Doctor Who

Season 1 Episode 5

World War Three (2)

16
Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Apr 23, 2005 on BBC America
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (20)

8.1
out of 10
Average
627 votes
  • enjoy

    9.0
    great..
  • "Harriet Jones, MP for Flightdale "Yes. We know who you are" That. Joke. Never. Gets. Old

    5.0
    All right, let's just get this arduous review over and done with. When last we left our heroes; The Doctor was being electrocuted, Rose and two government officials were cornered and in danger of death, and Jackie was being menaced by a pudgy, baby-faced alien. Yup, you heard me right these aliens that Murray Gold's bombastic music tried so hard to make us terrified of during last week's cliffhanger have a striking resemblance to a green cabbage patch doll. I'm sorry, maybe my imagination is beginning to get a bit rusty, but I have a hard time being afraid of something that not only looks like a green poster-child baby (the sort you see on the Pampers ads) but blunders around with impractical, dangling claws that couldn't grip the broad end of a funnel. When your body looks like an overweight Gollum and your face like then you've got problems with your design. The glowing zipper forehead was a bit creepy, I grant you, but it is so overused within this episode that it loses all potency. Also um why exactly did The Doctor's sticking his hot name-tag on the 'naked' Slitheen instantly fry the others too? Are those hideous compression-field-collar things they wear somehow connected? Are the loincloths fitted with an intercom? Seriously! These are all examples of the bad writing that runs rampant throughout this two-parter.



    As a whole, I give The Aliens of London/World War Three a 5/10. It's not the worst episode ever written, just by virtue of the presence of Harriet Jones and Jackie Tyler, but it's definitely not one I will ever watch again.

  • World War Three

    10
    World War Three was a perfect episode of Doctor Who. I really enjoyed watching how the story played out as The Slitheen plotted to take over the world. The special effects were pretty great and there was a lot of action scenes with the aliens. It was interesting to see how every thing played out. I really liked Harriet Jones and the situations she found herself in. The ending was great as Rose was confronted by her loved ones. I look forward to watching what happens next!!!!!!!!!
  • Lots of potential, ruined by a pathetic alien making me wonder why 2 parts were truly necessary to tell this medial story.

    7.0
    There was so much potential to this story. Some of the dialogue between Rose, the Doctor and Jackie are well done pointing to an important issue about companions and their families. This juxtaposition of safety vs adventure where the Doctor despite wanting to be responsible for those he travels with cannot promise any assurances. Unfortunately most of this is passed over as we have to deal with a pathetic enemy.

    The Slitheen are possible the worst Doctor Who enemy out there. Sure they are tall rubber suits, but they really don't look all that intimidating. In CG they looked more menacing as their was a fluidity to their movement with a sense of true hunter about them, but the disconnect to the costumes where it looked like a bunch of clumsy folks stumbling around in rubber suits. Are we seriously supposed to fear an alien race that would explode if they reached their hands into a jar of pickles?

    There was potential here for a deep meaningful story and you could of had your fun, but let us find some aliens that could have made us think our heroes are in some kind of actual danger.
  • Trapped in Downing Street with Harriot Jones and Rose by his side, can the Doctor stop the Slitheen from tricking Earth into Nuking itself into a pile of radioactive fuel for the ruthless criminal family to sell off as starship fuel?

    9.5
    'Harriot Jones MP for Flydale North' should be considered the Doctor's companion in this episode because of the current situation thier all in. But enough about that, the actress who plays Harriot also did a great job in the horror/Comedy 'Shaun of the Dead' playing Shaun's mother Barbara.
    Back to the story, its odd the Doctor toke so long to identify thier species and funny on how mickey commented on the thier planet Rexicoricophilavitorious.
    With this episode's ending, the Doctor is sure he doesn't want any information opn himself left on earth, since there IS always a list of the dead next to it, due ot the guilt of the Time War's after-effects he's still resolving.
  • The Slitheeeeeeeen part two! :D

    9.0
    I love how the Doctor works out what they are. It never fails to amuse me that bit. The whole breaking down each part of them to work out what planet they are from to figure out how to destroy them was really interesting for me, and I could watch that same bit over and over again and be utterly interested in it and I have no idea why.

    That being said - an interesting episode that seems to go so quickly everytime I watch it. A very interesting ending, but something that has always annoyed me was that it destroyed Number 10 yet we never really hear anything about it ever again in the episodes yet we hear about Harriet (who will NEVER fail to annoy me)
  • This episode revolves around the Doctor's sacrifice, and the Slitheen.

