Doctor Who

Season 1 Episode 2

The End of the World

17
Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Apr 02, 2005 on BBC America
8.7
out of 10
User Rating
726 votes
28

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
Location: Platform 1 (A space station orbiting Earth). Date: 5,000,000,000 AD (named 5.5/Apple/26) Enemy: The Lady Cassandra The Doctor takes Rose on her first voyage through time, to the year five billion, when the Sun is about to expand and swallow the Earth. She is cautious and soon starts to question her reasons for joining The Doctor. But amongst the powerful alien races gathering to watch on Platform One, a murderer is at work. Who is controlling the mysterious and deadly metal spiders?moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • The Doctor really knows how to treat a girl on her first her to see the destruction of her planet and all.

    7.0
    Man does The Doctor know how to treat a girl taking her to see the end of her planet! Maybe he thought i would be better than fireworks over the Thames.



    Over all, this episode serves as a nice introduction to the 'alien' side of Doctor Who, as well as dishing out humorous cracks about Michael Jackson and another reference to "Bad Wolf" (please remember this it will be important). I give The End of the World a 7/10 because, despite a rather threadbare plot and occasional cheesy moments, it did deliver on both visual and emotional strength.

    moreless
  • Interesting Idea

    6.5
    This episode had an interesting idea, and brought up some interesting questions. But overall it had a very BBC studio feel to it, very much in the vein of the old Doctor Who series, lots of latex monsters and aliens. It was mildly entertaining, but below the level of the first episode for me. I will continue to watch.
  • How can you top a TV series that begins with the end of the world?

    9.0
    How can you top a TV series that begins with the end of the world?



    You can't.



    Dr. Who is clearly a TV show determined to tackle the really big ideas. Ideas such as the mortality of the individual, the extinction of sentient species, the transience of life in the universe.



    What more can one ask for than that?
  • The End of the World One of My Favorites!

    10
    The End of the World was a perfect and very entertaining episode of Doctor Who. I really enjoyed watching because it is one of my favorite episodes of the series. The story was awesome and really gave the characters a good chance to learn about each other. I loved seeing all the different alien species. The Trees were really cool. That Lady Cassandra was crazy. The special effects were amazing. I liked how every thing played out and the ending was great. The characters really connected and so the adventure has really begun!!!!!!!!!moreless
  • The doctor takes Rose 5 billion years in the future to witness the destruction of the (now abandoned) earth. Aliens from all around come to witness the spectacle. And of course, someone tries to ruin the party.moreless

    9.0
    When I wrote the review of the pilot I wondered what the fuzz was all about. This episode surprised me - in a great way. Because it was marvellous. The plot was imaginative and entertaining and I even liked Rose - how she had to cope with all the weirdness and finally the destruction of earth and how all the troubles of mankind seem so vain. Like the doctor says in the beginning: "You lot. You spend all your time thinking about dying. Like you`re gonna get killed by eggs or beef or global warming or else whatnot."

    Apropos doctor: He has many great scenes in this episodes and I am really happy with Ecclestones performance.moreless
Jimmy Vee

Jimmy Vee

The Moxx of Balhoon

Guest Star

Yasmin Bannerman

Yasmin Bannerman

Jabe

Guest Star

Zoë Wanamaker

Zoë Wanamaker

Voice of Cassandra

Guest Star

Camille Coduri

Camille Coduri

Jackie Tyler

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (19)

    • In the scene where Rose and Cassandra are discussing being the last human, Rose's hair changes styles from long shots to close-ups.

    • This is the fourth time in the series that Earth has been burned by the Sun, the other occasions being sometime after the 30th century in The Ark in Space (1975), two million years from the present in The Mysterious Planet (1986) and ten million years from the present in The Ark (1966).

    • This is the second time in as many episodes that the Doctor gets to rip the arm off something.

    • The Doctor gets a B- for his act of "Jiggery Pokery" on Rose's cell phone. When she calls home, dialogue indicates that Jackie receives the call during a time period when Rose is still working at the department store.

    • When the Moxx of Balhoon tells the Face of Boe, "It's the classic Bad Wolf scenario." the subtitles to the DVD read "Bad move scenario".

    • This is the first episode in the new series in which the Doctor admits he is a Time Lord.

    • The Raffalo scene was a late addition because the episode, like many in the first series, was underrunning.

