Doctor Doctor Who Guide

Expectations were high for episode 4 of this historic new series of Doctor Who, after the exciting trailer shown at the end of episode 3. Just seeing Big Ben destroyed by an alien spaceship crash-landing is enough to get any viewer's attention.

So the stakes were high at 7pm, as the nation gathered on or behind their sofas to see the first two-part episode of the new series.

Aliens of London began with a traditionally disastrous materialisation of the TARDIS in the wrong time, meaning Rose was not back home 12 hours after she left, but 12 MONTHS!!! Of course the Doctor doesn't realise this until he sees a poster about Rose Tyler being missing. After a lengthy discussion (or argument) about where Rose had been for 12 months, the Doctor and Rose see a spaceship land directly in the centre of London in the Thames. Being unable see anything due to the crowds, Rose suggests they watch it on TV.

After the Doctor gives Rose a TARDIS key, he materialises in the hospital, where the alien is being, just as the alien is banging on the door to the horror of the supervisor. After a bit of lock picking, the Doctor opens the door to find a room full of military soldiers, who promptly point their large guns at him. At this point, the supervisor opens the door to the alien and screams. On hearing the noise, the Doctor, in typical fashion, goes straight from being the prisoner to being the commander and leads them to the source of the scream. As the soldiers check out the rest of the building, the Doctor finds out the escapee is still in the room. He chases the creature, which looks just like a pig, into the corridor only to see it shot in the head by one of the soldiers. He realises it is a normal pig with wires in its head.

Meanwhile, at 10 Downing Street, it turns out that the Prime Minister has gone missing and another minister is taking the reins. It turns out however, that this MP is one of the aliens and kills the General in the room in full view of another MP hiding in the cupboard. The Doctor returns to Roses estate to find (well start) a row between Rose and her mum because of Mickey revealing a few secrets, after which Roses mum phones the police. The Doctor tells Rose of his intention to keep a low profile, then walks out of his TARDIS, only to be surrounded by troops and helicopters and police. Mickey makes a run for it, as the Doctor and Rose get into luxury car to 10 Downing street. After waving to the press, the Doctor makes his way to a briefing while Rose is taken to one side the MP who saw the Aliens earlier. One of the aliens that the MP saw earlier, walks in just after one of the PM's staff. The Doctor interrupts the briefing to give his own analysis that this is all a trap. He is of course right and so the aliens at the front of the room start to unzip their heads and transmogrifying and promptly start electrocuting the Experts in the briefing room. The alien in the room with Rose has also transmogrified in her true form and is now throwing the member of staff against the wall. The Doctor and the Experts are still being electrocuted and the episode ends in the first cliff-hanger in the new series.

Wow, is one of many words that spring to mind. This was undoubtedly the best episode so far. But what made it the best episode so far and (wait for it...) was it worthy of Doctor Who?

Well, the short answer is the Story, the Graphics, the Direction and yes it's Doctor Who alright. The longer version is a bit more interesting though.

The Story was much better than previous episodes; it had all the ingredients of a good Doctor Who. Aliens, multiple storylines, mystery, twists, humour, the Doctor's habit of stumbling into trouble and the all-important cliff-hanger. We have yet to see how it ends of course, but this was a great beginning. The Doctor is back in his usual swing with aliens invading Earth, but with state-of-the-arts graphics and visuals.

It seem that no expense has been spared on this episode with the Graphics so much more realistic, real moving solid aliens and military and civilian vehicles galore and all of it used so well. As if that wasn't enough, you also see Big Ben destroyed, a spaceship land in the Thames and full BBC news reports, complete with Andrew Marr.

The Director, Keith Boak, has done a great job with this episode and his directing compliments Davies’s first great script for the new series. The way in which the shots were taken was completely appropriate to the script and Boak really captures the important and exciting moments in the episode like the Doctor being surrounded by soldiers and police and helicopters and the particularly tense moment where the Doctor crawls round the corner to see the alien (or pig in this case) for the first time.

So the verdict? Brilliant. This episode really captures what Doctor Who is all about, Danger, Mystery, Adventure and that is what made it special and not just like your average sci-fi churned out of the production machine by force. Doctor Who is back.

Filters: Series 1/27 Ninth Doctor Television