The title of the episode does not appear on screen. Pre-broadcast publicity attributed the title Funny for Money (also the slogan of Comic Relief) to the special, but co-writer Clayton Hickman revealed the episode's true title in a post to the Doctor Who forum a few days after the broadcast. He also confirmed the title to DWM writer Benjamin Cook via Twitter on 15 March 2009, though he also indicates that the title Ron With the Wind may also be applied to the story. DWMSE 23 indexes the story under the title Comic Relief but acknowledges the From Rax... and Ron With the Wind titles.
Sarah, Luke, Rani and Clyde are running a routine check on Mr Smith, concluding with manual calibration of the energy reversal beam. Before they finish, the attic starts shaking, and Mr Smith warns them of an unknown force locking in on their location. Just as suddenly as it began, the shaking stops and a small man in a bowler hat teleports into the room.
The man greets them and tells them he is Ambassador Rahnius, sent by the Galactic Alliance to thank them for protecting Earth. With a click of his fingers, he bestows upon them a gift: a set of sparkly red deeley boppers each. Confused, Luke asks what they are. Rahnius explains that cultural differences make humans very difficult to buy for. He makes himself comfortable by hanging his hat on the back of the door and taking a seat. Whilst telling a story he breaks wind noisily. This raises Sarah's suspicions. They have encountered an alien race with "gas problems" before.
Suddenly, K9 teleports into the attic and identifies Rahnius as a Slitheen. His cover blown, Rahnius activates a device on his ring that attaches a clamp to K9, deactivating him. He unzips his forehead and peels off his skin to reveal his true form, then activates another device that roots Sarah, Luke, Rani and Clyde to the floor through their "Deadly Deeley Boppers".
His enemies immobilised, Rahnius reveals his plans to steal K9. With his extensive knowledge of the past and the future, no bank in space will be safe from them - they'll crunch the credit of the cosmos. With Rahnius distracted by K9, Luke reminds Sarah of the energy reversal beam, but Sarah reminds Luke it is still uncalibrated and none of them can reach the switch. Clyde tells them to leave it to him as he grabs Rahnius' hat off the door.
Sarah gets Rahnius' attention, telling him she still has her sonic lipstick. She signals Clyde, who throws the hat. It hits the calibration switch. Mr Smith channels the energy reversal beam through the sonic lipstick. Rahnius is now stuck to the floor and everyone else can move again. Sarah tells Mr Smith to send Rahnius back where he came from, along with K9's clamp.
Sarah exclaims that it was the most bizarre five minutes of her life. K9, a red nose adorning his face, agrees.
- Sarah Jane Smith - Elisabeth Sladen
- Luke Smith - Tommy Knight
- Clyde Langer - Daniel Anthony
- Rani Chandra - Anjli Mohindra
- Voice of Mr Smith - Alexander Armstrong
- Voice of K9 - John Leeson
- Ambassador Rahnius- Ronnie Corbett
- Slitheen - Jimmy Vee
- Voice of Slitheen - Ronnie Corbett
to be added
- Rahnius claims to have been playing Space golf. He was with Brucifax and Tarbulon on the 211th hole when he was summoned for the mission by the Galactic Alliance.
- He also mentions a Galactic Canteen and Galactic Law.
- When Sarah pulls out her sonic lipstick on the Slitheen, he jokes, "What's next? The Bionic Blusher?" For added punch, the joke mocks the alliterative name of the sonic screwdriver, a similar tool used by the Doctor.
- The clamp used by Rahnius on K9 looks like a wheel boot, a tool designed to immobilise vehicles by law enforcement and property owners.
- The Energy reversal beam is a device that fits to Sarah Jane Smith's computer, Mr Smith
Story notes Edit
- This episode marks the first time one of the Doctor Who spin-offs has been featured in a mini-episode and is the first "mainstream" Comic Relief mini-episode (the previous production, The Curse of Fatal Death, was a spoof and not considered part of mainstream continuity).
- The title of the mini-episode does not actually appear on screen, making this only the third Doctor Who franchise episode in history to not display a story title (following the Doctor Who TV movie and the 2005 Doctor Who Children in Need Special mini-episode).
- The title is a play on From Russia with Love, the title of a James Bond novel and movie.
- This was K9's only appearance in a Series 2-era production. He does not appear in any of the regular season episodes.
- There are a handful of references to The Two Ronnies — a long-running TV series that Ronnie Corbett co-hosted with Ronnie Barker — including Rahnius saying that his nickname, "Rani", and Rani herself makes them "The Two Ranis", that whilst he was in the Galactic Canteen there were fork 'andles and when Rahnius is finally teleported away, Sarah says "And it's good night from him", which was Ronnie Barker's catchphrase. Equally, Corbett's monologue, a running feature in The Two Ronnies, is referenced through the speech pattern and mannerisms of Rahnius when he is sitting, much as he did in the aforementioned show.
- With the exception of K9, for no apparent (in-universe) reason donning a Comic Relief red nose, there is nothing in this mini-episode to suggest it cannot occur in mainstream continuity, unlike the franchise's previous Comic Relief production, The Curse of Fatal Death, which was a spoof.
- 8.3 million viewers according to unofficial over-night ratings.
Filming locations Edit
Prfoduction errors Edit
- Sarah Jane Smith mentions that they've encountered a gas exchanging race before. Clyde replies with "Slitheen". Slitheen is in fact not a race but a family, a misconception that exists in the DWU.
to be added
Home video releases Edit
- The mini-episode was included in the Series 2 DVD box set as a "bonus footage prize" for correctly answering five consecutive questions in a quiz. Along with the rest of Series 2, this was the first time the mini-episode was officially made available to North American viewers, as the Comic Relief special was never broadcast outside the UK.