    • The episode features the first appearances of the Face of Boe and Cassandra, both of whom will feature in New Earth and the Face of Boe only in Gridlock.

    • This is the first time that we see the Doctor cry, although he only sheds one tear.

    • Shortly after the Doctor's TARDIS is taken away, a brief scene is shown of the spiders moving through the ducts is shown. Two of the CG creatures bump the camera -- a deliberate goof and perhaps a wink to the original series which featured many camera bumps.

    • This is the first time in the series that the Doctor uses the psychic paper, as his and Rose's invitation onto Platform 1.

    • We see The Doctor cry in this episode when Jabe confronts him about the Time Lords. This is definitely the first time we see him shed a tear in the new series, it may even be the first time we've ever seen it. Even the events at the end of Earthshock, Part Four in the original series don't conjure a tear, even though he is visibly upset.

    • The Doctor modifies Rose's mobile, enabling her to call her mother in the early 21st century from five billion years in the future.

      This isn't the first time he's modified earth technology - Ace had a "boom box" with some rather unusual additions.

    • Jabe uses a type of handheld machine to try and find out what the Doctor is exactly. On the pre-production artist sketches of the 'machine' it has 9 strands of DNA. Each one represents one of the known Doctors' lives, Christopher Eccleston being the Ninth Doctor. However this representation never appeared on screen, the machine shows alternate graphics (timecode 11:55).

      The artist's sketch can be seen on the Platform 1 gallery in the BBC episode guide.

    • When Cassandra was teleported back to Platform One, how come the two assistants, which moisturise her, didn't teleport back as well? This would have meant she survived if they did. The Doctor either obviously didn't think they were important enough, or he couldn't get them to teleport with her.

    • This is not the first Titanic reference in Doctor Who. In Rose, Clive had a picture of the Doctor, with a family that he persuaded not to board The Titanic. The Doctor also talked about the Titanic being unsinkable in the episode Robot in the original series, and actually visited it during its sinking in the Virgin novel The Left-Handed Hummingbird.

      The fourth Doctor also assures Cardinal Borusa in The Invasion in Time, Part Six that he had nothing to do with that when the Cardinal finds an old newspaper with news of the Titanic's sinking on the front page.

    • The Moxx of Balhoon comments to the Face of Boe that their situation is "the classic bad wolf scenario", although he doesn't elaborate. This is the first reference to Bad Wolf during the season, but the references will get a lot more obvious later in the series.

    • If the doors to the room Rose was in were jammed, how did she get out?

    • They are not really spiders as they only have 4 legs.

      ...and when one of them clambers through a vent, it's a standard tumble dryer vent from any DIY store

  • QUOTES (36)

    • Cassandra: (before exploding) I am... too... young!

    • The Doctor: You have seen how dangerous it is. Do you want to go home?
      Rose: I don't know. I want... can you smell chips?
      The Doctor: (chuckles) Yeah. Yeah.
      Rose: I want chips!

    • The Doctor: (To Cassandra after she has her bodyguards threaten everyone with their spray guns) What are you gonna do, moisturise me?

    • (Rose watches pieces of the destroyed Earth pass the window)
      Rose: The end of the Earth. It's gone. We were too busy saving ourselves, no one saw it go. All those years. All that history and no one was even looking.

    • The Doctor: People have died, Cassandra. You murdered them.
      Cassandra: It depends on your definition of 'people'. And that's enough of a technicality to keep your lawyers dizzy for centuries.

    • (Cassandra is revealed as the mastermind behind the sabotage)
      Cassandra: I had hoped to manufacture a hostage situation, with myself as one of the victims. The compensation would have been enormous.
      The Doctor: Five billion years and it still comes down to money.
      Cassandra: Do you think it's cheap looking like this? Flatness costs a fortune.

