Thursday, February 28, 2013

Doctor Who-Aliens Of London

                              When the doctor and Rose return to London,the doctor believes Rose has only been absent for twelves hours. But upon her going to visit her mother Jackie,the doctor discovers via a missing persons advertisement  that Rose has been listed as "missing" for an entire year. After finding herself unable to fully explain her absence to her mother,Rose and the doctor play witness to the landing of a UFO in the Thames. Believing humanity is on the threshold of history,the doctor accompanies Rose to a party at her mothers house where her boyfriend Mickey arrives and explains he was accused of murdering Rose in her absence. The UFO landing has resulting in mass hysteria and civil disobedience around the world. With the prime minister of England mysteriously missing,and MP Harriet Jones sent in to retrieve more information three awkward and insignificant members of parliament suddenly begin taking over the case in great secret. The  case,among other things,involves the pilot of the spaceship taken into medical custody.
Leaving Rose with the TARDIS key while he goes to investigate,
the doctor does some investigating of his own. In the morgue the alien pilot has escaped producing much anxiety to the forensic specialist looking in on it. 

           On his way to look into this the doctor is accosted by members of UNIT,after which he leads the puzzled soldiers to encounter the scared alien creature who they fire upon. Upon further investigation it turns out just to be an Earth pig that's been grafted into a humanoid body with sophisticated alien equipment  Harriet Jones meanwhile locked herself into the closet of the parliamentary cabinet meeting about the UFO only to discover something shocking. Upon rushing with Micky and Rose to meet up with the doctor,Jackie enters the TARDIS and believes the doctor is the key to the entire mystery. She calls an emergency number given on the TV and it isn't long before the doctor and Rose are honored guests with UNIT as parliament. All this after the doctors own investigation with the TARDIS computers reveal the UFO actually came out of the Earth and deliberately re-entered the atmosphere,with the faked alien pilot. Harriet confides to Rose this mysterious new trio investigating the crash are actually alien body snatchers she personally witnessed. By these time,each of these aliens reveal themselves before Jackie Tyler,the doctor as well as Rose and Harriet as being the Slitheen.

            One of the important elements of this story,that would be expanded on greatly with the eleventh doctor's encounter with Amy Pond much later,was the doctors awkward sense of timing. He is able to discern the difference between 12 months and 12 hours,however he is irritated at the middling goings on surrounding the psychological impact this has to Jackie and Mickey. This also points to the doctors lack of interest in "domesticity" in the TARDIS,which he seems to think will get in the way of his free spirited journey through time and space. Rose is generally the calm middle ground,supporting both the doctor and the skeptical Mickey as well as the frightened Harriet Jones upon the revelation of alien invaders in parliament itself. The Slitheen are portrayed for the first time in Doctor Who as the malicious and rather vulgar Slitheen family,constantly passing gas in their difficulty fitting into their disproportionate human skin "suits". This story also points to the doctors continual sense of compassion as he bemoans UNIT for the dozenth time for shooting the innocent and frightened mutated pig creature the Slitheen fashioned,and also his trying to help Rose's family and boyfriend to accept him as a help rather than a hindrance to their lives.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Doctor Who-The Unquiet Dead

                         Upon arriving in what he thinks is London in 1860,a quick glance at a newspaper by the doctor reveals he and Rose are  actually at Cardiff in 1869. They are unknowing participants in two events. At the Sneed Funereal Home,a group of cadavers have begun walking the streets on their own. And on this night,Christmas Eve as ,Charles Dickens is lecturing on the Cardiff Stage that evening when he plays witness,along with the doctor,to one of these cadavers-an elderly woman expelling an enormous level of floating blue energy. The doctor ends up riding with Sir Dickens,of whom he is a great admirer while Rose is knocked out with chloroform  by Mr.Sneed having witnessed the body. All of them end up at the Sneed Funereal Home where they all learn the truth of what has been happening. It completely co-ops Dickens,having taken the position of a realist,that such fanciful things are happening around him. But aside from the fact the doctor has already deduced they are dealing with a gaseous creature,another wrinkle has appeared in the delicate fabric of the situation. 

                         The doctor also eavesdrops on a private conversation between Rose and Sneed's servant Gwenyth where she reveals herself to be a psychic "seer" who is more aware of the situation,including the future world from which Rose comes,than believed. The doctor concludes this is because she was born near a rift between her universe and another. During a seance with the still skeptical Dickens,Gwenyth reveals these gaseous beings are the last survivors of a species called the Geth,who wish to use the bodies of dead humans to survive after being killed in the time war that killed the doctors people. Offering herself as a  medium between humanity and the Geth,Gwenyth again makes another surprising revelation: the Geth are not in fact few in number,but are a mass number of aliens who wish to murder humanity to make use of their bodies. Because she realizes her mistake,even after death,Gwenyth burns down the funereal home to close the rift and keep the Geth from destroying humanity. The doctor and Rose depart,having at least bought some wonder back into Dickens' life shortly before his death.

