, having completely turned over his production responsibilities to the programme the instant that David Tennant's side of the regeneration sequence was completed on The End of Time.

Synopsis

When the Doctor is declared dead, old companions Sarah Jane and Jo Grant meet for the first time and join forces to discover the truth. As an interstellar conspiracy gathers around UNIT HQ, Clyde finds he holds the fate of the Time Lord in his hand – quite literally!

Plot

Part 1

Sarah Jane and the gang are talking to Luke on a webcam when UNIT arrive on Bannerman Road outside her house. She is told by Colonel Tia Karim that her friend, the Doctor, is dead, but doesn't believe it. Colonel Karim tells the gang that alien undertakers, the Shansheeth, are organising the funeral. This makes Sarah Jane more suspicious, so much that she dares to say who would believe something like that. Mr Smith tells her the Shansheeth are called the galactic undertakers. That night, Sarah Jane tells Luke the news and that she thinks the Doctor is still alive. Luke thinks the idea is crazy. The next day Sarah Jane goes to the funeral, accompanied by Rani and Clyde. Just as he is getting into the private car, Clyde receives what seems to be a static electric shock to his hand. The gang go to Mount Snowden, home to the UNIT base which will host the Doctor's funeral.

At Snowden, the gang bump into the Groske, a blue, tame version of the Graske. One of the Groske follows them and tells Clyde he "smells like time." Clyde looks at his hand, where he sees artron energy. The gang are taken to the parlour where a gathering of remembrance is taking place. Sarah Jane asks to see the body, but Karim refuses, and Sarah is suspicious until told that he was hurt. She sits down with Rani and Clyde, confessing that she thinks the Doctor regenerated, and she doesn't even know what face he could be wearing. The Shansheeth play music on a harp to help the mourners remember the Doctor, but their thoughts of him are interrupted by the entry of Jo Jones (née Grant), who has dropped the flowers she brought. Jo chatters while she and her grandson Santiago pick up the flowers. When they recognise each other, Jo sits next to Sarah Jane. Santiago sits behind Rani and Clyde. Sarah Jane and Jo talk and make friends, as do Santiago, Clyde, and Rani.

After the remembrance, the gang is in a bedroom where Jo agrees with Sarah Jane's belief that the Doctor is still alive. As Clyde, Rani, and Santiago leave the room, they again meet the Groske who told Clyde that he "smells like time". Clyde gives chase, but the Groske jumps into a ventilation shaft.

Meanwhile, Shansheeth Blue is "filleting the Cradle" - using the harp from the remembrance to view the memories of the Doctor that were collected at the gathering. The Shansheeth wearing red and yellow agree Sarah Jane and Jo have the strongest memories. They play more music through the vents, putting Sarah Jane and Jo into a trance. Clyde, Rani, and Santiago follow the Groske into the vent, where they lose him, but overhear the Shansheeth discussing their plot to use a memory weave to steal Jo and Sarah Jane's memories — which will kill them. The artron energy on Clyde's hand returns with a bright, blue light, alerting the Shansheeth to their presence. The youngsters shuffle their way backwards out of the vent. Sarah Jane and Jo hear the clatter, which breaks their trance. They run into the corridors and bump into the others. Clyde tells Sarah Jane and Jo that this is a trap and they are the prize.

EleventhdoctorSJA

The Doctor after swapping places with Clyde.

Clyde freezes and starts talking in a different voice, a voice that knows Clyde, Rani, Jo, and Sarah Jane. Clyde regains control of his voice and realises he has someone else’s hand. Clyde disappears and the Doctor takes his place.

Rani demands to know who he is. The Doctor explains that he used Clyde's residual artron energy to switch places with him, which is trouble for Clyde, who is now in a red, wasteland-like planet full of debris. Although she had mentioned that she expected it, Sarah Jane marvels that the Doctor has "done it again" (regenerated) — though, as before, he smiles and says, "Hello, Sarah Jane." Having never seen this current incarnation either, Rani and especially Jo are bewildered — Jo asks, "What Doctor? The Doctor? My Doctor?" until Sarah Jane asks Jo if she knew the Doctor could change his face. She does, but is shocked that the Doctor is much younger than the other Doctors she has met and has a baby's face compared to theirs. The Doctor responds to Jo, "Oy, imagine it from my point of view! Last time I saw you, Jo Grant, you were what, 21, 22? It's like someone baked you." Hearing this, any doubt that Jo has that it is indeed the Doctor vanishes.

At this point, the Shansheeth arrive, and the Doctor strides forward to meet them, irritably saying, "I've been looking for you. Have you been telling people I'm dead?" They tell the gang the death certificate had been sent out early. Shansheeth Blue says this can be rectified. He shoots the Doctor with an energy beam, saying, "Rest in peace!".

Part 2

Crimson heart

Sarah Jane and Jo travel to the stars once again.

Caught in the energy beam, the Doctor disappears and Clyde reappears. He and Clyde keep swapping places. The energy beam disengaged, the Doctor, Jo, Sarah Jane, Rani, and Santiago run from the Shansheeth, and find safety behind a locked door. The Doctor takes Jo and Sarah by the hand. All three swap places with Clyde on the alien planet. As the Doctor works on the machine he used to swap places, they talk. The Doctor says he looked in on Jo and all his old companions before he last regenerated. He tells Jo that her forthcoming thirteenth grandchild will be dyslexic, but a great swimmer. With the help of Sarah's sonic lipstick and some natural tea carried by Jo, the Doctor adjusts the machine so they can travel to Earth without sending Clyde to the planet.