    • Jabe: (as the Doctor scans a door entry keypad) What about your ancestry, Doctor? Perhaps you could tell a story or two. Perhaps a man only enjoys trouble when there's… nothing else left. I scanned you earlier. The metal machine had trouble identifying your species. Refused to admit your existence. And even when it named you, I couldn't believe it. But it was right. I know where you're from. Forgive me for intruding it's remarkable that you even exist. I just want to say… how sorry I am.
      (She lays a hand on his arm. The Doctor, with tears in his eyes, looks at her and covers her hand with his)

    • Rose: How many operations have you had?
      Cassandra: Seven hundred and eight. Next week, it's seven hundred and nine. I'm having my blood bleached. Is that why you wanted a word? You could be flatter. You've got a little bit of a… chin poking out.
      Rose: I'd rather die.
      Cassandra: Honestly, it doesn't hurt!
      Rose: I mean it. I would rather die. It's better to die than live like you, a bitchy trampoline.
      Cassandra: Oh, well, what do you know?
      Rose: I was born on that planet. And so was my mum, and so was my dad. And that makes me officially the last human being in this room. Cos you're not human. You've had it all nipped and tucked and flattened til there's nothing left. Anything human got chucked in the bin. You're just skin, Cassandra. Lipstick and skin.

    • The Doctor: Where's the engine room?
      Jabe: I don't know, but the maintenance duct is just behind our guest suite. I could show you… (indicates Rose) and your wife.
      The Doctor: She's not my wife.
      Jabe: Partner?
      The Doctor: No.
      Jabe: Concubine?
      The Doctor: No.
      Jabe: Prostitute?
      Rose: Whatever I am, it must be invisible. Do you mind?

    • Rose: The aliens are so alien. You look at them… and they're alien.
      The Doctor: Good job I didn't take you to the Deep South.
      Rose: Where are you from?
      The Doctor: All over the place.
      Rose: They all speak English.
      The Doctor: No, you just hear English. It's a gift of the TARDIS. The telepathic field gets inside your brain, translates.
      Rose: It's inside my brain?
      The Doctor: Well, in a good way.
      Rose: Your machine gets inside my head, it gets inside and it changes my mind and you didn't even ask?
      The Doctor: I didn't think about it like that.
      Rose: No, you were too busy thinking up cheap shots about the Deep South. Who are you then, Doctor? What you called? What sort of alien are you?
      The Doctor: I'm just the Doctor.
      Rose: From what planet?
      The Doctor: Well, it's not as if you'd know where it is.
      Rose: Where are you from?
      The Doctor: What does it matter?
      Rose: Tell me who you are!
      The Doctor: This is who I am! Right here, right now. Alright? All that counts is here and now and this is me!

    • Steward: And last but not least, our very special guest… Ladies and gentlemen and trees and multiforms, consider the Earth below. In memory of this dying world, we call forth… the last human…
      (Rose goes to step forward but the doors open and a piece of skin stretched on a frame, accompanied by two attendants, comes in)
      Steward: The Lady Cassandra O'Brien dot Delta 17.
      Cassandra: Oh now, don't stare. I know. I know. It's shocking, isn't it? I've had my chin completely taken away. And look at the difference! Look how thin I am. Thin and dainty. I don't look a day over two thousand. (to one of her attendants) Moisturise me, moisturise me. (the attendant sprays her) Truly, I am the last human. My father was a Texan, my mother was from the Arctic desert. They were born on the Earth and they were the last to be buried in its soil. I have come to honour them and say goodbye.

    • (Jabe holds the fan control down so that the Doctor can safely get across to the sun shield's manual override button)
      The Doctor: You can't. The heat's going to vent through this place.
      Jabe: I know.
      The Doctor: Jabe, you're made of wood!
      Jabe: Then stop wasting time, Time Lord.

    • Rose: (talking to Raffalo the plumber) I just sort of hitched a lift with this man… didn't even think about it… I don't even know who he is… he's a complete stranger.

    • The Doctor: (as he and Rose view the Earth from Platform 1) You lot. You spend all your time thinking about dying. Like you're going to get killed by eggs or beef or global warming or asteroids. But you never take time to imagine the impossible. That maybe you'd survive.

    • The Doctor: So, what you're saying is, if we get in trouble there's no one to help us out?
      Jabe: I'm afraid not.
      The Doctor: Fantastic.
      Jabe: I don't understand. In what way is that fantastic?

    • (taking Rose's mobile phone)
      The Doctor: Tell you what, with a little bit of jiggery-pokery...
      Rose: Is that a technical term, jiggery-pokery?
      The Doctor: Yeah. I came first in jiggery-pokery. What 'bout you?
      Rose: No. I failed hullabaloo.

    • Computer: Guests are reminded that Platform One forbids the use of weapons, teleportation, and religion.

    • Cassandra: (to the Doctor) I bet you were the school swot and never got kissed.

    • Rose: You think you're so impressive.
      The Doctor: I am so impressive!
      Rose: You wish.