                  This story very much hearkens back to two important elements of the classic Doctor Who series: the historical stories of the first doctor era as well as the Hammer horror elements of the early fourth doctor stories. Charles Dickens,facing the end of his life during the beginning of the cynical aspect of the Victorian age,is soon confronted with a very different and intimidating new way of understanding the world: that the ghosts and phantoms he once rejected in his prose were in fact beings from another world he simply couldn't comprehend,even with his own advanced mind. We also learn of Rose's high level of respect in this story. She shows complete sympathy for Gwenyth,the humble servant girl,who sacrifices herself out of her understanding of her own differences. She also vocally objects to the Geth's insistence on using the dead as couriers for their own life forces.  These come together to help the doctor understand Rose better,and actually admit that her ability to broaden her own morality made her a welcome aspect of his travels. This is also the first mention of "bad wolf",a plot element that would become highly significant in the first series of the Doctor Who relaunch.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Doctor Who-The End Of The World

                    During Rose's first moments inside the TARDIS,the doctor offers to take her anywhere in time she wishes to go. The pair wind up at her continual need to travel forward in time billions of years into the future onto Platform One,an observation facility where the galaxies most elite have come to watch the planet Earth,being held in place for millennia be swallowed up by it's sun as nature intended. Many of the guests are aliens descended from lifeforms on Earth,including a tree-like humanoid named Jade whose scan of the doctor reveals his true identity to her. The host of the event is the Lady Cassandra,the last pure blooded human who is now,after many surgeries, little more than a flattened Hyde with a face. Something is amiss as members of a people called the Repeated Mean have offered the guests a gift,who turn out to be robotic spiders who have become intent on sabotaging the platforms sun filter as the Earth is enveloped by it's sun.

                    As Rose attempts to cope with her surroundings and her puzzlement at the doctors ambiguous identity,she soon finds herself to be a near victim of the sun filters malfunction.  After investigating the sabotage with Jade the doctor comes to the conclusion the spider robots are being controlled by one of the observers on the platform. It is not the Repeated Mean as suspected,since they too turn out to be androids. It is in fact Cassandra,who is trying to destroy the platform in order to avoid paying for the financial expenditures of the surgery she has had to keep herself alive. At the willing sacrifice of Jade's life,the doctor is about to re-activate the sun filter from the source. He saves the life of the observers and Rose,however Cassandra finally implodes to death due to lack of moisture. Upon leaving the doctor returns Rose to her time,where he explains he is the last of the dead race of time lords and offers for her to remain on Earth. She decides to travel with him instead.

                     A fascinating example of future fiction,this story makes excellent use of the relaunched Doctor Who's superior CGI visualizations-with the stunning depiction of the Earth's absorption by the sun and the different aliens within Platform One. More important to it's success is the story line itself. The main thrust is Cassandra,literally a frail shell of a human whose bad attitude outweighs her weak physical state,is completely insipid to Rose. Even when the doctor is forced to destroy her,it is completely justified,as he says,because all things must eventually end.  The story asks many psychologically intense questions about the importance of life and the necessity of death. There is a great deal of humor interjected too-from Rose's comparison of Cassandra to Michael Jackson to the notion of contemporary pop music,such as Britney Spears "Toxic" as being one day thought of as classical music. Overall this is one of the modern Doctor Who's greatest epic stories.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Doctor Who-Rose

                    Rose Tyler,an ordinary human living and working in London,
suddenly finds her life turned upside down when while searching for her supervisor she is accosted by a group of walking mannequins. She is whisked away by a stranger who saves her life,and addresses himself only as "the doctor" who indicates to her she is in danger and should run for her life. After this the building explodes. Out of a job,her mother Jackie seeks compensation for her when the doctor suddenly returns to her house claiming to trace the source of these living mannequins. Rose decides to use her boyfriend Mickey's computer to do an online search and begins an online conversation with a man named Clive. Upon visiting him with a suspicious Mickey,Rose is told by Clive that this doctor has been present at every crucial moment in history and that death follows in his wake. On a dinner with Mickey afterwards,she notices Mickey continually harping on the subject of the doctor while stuttering oddly. The waiter who keeps bringing them champagne turns out to be none other than the doctor himself. When the cork from the bottle doesn't kill him when swallowed the doctor and Rose escape and she gets her first look at the TARDIS. 

