The Sarah Jane Adventures

Season 3 Episode 1

Prisoner of the Judoon (1)

Aired Monday 4:35 PM Oct 15, 2009 on BBC
out of 10
User Rating
36 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Sarah Jane and the gang face the most dangerous day of their lives, as the rhino-like Judoon return. When prisoner Androvax the Destroyer crash-lands on Earth, a Veil is set free and starts to turn Earth's technology against itself.

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  • Someone Stepped Into My Life Written by Phil Ford Directed by Joss Agnew

    Androvax (to Luke): "No wonder Sarah Jane is so proud of you. It makes me want to be sick."

    In the last few weeks, I've been going through the first two seasons of this series, following the more devastating events of Torchwood's third season and in terms of an opening episode, this is certainly a show that's become more and more in its stride. It's practically glowing with confidence.

    Following the format from the previous two seasons, the opening story featured a race familiar to viewers but essentially new to the Bannerman Road gang. The Judoon (or for the most part, one called Tybo) crash landed to Earth and as a result, brought a new enemy with him as well. Trust such a thing to happen on the series.

    In terms of threats, the Androvax was something of an interesting creature. For the briefest of moments, there was a fleeting possibility that he could be a victim of the Judoon but it's only brief. The Androvax not only managed to escape Tybo's clutches but it was also able to catch a lot of trouble in such a short amount of time.

    When Sarah Jane and Clyde were talking to the distressed little girl, I don't think there was a single person who was surprised when the girl suddenly read as extraterrestrial on Sarah Jane's scanner. Sarah Jane then becoming the next person to be possessed by the Androvax was another non surprise.

    Elisabeth Sladen certainly has history in playing a possessed Sarah Jane and it's something that she does rather well. Here as the Androvax, she gets to be the villain for the most part of the story and clearly had a ball in the role reversal from her more heroic alter ego.

    In evil form, Sarah Jane was able to threaten the destruction of Mr Smith before actually setting him to destruct when Clyde, Luke, Rani and Tybo made the mistake of going up to the attic at the worst time. Only for Luke's quick thinking, they would've been blown to pieces. Got to love Luke for remembering about Mr Smith's most important of priorities.

    Of course such evilness didn't stop there. Androvax took over Genetec Systems during the second half of the story, went above and beyond from keeping the gang at bay and even had no problem in toying with Luke's concerns over his mother's safety.

    One of the main plots in this story involved the advancement of nanogenes and Androvax spotted a wonderful opportunity with them as well. The nanogenes were not only capable of building it a spaceship to flee the Judoon and the threat of death but it also served as a way of destroying the Earth as well.

    Time and time again you just wonder why the aliens of the story just don't leave Earth alone and concentrate mainly on escape. I suppose because there's often certain viewer exasperation on the very idea, this story attempted to give Androvax more depth.

    The creature's reveal of anger about his own world being frozen is understandable but naturally doesn't justify his actions. Still though, it does make for some interesting debate, especially as it proved to be the very thing for Sarah Jane to get out of her body.

    However in terms of the actual story, I can't help but wonder if the Androvax is something we'll see back in the near future. He certainly made for an interesting threat and it's not like the story actually attempted to redeem him in the end either. It just explained why he was so hell bent on destruction of Earth along with his own survival.

    As for the Judoon, they are certainly served well by the overall story as well. For the most part, it's just Tybo and he's certainly a barrel of laughs. Mainly for some of his ineptitude and also due to his interaction with the kids of the episode. His intolerance for them is mostly funny, even if his appearance gives Clyde enough ammo for the entire story.

    Still there are a few times in the story when you worry about whether or not Tybo might lose the plot altogether and do more harm to either Luke or Rani than just destroy their mobiles. Sometimes, Tybo showed more restraint with the kids than you would expect from a Judoon.

    As for punishing them – well, I don't think they're going to be that bothered in strictly being Earth bound for the time being. Unless The Doctor during his imminent appearance decides to give them a small trip in the TARDIS. Oh come on, it's not like there's anyone who isn't aware of that massive spoiler by now.

    Another fun element of this story was the Chandra parents getting a little in on the action. Gita made a point of dragging Haresh to Genetec Systems and both of them reacted reasonably well when confronted by an army of Judoon. I know Digital Spy weren't particularly keen on their inclusion in the story but I really can't see where they're coming from on this one. They were fine with me.

    It also just goes to show that with both the Chandra parents being aware of alien life, then there can't be much longer until they realise that Rani actually knows more than she was letting as well. Their reactions will certainly be interesting. I think Haresh will probably react worst to Rani getting involved in Sarah Jane's world.

    Also in "Prisoner Of The Judoon"

    This continued with previous season openers with Sarah Jane talking about her adventures out in the universe through voice over.

    Sarah Jane: "I went to places beyond my wildest dreams and met creatures beyond my darkest nightmares and all of it was amazing."

    Sarah Jane's history of possession has been in stories such as "Planet Of The Spiders" and "The Hand Of Fear" to name but two.

    Clyde (re Judoon): "So they're the good guys?"

    Sarah Jane: "Depends on your point of view. From what I've heard their methods aren't exactly softly softly."

    Tybo (re Androvax): "Prisoner was secured. I do not answer to humans."

    Sarah Jane: "You crashed and let some creature that has already destroyed 12 planets loose on our world. I think you answer to all of us, Captain Tybo."

    The format's changed this season. Instead of next episodes airing on CBBC at 5.15pm, both parts of each story are on Thursday and Fridays on BBC1 at 4.35pm. That works for me.

    Mr Smith: "If that were Sarah Jane I was talking to, she wouldn't need to ask."

    Androvax (as Sarah Jane): "I am Sarah Jane. I've just been upgraded and you will obey me because if I understand it, that is what you are programmed to do. That is your purpose."

    Gita (to Haresh): "That's your problem my darling. If you want to grow in corporate floristry, you have to learn to think outside the seed box. It's a planet eat, planet world, Haresh, believe me. Now, come on."

    During the attic scene with Mr Smith, the upcoming animated serial, "Dreamland" was referenced.

    Haresh (to Judoon): "Hello and, welcome to Earth."

    Gita: "It's very nice to meet you."

    Androvax: "Why can't you just be quiet? I needed a body to hide in, not a conscience."

    Sarah Jane: "Everyone has a conscience, Androvax, even you. You just buried it so deep down you can't hear it anymore."

    It's an interesting coincidence that Tybo didn't scan Luke and discover his origins. Probably would've caused a hindrance, plot wise.

    Gita (to Haresh, re Judoon): "These are aliens with guns. I think we should be calling the police and not playing I Spy."

    Rani: "Think! What would Luke do?"

    Clyde: "I don't know. I get by on good looks and one liners. I'm not supposed to understand all this techie stuff."

    Rani: "Yeah, I know you're the cool one but cool isn't much help right now."

    Androvax (part of a race called the Veil) destroyed 12 world and earned the same moniker that Davros gave to The Doctor in "Journey's End". He also left Sarah Jane one hell of a cryptic warning.

    Androvax: "You will be destroyed in the end. If not by me, then someone will destroy you, Sarah Jane Smith."

    Chronology: Unspecified but seemingly 2009 based perhaps?

    "Prisoner Of The Judoon" marked a breezy, fun, confident opener for the series. If this opening story is enough to go on, then we have another good season to look forward to, don't we?moreless
  • A solid start to Series 3 (A review for both parts)

    It has to be said that this episodes shown a huge improvement to the show in every regards except, arguably, the storyline.

    Its very hard for me to judge the script harshly because this is written for a young audience, so as someone who watches the show simply beause I watch Doctor Who and Torchwood, Ive got to judge it on what it is, not what I want it to be.

    One thing is certain, the plotline is solid and well thought through. This could have been done in DW or TW; its a clever idea, and one perfect for SJA. Theres clever use of established things in the Who universe, from UNIT to the Judoon, and new enemy is a great addition to the Who-universe as well as having his own clever storyline.

    It was fun to see Sarah Jane play a bad guy, although it was far more fun and camp than any threat or danger that was presented. This was something of a weak point at times, with (sorry Sladen) a bit of acting that was too cheesy. (But again this was probably perfect for the targeted audience)

    As I said at the begining, the rise in quality was obvious. Whilst there is obvious points for improvement in all aspect of the CGI, for a kids show and for a show on a BBC (Or UK in general) budget, it was all beyond my expectations, with a considerable leap from series 1 & 2, and at the time, I was equally surprised with them! The same goes for camera use, soundtrack, editing and all other effects.

    9.5 is admittedly an over generous score. If I was to be harsh however it wouldn't get anything lower than 7.5. This is the opener to the series and I have no doubt there will be a progression in excitement throughout the series.moreless
  • A good improvement from season 2.

    Well Sarah Jane's back and ready for action as the new season starts. You can notice some improvements like its now in HD, the writing sounds more believable and some more interesting aliens. Clyde, Luke and Rani are what really keep the show running with some great performances. I'm sorry to say this but Sarah Jane's acting was a bit poor. In the story she gets taken over by a creature and the way shes does it is laughable. The weird evil grin she makes her look constipated. And when she talks to Mr Smith shes sounds drunk. The Judoon in the story is humorous too, but I don't want to give it away. Anyway I'll give it a 7, a good way to start a season.

  • Sarah Jane is BACK, and how better to start the third series with: a Judoon who loses it's prisoner, a "destroyer of worlds"! Sarah Jane, a good looking Luke, a very funny Clyde, investigator Rani and intergalactic policemen, Judoon have to find him soon!moreless

    AMAZING start to the series, i was glued to the screen! Luke has never been better looking, hahaha! Liz Sladen is a better actress then I ever thought! I mean i could NEVER act like she did while she was possessed... she looked sexy hahaha and I'm not the only one who thinks that, just look up on the internet hahaha i still cant believe she is 61... maybe 48 but not 61!!!!!

    The mr Smith expoding left me on tender hooks even though i knew they would get out of it in the next episode... i couldnt wait even a day!!! let alone the week im having to wait right now!!!moreless
Paul Kasey

Paul Kasey

Captain Tybo

Guest Star

Nicholas Briggs

Nicholas Briggs

Captain Tybo (voice)

Guest Star

Terence Maynard

Terence Maynard

Madison Yorke

Guest Star

Alexander Armstrong

Alexander Armstrong

Mr Smith (voice)

Recurring Role

Mina Anwar

Mina Anwar

Gita Chandra

Recurring Role

Ace Bhatti

Ace Bhatti

Haresh Chandra

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (3)

    • Sarah Jane: Humans don't matter, under the articles of the Shadow Proclamation we barely exist; too primitive.
      Clyde: You know a planet could start to get a complex.

    • Clyde: So what was that? A meteor or a comet or something really cool, please tell me it was something cool.
      Luke: A body entering the Earth's atmosphere generates temperatures in excess of 1600 degrees centigrade. No way was it something cool, Clyde.
      Clyde: Yeah, yeah, still got a long way to go with that humour thing, my young padawan.

    • Tybo: (regarding Androvax): Prisoner was secured. I do not answer to humans.
      Sarah Jane: You crashed and let some creature that has already destroyed 12 planets loose on our world. I think you answer to all of us, Captain Tybo.

  • NOTES (1)

    • This is the third appearance of the Judoon, they also feature in the Doctor Who episodes Smith and Jones and The Stolen Earth.


    • Clyde: (to Luke) Still got a long way to go with that humour thing, my young padawan.

      Padawan is a term used in the Star Wars franchise to describe an apprentice Jedi Knight.

    • Clyde: I reckon he just wants your mum to help him phone...home...or something.

      Phone home is the catch-cry of the unnamed alien in the blockbuster 1982 film E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. The phrase has become clichéd over time, a point Clyde appears to recognise.

    • Rani: Who'd you think you are, Jack Bauer?

      Jack Bauer is the protagonist of the long running American series 24. The best agent of the fictional Counter Terrorism Unit.

    • Clyde: Unless they're Triffid's.

      Triffids are a large, venomous plant from the John Wyndham novel Day of the Triffids. They are capable of locomotion and kill by means of a poisonous stinger, then wait for their victim to rot before they digest the flesh.

    • Clyde: Oh great, a pan-galactic PC Plod

      PC Plod was a character from the children's books and later animated series Noddy, a steadfast but somewhat slow-witted policeman.