    • (Cassandra is dying)
      Rose: Help her.
      The Doctor: Everything has its time and everything dies.

    • Rose: So when it says guests, does that mean people?
      The Doctor: Depends what you mean by people.
      Rose: I mean people. What do you mean?
      The Doctor: Aliens.
      Rose: What are they doing on board this spaceship? What's it all for?
      The Doctor: It's not really a spaceship, more like an observation deck. The great and the good are gathering to watch the planet burn.
      Rose: What for?
      The Doctor: Fun. Mind you, when I say "the great and the good," what I mean is the rich.

    • Rose: (talking to the potted cutting of Jabe's grandfather) Hello. My name's Rose. That's a sort of plant. We might be related. (pause) I'm talking to a twig.

    • The Doctor: (To Jabe) I was on board another ship once. They said that was unsinkable. I ended up clinging to an iceberg.

    • Rose: I want chips.
      The Doctor: Me, too.
      Rose: Right then, before you get me back in that box, chips it is and you could pay.
      The Doctor: No money.
      Rose: What sort of date are you? Come-on then, tight-wad. Chips are on me.

    • Rose: (Looking at the Earth) How longs it got?
      The Doctor: About half an hour. Then the planet gets roasted.
      Rose: Is that why we're here - I mean, is that what you do? Jump in at the last minute and save the Earth.
      The Doctor: I'm not saving it. Time's up.

    • The Doctor: You think it'll last forever. The people, and cars, and concrete. But it won't. Then one day it's all gone. Even the sky.

    • Rose: He's blue!
      The Doctor: Yeah.
      Rose: Okay.

    • The Doctor: So tell me Jabe, what's a tree like you doing in a place like this?

    • The Doctor: (After witnessing Earth's destruction, then taking Rose back to present-day Earth) My planet's gone. It's dead. It burned like the Earth. It's just rocks and dust. Before it's time.
      Rose: What happened?
      The Doctor: There was a war and we lost.
      Rose: A war with who? What about your people?
      The Doctor: I'm a Time Lord. I'm the last of the Time Lords. They're all gone. I'm the only survivor. I'm left travelling on my own because there's no one else.
      Rose: There's me.

    • Cassandra: Talk to the face, talk to the face!

    • The Doctor: (Hearing an explosion) That's not supposed to happen.

    • The Doctor: (After Rose's comments about her mother being dead) Barrel of laughs, you are.

    • The Doctor: (To Jabe) I give you in return the gift of air from my lungs.
      Jabe: (Breathing in) How intimate.
      The Doctor: There's more where that came from.
      Jabe: I bet there is.

    • The Moxx of Balhoon: My felicitations on the event of this historical happenstance. I give you the gift of bodily salivas. (Spits on Rose)

    • (A large jukebox is wheeled in)
      Lady Cassandra: According to the archives, this was called an "iPod". It stores classical music from humanity's greatest composers. Play on!
      (A henchman presses a button on the jukebox, which starts playing "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell)

    • Cassandra: Bid farewell to the cradle of civilization! Let us mourn her with a traditional ballad.
      (The jukebox plays "Toxic" by Britney Spears)

  • NOTES (16)

    • Original International Air Dates:
      September 6, 2009 on CNBC-e

    • According to a March 2006 interview by SciFiWire with Russell T Davies, he requested for this episode to be broadcast back-to-back with Rose, but the request was given to the BBC too close to transmission. However, the American Sci-Fi Channel did run the two episodes consecutively.

    • The costume worn by Simon Day as The Steward was placed in auction at Bonhams on March 06 2007 as part of the The Angels Star Collection of Film & TV Costumes auction (Lot 17).

      Described by Bonhams as "A costume for The Steward,the two piece costume comprising jacket and trousers, being of brown and black coloured brocade, the trousers with elasticated braces, labelled inside 'Angels The Costumiers', inscribed 'Bruce Payne Feb 2000' "

      The costume had previously been used by Bruce Payne in Dungeons and Dragons 2000.

    • Russell T. Davies re-used the line "Where am I going to go, Ipswich?" from one of his early children's dramas, Dark Season - in episode 5 Reet uses this line when trapped in the Behemoth's complex.

    • The final scene, when the Doctor and Rose come back to Earth and they discuss having chips, was filmed on Queen Street, one of the main shopping streets in Cardiff.