    8.3
    In this episode we see more of Mickey & Jackie and find out more about their background and relationship. The Doctor must make the ultimate sacrifice as he has the choice: death to him, Rose and the Slitheen or death tot he world.

    Of course Rose and the Doctor wouldn't die so early on in the series so it answered the question before we found out.

    Once again there is a bit of silly humour but that gets better as we get to more serious conversations.

    For the first 2 parter, episodes 4&5 weren't that bad and I am glad they did it.

    All in all, a good episode.
  • The Doctor, Rose and the people they care about the most are all in danger but there is no help. What Do the Slitheen want? Who to escape? Written By; Russel T Davies Directed By; Keith Boak

    9.0
    Following the events of Aliens In London, The Doctor manages to push the shock of electric into a Slitheen and the the shock is felt in all of them. Jackie manages to escape to Mickie's, Rose and Harriot get chased and manage to hide and the Doctor tell the guards that the prime minister is a Slitheen but the prime minister orders the guards to shoot him. The Doctor escapes into the lift and finds Rose and Harriot. They then lock them selves into the cabinet room. The Doctor then speeks to Margret Blaine, who is also a disguised Slitheen, who tells him the Slitheen FAMILY want to reduce the Earth to 'moltan slack' and sell it. The Doctor then shuts them in again. At Mickie's, Jackie is talking to Mickie when the doorbell rings. It's a Slitheen! On the phone too The Doctor and Co. The Doctor relises they are a family from the race of 'Raxacoricofallapatoriuns' and tells Jackie to throw vinegar at it. She does and the Slitheen exsplodes. Mickie then hacks into the royal navies computer, on The Doctor's orders and sends a missile to No. 10. Rose and Co. take cover in a cupboard and they all survive. The Slitheen aren't so lucky. Rose then leaves with The Doctor again.

    This episode is a great conclusion to it's first part and really finishes the story well. The acting is again superb.

    Best Actor/ Actress; Penolope Wilton
  • With something of a disjointed ending to "Aliens Of London", I hate to admit that the very start to our concluding hour to the Slitheen wasn't getting off to a good start itself.

    7.5
    The tension that lacked in the closing moments of last week didn't seem to be making an appearance here and the first ten minutes bounced from The Doctor inflicting a bit of pain on our green skinned nemesis, fleeing from security to Rose and Harriett almost being killed. It wasn't the best in terms of Russell's writing and who would've thought that The Doctor trapping himself, Rose and Harriett inside the Cabinet room would've been a sigh of relief? I didn't but given the rather silly opening of this episode, I found it to be a blessing in disguise as The Doctor and company devised some plans. As the Slitheen continue their quest, their real reasons for the take over and destruction of planet Earth was revealed to be less insidious that thought. It turns out that all they really want to do is to obliterate Earth so they can sell it bit by bit? Fantastic scheme that is as it does little to improve our 10 Downing Street saga. Plot wise, this seems a little to futile and for me the straw that broke the Camel's back. Despite some great acting by David Verrey as Joseph Green and Annette Badland as Margaret Blaine, I just couldn't take this plot any more serious. For me the danger was lacking and I just wanted this lot exterminated (hint for next week). Having being rescued by Mickey, I found Rose's boyfriend and Jackie's scenes far more interesting to watch mainly because there was better characterisation with them than with the Slitheen. In fact you could argue that it was Mickey and Jackie who did more to save the day than The Doctor, Rose or Harriett. After killing one of the Slitheen with a vile combination of vinegar, eggs and gherkins (it seems that breaking calcium is a weakness for this lot), Jackie and Mickey were then put in the unenviable position of endangering Rose. Let's just that both of them had tough decisions to make in order to do the right thing and prove their love for her. Jackie got some wonderful turning points in this episode as she openly expressed more rage at The Doctor for constantly putting her daughter at risk, even if Rose made it clear that it's her choice to be with The Doctor. Jackie seems to be a good enough parent if a little clueless about what her daughter really wants out of life, but at least a lot of what she says and feels and how she expresses it is believable. She treats Mickey like the boy who isn't good enough for her child, yet lets him take charge when a situation is heavy and she's out of her depth. This is made into an example when Mickey hacks into the royal Navy base and uses a missile from a submarine to hit Downing Street. Jackie could've stopped him but deep down she knew both him and The Doctor were doing the right thing. In the end she also admitted to liking The Doctor (well she did try it on with him "Rose") and hinted that Rose felt more for him. I like The Doctor and Rose together but I'm not sure about a coupling though. Is it really necessary? It's Mickey however who is really the highlight of the episode and I just absolutely loved his interactions with The Doctor tonight. They were simply priceless. The constant baiting Mickey had to endure forced him to be a hero and even The Doctor respected him enough to invite him to tag along in the TARDIS. I wasn't surprised Mickey rejected his offer though, even though he probably knows that by staying behind he may lose Rose. It was very easy to like and feel for the guy in this episode. The explosion that wiped out the Slitheen (hopefully the lot of them) didn't excite me. I found it to be too random and after a messy exposition I was only too glad to rid of them to really care how they ended but the final ten minutes of this episode was the best. With all the other MP's obliterated, Harriett is now in a position of power and it was probably her idea for the whole "Alien Hoax" line the press spun in the aftermath of the Slitheen. That was a cop-out but understandable. As for Rose and The Doctor, their bond definitely seems to be intensifying. The Doctor had a hard time telling Jackie he could always protect her. Rose on the other hand knows he can't and has just gotten to accept it. She also trusts his instincts even if she isn't afraid to challenge them from time to time. Jackie and Mickey may love her but I don't thin they'll ever be completely okay with Rose always coming and going in and out of their lives but as the final scene indicates, they don't a choice in the matter.
  • Well, that's the first of the two-story arcs finished, so what'm I left thinking?

