a real world point of view
|Script release:||The Shooting Scripts|
|Main setting:||London, 1985 and 1987|
|Premiere broadcast:||14 May 2005|
|Premiere network:||BBC One|
|Format:||1x45 minute episode|
|Doctor Who television stories|
|The Long Game||The Empty Child|
|Dalek||The Long Game|
Rose reminisces about her father, Pete Tyler, whom she describes as "the most wonderful man in the world". When Rose was a little girl, her mother Jackie told her about how Pete died on November 7 1987, the day of Stuart Hoskins and Sarah Clarke's wedding and how she wished Rose could have known her father. Jackie told the young Rose that nobody was there for Pete when he died and that the hit-and-run driver was never found...
Ever since she met the Doctor, Rose has been tempted to change her father's fate, and now, that day has arrived, as Pete Tyler lives, the future of Earth dies... at the hands of the deadly Reapers. The Doctor faces a dilemma, save history and ruin the life of his companion, or stand by and watch the whole of history change around him.
In the TARDIS, Rose hesitantly asks the Doctor if they can go to the day her father died so that she can be there for him when he does. The Doctor says that he can do this, but he is concerned Rose may not be able to handle it emotionally. He tells her to be careful what she wishes for. In another flashback, we see that the Doctor and Rose have already witnessed Jackie and Pete's wedding.
The TARDIS materialises in 1987 on the street where Pete died. They stand on the pavement, Rose describing what happened as they watch it. Pete was late getting the wedding gift, and when he stepped out of his car to cross the road, an oncoming car rounded the corner and ran into him, killing him almost instantly. When this happens, the Doctor tells Rose to go to Pete, but she is unable to approach her father's fallen body. By the time she recovers, the ambulance has arrived and he is already dead. She asks the Doctor if she can try again, and while he looks doubtful, he agrees.
Travelling back to the same moment, they wait around the corner from their earlier selves. The Doctor warns Rose to wait until her earlier self has left before going to see her father, lest it create a paradox. However, as Pete steps out of his car and the other car comes hurtling around the corner, Rose pulls away from the Doctor, passing their startled earlier selves and knocking Pete out of the way. The earlier Doctor and Rose vanish, and while Rose is overjoyed at having actually succeeded in saving her father, the Doctor looks on aghast. Rose introduces herself to Pete, who remarks on the coincidence of her name being the same as his daughter's. When Rose says she is attending the Hoskins-Clarke wedding, Pete offers her and the Doctor a lift. Above the city, alien eyes scan the area hungrily.
At Pete's flat, Rose looks around and remarks on all the various bits and pieces of entrepreneurship that her father is involved in, including health drinks and solar power panels, which he will now have the opportunity to exploit. The Doctor is angry with Rose, implying that she had planned this from the moment she heard that the TARDIS was a time machine. Rose says there was no plan, that she just saw a chance to stop it and did so, and questions why it is all right for the Doctor to save people but not for her to save her father. The Doctor calls her a selfish, stupid ape. He knows what he is doing while she does not; the presence of two sets of them made that location a vulnerable point. They argue, more and more heatedly, until the Doctor demands the TARDIS key back and leaves. Pete looks out of the kitchen at this point, thinking it a lover's quarrel. Pete and she go to the wedding.
As the Doctor walks back to the TARDIS, he senses that something is wrong. When he gets back to the TARDIS and unlocks it with his key, he finds it an empty box. In the meantime, Rose and Pete are driving to the church. Rose is puzzled by anachronistic hip-hop music from The Streets playing over the car radio, and her mobile phone voice mail is filled with copies of the message, "Watson, come here, I need you," the very first thing said over a telephone by Alexander Graham Bell. They are almost at the church when a car nearly collides with them and abruptly vanishes, a car Pete recognises as the same car that almost ran him down earlier. As their car runs off the road, Rose reflexively calls Pete "Dad", but brushes it off when Pete asks her what she meant by that.
