a real world point of view
|Main enemy:||Cassandra, Sisters of Plenitude|
|Main setting:||Powell Estate, 2007|
New New York, New Earth, 5,000,000,023
|Writer:||Russell T Davies|
|Premiere broadcast:||15 April 2006|
|Premiere network:||BBC One|
|Format:||1 45-minute episodes|
|Confidential:||New New Doctor|
|The Christmas Invasion||Tooth and Claw|
|Children in Need Special||School Reunion|
- You may wish to consult
New Earthfor other, similarly-named pages.
- You may be looking for the Torchwood episode "The New World".
New Earth was the 1st episode of Series Two of the revived Doctor Who, and the middle of the "New Earth" trilogy also containing The End of the World and Gridlock. It featured reappearances of Cassandra O'Brien.Δ17 and the Face of Boe, and introduced a mystery surrounding the Face that would later be a major part of the overall story arc of Series 3. It was also the first BBC Wales episode to be almost entirely set off Earth and beyond Earth orbit (Series 1's Bad Wolf having been set on board the Game Station).
Behind the scenes, it was the final appearance of Zoë Wanamaker, but it was the first time that actors Anna Hope or Adjoa Andoh had worked on the programme. Principal photography was rocky enough to be remarked upon by two different sets of commentators. Its overruns and difficulties negatively impacted upon other episodes within its production block. (PCOM, DCOM: New Earth)
In the distant future, an order of cat-nuns cure all illnesses, but the Doctor is suspicious of their methods. He must uncover the truth and save Rose from the vengeance of his old enemy, the Lady Cassandra.
The Tenth Doctor powers up the TARDIS as Rose says good-bye to Jackie and Mickey at the Powell Estate. Although Jackie and Mickey sadly watch the TARDIS fade away, inside the ship Rose is all smiles as she asks where they are going next. The Doctor tells her that they are going further than they have ever gone before.
The TARDIS materialises on New Earth, in the year five billion and twenty-three. Following the destruction of Earth, humanity became nostalgic and settled a new planet with similar gravity and atmosphere in Galaxy M87. Rose is delighted at the new world, the sight of the futuristic city of New New York in front of them and the smell of apple-grass. However, the two travellers are being observed by a metal spider controlled by Chip, a small, pale man with multiple tattoos. Chip takes his orders from Lady Cassandra, who is still alive and recognises Rose.
The Doctor and Rose head for New New York Hospital whither the Doctor has been summoned by a telepathic message displayed on his psychic paper: "Ward 26, Please Come". The hospital is run by humanoid feline nuns belonging to an order called the Sisters of Plenitude. Trying to find the right ward, the Doctor and Rose enter separate lifts, which drench each of them in a disinfectant liquid then blow-dry them — the Doctor is completely blasé about it, while Rose has no idea and takes a while to get used to it. Chip has overridden Rose's lift controls, diverting her to the basement. He beckons her forward, calling her by name; she grabs a metal pipe as a weapon.
In the ward, the Doctor is escorted by Sister Jatt. He sees that the patients all have diseases which are supposed to be incurable, yet the Sisters are able to cure them. The nuns are evasive about what is in the coloured solutions that are given to the patients. The Doctor recognises who has called him here — the Face of Boe. He is being tended by Novice Hame, who tells the Doctor that the Face is dying of old age — one of the few things the Sisters can't cure.
Rose explores the basement warily, and finds a film of a party of several men and a blond woman with a familiar voice. The same voice makes Rose turn to see Cassandra: a piece of skin stretched out on a frame over a brain jar. Cassandra had been reconstructed from another piece of her skin, and Chip (a force-grown clone devoted to Cassandra) smuggled her into the hospital, where he has been tending to her ever since. Cassandra has found out the Sisters are hiding something, and she needs Rose's help... or rather, her body. Using a device called a psychograft, Cassandra transfers her consciousness into Rose's mind, taking control of her body but allowing her old one to die. Cassandra is initially unimpressed with her new body — protesting, "I'm a chav!" - but changes her mind after taking a good look at her Rose's curves.
In the ward, Novice Hame tells the Doctor that legend says the Face has lived for thousands, perhaps millions of years and that he will give his dying message to a wanderer without a home. The Doctor realises that he fits the description in the legend, but says nothing. Below, Cassandra reads Rose's surface thoughts and discovers that the man with Rose is the Doctor with a new face. She goes to meet him after putting a tiny bottle in her cleavage.
Cassandra/Rose's odd behaviour — at one point giving the Doctor a lusty kiss — raises the Time Lord's suspicions. They enter Intensive Care and discover the horrifying secret of the cures: hundreds of pods, each holding an artificially grown human being infected with a thousand different diseases, a human farm to breed cures. The Sisters kill any healthy enough to speak or move. The Doctor confronts Novice Hame, but she insists that these artificial humans are just "flesh", and that it was necessary to cope with the influx of patients and diseases. He demands they reverse what they have done to Rose, not realising that it is Cassandra who has taken over. Her cover blown, Cassandra/Rose reveals her identity and knocks out the Doctor with some drugged perfume (from the bottle concealed in her cleavage).