                     The doctor explains that an alien race called the Nestene consciousness,largely destroyed in a great war have come to Earth to feed off it's excess in chemical resources. He has developed an anti polymer agent but wishes to negotiate first. He and Rose confront the consciousness in an underground warehouse beneath a Ferris Wheel they are planning to use to transmit a signal to control all the plastic on the planet,in the company of a very living but terrified Mickey. The doctors negotiations backfire when the Nestene discovers his anti polymer agent and attempt to abduct the doctor and his TARDIS. Meanwhile the Nestene went through with their plans and now Rose's mother Jackie,confronted by a collection of murderous Autons,is in danger along with everyone else in London and the world. Moved by his honest but kind pleas on humanities behalf,Rose uses her gymnastic skills to bungee  jump across the room,knocking the anti plastic into the consciousness,destroying it and saving Mickey and the doctor. Upon returning to London the doctor offers for Rose to join him. But it's only when he mentions the TARDIS can travel through time that Rose says goodbye to Mickey and accepts his offer.

                         Russel T. Davies had an enormous challenge before him in 2004 when he was developing a new version of Doctor Who for the BBC after it's 15 year absence from the network. Christopher Eccleston was a fantastic choice for the ninth incarnation of the doctor,bringing with him a fast talking mix of the absurdest humor and intellectual ennui that not only suited the role of the doctor perfectly,but also the new quick pace of the relaunched series. Billie Piper also triumphs as the plucky and complex Rose,who is basically forced to choose between moving at breakneck speed for no real reason or for every reason in the universe. The Autons,in a plot not too dissimilar to the third doctor story Spearhead From Space provides excellent connectivity for those classic Whovians looking to enjoy the new show. Though driven by intense action and horror,this story has many humorous overtones such as the awkward motions of the Autons and Jackie Tyler making the moves on the doctor on first sight of him. One of the all time strongest introductions in the Whoniverse.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Happy Birthday Christopher Eccleston!

                            Very few people in the who've been associated with Doctor Who over the years were taking more of a chance than Christopher Eccleston. Born to a working class family in Lancashire in 1964,he had been unemployed for many years he himself took many day jobs to support himself. During the early 90's he became a very well known and revered character actor on stage and screen,appearing on many BBC programs. His popularity grew to a point where he was nominated by the British Academy Television Awards and the Radio Times as one of the most powerful dramatic actors of his time. In the springtime of 2004,he was offered the role that would change his career.

                              Russel T. Davies was put in charge of revitalizing the classic BBC science fiction program Doctor Who. It was going to be a very different proposition from the classic series. The episodes would generally be convention hour length programs as opposed to multi part serials. And the doctors race,the time lords,would be extinct with the exception of himself. Paired first with Billie Piper's Rose Tyler,Eccleston signed on for only one series in the role. Rumors were abound as to his reasons for the short stint as the intrepid time lord. Eccleston-a husband,father and atheist who had his own mind on many issues,simply didn't relate too much to the cast and culture of the people involved in the show at that time.

                             The ninth doctor Eccleston portrayed was the perfect match of character and actor. This doctor was one who had faced not only his own permanent mortality but the loss of his own race of people. He was alone in the universe,travelling through time and space in an essentially homeless state. He had nothing to gain,and nothing to lose. Eccleston was more than happy to portray his doctor as the same eccentric,goofy and often overly optimistic character he'd always been. But this was also a doctor that had had a significant run in with his dark side,and was looking to redeem that by re imagining himself. It's only appropriate Eccleston would soon after take on the role of the similar personality of John Lennon in the BBC television biopic Lennon Naked,which I encourage everyone reading this to check out.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Sarah Jane Adventures-Revenge Of The Slitheen

                 On Maria and Luke's first day at their new school,they find something oddly amiss. The new administrators all seem to have constant gastric problems,the food in the cafeteria is rotten,an unusual metallic odor in the air and the two have to contend with being in separate classes,with Maria having to deal with her opinionated classmate Clyde Langer. Sarah-Jane,for her part is curious about the new building too. When she talks to Maria's father Alen,he has been involved in a series of construction projects of the same exact model buildings all over the world-the blueprints of which contain a huge mystery room in each construct. When she goes to the school herself to investigate it turns out things have already gotten severely out of hand. Following a mysterious power outage where even Sarah-Jane's advanced equipment dies,her meeting with the head master of the school results in her becoming aware that she,along with most of the other adults at the school are menacing,green,black eyed creatures.

                   While trying to escape Luke,Maria and Clyde find themselves taken in by an honor student who addresses himself as a child of the Slitheen. When Sarah-Jane and the trio escape back to her home,she is able to use Mister Smith to give her more information on the Slitheen and their mission. Meanwhile the family try to use the technology Luke inadvertently gave them to not only knock out every energy source on the planet but Earth's sun as well. Sarah-Jane knows what's happened now. The Slitheen's have gained control over the Coldfire construction firm to built special facilities all over the planet near electric train depots they are using to conduct massive amounts of energy into a device which will destroy Earth's son and all life on the planet. The reason,as they explain to Sarah-Jane and her companions is due to the Doctor's successfully stopping the families attempts to invade Earth previously and their resulting misfortune. Once Clyde helps his new companions to defeat the Calcium based Slitheen family with simple vinegar,they are able to stop their plans and save the world.

                        It's really compelling to see Sarah-Jane Smith and her adolescent companions up against the Slitheen of Raxicoricofallapatorius, a race of self centered and insipid extra terrestrial parasites who see no value whatsoever in life on Earth,or anywhere else for that matter. Clyde Langer,while starting out as something of a class clown protagonist to Maria and Luke ends up learning the most from this experience when he's forced by necessity into helping Sarah-Jane,her son and Maria in saving the Earth from the Slitheen's plans. Even more telling in this story is Sarah-Jane's personal insecurities as a new mother. Upon finding out one of the reasons for the Slitheen attempt to destroy Earth is to steal it's resources to keep their 12 year old son from having a meaningful life,she is deeply affected by having to kill the Slitheen,especially their child. She is not able to even applaud their victory when the Earth is saved from the Slitheen. This showcases that Sarah-Jane possesses the same level of compassion as the doctor with whom she once traveled  And she intends to carry that with her on her personal missions.


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Sarah Jane Adventures-Invasion Of The Bane

                    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.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Happy Belated Birthday To Elizabeth Sladen!

                Sometimes in a long running television show with a revolving door cast policy,there comes one character that an audience comes to embrace as much as they might a member of their own family. In the case of Doctor Who,it's likely that honor would have go to the character of Sarah-Jane Smith-portrayed by the late Elizabeth Sladen. Sladen passed away of cancer on April 19'th 2011 having been diagnosed with cancer only months earlier. Having only played on the original Doctor Who series for three years,spanning the final series of Jon Pertwee's third doctor and the entirety of the first two series of Tom Baker's run in the role. Yet at the same time she not only reprized the role on audio books,a spin off TV show,anniversary specials such as The Five Doctors in 1983 and later in the modern day Doctor Who series alongside David Tennent in the story School Reunion.

                Sladen started acting very early in her life,from school plays alongside English political figure Edwina Currie. She made her first film appearance in the 1964 film Ferry Cross The Mersey as an uncredited extra. She than went onto play Hero in the Hillbark Players production of Much Ado About Nothing. She than moved onto the Liverpool Playhouse staring in other Shakespeare productions before moving onto more television work. It was on the set on one such show,The Physicists  that she made her future husband with which she'd later have a daughter Sadie Miller. It was her role in the BBC TV show  Z-Cars that led to producer Ron Craddock recommending her to Doctor Who producer Barry Letts as the successor to Katy Manning's Jo Grant when Katy decided to leave the show. What aside from this made Sarah-Jane Smith such a renowned Doctor Who assistant?

               One of the qualities was that Sarah was always a character who asked questions,learned as much as she could and was genuinely helpful to the doctor on his quest for justice and adventure. Her close friendship with the character,especially during the Tom Baker era was helped by the fact she was a confident,level headed individual as well as a proud and vocal supporter of women's rights. She helped bring Doctor Who into another age. And the brother/sister camaraderie she shared with the doctor allowed her to have an uncommon bond with her unlike some of his other assistants. Even as late as her final meeting with the doctor,in his eleventh incarnation,it was clear he never did forget about Sarah-Jane Smith. Much the same way Whovians from anywhere will doubtless forget Elizabeth Sladen. 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Doctor Who-School Reunion

                              The Doctor,under his old alias of John Smith along with Rose posing as a lunch lady are undercover at the Daffy Hill school,where ever since the new administrator Mr.Finch and his "handpicked" staff have arrived,the levels of average academic  scores for students have been raised uncomfortably high . The lunch staff insist the children are eating food served in special oil that the new staff all avoid,but seem to be making the children smarter. The doctor has suspected alien intervention but so has someone else from his past on Earth:non other than Sarah Jane Smith herself,who has decided to do some investigating of her own at the same school. Upon realizing she is in company with the regenerated doctor and discovering him now in the company of Rose,a rivalry develops between them until they discover a group of bat like creatures hibernating in Finch's office. Sarah than asks the doctor to help repair the now battered K-9 Mark III who,upon reactivation reveals the the oil is actually that used by the Krillitane-a conquering alien race who represent mongrel genetics of the different species they've invaded.

                           Upon returning to the school the next day the doctor,
Sarah,Rose and Mickey find that the schools computers have been locked. What they do not yet know is that Finch,actually named Brother Kassar,and his compatriots have been actually been using the computers at the school to teach the children through audio/visual association. When the computers are re-activated the doctor finds the program used to teach the children and discovers it's a program designed to decode the Skasis Paradigm,a theory of complete relativity of all things that would allow the Krillitane control over everything in the universe. After failing to persuade the doctor and Sarah into joining him in his species cause to reshape the material universe,Finch is chided by the doctor for using the minds of children for his own goals and ends up using K-9 to destroy the school and the Krillitane staff after the children have all successfully escape. After asking Sarah-Jane Smith to resume her journey's with him and Rose,the doctor is declined by Sarah but taken up on the offer by Mickey. The doctor leaves Sarah with a brand new K-9 Mark IV for her as a parting gift.

                           Overall this is a wonderful and telling story from the tenth doctor. The plot of the Krillitane,alien eugenics coming to Earth to use the souls of children to do their bidding,is definitely a telling metaphor for the often repressive educational system in England and around the world. The thrust of the story is really the doctor re-uniting with Sarah-Jane Smith. While at first envious Rose,assuming Sarah and the doctor shared the same unrequited romantic relationship she did with him,ended up even sharing a bit of a laugh at some of the doctor eccentric habits he had while they traveled with him. While this provides the comedy in the story,the drama is enhanced by a number of character interactions. Mickey's insistence on joining Rose and the doctor in the TARDIS is helped along by realizing his computer abilities make him the human equivalent of K-9. The doctor informs him that,while he did develop feelings for Sarah-Jane his reason for leaving his many companions behind is due to his compassion for not seeing much shorter lived humans die while he lived on. Brother Kasser nearly succeeds in tempting the doctor into taking his side by insisting the the Skasis Paradigm  could revive his people. Again it's Sarah's compassion for the doctor that helps him,and her,realize their true purpose even when they part ways.

Friday, February 1, 2013

K-9 & Company-A Girl's Best Friend

                        Sarah-Jane Smith returns home to her Aunt Lavinia,who is actually on a lecture tour in America and again faces another Christmas holiday after grueling international journalism without the presence of her family. Upon arriving she encounters her aunts ward,a student named Brendon and a mysterious package that has apparently been laying waste in the family attack for several years now. Upon opening the box,the discover it is a gift from the doctor of K-9 Mark III. Though immediately fascinated by the unique gift,Sarah and Brendon soon find more to worry about. Sarah is concerned about her aunts abrupt lecture tour during the holidays. Not only that but,upon investigating on her own among the village locals discovers her Aunt's gardener George Tracey and his son Tracy behaving very mysteriously about some mysterious constructs near their green houses.

                         This is corroborated when,upon going to investigate himself,Brendon is attacked by Peter after being warned by him to stay away from the area. And the accompanying K-9 is promptly blamed for the damage done in the scuffle. In her bewilderment Sarah presses her investigation on the locals with the help of K-9 discovers debate about the possibility of a witch coven in the area. In the end Brendon is abducted from his bedroom,driving Sarah to take K-9 on a direct investigation. His study of maps of the local area,as well as Sarah's discovery on witchcraft texts in the house library lead them to a local chapel  where they discover Brendon surrounded,in fact by a ritual coven. After K-9 confronts them with his lasers,Sarah is able to finish them off in defense of Brendon before spending Christmas with her Aunt's friends,whom she'd previously suspected of being part of the coven.

                           This story was produced in 1981 as a one off program by John-Nathan Turner,who hoped to spin the successful characters of K-9 and Sarah-Jane Smith together in their own series. This story set about creating a series of new characters for the audience to connect to,such as Brendon Richards. The series Turner was hoping to promote never in fact materialized. And this in fact remained a one off. In 2008 it was released on the bonus disc of the Doctor Who story The Invisible Enemy in which K-9 first appeared. In the end,this story is really more of a vehicle for Elizabeth Sladen's Sarah-Jane Smith. Possessing more refined self assured attitude than she had even had while travelling with the doctor,and in a position to take charge of her own life this story really pushed the envelope,though all to briefly in this particular case,in terms of establishing Sarah as a vital stand-alone character.