When the young Maria Jackson moves to Banner Man Road after with her single mom after her parents divorce,she is almost instantly confronted by two mysterious. One is the her new school mate Kelsey's obsession with an energy drink called Bubble Shock,containing the unknown"organic" ingredient called Bane,and the other is her and her father Alan's secretive neighbor named Sarah-Jane Smith. At night Maria spies Sarah consorting with an angelic female alien. When discussing this with Kelsey on the tour of the bubble shock factory the next day,the pair find themselves in a puzzling environment of security scans and no cell phone zones. Sarah-Jane's curiosity has also gotten the best of her as she tries to interview the companies elusive president Miss Wormwood about the Bubble Shock company's seemingly bypassing the UK's new business regulations. Kelsey,having left the tour to use her cell phone,comes across an unseen area of the factory and to her surprise encounters a giant octopus like creature. Meanwhile a young child whose been held captive in the area escapes and ends up running away with Maria and Sarah-Jane when they both try to escape. Upon being caught and interrogated by Wormwood Kelsey's memories are erased as she is thought to be of no consequence. However the interview with Sarah-Jane Smith has peaked her interest so she sends her henchman to Banner Man Road to pursue her.
Though Sarah-Jane warns Maria and Kelsey not to be involved with her,the three are forced to remain together after Maria warns Sarah-Jane that of the henchmen chasing her. Upon entering Sarah-Jane's home,they are attacked by the same creature Kelsey had encountered. Sarah-Jane uses an unknown substance to defeat it and,by necessity is forced into showing Maria and Kelsey her upstairs workplace which includes a wealth of extra terrestrial artifacts, K-9 and her personal super computer called Mister Smith. One of Sarah-Jane's devices has determined that Bubble Shock's secret ingredient Bane is an alien secretion Meanwhile Wormwood fearful of being exposed,activates an enzyme within the beverage that allows her to control everyone who is drinking it-including Kelsey and Maria's father. Upon confronting Miss Wormwood Sarah-Jane is told the Bane constructed this child who ran away,who they call the Archetype from the memories of thousands of humans in order to gain knowledge for a premeditated invasion. Remembering the company's no cell phone policy,Maria uses hers to destroy the Bane factory and put a stop to the invasion. In the end Sarah-Jane embraces Maria as her trusted friend,and legally adopts the Archetype who she decides on naming Luke.
With three successful series of Doctor Who under his belt,the shows' producer Russel T. Davies gleefully decided to revive Elizabeth Sladen's beloved Doctor Who assistant Sarah-Jane Smith in her own series,surrounding her adventures with a new adopted son and his young neighborhood friends. Created for both young adults and their families,this pilot was an excellent way to get the show going. Luke emerges as fascinating character-created by a wealth of knowledge from thousands of human beings but at the same time completely new to the world. Sarah-Jane,now a character facing a life of dealing with extra terrestrials of all sorts but not really sure how to go about it,has come to live in her own isolated world until the open minded and yearning young Maria enters her life. The story itself is also very telling. In the characters of Kelsey and the insipid Miss Wormwood,you have representations of the spawns of every walking commercial and corporate thinking. Neither trust the other however with Miss Wormwood as the cold executive thinker and Kelsey as a confused and shallow young lady with little mind of her own. The events of the story help to motivate the camaraderie that develops from the loneliness of Sarah-Jane,Maria and Luke and how they came to know and trust one another.