At the church they meet Jackie, carrying an infant Rose. Jackie eyes the adult Rose suspiciously. Jackie and Pete get into a shouting match, Jackie accusing Pete of being a failure with all of his business schemes that never succeed, and threatens to divorce him. Rose realises her parents' marriage was anything but the idyll she believed it to be. As Jackie and Pete make up slightly, her anxiety fades. It is at this moment that a young Mickey — who has witnessed all the children in a local play park disappear — runs around the corner, yelling about monsters. The Doctor runs towards Rose from the opposite end of the street, shouting for her to get in the church. Rose looks up and screams as she sees gigantic winged reptiles with multiple arms materialise in the sky above.
The creatures swoop down, killing the vicar and the groom's father before the Doctor ushers the rest into the church; the walls of the church are old and will stop the creatures for a while. When Jackie demands to know what is going on, he explains that there has been a wound in time and the creatures are like bacteria taking advantage of it, to sterilise the wound by consuming everything in sight. With great satisfaction, the Doctor orders Jackie to do as he says and make sure all the doors and windows are secure. Rose asks if this is her fault, and the Doctor does not answer. Pete overhears this.
The Doctor looks out the back window of the church, and sees the car supposed to run Pete down appearing and disappearing as it circles the church, the driver repeating the actions he never got to complete. Pete notices the car. The Doctor tells him quickly not to worry about it. Pete talks to Rose, and wonders aloud why he instinctively seems to trust her. He remembers she called him "Dad" and deduces she is really his daughter, all grown up. They tearfully embrace as the creatures continue to batter against the church doors, trying to get in.
The Doctor is ensuring that the doors and windows are sealed when he is cornered by Stuart Hoskins and Sarah Clarke. They recognise that he is the only person in the church who knows what is going on and nervously enquire whether he can save them. Sarah, who is obviously pregnant, insists that they are nothing important, but the Doctor begs to differ once he hears the story of how they met. He has never had the lives these two people have; they are two ordinary people with a potentially happy future, and that makes them special. He promises he will do everything he can to save them.
Pete is delighted at how Rose has turned out. They talk in the vestry about the future and time travel, but Rose is strangely vague about what he is like in the future. Jackie comes in with the young Mickey, and is jealous again. Pete tries to explain who Rose is, but Rose tells him not to let Jackie know. In the basilica, the Doctor is looking after the infant Rose. The adult Rose shows up. The Doctor apologises for snapping. He was not really going to abandon her, but confesses that he has no idea what to do. When the Time Lords were still around, paradoxes like this could be repaired but now this church and places like it are probably the only places in the world where people are still alive. The creatures have eaten everyone else. The TARDIS key glows hot in the Doctor's pocket. Although the TARDIS's interior dimensions were thrown out of the wound in time, the ship is still linked to the key and he can summon it back.
The Doctor uses a mobile telephone battery in conjunction with the sonic screwdriver to charge up the key. The shadowy shape of the TARDIS begins to materialise slowly around it. He tells everyone not to touch or disturb the process — once the TARDIS has fully materialised, he can try to repair the damage.
Pete has another talk with Rose, asking her whether he was a good father. She lies, saying Pete was always there for them, told her bedtime stories every night and took them on picnics in the country on weekends. The Doctor tells Rose that when time is sorted out again, everyone will forget what has happened, but what Rose changed will remain changed. Pete has realised that he is supposed to be dead and his survival is jeopardising everything. Rose tells Pete that the fault is hers, but Pete replies that he is her father — it is his job for it to be his fault.
Jackie overhears Pete, who tells her who Rose is, but Jackie does not believe him. Pete takes the infant Rose from Jackie to get her to compare the features. Before the Doctor can stop him the infant Rose is thrust into the adult Rose's arms, causing a paradox and one of the creatures to materialise within the church. It devours the Doctor, then flies towards the still-materialising TARDIS. When they meet, they blink out of existence.
Pete watches the car repeating its movement around the church through the window. He tells Rose that he has had these extra hours with her, and now he's going to do what a father is supposed to do to. He shows Rose to Jackie properly and Jackie finally recognises Rose as the grown up version of her daughter. Pete tells Jackie that she has to live to raise Rose, and the three embrace.
Pete grabs the wedding gift and runs out of the church, watching for the car as it materialises in its never-ending loop and steps in front of it. As Pete crumples to the street, the creatures screech and vanish.
