9th Doctor
Aliens of London / World War Three

Executive Producers
Mal Young
Julie Gardner
Russell T. Davies

Phil Collinson

Script Editors
Helen Raynor
Elwen Rowlands

Written by Russell T. Davies
Directed by Keith Boak
Incidental Music by Murray Gold

Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who), Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), Camille Coduri (Jackie Tyler), Corey Doabe (Spray Painter), Ceris Jones (Policeman) [1]; Jack Tarlton, Lachele Carl (Reporters); Fiesta Mei Ling (Ru) [1], Basil Chung (Bau) [1], Matt Baker (Himself) [1], Andrew Marr (Himself), Rupert Vansittart (General Asquith), David Verrey (Joseph Green), Navin Chowdhry (Indra Ganesh) [1], Penelope Wilton (Harriet Jones), Annette Badland (Margaret Blaine), Naoko Mori (Doctor Sato) [1], Eric Potts (Oliver Charles) [1], Noel Clarke (Mickey Smith), Jimmy Vee (Alien [1], Steven Speirs (Strickland); Elizabeth Fost, Paul Kasey, Alan Ruscoe (Slitheen); Morgan Hopkins (Sergeant Price) [2].

The Doctor takes Rose home. But when a spaceship crash-lands in the Thames, London is closed off, and the whole world goes on Red Alert. While the Doctor investigates the alien survivor, Rose discovers that her home is no longer a safe haven. Who are the Slitheen?

Original Broadcast (UK)
Aliens of London		 16th April, 2005			7h00pm - 7h45pm
World War Three		 23rd April, 2005			7h00pm - 7h45pm
  • Previewed in Doctor Who Magazine #355.
  • Episodes released on DVD. [+/-]

    Series 1, Volume 2

      SERIES 1, VOLUME 2

    • U.K. Release: June 2005
      PAL Region 2 - BBCVDVD1756

      Includes the episodes: Aliens of London / World War Three and Dalek.

      The First Series Boxset - U.S. Set

    • U.K. Release: November 2005 / Canada Release: February 2006
      PAL Region 2 - BBCDVD1770  (5 DVD)
      NTSC Region 1 - Warner DVD E2501  (5 DVD)

      This boxset includes all 13 episodes of the first series.


      • Commentaries on all 13 episodes as follows:
        • Rose: Russell T. Davies (writer/executive producer), Julie Gardner (executive producer), Phil Collinson (producer).
        • The End of the World: Phil Collinson (producer) and Will Cohen (visual effects producer).
        • The Unquiet Dead: Mark Gatiss (writer), Euros Lyn (director), and Simon Callow (Charles Dickens).
        • Aliens of London: Julie Gardner (executive producer), Will Cohen (visual effects producer), and David Verrey (Joseph Green/Chief Slitheen).
        • World War Three: Phil Collinson (producer), Helen Raynor (script editor), Annette Badland (Margaret Blaine the Slitheen).
        • Dalek: Robert Shearman (writer), Dave Houghton (visual effects producer), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek Voices), Bruno Langley (Adam Mitchell).
        • The Long Game: Bruno Langley (Adam Mitchell), Brian Grant (director), and Christine Adams (Cathica).
        • Father’s Day: Paul Cornell (writer), Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), Shaun Dingwall (Pete Tyler), and Phil Collinson (producer).
        • The Empty Child: Steven Moffat (writer), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), and Dave Houghton (visual effects producer).
        • The Doctor Dances: Steven Moffat (writer), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), and Dave Houghton (visual effects producer).
        • Boom Town: Phil Collinson (producer), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), and Annette Badland (Margaret Blaine the Slitheen).
        • Bad Wolf: Russell T. Davies (writer/executive producer), Julie Gardner (executive producer), Phil Collinson (producer).
        • The Parting of the Ways: John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Julie Gardner (executive producer), and Billie Piper (Rose).

      • Cut-down versions of all 13 episodes of the documentary series Doctor Who Confidential, plus an all-new bonus 14th episode that goes behind-the-scenes on The Christmas Invasion, the 2005 Christmas special episode starring David Tennant as the Doctor. The First Series Boxset

      • Three Video Diaries:
        • 'On Set With Billie' - Billie Piper’s own camcorder footage of the shooting.
        • 'Making Doctor Who' - Russell T. Davies’ camcorder footage of the shooting.
        • 'Waking the Dead' - Mark Gatiss' camcorder footage from the shooting of The Unquiet Dead.