    7.2
    The plot does appear to fly past you at the speed of light sometimes. In this case, the fact that the main story [of the Slitheen takeover] finishes and leaves another 10 minutes of episide time to fill for character exposition, basically.

    I wasn't impressed by the acting of Micky and Rose's Mum in the first episode, 'Rose', but it grew on me here, to the point where I tolerated both. Rose's mum still seems too overprotective - and especially at the end - very shallow. However, these remain minor faults in the scheme of things, and hopefully these characters won't return for a while, since Rose is now pretty much off with the Doctor for good.

    The series continues along the 'moral' lines, with greed being the issue here, as in The End of the World. I don't have a problem with the show trying to be slightly more 'moral', especially since it's aired as a piece of family viewing.

    I've noticed many complaints amongst previous episodes about the background music. I watched tonight's episode with this in mind, but I have to admit not finding any fault to it. It followed the norm - fast, upbeat drums during exciting bits, slow violins during emotional scenes - and yes, this is cliché, but there's nothing wrong with it.

    Even more impressive are the computer generated effects in the episode. The BBC haven't skimped here at all, and everything from the missile flying through London [which reminded me of the beginning of the Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies] to the Slitheen giving chase looked impressive. I'd say the CGI Slitheen actually looked more impressive than their costumed counterparts, probably because in CGI there's none of the comical head-bobbing that happens when becostumed Slitheen try to run.

    While I think about it, the episode title - "World War Three" - doesn't seem entirely accurate - there being very little war on a global scale involved, besides the UN allowing the UK to launch nuclear missiles.

    I liked the fact that throughout the episode arc, the [original, dead] Prime Minister remained nameless, and even when the dead body fell out the cupboard, it looked sufficiently like the back of Tony Blair that the episode could easily have been set tomorrow, for all we might know.

    The current series is going from strength to strength, and it looks like getting even better next week, when the Daleks return. The trailer was scintillating, anyways.
  • War! What Is It Good For?... Profit, if you're a Slitheen.

    8.6
    Much, much better than its preceding part, ‘World War Three’ provides a thrilling and exciting end to this first two-part story. Following directly on from ‘Aliens Of London’, the Doctor escapes the Slitheen and meets up with Rose and Harriet, confining themselves to a sealed room within Downing Street. The Slitheen’s nefarious plan to start World War Three then profit from it by selling off a radioactive Earth to intergalactic bargain-hunters is revealed and the Doctor is determined to stop them. As the UN decide on whether to release nuclear weapons codes, the Doctor comes up with a plan. But being stuck in a sealed room, there’s not much he can do. Step forward Mickey and his PC… Much more action- which is what Dr Who does best- and a playful yet well-written script makes this a great episode.