By the church, the congregation, including Stuart's father, rushes out to see the aftermath of the accident. The Doctor, restored to life, tells Rose to go to Pete, and she does so. She cradles Pete's head and holds his hand as the driver of the car watches on, and Pete smiles up at her as he expires. The Doctor and Rose walk, hand in hand, back to the TARDIS. Time has returned to normal, with only a few minor adjustments.
Jackie tells the young Rose that the driver, a young man, stopped and waited for the police. It was not his fault — for some reason Pete just ran out in front of the car. There was also a young girl there with him who stayed with him when he died, and then left. Nobody found out who she had been, leaving Rose to eulogise about Pete Tyler, her father... the most wonderful man in the world.
- The Doctor - Christopher Eccleston
- Rose Tyler - Billie Piper
- Jackie Tyler - Camille Coduri
- Pete Tyler - Shaun Dingwall
- Registrar - Robert Barton
- Young Rose Tyler - Julia Joyce
- Stuart - Christopher Llewellyn
- Sonny - Frank Rozelaar-Green
- Sarah - Natalie Jones
- Bev - Eirlys Bellin
- Suzie - Rhian James
- Young Mickey - Casey Dyer
|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.|
Songs from the real world Edit
- The songs Never Gonna Give You Up by Rick Astley and Don't Mug Yourself by The Streets play on Pete's car radio. The latter is used to highlight the disruption to the timeline, as it was released in 2002.
- Never Can Say Goodbye by The Communards is also played at the start of the episode.
Theories and concepts Edit
- This shows a demonstration of the Blinovitch Limitation Effect - that crossing and affecting timestreams can have unforeseen effects.
Story notes Edit
- This story had a working title of Wounded Time.[source needed]
- Never Gonna Give You Up, a hit single from the period Rose and the Doctor visit, is playing on the radio in Pete's car. This song made a comeback during the 2000s as the "Rickroll'd" YouTube phenomenon.
- Pete gives Rose his keys and asks her to straighten the car up. Moments later, the car has indeed been straightened up and therefore, it is probable that Rose has learned to drive.
- The Reapers are not mentioned by name on screen. They are similar to Chronovores.
- As is routine for post-2005 Doctor Who, a "NEXT TIME" trailer for the next episode is shown at the end of the episode.
- 8.06 million [statement unclear]
Filming locations Edit
- St Paul's Church in Grangetown, Cardiff. (For St Christopher's)
- The boardroom of the HTV Wales building in Culvershouse Cross. (For the Registry Office)
- Hoel Trelai and Hoel Pennar in Ely, Loudoun Square in Butetown, Cardiff and Llanmales Street, Grangetown. (The street scenes)
- Grange Gardens in Grangetown. (Playground scenes)
Production errors Edit
to be added
- Rose mentions meeting her dad in The Parting of the Ways.
- The Doctor references the events of Rose.
- The theory of time trying to fix the deaths of people (who were supposed to die) was introduced in PROSE: GodEngine.
- The Doctor's insistence that adult Rose does not physically touch the infant Rose is consistent with the Blinovitch Limitation Effect as observed in TV: Mawdryn Undead with the 1977 and 1983 versions of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.
- Even though the Doctor has met his different incarnations many times, this is only the second time that the Doctor has met a second version of his current incarnation in a televised episode. This previously happened to the Third Doctor in TV: Day of the Daleks. The Eleventh Doctor would later meet a second version of himself several times (TV: The Big Bang, Space/Time, Last Night)
- The word "Bad Wolf" appears on one of the "Energize" posters.
Home video releases Edit
- This story was released on a vanilla DVD with The Long Game, The Empty Child and The Doctor Dances.
- It was also released as part of the series 1 DVD box set.
- This story was also released with Issue 4 of the Doctor Who DVD Files.
- BBC - Doctor Who - Episode Guide - Father's Day
- Detailed synopsis of Father's Day at the Doctor Who Reference Guide
- Father's Day at Shannon Sullivan's A Brief History of Time (Travel)
- The Discontinuity Guide to: Father's Day at The Whoniverse