While the Doctor is trapped in a pod about to be injected with diseases, Cassandra/Rose tries to blackmail Matron Casp, demanding money to keep quiet about the Sisters' actions. Casp declines and threatens her physically. Cassandra/Rose releases some of the plague carriers in response. They, in turn, release the rest, and the zombie-like mass of them lurch through the hospital, infecting and killing anyone they touch almost instantly. After failing to find a way out through the basement, the Doctor demands Cassandra release Rose, threatening her with the sonic screwdriver. Cassandra transfers her consciousness to the Doctor instead. The Cassandra/Doctor and Rose climb up the lift shaft, pursued by the carriers. Matron Casp tries to stop them, but is infected and falls screaming down the shaft. Cassandra transfers herself to a plague carrier so that the Doctor can use the sonic screwdriver to unseal the lift doors, then jumps back into Rose. Cassandra/Rose is shocked by the loneliness of the carriers (which she saw in the surface thoughts of the carrier she had possessed) — not being able to touch or be touched all their lives.
The Doctor and Cassandra/Rose reach Ward 26, which seems to be the only place still untouched by the carriers. He grabs all of the intravenous solutions, straps them to his body, then slides down the shaft to the lift car with Cassandra/Rose, where he empties the solutions into the disinfectant reservoir. He opens the doors, luring several plague carriers inward as Cassandra/Rose starts the shower. The spray drenches the carriers, curing them, and the Doctor encourages them to pass it on; they wander back out to spread the cure to the others.
The surviving Sisters are arrested by the New New York Police Department, and the cured new humans (as the Doctor calls them) are taken into care. The Doctor remembers the Face of Boe. No longer dying, the Face tells him telepathically that he had grown tired of the universe, but the Doctor has taught him to look at it anew. The Doctor asks the Face about his message, but is told it can wait for their third and final meeting. The Face teleports himself away.
The Doctor orders Cassandra out of Rose's body, telling her to end it, to which Cassandra sobs and tells the Doctor how she doesn't want to die. Chip appears and Cassandra transfers her consciousness into him despite protests from the Doctor, but as a half-life his body quickly fails, and Cassandra accepts her impending true death; New Earth has no place for people like her and Chip. The Doctor does one last thing for Cassandra, taking her back to the party seen earlier, to see herself when she was still beautiful. "Chip" approaches the Cassandra of the past and tells her just that, and collapses into the younger Cassandra's arms as she comforts "him". As Cassandra finally dies, the Doctor and Rose silently leave in the TARDIS.
- The Doctor — David Tennant
- Rose Tyler — Billie Piper
- Jackie Tyler — Camille Coduri
- Mickey Smith — Noel Clarke
- Cassandra O'Brien Dot Delta Seventeen - Zoë Wanamaker
- Chip — Sean Gallagher
- Matron Casp — Doña Croll
- Duke of Manhattan — Michael Fitzgerald
- Frau Clovis — Lucy Robinson
- Sister Jatt — Adjoa Andoh
- Novice Hame — Anna Hope
- Patient — Simon Ludders
- Face of Boe — Struan Rodger
|Executive Producers Russell T Davies and Julie Gardner|
|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.|
the doctor Edit
- The Ambassador of Thrace hosted a party Cassandra once attended.
- Novice Hame, Sister Jatt and Matron Casp are part of the Sisters of Plenitude.
- The Face of Boe sends a message to the Doctor via the psychic paper.
- Cassandra refers to herself as a chav while inside Rose's body.
Diseases and illnesses Edit
- The Duke of Manhattan is suffering from Petrifold Regression; although the Doctor states it will be at least another thousand years before a cure is found, the Sisters prove him wrong.
- Marconi's Disease takes years to recover.
- Pallidome Pancrosis kills the sufferer within ten minutes.
Cultural References Edit
- As the Duke of Manhattan recovers from his Petrifold Regression, he greets the Doctor with, "It's that man again!" It's That Man Again (known as ITMA) was a hugely popular BBC radio comedy series in the 1940s and a precursor to The Goon Show.
- Rose refers to Chip as Gollum, a character from The Lord of the Rings.
Foods and beverages Edit
- The Duke of Manhattan offers the Doctor a glass of champagne.
Story notes Edit
- This is the first story of the revived series to be set on an alien planet. Ironically, the first non-Earth planet the Doctor visits in the revived series is called New Earth (all on-camera locations up to that point were either Earth or space stations or spaceships in orbit around Earth).
- Rose's comment when she steps out of the TARDIS, that she'll never get used to standing on an alien planet no matter how many times she does so, is also somewhat ironic from the viewers' perspective, as she has never actually done so on screen prior to this. It is not a continuity error of course, as prior conversations in previous episodes have referenced off screen trips to other planets.