    Whilst there’s still a lot of soapy drama here, it’s more muted; more understated, which is good. I even began to sympathise slightly with Jackie, with her fears that Rose is going to be in danger. What parent doesn’t want their child to be safe and sound? It was good that the antagonism between the Doctor and Mickey had dulled slightly during this episode, as that was another element to ‘Aliens Of London’ that really wound me up. Penelope Wilton continues to impress as Harriet Jones, better in her expanded role- she particularly shone in the scene where she stepped up to make the decision. Annette Badland was also good as Margaret Blaine- she was somewhat sinister when explaining the Slitheen master plan to the Doctor, which worked.

    Plus there’s a scathing swipe at the British government with the fabricated Slitheen story of ‘massive weapons of destruction’ that can be armed in forty-five seconds which amazes me even now that it made it into broadcast (given the fact that a similarly flimsy claim was used to justify the invasion of Iraq at the time). Generally, a much stronger and better episode. And the preview for the next episode was just the icing on the cake… the return of the Daleks. Can’t wait!
  • The Doctor and Rose attempt to avert World War Three...

    9.4
    "I think you'll find the Prime Minister is an alien in disguise..."

    Basic Plot
    With the Doctor, Rose and Harriet Jones (MP for Flydale North) trapped inside Downing Street; their only option to stop the Slitheen from destroying the world is to aim a missile at themselves.

    The Aliens of London story concludes in this much faster paced and more exciting second part. There are some great scenes in this episode - The Doctor thinking ("Narrows it down!") and the regulars having to nearly blow themselves up to save the world.
  • Alien action, blowing up historical places with missiles and almost swearing Slitheen. Welcome to the mad mad world of Doctor Who.

    10
    I have to say this was not as good as “Aliens of London” but it was still great.

    One thing I found hilarious was when the Slitheen farted and blew up in Mickey’s kitchen! I also liked the Doctor meeting Harriet Jones “Who’s alien?” and them and Rose in that bunker at Downing Street.

    Oh and I thought that Mickey being able to launch a missile from the internet was a bit stupid, but it’s Doctor Who so it worked!

    A good episode but a let down after the build-up of AoL.

    The Slitheen in this episode were great. I like the Slitheen. Slitheen are good.
  • The less than amazing conclusion to the World War Three two parter...

    8.5
    The less than amazing conclusion to the World War Three two parter...

    I actually rated this episode lower than I did the pervious episode, although I enjoyed it more. This is mainly because I was very disappointed in this episode. I find the acting of the mother and Mickey to be horrendous. I would be happy to never see either one of them again, especially the mother.

    Anyone notice the differences in behavior among the Slitheen? When the aliens were CGI, they moved quickly, aggressively, powerfully and appeared deadly. However, when they stood around they appeared harmless. They never even attempted to attack the Doctor in the episode.

    I do not know. Had the behavior of the aliens been changed, this episode would have been much better.

    I am looking forward to next week though, my first viewing of the Daleks.
  • Conclusion A much better second outing in this two part story and restored my faith in the writers of this show, that they know what they are doing.

    8.2
    A much better second outing in this two part story and restored my faith in the writers of this show, that they know what they are doing and that I should as a fan of the show, sit back and enjoy the fruit of their efforts, which I did.
    For, “Aliens of London” the first part of this two part episode story was a ramshackle of an episode, moving way to fast for anybody to stop, caught their breathe and take in what was going on with that episode. The only thing that a viewer of that episode could do was to hold on tight for the ride. But, “World War III” is a much better episode, and it seems that the writers have learned from their lesson from the pervious one and slowed it down to point where a person can gasp what is going on in this episode.
    This slowing down of the episode allowed more things to be slipped into the episode, like more small snippets of character developments for all of the main characters that make you want to stop and take notice at what is going on. Like Rose’s Mother concern about the safely of her daughter while she on these travels and the Doctor’s own telling monuments at the end of the episode. In which he accepts that Mickey is somebody that he could trust when the chips are down and that two of them come to an understanding with each other, that each other aren’t as bad as they first thought that they were. But even with that, the two of them still have their faults with each other and that there is nothing that they can do about it to change that part of themselves.
    Another thing that surprised me with this episode are the numerous amount of political allegories that were embedded in this second half of the story, from misinformation about the infamous Weapons of Mass Destruction, to the fuel crisis and the race to find alternated fuels, what people will do to get them, and that the famous parable “The Route of All Evil is Money”. It seemed that this episode of the Doctor Who had token a lesson from Star Trek, whom always had an episode that was about a particular issue. This to me was a slight, but welcome deviation to normal format that this show had from the pervious viewing of the show in both the old series and this new one.
  • War Is Not The Answer Written by Russell T Davies Directed by Keith Boak

    7.0
    With something of a disjointed ending to “Aliens Of London”, I hate to admit that the very start to our concluding hour to the Slitheen wasn’t getting off to a good start itself. The tension that lacked in the closing moments of last week didn’t seem to be making an appearance here and the first ten minutes bounced from The Doctor inflicting a bit of pain on our green skinned nemesis, fleeing from security to Rose and Harriett almost being killed.

    It wasn’t the best in terms of Russell’s writing and who would’ve thought that The Doctor trapping himself, Rose and Harriett inside the Cabinet room would’ve been a sigh of relief? I didn’t but given the rather silly opening of this episode, I found it to be a blessing in disguise as The Doctor and company devised some plans.

    As the Slitheen continue their quest, their real reasons for the take over and destruction of planet Earth was revealed to be less insidious that thought. It turns out that all they really want to do is to obliterate Earth so they can sell it bit by bit? Fantastic scheme that is as it does little to improve our 10 Downing Street saga. Plot wise, this seems a little to futile and for me the straw that broke the Camel’s back. Despite some great acting by David Verrey as Joseph Green and Annette Badland as Margaret Blaine, I just couldn’t take this plot any more serious. For me the danger and I just wanted this lot exterminated (hint for next week).

    Having being rescued by Mickey, I found Rose’s boyfriend and Jackie’s scenes far more interesting to watch mainly because there was better characterisation with them than with the Slitheen. In fact you could argue that it was Mickey and Jackie who did more to save the day than The Doctor, Rose or Harriett. After killing one of the Slitheen with a vile combination of vinegar, eggs and gherkins (it seems breaking calcium is a weakness), Jackie and Mickey were then put in the unenviable position of endangering Rose. Let’s just that both of them had tough decisions to make in order to do the right thing and prove their love for her.

    Jackie got some wonderful turning points in this episode as she openly expressed more rage at The Doctor for constantly putting her daughter at risk, even if Rose made it clear that it’s her choice to be with The Doctor. Jackie seems to be a good enough parent if a little clueless about what her daughter really wants out of life, but at least a lot of what she says and feels and how she expresses it is believable. She treats Mickey like the boy who isn’t good enough for her child, yet lets him take charge when a situation is heavy and she’s out of her depth.

    This is made into an example when Mickey hacks into the royal Navy base and uses a missile from a submarine to hit Downing Street. Jackie could’ve stopped him but deep down she knew both him and The Doctor were doing the right thing. In the end she also admitted to liking The Doctor (well she did try it on with him “Rose”) and hinted that Rose felt more for him. I like The Doctor and Rose together but I’m not sure about a coupling though. Is it really necessary?

    It’s Mickey however who is really the highlight of the episode and I just absolutely loved his interactions with The Doctor tonight. They were simply priceless. The constant baiting Mickey had to endure forced him to be a hero and even The Doctor respected him enough to invite him to tag along in the TARDIS. I wasn’t surprised Mickey rejected his offer though, even though he probably knows that by staying behind he may lose Rose. It was very easy to like and feel for the guy in this episode.

    The explosion that wiped out the Slitheen (hopefully the lot of them) didn’t excite me. I found it to be too random and after a messy exposition I was only too glad to rid of them to really care how they ended but the final ten minutes of this episode was the best. With all the other MP’s obliterated, Harriett is now in a position of power and it was probably her idea for the whole “Alien Hoax” line the press spun in the aftermath of the Slitheen. That was a cop-out but understandable.

    As for Rose and The Doctor, their bond definitely seems to be intensifying. The Doctor had a hard time telling Jackie he could always protect her. Rose on the other hand knows he can’t and has just gotten to accept it. She also trusts his instincts even if she isn’t afraid to challenge them from time to time. Jackie and Mickey may love her but I don’t thin they’ll ever be completely okay with Rose always coming and going in and out of their lives but as the final scene indicates, they don’t a choice in the matter.

    Also in “World War Three”

    Why are the “Previously On” bits still silent? It’s a little weird.

