Doctor Who - The Christmas Invasion
Phil Collinson, Russell T. Davies (executive), Julie Gardner (executive) for BBC Wales/BBC
directed by James Hawes
starring David Tennant, Billie Piper, Camille Coduri, Noel Clarke, Penelope Wilton, Daniel Evans, Adam Garcia, Sean Gilde, Chu Omambala, Anita Breim, Sian McDowall, Paul Anderson
written by Russell T.Davies, music by Murray Gold
Doctor Who, Doctor Who (David Tennant), Doctor Who (new series), Rose Tyler
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Doctor Who (David Tennant) has just regenerated into a new body (see
last episode, Bad
Wolf/Parting of the Ways), which means he doesn't feel too great.
He just manages to steer his time machine, the TARDIS, to present day
London so that his companion Rose (Billie Piper) can celebrate Christmas
with her mother (Camille Coduri) and boyfriend (Noel Clarke), then he
collapses, and since the Doctor is no human, nobody knows what to do to
get him better ... which is a bad thing, because first, Christmas
decoration starts attacking people, then the alien race the Sycorax stop
by London and announce they want to enslave humanity. British prime
minister Harriet Jones (Penelope Wilton - see episode Aliens
of London/World War Three) tries to take responsibility, but as
the Sycorax have taken over control over one third of the human population
(via blood-control), her bargaining position is comparatively weak
... and remains so until the Doctor gets his strength back (by, of all
things, tea), quickly renders harmless the aliens' blood control device
and challenges the Sycorax leader (Sean Gilder) to a duel ... at the end
of which he throws the evil alien from his spaceship down to earth -
Since he is the winner,m the Doctor is now in a position to tell the
rest of the aliens to bug off and never come back - and the Sycorax comply
... only in the end, prime minister Harriet Jones has the alien spaceship
shot out of the skies by a secret organisation named Torchwood
(whose own series might follow eventually in the real world), much to the
dismay of the pacifist daughter. To avenge himself on her, the Doctor says
the six words that might cost her her job to her assistant: "Do
you think she looks tired ?"
Some great ideas are assembled in this episode: attacking Christmas
decoration, the six words to impeach a PM, the Doctor duelling an alien
invader in pajamas, the prime minister feeling the urge to introduce
herself to everyone (including showing her ID) ... but somehow this
episode doesn't fall together too greatly: Way too much time is spent
showing Rose worrying by the Doctor's bedside, or even mourning the loss
of a friend, while at the same time, the Doctor doesn't do anything but
lieing around for way too long - and somehow these scenes take the steam
out of the whole episode. It's only when David Tennant, who makes quite an
energetic Doctor once he's up, is given the opportunity to act that the episodes shows
its true potential - but that's too little too late ...
Still not a total loss, some witty ideas, good one-liners and Tennant's
performance at least paint a bright future ...