Clyde and Rani talk with Santiago. He hasn't spoken to his parents in six months. Meanwhile, Colonel Karim is working with the Shansheeth. They are plotting to use Jo and Sarah Jane's memories of the TARDIS to create a new TARDIS key, so the Shansheeth can stop death across the universe by interfering with the timelines.

Memory Weave

Sarah and Jo in the memory weave.

Rani, Santiago, and Clyde are rescued by a Groske and taken through the ventilation shafts. They come to a hiding place, but Karim discovers them. She locks them in and turns on the heat, making the place so hot the children may boil. The Doctor, Jo, and Sarah Jane come to the rescue, but the two companions are kidnapped and strapped into the memory weave. Their minds are scanned and they begin remembering the TARDIS. These memories begin to generate a new TARDIS key as the Shansheeth and Colonel Karim make their intentions clear.

The Doctor, Rani, Clyde, Santiago, and the Groske come to the door of the room where Sarah Jane and Jo are strapped into the memory weave. It is locked. The Doctor tells them to remember all of their adventures with him, in as much detail as possible. Sarah Jane and Jo both remember past encounters with the Doctor and all the creatures and enemies they met. Clyde and Rani tell Sarah Jane to remember their experiences fighting aliens as well. Santiago tells Jo to remember all the places she's visited. Jo remembers all the countries she has been to as Sarah Jane remembers her battles with aliens.

The Shansheeth begin panicking as the memory weave reaches critical. The Doctor tells Sarah and Jo that it's his funeral and they realise there is an empty, lead-lined coffin waiting next to them to be used. Karim tries to get in the coffin with them, but they keep her out as the memory weave explodes, frying the Shansheeth to "fried chicken", killing Karim, and blasting the doors off. The Doctor and Sarah's companions enter the room and open the coffin, to find Sarah and Jo hugging each other out of fear. They notice the Doctor and everyone else looking down at them and laugh happily that they survived.

The Doctor takes them in the TARDIS and materialises in Sarah Jane's attic. Mr Smith detects the time fluctuations of the incoming TARDIS and activates to state that it has landed. Clyde and Rani exit the TARDIS. Santiago is shocked that they have a sentient computer, which trumps anything he's seen. In the TARDIS, Sarah and Jo examine the new interior. Jo feels the TARDIS is the same no matter how it looks. Jo says she could stay and travel with the Doctor forever, but notes he could get in trouble with the Time Lords. Sarah and the Doctor remain quiet, but the Doctor tells her that it's about time he got going. Sarah and Jo tell the Doctor that if he ever did die, they believe they'd feel something. The Doctor agrees and whispers that the entire universe might shiver if he died. He then shouts to make his old friends jump and they exit the TARDIS. They all watch as it dematerialises.

Jo and Santiago leave for Norway and the trio are left behind. Sarah Jane says that she googled TARDIS and learned of others whom she believes to have been companions of the Doctor. She tells them of Tegan, fighting for aboriginal rights in Australia; Ian and Barbara Chesterton, Cambridge professors who are rumoured not to have aged since the 1960s; Harry Sullivan, her old friend from UNIT, who worked on finding remedies for diseases; Ben and Polly, running an orphanage; and a Dorothy-something who has raised millions of pounds (money) through her company "A Charitable Earth".

As they watch Jo and Santiago leave, Sarah Jane says, "With friends like us, he's not really going to die, is he?"

Cast

Crew

General production staff

Script department

Camera and lighting department

Art department

Costume department

Make-up and prosthetics


General post-production staff

Special and visual effects

Sound







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.
          

Unlike most other SJA stories, Russell T Davies, being the writer of this story, did not get a "created by" credit.


References

Time Lords

  • The Doctor tells Clyde he can regenerate 507 times and change to any colour of skin. His exaggerated comment about his regeneration limit is an allusion to his real limit, with the individual digits 5, 0, and 7 adding up to equal 12.
  • Jo says she should leave before the Doctor "gets in trouble with the Time Lords". Neither Sarah Jane nor he tell her that the Time Lords are dead (which the Doctor later discovers is not the case).

Individuals

  • According to the Doctor, he left Amy and Rory on their honeymoon.

Culture

Planets

  • Jo mentions Metebelis III.
  • Jo and Sarah both reminisce about their trips to Peladon, specifically their encounter with Aggedor. The Harp music reminded Jo of the Royal Palace on Peladon.

Species

Story notes

Ratings

  • Part 1 — 0.92 Million[3]
  • Part 2 — 0.96 Million, the highest rating of any CBBC show, ever, as of 2010[3]

Filming locations

Production errors

If you'd like to talk about narrative problems with this story — like plot holes and things that seem to contradict other stories — please go to this episode's discontinuity discussion.

to be added

Continuity

Home video releases

  • Death of the Doctor was included on the special edition DVD of The Green Death.

External links

Footnotes

  1. SFX - INTERVIEW Russell T Davies talks about THAT Sarah Jane Adventures line accessed 18th November 2010
  2. Contrary to Davies' comments, the 12-regeneration limit has in fact been referenced on numerous occasions, and was a major plot point in at least three stories: TV: The Deadly Assassin, Mawdryn Undead, and Doctor Who: The TV Movie. The idea of regeneration limits had been addressed numerous times as well, such as in TV: The Five Doctors and The Twin Dilemma.
  3. 3.0 3.1 The Doctor Who News Page - Death of the Doctor Tops Ratings accessed 18th November 2010

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki