Confronted with the imminent arrival of Rose from the alternate universe, the Doctor and Donna make a quick jump to modern-day Earth, finding that everything is all right and returning to the TARDIS. But a sudden displacement of time and space leaves the TARDIS floating in space – without Earth. The Doctor flies into action to try to track the planet down, even going so far as to pay an unannounced visit to the Shadow Proclamation, an intergalactic law enforcement body, where he talks his way past Judoon guards and discovers that Earth isn’t the only planet missing: the Shadow Proclamation has placed the entire universe on alert. Taking note of the mass and properties of the missing worlds, the Doctor hypothesizes that the planets may have been stolen to become components of a massive engine, generating energy on a scale not seen since the creation of the universe. The representatives of the Shadow Proclamation are prepared to go into battle, but only if the Doctor surrenders his TARDIS; he opts to go it alone instead.
On Earth, chaos has broken out. Night has fallen around the world, and the sky is now teeming with unfamiliar planets. At UNIT HQ in New York City, at Torchwood in Cardiff and at Sarah Jane Smith’s home in Ealing, former companions of the Doctor are among the first to hear a message transmitted from an oncoming barrage of spacecraft: a Dalek voice endlessly repeating the word “exterminate”. The Daleks attack the planet, concentrating their firepower on military installations or entities that have prior knowledge of the Daleks: Torchwood and UNIT are among the first targets. An unlikely ally unites Martha, Torchwood and Sarah, using a technology invented for an emergency in which the Doctor hasn’t arrived to save the day. But the TARDIS does indeed make its way to Earth, finding the stolen planets time-shifted within the Medusa Cascade. The Doctor discovers that Davros, creator of the Daleks, has survived the Time War and bred a new race of Daleks to do his bidding. As the Doctor’s former companions race to join up with him, Torchwood comes under Dalek attack and Gwen and Ianto are left to fend for themselves. Sarah finds herself at the mercy of the Daleks, and even when Rose finds the TARDIS, it may not be enough to save the Doctor when he finds himself in a Dalek’s gunsights.
written by Russell T. Davies
directed by Graeme Harper
music by Murray Gold
Guest Cast: Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), Freema Agyeman (Martha Jones), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Penelope Wilton (Harriet Jones), Adjoa Andoh (Francine Jones), Gareth David-Lloyd (Ianto Jones), Eve Myles (Gwen Cooper), Thomas Knight (Luke Smith), Bernard Cribbins (Wilfred Mott), Jacqueline King (Sylvia Noble), Julian Bleach (Davros), Michael Brandon (General Sanchez), Andrea Harris (Suzanne), Lachele Carl (Trinity Wells), Richard Dawkins (himself), Paul O’Grady (himself), Marcus Cunningham (Drunk Man), Jason Mohammad (Newsreader), Paul Kasey (Judoon), Kelly Hunter (Shadow Architect), Amy Beth Hayes (Albino Servant), Gary Milner (Scared Man), Barney Edwards, Nick Pegg, David Hankinson, Anthony Spargo (Dalek Operators), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek voice), Alexander Armstrong (voice of Mr. Smith)
Notes: Davros first appeared in 1975’s Genesis Of The Daleks, and returned to terrorize each of the Doctor’s successive incarnations until his final appearance in 1988’s Remembrance Of The Daleks. Even the cancellation of the original series didn’t slow him down, as he returned to do battle twice more with the sixth Doctor, and then with Paul McGann as the eighth Doctor in Terror Firma, and even appeared in his own audio spinoff series, I, Davros. Apparently he’s been missing since a battle during the first year of the Time War, which – just to drive fans crazy – remains unrecorded in either novel or audio form. Actor Julian Bleach becomes the fourth actor to play Davros, having played the Ghost Maker in an episode of Torchwood’s second season. Bernard Cribbins, as Donna’s grandfather, has come up against the Daleks before – 42 years before this episode’s premiere, in the 1966 feature film Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. starring Peter Cushing as Doctor Who. Penelope Wilton returns as former Prime Minister Harriet Jones, not seen since the then-newly-regenerated Doctor uttered six fateful words in The Christmas Invasion. Appearing as himself, evolutionary science advocate Richard Dawkins is the husband of former Doctor Who co-star Lalla “Romana” Ward; coincidentally, they were introduced by former Doctor Who writer and script editor – and Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy author – Douglas Adams.
LogBook entry & review by Earl Green […]