The Doctor (Eccleston), Rose (Billie Piper) and Adam (Bruno Langley) travel to the far flung future, to Satellite 5, orbiting the Earth, only to find something has gone dreadfully wrong with future history.
The Long Game was written by Russell T. Davies and first aired on 7 May, 2005.
The Doctor is sure something has held back the development of humanity for some reason, and some how. Slipping out of the TARDIS the trio start investigating, and Adam goes a little too far, causing a final decision about him by the Time Lord.
As the group investigate they learn about the mysterious Level 500 that no one who has been promoted to has ever returned from. Watching the travellers at work is the Editor (Simon Pegg) who is overseeing everything. He works for the Mighty Jagrafess who seems to be the reason there are no aliens in humanity’s future, and why their development has been halted.
Watch out for the Bad Wolf Channel, and the Face of Boe!
There’s a bit of a relevant commentary going on in this episode about journalism and making the news as opposed to investigating and reporting it properly.
This episode, in my books, was ok, it’s not the strongest of the new series, especially when it’s followed by Father’s Day. Still, it does expand the new series mythology nicely, and allows for some nice character bits for Rose and the Doctor.
I love how the Doctor is almost indignant when it’s suggested that he’s wrong about what is going on at the beginning of the episode. And, personally, I was glad to see Adam leave the TARDIS, he was a bit rubbish.
Here’s a curious thought. We know the TARDIS translates alien languages, and yet the Jagrafess speaks an alien tongue that only the Editor can understand. Odd.
Father’s Day is a fantastic episode, written by Paul Cornell it first burst onto screens on 14 May, 2005.
Since she was a child Rose has listened to stories from her mom, Jackie (Camille Coduri) about her dad, Pete Tyler (Shaun Dingwall),. He died when she was a baby, and Jackie has made him out as some wonderful thing.
Rose asks the Doctor for the opportunity to see her father. They go back to the day he dies, struck by a car, and Rose saves him. This disrupts time and the church the Tylers are going to for a wedding comes under assault as time tries to right itself.
The Doctor is furious with Rose’s actions, and for the first time thinks that bringing Rose along was a terrible choice. He even attempts to leave her, but events conspire against them, and the two have to find a way to save the day. Even if that means Pete Tyler must die.
It’s a poignant and scary episode, as Rose sees her parents as they really are, not stories, or tainted memories, but as actual people with faults, foibles, and arguments.
Next time around is the fantastic World War II double episode, The Empty Child and The Doctor Dances.