      • 6 other featurettes:
        • 'Destroying the Lair' - Visual effects featurette about the destruction of the Nestene lair in the first episode.
        • 'Mike Tucker’s Mocks of Balloons' - Visual effects featurette about the making of the aliens.
        • 'Designing Doctor Who' - About set design.
        • 'Laying Ghosts – The Origins of the Unquiet Dead' - About Mark Gatiss’ scripting of this episode.
        • 'Deconstructing Big Ben' - Visual effects featurette about the sequence of the alien spaceship crashing into Big Ben during Aliens of London.
        • 'The Adventures of Captain Jack' - About the character of Capt. Jack Harkness and the actor who plays him, John Barrowman.

      • An interview with Christopher Eccleston from the BBC’s Breakfast.

      • Trailers from BBC1 from throughout the series’ run.
  • Doctor Who Magazine Archive: The Doctor Who Companion - Series 1.

The Doctor takes Rose back home to visit her mother, materialising outside her flats twelve hours after she left. Or so he believes. However, while waiting for Rose to return, a flyer on a nearby telephone pole catches his eye -- a missing-persons flyer with Rose’s picture on it. When Rose enters her flat and casually greets her mother, claiming to have spent the night with a friend, the stunned Jackie sweeps her daughter up in a desperate, unbelieving hug -- and, over her shoulder, Rose sees a table covered with missing-persons flyers and posters, all with her name and picture on them. The Doctor bursts into the flat, takes in the situation, and apologetically tells Rose that she hasn’t been gone for twelve hours, but for twelve months...

Aliens of London

Some time later, outside Jackie’s flat, a young boy spray-paints the words “BAD WOLF” on the TARDIS and cycles off. Meanwhile, a policeman sits and listens patiently as Jackie lashes out at Rose for her thoughtlessness in vanishing for over a year without so much as a phone call. Rose claims that she’s been travelling, but Jackie angrily points out that she left her passport behind. The Doctor explains that he employed Rose as his companion -- in a non-sexual sense -- but Jackie turns her anger on him, slapping him and accusing him of luring away her daughter for immoral purposes. Rose is embarrassed and remorseful, but despite Jackie’s pleas, Rose can’t even begin to explain where she’s been for the past year.

Later, the Doctor sits with Rose on the roof as she ponders how to deal with having unwittingly traumatised her mother. The Doctor firmly states that Jackie’s not coming with them if Rose decides to keep travelling. In passing, he reveals that he’s 900 years old, and Rose realises that this is just another of the many things she can’t discuss with anyone. As she muses what it’s like to be the only person who knows that aliens really are out there, however, an alien spacecraft sputters overhead and careens wildly across the London skyline, belching smoke. As they watch, the ship demolishes Big Ben and crashes into the River Thames. Delighted, the Doctor rushes off to investigate, but the army has cordoned off the crash site and the streets are gridlocked. The Doctor wants to find out what’s happening, but he can’t get close to the crash site, and he doesn’t want to attract the wrong sort of attention by materialising the TARDIS nearby. Rose thus suggests that he watch the news on TV like everyone else.

The Doctor returns to Rose’s flat, where Jackie reluctantly lets him in for fear of alienating her daughter further. Jackie’s friends and neighbours have joined her to discuss the UFO crash and Rose’s return, and the Doctor is having difficulty hearing the television; at one point, he even finds himself fighting for the TV remote with a young boy who wants to watch Blue Peter. Meanwhile, reporter Tom Hitchingson and political commentator Andrew Marr are amongst those reporting the news and its developments. The world is on red alert, flights have been cancelled over North American airspace, and the Secretary-General of the UN has advised people to watch the skies. Divers remove a body from the wreck and take it to Albion Hospital for examination by Dr Sato; there, she reveals her findings to General Asquith, who is startled by the alien pilot’s appearance and orders Sato to keep it out of sight until the experts arrive.