- This is the first Doctor Who episode to have an accompanying Tardisode. These short prelude scenes were made available online and via cellphone a week prior to the broadcast. In the case of New Earth the Tardisode consisted of a faux commercial advertising the Sisters of Plenitude's services.
- This story had the working title of The Sunshine Camp.
- Immediately after the episode, a commentary for the episode, featuring David Tennant, Russell T Davies and Phil Collinson, was made available on the official website for viewers to download and listen to alongside the repeat. The same thing was done for TV: The Christmas Invasion.
- The words 'bitch' and 'arse' are implied, although not actually said. In both cases, the character (Cassandra and Rose, respectively) is cut off in her dialogue and the words are implied by the next word in the script. Cassandra, when talking of Rose, calls her 'that little...' and then the scene cuts to Rose whose first words are 'a bit rich'. Later, Rose tells Cassandra she is 'talking out of [her]...' and Cassandra interrupts, 'Ask not!'.
- When Cassandra takes over the Doctor's body she references to some parts that have been "hardly used", a reference to the perceived asexual nature of the Doctor. This may also refer to the fact that this is a new (regenerated) body, and that he hasn't really had a chance to "use" most of the parts very much at this point.
- The scene showing Rose kissing the Doctor was featured in one of the trailers and raised a stir in fan circles. Ultimately, we learn it's actually Cassandra possessing Rose doing the kissing; Rose and the Doctor never do kiss on screen in that fashion, though Rose will eventually kiss the Meta-Crisis Tenth Doctor in TV: Journey's End.
- Although it is widely stated that Rose has met the Face of Boe twice, the only times she was in his presence in this episode was during the periods where Cassandra was possessing her body, and he teleports away before Cassandra takes over Chip.
- Adjoa Andoh, who plays Sister Jatt, went on to play Francine Jones in TV: Smith and Jones and later episodes of series 3 and 4.
- This episode marks the first appearance of a running joke about the Tenth Doctor's love of the "little shops" found in hospitals and museums.
- As is routine for post-2005 Doctor Who episodes, a "NEXT TIME" trailer for the next episode is shown at the end of the episode.
- Stock footage from Rose is used at one point.
- 8.62 million viewers
Filming locations Edit
- The exterior shots of New Earth were filmed on the Gower Peninsula.
- The hospital scenes were filmed inside the Wales Millennium Centre which appeared in the previous series episode Boom Town. When the Doctor asks about the shop and points to where he would put it, he points to the location of the centre's own Portmeirion shop (so-called because it sells the unique Portmeirion china produced in the Welsh resort village of the same name that was once used as a filming location for TV: The Masque of Mandragora).
- The exterior shots of the lift car as Rose descends to the basement are stock footage recycled from Rose.
Production errors Edit
- When Rose says goodbye to Jackie and Mickey, the wiped out marks; 'Bad Wolf' can still be seen on the ground.
- When the camera zooms out when Rose is captured and Cassandra is about to "go" into Rose, the psychograft disappears, but in the next shot of Rose, it is there again.
- Before the Doctor and Rose/Cassandra open one of the booths behind the Doctor there is an empty booth. In the next shot there is clearly one of the Flesh occupying it.
- At 5.30 Rose enters the right hand lift but at 6.20 she leaves the left hand one.
- There have been several planets called New Earth in Doctor Who: the planet where Sarah was told she was being taken to in a spaceship in TV: Invasion of the Dinosaurs (which turned out to be fake); a planet invaded by the Daleks from COMIC: Doctor Who and the Dogs of Doom; the homeworld of the Sixth Doctor novel companion Grant Markham and the setting for PROSE: Time of Your Life; and the New Earth Republic, a future Earth colony and the setting of the PROSE: Synthespians™.
- The Sisters of Plenitude are not the first feline aliens to feature in the series. The Cheetah People appeared in TV: Survival.
- The ailment that the Duke of Manhattan is dying from, Petrifold Regression — a disease that turns its victims to stone — is also mentioned in PROSE: The Stone Rose. Amy Pond thinks she's suffering from a similar condition caused by the Weeping Angels in TV: The Time of Angels.
- The Bad Wolf car park graffiti shown in TV: The Parting of the Ways reappears at the outset of the episode, though faded.
- Cassandra last appeared, and was thought to have died, in TV: The End of the World.
- Novice Hame and the Face of Boe reappear in the episode TV: Gridlock, which is also set in New New York on New Earth several years after New Earth.
See also Edit
DVD releases Edit
- This episode was released as a "vanilla" DVD with The Christmas Invasion.
- New Earth was also released as part of the Series 2 DVD box set.
- This story was also released with Issue 8 of the Doctor Who DVD Files.
- Official BBC Website - Episode Guide for New Earth
- Detailed synopsis of ''New Earth'' at the Doctor Who Reference Guide
- ''New Earth'' at Shannon Sullivan's A Brief History of Time (Travel)
- The Discontinuity Guide to: New Earth at The Whoniverse
- TARDISODE: New Earth