    • The final viewing figure for the BBC One airing of this episode was 7.97 million.

    • The ducts through which The Doctor and Jabe walk are actually real duct corridors in BBC Wales Broadcasting House.

    • The Manchester Suite in Platform One (the large hall) was filmed in The Temple of Peace Hall in Cardiff.

    • The US broadcast of the episode featured a slight cut: The scene that makes reference to Britney Spear's Toxic as "a traditional ballad" was trimmed down to the point where the 7" single was put into the jukebox.

    • Paul Kasey - Forest of Cheem Tree (uncredited)
      Alan Ruscoe - Lute - Forest of Cheem Tree (uncredited)

    • In the Behind the Scenes pictures there are photographs showing the artifacts from Earth that were in the glass cases in the party room. They include a typewriter, rolls of film, a plastic Santa, a jukebox, an digital camera, and a Harry Potter book

    • Russell T. Davies based the character of Cassandra on the many celebrities who have had many face lifts.

    • This episode features 2005's first pre-credit sequence. This is designed to give viewers a mini-cliff hanger before the title sequence kicks in, and will be a feature of the remaining episodes for this year. The only time this occurred in the original series was in the 1970 serial "The Ambassadors of Death" and for a regeneration sequence in 1982's "Castrovalva" and a JFK speech in 1988's Remembrance of the Daleks.

    • Whilst this is only the second episode to feature the Ninth Doctor, news of Christopher Eccleston's departure from the lead role leaked out days earlier.

    • Several classic Doctor Who stories have featured the human survivors of an uninhabitable Earth including The Ark, The Ark in Space and Frontios.

    • It was descriped in The Radio Times Doctor Who special (26.03.05 - 01.04.05) as "aliens galore as the Doctor takes Rose to the year five billion. Featuring Zoe Wanamaker".

  • ALLUSIONS (8)

    • Rose: I'm gonna catch up with the family. Quick word with Michael Jackson.

      Michael Jackson is of course well known due to his huge contribution to both the music and the gossip industries, however in this instance Rose is using him as an indication of the huge amount of plastic surgery that the Lady Cassandra has undergone.

    • Steward: And next, from Financial Family Seven, we have the Adherents of the Repeated Meme.

      The meme theory was suggested by biologist Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene. Memes are units of cultural inheritance that replicate by creating copies in the minds of other people, Dawkins has described religion in particular as a viral meme.

    • The Doctor: Unsinkable?
      Jabe: If you like, the nautical metaphor is appropriate.
      The Doctor: You're telling me. I was onboard another ship once, they said that was unsinkable. I ended up clinging to an iceberg, it wasn't half cold.

      The ship being alluded to here is The Titanic, proudly boasted to be unsinkable. The designers were so confident of this that they didn't put enough lifeboats on board to evacuate the entire ship - so as not to overclutter the deck. The ship set sail from Southampton on the 10th of April 1912 with 2200 people on board and sank in the North Atlantic 5 days later, taking 1500 people down with her.

    • Cassandra: How did that old Earth song go? 'Burn, baby, burn!'

      Cassandra is referring to the chorus of the 1976 hit song "Disco Inferno" by The Trammps.

    • Lady Cassandra: And this used to be known as an iPod.
      [wheels in a 1950's style jukebox.]
      The jukebox plays a late 20th and an early 21st century song:
      1. Soft Cell / Tainted Love
      2. Britney Spears / Toxic

      NB: both on 7" singles.

    • n/a: n/a
      The whole plot of this episode, travelling forward in time to attend a formal event at the end of the world, is very similar to the plot of "The Restaurant at the End of the Universe", by Douglas Adams (the second Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy book). In Adams' version, it's the whole universe which is ending, not just the Earth.

    • Rose: But hold on, they did that once on Newsround Extra - the sun is expanding, that takes hundreds of years".

      A reference to the BBC's flagship children's news programme. The show runs a daily news programme aimed at 8 to 16 year olds. Newsround Extra is a weekly extended in-depth episode covering one story or issue.

    • The Doctor: But the planet's now the property of the National Trust, they've been keeping it preserved. See down there - gravity satellites, holding back the Sun. Rose: The planet looks the same as ever - I thought the continents shifted or things

      The National Trust is an organisation in Britain dedicated to preserving historical buildings, landmarks and areas of historical interest. For example, Shakespeare's house, stately homes, Stonehenge.

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