There has been no sign of the PM since the state of emergency was declared, and due to the gridlock and the grounding of flights, most of the Cabinet has been stranded outside central London. Thus, Joseph Green -- the rotund MP for Hartley Dale, and Chairman of the Parliamentary Commission on the Monitoring of Sugar Standards in Exported Confectionary -- has unexpectedly become the acting Prime Minister. He seems to be having difficulty handling the pressure, and while junior secretary Indra Ganesh tries to brief him, Green breaks wind, complaining that the nerves are giving him an upset stomach. The equally rotund Margaret Blaine of MI5 and Oliver Charles, Transport Liaison, report that the PM boarded his car that morning, before the emergency, and has since disappeared. Ganesh gives Green a booklet detailing the emergency protocols to be followed in case of alien incursion, and Green takes Margaret and Oliver into the Cabinet office to discuss the situation... but once there, he drops the booklet on the table, and all three begin to giggle like naughty schoolchildren. In all of the confusion, nobody pays any attention to backbencher Harriet Jones, MP for Flydale North, whose afternoon appointment with the PM has been trumped by the ongoing emergency.

Night falls over London, and the Doctor, frustrated by the mundane conversation between Jackie and her neighbours, tells Rose that he’s going out for a walk. He assures her that first contact with alien life is something the human race can and must be left to handle on its own, and when she shows concern that the Doctor will leave her behind, he hands her a key to the TARDIS. Mollified, she returns to the flat -- but despite his assurances, the Doctor heads straight to the TARDIS. Upstairs, Mickey Smith emerges from his flat, catches sight of the Doctor, and bolts downstairs to confront him, but arrives just as the TARDIS fades away. Inside, the Doctor struggles to control the TARDIS’ flight, even whacking the controls with a small sledgehammer in order to make his ship do what he wants.

Meanwhile, at 10 Downing Street, Harriet tries to convince Ganesh to let her speak with Green, but he refuses to interrupt Green’s important meeting for her minor concerns. When Green, Margaret and Oliver emerge from the Cabinet office, Harriet tries to speak with Green, explaining that she’s come up with a scheme by which cottage hospitals don’t have to be excluded from centres of excellence. Green laughs in her face and walks off with the others. Nettled, Harriet slips into the deserted Cabinet office and drops the report she’s prepared in Green’s briefcase... but she then notices that he’s left the emergency protocols booklet behind, and, curious, she begins to leaf through it.

The TARDIS materialises in a storeroom in Albion Hospital, and the Doctor emerges cautiously -- only to walk straight into a group of soldiers on tea break. The moment of mutual surprise is broken when they hear Dr Sato screaming, and the Doctor instantly takes charge of the situation, leading the soldiers to the morgue to investigate. There, the terrified Sato reveals that the alien came back to life and burst out of its drawer, and the Doctor orders the soldiers to lock down the perimeter and search for the missing alien. However, he then hears movement in the morgue, and investigates to find the alien hiding behind a counter. It looks for all the world like a pig, in a spacesuit, walking on its hind legs. The Doctor tries to approach it, but it bolts, squealing in terror -- and runs straight into a bewildered soldier, who shoots it in the head before the Doctor can stop him. The enraged Doctor insists that the creature was just scared, and watches, mourning, as it dies in front of him. He returns the body to the morgue, where he studies Sato’s findings and reveals that the creature is in fact just a pig -- albeit a pig augmented with technology in order to make it look and act more alien. However, Sato points out that the technology used to augment the pig is itself alien, which means that real aliens are responsible for faking a false UFO scare. The Doctor returns to his TARDIS and dematerialises, leaving the confused Dr Sato behind.

Back in 10 Downing Street, Harriet hears voices approaching the Cabinet office and is forced to hide in a nearby closet. General Asquith enters with Green, Margaret and Oliver, berating Green for his appalling lack of leadership; Green isn’t returning the White House’s calls, he’s cancelled the airlift that would have brought senior Cabinet ministers into London, and he hasn’t started any of the emergency procedures outlined in the booklet. To Asquith’s fury, Green, Margaret and Oliver begin giggling and farting like naughty schoolchildren, and finally Asquith declares that he’s using his emergency powers to remove Green from power and place London under martial law. This is a threat that Green takes rather more seriously -- and as Harriet watches in horror from hiding, Green, Margaret and Oliver unzip their foreheads to reveal their true alien forms, and advance on the startled General Asquith.