    Doctor: “That’s never going to work, is it?”
    Sergeant: “No”
    Doctor: “Fair enough”.

    When trying to find Harriett, the Asquith Slitheen described her as an old girl with stale perfume and brittle bones. Margaret described Rose as young and hormonal.

    Doctor: “Harriett Jones, I think I like you”
    Harriett: “I think I like you too”.

    History lesson about 10 Downing Street: 2000 years ago it was a marsh land, in 1730 it was occupied by Mr Chicken and 1976 it was a Cabinet room. The security doors were installed in 1991.

    Mickey: “No-one’s gonna look for you here, especially since you hate me so much”
    Jackie: “You saved my life. God, how embarrassing is that?”

    The real name of the Slitheen I can’t even pronounce, let alone spell it but it’s long enough and featured quite a few f letters in it. Other disguises that they had though were as Captain Tennent James from RAF, Ewan McAlistair, the deputy security of the Scottish Embassy and Silvia Delaney, chairperson of North Sea boating club.

    Margaret (re fighting the Slitheen): “What, you trapped in your box?”
    Doctor: “Yes, me”.
    Rose (re strategy): “Do it”
    Doctor: “You don’t even know what it is, you just leap?”

    Although uncredited we saw Navin Chowdry in this episode as The Doctor moved Indra’s body away. He apologised, though he wasn’t responsible for the man’s death.

    Jackie: “I could stop you”
    Mickey: “Do it then”.

    There was a fair amount of political referencing in this episode, including a jibe made about those infamous WMD dossiers in regards to Saddam Hussein. The missile Mickey also launched was titled UGM 848. Oh and the Bad Wolf scribe was take off the TARDIS here.

    Harriett (to the public): “Mankind stands tall. Proud and undefeated, God bless the human race”.

    Harriett ran for three successful terms and is seen as an architect of Britain’s Golden Age. I wonder if we will see her again.

    Jackie: “My daughter saved the world”
    Rose: “Even the Doctor helped”.

    Other stuff: While away Jackie has told everyone that Rose has been an au-pair in France, Rose has a TARDIS picture on her phone and the Doctor and Rose’s next journey is the horse head nebula.

    In this episode’s defence, “World War Three” was a better instalment than “Aliens Of London” but it took quite a while for things to actually pick up in it though. The destruction of London we saw here is definitely on nose in the wake of the attacks that happened last July. However I thought some of the effects were a little dodgy and while I enjoyed this more than last week’s episode, it was unsatisfying.

  • The Doctor and Rose race against time to stop the Slitheen from causing a nuclear war that will dstroy the planet.

    8.0
    This a great second installment. I would say it is just has good if not better than the first installment and is terrific entertainment. The slitheen one again spend most of their time farting and the Doctor and Rose spend most of their time stopping a nuclear holocaust. Great fun.
  • Some bits are implausable even for sci fi, but this is still great fun to watch.

    7.5
    As the conclusion to a two part episode, the Doctor's solution to saving the day is a bit of a let down as it is implausible even within the realms of fantasy and science fiction. Having said that it does make for a spectacular, Independence Day style action pinnacle.

    What saves this episode is the splicing of humour with action, which helps give this new series a good sense of fun so that even when some elements of the plot seem weak, it's very hard to get cynical about it.

    Perhaps head writer Russell T Davis' greatest asset as a writer is his keen understanding of great character drama. In his Whoniverse, it's not merely a case of good guys vs bad guys. By the end of the episode the Doctor is shown to be uncompassionate to the plight of his young campanion's mother, from whom he has taken her, leaving your sympathies slightly confused.

    Not the best episode of the new series but still great entertainment.
  • Slightly better...but that's not saying much.

    6.5
    The real weakness of this two-parter was exposed in this episode, which was the enemy just wasn't menacing. The threat wasn't credible. Plus, their motives (and execution) were confusing, and the political statements were more heavy-handed than they've ever been on the show.

    The two-parter played like those who don't like sci-fi think sci-fi should play -- it played into all the stereotypes. A big part of that was because it was set in the present day. And yet, the threat of the Gelth in ep 3 or Cassandra destroying the last survivors of earth in ep 2 seemed more...plausible.

    What redeemed this episode beyond its premise was once again, the characters. The phone sequence with Mickey and Jackie, and the Doctor, Rose and Harriet Jones (another superfluous character) was exciting and suspenseful. There were some nice character moments there -- loved that the Doctor's thinking saved the world, but Rose's thinking actually saved their lives.

