The out-of-space Facebook [Doctor Who – The Stolen Earth]
Okay, well, obviously I wrote this morning’s post about how David Tennant isn’t leaving Doctor Who anytime soon before I watched the most recent episode, ‘The Stolen Earth’. And now I feel slightly silly.
The exciting instalment ended with an extermination-happy Dalek (is there any other kind?) mortally wounding the Doctor, who commenced regeneration… only to be rudely interrupted by a melodramatic “TO BE CONTINUED”. Either this cliffhanger is a big fakeout and David Tennant isn’t going anywhere, or, he’ll be replaced next week and the BBC has kept the most massive secret of all time.
I’m guessing it’s the former, given that the BBC is notoriously bad at keeping Doctor Who secrets, not to mention the fact that Tennant has been spotted filming this year’s Christmas special… unless that’s part of Russell T Davies’ master plan to fool us all? Devious!
Anyway, though exciting this episode’s storyline was a higgedly-piggedy mess: something about Daleks wanting to conquer the universe? Again? And one of them is crazy and can predict the future? Or whatever? Though their inscrutable plot to steal a bunch of planets felt fresh – the callbacks to previously mentioned missing planets were a nice touch – I’m a little sick of the Daleks themselves, even if they did recruit Davros and a red-shelled “Supreme Dalek” to spice things up. Fingers crossed that in the concluding half of this two-parter the Doctor will exterminate the pepper pots for good, so the show can find some other ridiculous sci-fi crutch to lean on.
What made the episode awesome, though, was the return of all the Doctor’s companions. Aww! Sarah Jane Smith! Captain Jack! Martha Jones! And dear, gun-toting Rose, who I’m chuffed to see even if her comeback has so far felt a little flat. Meanwhile, I just knew something terrible would happen before she could reunite with the Doctor – I literally watched that scene through my fingers.
And speaking of returning characters: former prime minister Harriet Jones united the companions, located the Doctor using magic, and then died. Sniff! (Though we never actually saw her death, and as the hoary sci-fi rule goes: no body = no death. So you never know.) I hope her sacrifice gets to Doctor to admit he was a right bastard to her, though maybe I’m biased because Penelope Wilton is the best.
Predictions for next week’s supersized finale: the Doctor’s “regeneration” will be reversed somehow. Sarah Jane Smith will avoid extermination. The kids at Torchwood will escape the Daleks. And this will all happen in the first two minutes, because that’s how Doctor Who cliffhangers are always tied up.
But I’m deeply intrigued – and a little daunted – by the crazy Dalek’s prediction that the Doctor’s “most faithful companion” will die. Uh oh! Surely it’s got to be Donna; how else to explain the crazy Shadow Proclamation albino’s prediction that she’ll undergo some great loss?