Mickey enters the Tylers’ flat, and is furious to see Rose sitting with the rest of his neighbours. Rose apologises for not visiting him, but that’s not nearly good enough; when she disappeared with no explanation, Mickey was nearly charged with her murder. He’s been questioned five times in the past year, and even when Jackie blamed him, Mickey couldn’t tell her the truth, as he knew she’d never believe him. He now demands that Rose admit the truth; she might as well, because the Doctor’s gone without her. Rose refuses to believe this, but when she goes out to see for herself, there is indeed no sign of the TARDIS. She insists that the Doctor wouldn’t have left her behind -- and as she speaks, the TARDIS key begins to glow in her hand. Jackie has followed Mickey and her daughter, and although Rose tries to bundle her back to the flat, it’s too late. To Jackie’s shock, the TARDIS materialises before her eyes.

The Doctor is irritated when Jackie and Mickey walk into the TARDIS behind Rose, and as Mickey angrily accuses the Doctor of ruining his life, Jackie stares about in shock and bolts out of the ship in terror. Rose follows, trying to assure her mother that everything’s all right, but Jackie runs back to the flat, and the frustrated Rose returns to the TARDIS to find out what the Doctor has to say. Jackie huddles up in her flat, trying to cope with what she’s seen -- and when the emergency alien hotline number reappears on the TV, she calls it up and blurts out her story, claiming that her daughter is in danger because of an alien called the Doctor who travels in a blue box called the TARDIS. These key words trigger an automated alert which Ganesh receives at 10 Downing Street.

Back in the TARDIS, the Doctor -- who insists on calling Mickey “Ricky” rather than admitting he can’t remember his name -- explains that the crash landing was faked, but by other aliens. Mickey points out that putting the world on red alert is an odd way to start an invasion... so what are the aliens really up to? The Doctor starts fiddling about with the circuitry beneath the console, but refuses to explain what he’s doing, pointing out rather rudely that Mickey doesn’t have a hope of understanding it anyway. Rose apologises for the Doctor’s behaviour, and assures Mickey that she did miss him, even though she’s only been gone for a few days from her perspective. He tells her that he spent the whole year looking for her, and that he never dated anyone else (though, admittedly, most people think he murdered Rose and hid her body somewhere). Now that she’s back, she realises that Mickey wants to pick up where they left off -- but before she can decide, the Doctor announces that he’s finished his work. He’s looped back the TARDIS radar 12 hours to follow the ship’s flight path -- and he, Rose and Mickey thus discover that the ship was launched from Earth before crashing back down. The aliens have obviously been here for a while... and what have they been doing for all that time?

“Oliver Charles” has now shed his skin and clothed himself in General Asquith’s; however, like the other aliens, he must break wind frequently in order to squeeze himself into the tight disguise. Harriet cowers in the closet as “Asquith” tosses his former skin inside, complaining that he’ll now have to give up Oliver’s wife, his mistress, and the young farmer he was seeing on the side. As Green, Asquith and Margaret leave, Ganesh rushes up to inform them that their automated surveillance software has detected someone speaking about “the Doctor,” who is apparently the ultimate expert in extra-terrestrial affairs. Harriet listens from hiding as Ganesh tells the others that they’ll have to enlist the Doctor’s help.

The Doctor, Rose and Mickey watch more news footage from inside the TARDIS, and see a group of experts from UNIT, the United Nations Intelligence Taskforce, being escorted into 10 Downing Street. Mickey, who’s spent the last year researching the Doctor’s past appearances, reveals that the Doctor once worked for UNIT; however, the Doctor decides not to offer his help, as he’s changed a lot since the old days and his arrival would just confuse matters. He decides to check out the wreck of the ship instead. However, as soon as he, Rose and Mickey step out of the TARDIS, they find themselves surrounded by police, soldiers and helicopters. Mickey bolts in panic and hides behind the dustbins as the army close in on them, and Jackie protests in vain when her daughter is apparently taken into custody alongside the Doctor. However, they’re not being arrested; they’re being escorted to 10 Downing Street.

The Doctor admits to Rose that he’s visited this planet a lot, and these days, his arrival tends to be noticed. He and Rose arrive at 10 Downing Street, where they wave to the paparazzi and enter the seat of government. Inside, Harriet Jones is trying to mingle with the visiting experts, but before she can speak to any of them, Ganesh arrives and ushers them all out to the briefing room. He gives the Doctor an ID card, but refuses to give one to Rose, who doesn’t have sufficient security clearance. Harriet offers to take care of Rose while the Doctor is busy, and escorts Rose out into the hall -- where she breaks down in tears and tells Rose everything that she’s seen. Rose accompanies Harriet to the Cabinet office, where they study the abandoned skin suit and try to decide what to do about it. Hoping to find some evidence of alien technology, Rose opens up a nearby closet -- and a body tumbles out. When Ganesh storms in to take Harriet to task for continually getting in the way, he finds Rose and Harriet staring, appalled, at the body of the Prime Minister. Margaret Blaine then strolls into the office behind them and admits to the bewildered Ganesh that she lied about escorting the PM to his car that morning. She then closes the door, unzips her forehead and removes her skin-suit...

Back in her flat, Jackie is being questioned by police commissioner Strickland... a rather rotund and gassy man who seems uncomfortable inside his own skin. Strickland sends the other police away so he can question Jackie alone about the Doctor, and although Jackie insists that she knows nothing about the man, that isn’t good enough for Strickland. This Doctor means trouble, and that means anyone associated with him is trouble. And Strickland’s job is to deal with trouble. He unzips his forehead and removes his skin-suit...

The Doctor walks into the briefing room, flips through the agenda within seconds and immediately picks out the most important point. Before Asquith can begin the briefing properly, the Doctor speaks up, pointing out that a satellite detected an anomalous blip of radiation beneath the North Sea three days ago, but that the faked crash-landing has distracted attention from it. Worse, it suddenly occurs to the Doctor that everyone who could have investigated the radiation blip is currently in this room. The crash wasn’t just a distraction; it was a trap. As he speaks, Green passes wind loudly, and when the Doctor turns on him for the interruption, Asquith unzips his forehead and removes his skin-suit...

The aliens’ true forms are now revealed; they are the Slitheen, gigantic, corpulent, baby-faced aliens with extended necks, claws, and elongated arms. In the council estate, the alien that was Strickland advances on the terrified Jackie. In the Cabinet office, the alien that was Margaret Blaine grabs Ganesh by the throat and lifts him up to the ceiling as the horrified Harriet and Rose watch. And in the briefing room, Green activates the charges in the delegates’ ID cards, electrocuting every one of the gathered alien experts. The Doctor drops to the ground in agony as the Slitheen burst out laughing...

World War Three

Every human in the briefing room is electrocuted -- but the Doctor isn’t human, and he manages to remove his card and slap it onto the exposed Slitheen’s electronic collar. The feedback incapacitates not only this Slitheen, but all others. Upstairs, Harriet and Rose bolt for the door as the Slitheen that was Margaret Blaine goes into spasm; elsewhere, Mickey bursts into Jackie’s flat and pulls her to safety, pausing only to snap a picture of the writhing Slitheen with his cellphone.

The Doctor bolts out of the briefing room to fetch help, but Green manages to pull the ID card away from his fellow Slitheen’s collar, and by the time the soldiers burst into the room, it has disguised itself as General Asquith again. Sergeant Price examines the experts’ bodies and confirms that they’re dead, and Green accuses the Doctor of killing them. The Doctor in turn accuses Green of being an alien in disguise, but the soldiers don’t buy it. The Doctor tries to flee, but soldiers surround him in the corridor outside, and Asquith orders them to execute him on the spot; fortunately, they’ve backed him up against a lift, and he pops inside and closes the doors before they can shoot. Asquith places the upper levels of 10 Downing Street under strict quarantine and orders Price to secure the ground floor and shoot the Doctor on sight. In the meantime, Asquith and Green head upstairs -- and on the way, they dispose of their flatulent human disguises to revel in their glorious nudity.

Upstairs, Harriet realises that they’ve left the emergency protocols in the Cabinet office, but the Slitheen-Margaret has recovered and they are unable to return for them. The Doctor’s lift stops briefly on the floor, distracting the Slitheen for a moment and enabling Harriet and Rose to hide in a nearby office. The Doctor takes the lift up one more floor and then descends via the staircase. Green and Asquith join Margaret, eager to purify their blood with a hunt; Margaret can scent the fear of her targets, and has been prolonging the hunt deliberately to make the smell more intoxicating. Margaret pulls aside the curtains to reveal Rose hiding behind them, but Harriet emerges from hiding, offering herself up in the young woman’s place. Fortunately, the Doctor bursts in and drives the Slitheen back with a fire extinguisher, enabling them all to escape.

Harriet leads the Doctor back to the Cabinet office to fetch the emergency protocol booklet, but the Slitheen are only a few steps behind them. The Doctor holds them off with a bottle of port, threatening to use his sonic screwdriver to increase its flammability. When the Slitheen hesitate, he takes the opportunity to question them, and learns that they are not an invasion force, but a family business. Slitheen is not their race name, but their surname; “Joseph Green” is in fact Jocrassa Fel Fotch Pasameer-Day Slitheen. Before the Doctor can learn their intentions for the Earth, however, “Asquith” calls his bluff regarding the port. As the Slitheen advance on him, the Doctor delivers a brief lecture on the history of the Cabinet offices... up to the installation of three-inch-thick steel security bulkheads, which he now activates, sealing the Slitheen out of the room. And, unfortunately, sealing himself and his friends inside.

Satisfied that the Doctor no longer poses a threat, the Slitheen summon the rest of the family to Downing Street, and Asquith orders Price to keep the ground floor secure and await an emergency address from the Acting PM to the people of the world. Outside, Andrew Marr tries to make sense of the variety of people who are showing up: Group Captain Tennant James of the RAF; Ewan McAllister, Deputy Secretary for the Scottish Parliament; even Sylvia Dillaine, Chairman of the North Sea Boating Club. All they seem to have in common is their remarkable girth and the fact that they’ve been invited to the upper levels of 10 Downing Street. Upstairs, the Slitheen strip off their skin-suits, and soon, the entire family has gathered -- except for Sip Fel Fotch, “Commissioner Strickland”, who has yet to finish with Jackie Tyler...

Mickey helps Jackie to slip back to his flat, unnoticed. There, he warns her that nobody can be trusted (casting a suspicious glance at his trash bin as he does so), and accuses the Doctor of dragging Rose into this dangerous lifestyle. Jackie begins to cry as the shock settles in, realising that the man she accused of killing her daughter has now saved her life -- and that the monster that tried to kill her is still out there somewhere. Outside, “Strickland” sniffs the air and dismisses the other police, telling them that he’ll finish with Jackie on his own...

In the Cabinet office, the Doctor places the PM’s and Ganesh’s bodies in the cupboard, and Harriet sadly realises that she never knew the young secretary’s name. The Doctor explains that the Slitheen’s collars generate compression fields that enable them to shrink their bodies down to fit inside human skins; the gas is a side effect, and the PM’s body was too slim for them to use as a disguise. It occurs to him that he knows Harriet Jones’ name from somewhere, but he can’t recall exactly where. Harriet reads the emergency protocol booklet but finds nothing of any help; Rose suggests that they launch a missile at the Slitheen, but due to an unfortunate incident in the UK’s past, the United Nations holds the release codes for Britain’s nuclear arsenal, and they can’t launch a strike without UN approval. Mickey then calls Rose, and is able to reach her through the steel shielding thanks to the modifications the Doctor made to her cellphone. The Doctor swallows his pride and asks Mickey for help, giving him the secret password (“buffalo”) that will enable him to log onto UNIT’s secure website. As Mickey works, however, Jackie demands to know whether her daughter will be safe with the Doctor -- and the Doctor is unable to answer her question.

The UNIT website is monitoring an alien signal that the Doctor realises is being transmitted by the Slitheen. As the Doctor listens to the signal and tries to work out what it’s saying, Strickland tracks Jackie down to Mickey’s flat, strips off his skin-suit and begins to break down the door. Mickey offers to hold off the alien with a baseball bat while Jackie flees, but there’s no other way out of the flat. For a moment, the Doctor is paralysed by indecision, but when Rose begs him to help her mother, he springs into action and starts looking for the aliens’ weakness. He and his allies list all they know about the aliens, from the colour of their skin to the nature of their technology and, finally, the smell of their farts. This enables the Doctor to narrow down their planet of origin to Raxacoricofallapatorius, which means that the aliens’ bodies are composed of organic calcium, weakened by the gas compression field -- which leaves them vulnerable to acetic acid. Mickey and Jackie retreat to the kitchen, where Jackie pours all of Mickey’s pickled onions, gherkins, and eggs into a container and flings it at the approaching Slitheen. The Slitheen blinks in surprise for a moment and then explodes, coating Mickey’s kitchen with a wet sludge. In the Cabinet rooms, Harriet recalls how Hannibal used vinegar to dissolve boulders while crossing the Alps, and she, Rose and the Doctor share a victory toast.