    The best moment of the ep is when Rose is at home, enjoying her normalcy...until she hears about the next potential adventure and realizes she can never really "go home again" If it was necessary for her to see her old life before making that choice, then this two-parter did serve a purpose. Still, there were better ways to do it.
  • I thought this was an improvement over Aliens of London, and so really Aliens of London has to be understood as just a first part to a better whole.

    7.7
    I thought this was an improvement over Aliens of London, and so really Aliens of London has to be understood as just a first part to a better whole. The farts are still there, but not quite as prevalent. And thus, not quite as bothersome. The Slitheen are better explained, the reason for the gas problems and the reason they're able to fit inside human bodies. The latter issue is something the original series probably would have failed to explain.

    The humor here is more along the lines of Rose, and thus far exceeds the efforts of Aliens of London. Mickey snapping a picture of the Slitheen with his picture phone was cool. The Doctor being cornered against a lift was likewise hilarious. And Rose and Harriet's running from the Slitheen was also inspired. Reminded me of Seeds of Death with Troughton running from the Ice Warriors. I was expecting Rose and Harriet to run through one door, only to have to go back the way they came.

    But the big thing for me was the use of the term "massive weapons of destruction." This was a blatant criticism of the Bush and Blair administration's use of a certain similar term, and their use of that term to frighten the world thus making their invasion of Iraq easier. It's rare for Doctor Who to sort of have that kind of real world statement on display. The Slitheen scared the UN by providing them with "indisputable proof" that the aliens had weapons of mass destruction aimed at the world. And while no such weapons actually existed, they were able to get UN approval to get access to nuclear weapons. Similarly, the Bush administration said they had "indisputable proof" that Iraq had WMD, and therefore got approval to invade, only to later find out that no such weapons actually existed. It's the use of the term "massive weapons of destruction" that really captures the idea. Any other word, like invasion fleet, or the H-Bomb or Doomsday, just wouldn't have captured it. When you take Aliens of London and WWIII both together, the destruction of Big Ben comes across very much like 9/11, and then as I said before about the WMD, well, it becomes quite obvious doesn't it? The more I think about it, the more I like it though.

    Also, is anyone else amused that they've painted the Bush/Blair figure or charicature as a farting trigger-happy incompetent??? lmao! (and in that regard, the farting thing in Aliens of London becomes much more tolerable!)

    One thing that was strange was how the Doctor was able to overcome the electric ID badges. It just seemed too easy. The idea that it didn't work on him because he wasn't human...Funny, coz it worked on the Slitheen just fine who are also not human. Ok, yeah the Doctor's a timelord and the Slitheen are not, so there's that difference. And it has to be said, the device didn't kill the Slitheen. So it worked out fairly ok.

    Really I don't have too many complaints about the episode. It's a shame they had to dedicate two stories of the season to farting aliens. But other than that, this was much better.

    One sorta silly but terrifying thing about WWIII is the idea that someone could go online, hack into a government website and launch a missile...um, I certainly hope it's not that easy!! I wonder if they were trying to make a statement about the vulnerability of government computers...

    And a few more things to think about concerning the political satire (can't think of what else to call it), the idea that the chief Slitheen guy wants to get naked all the time! ha! "Victory should be naked!"

    Also, Harriet's comment at the end "God Bless the HUMAN RACE!" ha! (can I get a round of God Bless AMERICA from anyone?)

    In the scene where they want to execute the Doctor, the General reminds me something of John Ashcroft: hey, forget about a trial or civil rights, just execute him!

    Particularly good was the end with Rose and her mum, which was a jarring scene. In these first few stories, Rose is repeatedly faced with the question of whether she wants to continue on (you suspect it's because the writers didn't know if Billie would want to stay on, so they gave her lots of opportunities to leave lol). Now you sorta feel like we're beyond that, she's on for the long haul. It was a decision SHE had to make really (with some helpful pushing from the Doctor). Michael appears to have a point, it seems like there's some reason the Doctor wants her to come with him. It seems to be building up to that. But you also feel it's more spontaneous than planned out too. I almost have to say Rose has become one of my favorite companions already. And maybe that's the real reason the Doctor wants her around, because she's one of the best he's had as a companion.

    I gave it a 38.5.

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