The death of Sip Fel Fotch hits the other Slitheen hard, and Green storms out of Downing Street to speak to the press. Mickey and Jackie watch the live broadcast on TV while the Doctor, Harriet and Rose listen over Mickey’s cellphone. Outside, Green addresses the nations of the world, claiming that Earth is under attack by hostile alien forces capable of unleashing massive weapons of destruction within 45 seconds; Britain lies directly beneath the mothership, and their only hope of survival is an immediate nuclear strike. Green thus begs the UN to pass an emergency resolution and release Britain’s missile codes so they can strike first and save the planet.

The Doctor, finally understanding the truth, opens the bulkheads to speak to Margaret and confirm his suspicions. The Slitheen deliberately engineered a spectacular UFO crash in order to drive the world into a panic and convince the UN to release the nuclear codes. Once the Slitheen have those codes, they’ll fire Britain’s nuclear arsenal at every other country on Earth, triggering World War Three. Despite the showy splash-landing, the Slitheen’s ship didn’t actually crash; it’s still intact, and the Slitheen intend to sit out the nuclear holocaust inside. Once the planet has been reduced to a radioactive cinder, the Slitheen will sell off bits of it as fuel to every cut-price, bargain spaceship out there. The signal they’re sending out is an advertisement for the sale of the century; they’ll make a mint, at the cost of five billion lives. The Doctor orders the Slitheen to leave the planet immediately, or he’ll stop them. Margaret and the Slitheen burst out laughing -- but the Doctor isn’t laughing, and as he closes the bulkheads, Margaret begins to get a little worried.

It’s midnight in New York, and the UN Security Council have convened to vote on their emergency resolution. Dawn is breaking over London, and as far as anybody knows, it could be the day humanity fights its first interplanetary war. Green and Asquith leave Price in charge of keeping the ground floor secure, while they retreat to the Prime Minister’s office to wait for the phone to ring. Giggling with anticipation, the Slitheen remove their skin-suits to greet victory in their glorious nudity.

Time is running out, and the Doctor reluctantly reveals that he can stop the Slitheen -- but he can’t guarantee Rose’s safety. Rose is willing to let him do whatever he has to, but Jackie refuses to let him risk her daughter’s life. The Doctor finally tells Jackie that this is what his life is about, standing up and making terrible decisions -- and he doesn’t want to lose Rose because of it. But Harriet then points out that she’s the only duly elected representative in this room, and she’s thus the only one with the authority to make this decision. On behalf of the people of Britain, she orders the Doctor to carry out his plan. The Doctor thus directs Mickey over the phone, giving him the passwords he needs to hack into the Royal Navy and launch a conventional, non-nuclear missile from the nearest offshore submarine, the HMS Taurean. Jackie can’t bring herself to stop Mickey, as much as he himself might want her to... and Mickey, albeit reluctantly, presses the button and fires the missile at 10 Downing Street. The Doctor, Rose and Harriet remain trapped in the Cabinet offices, and the bulkheads may not be strong enough to protect them from a direct missile strike; nevertheless, the Doctor keeps in touch with Mickey, guiding him as he blocks the counter-defences on the coast, enabling the missile to slip through. Rose and Harriet clear all of the loose objects out of the cupboard, and they and the Doctor huddle inside and wait...

Downstairs, Price receives a report of the incoming missile, and triggers the fire alarm, evacuating the building. He rushes upstairs to warn the Prime Minister of the danger -- and bursts into the office to find it filled with naked Slitheen, waiting for the red phone to ring. After an appalled pause, Price flees. Outside, the press and police scatter as the missile hurtles towards Downing Street; inside, the panic-stricken Slitheen begin fighting over their skin-suits, but they’re trying to work out which disguise belongs to whom when the missile strikes, blowing 10 Downing Street to smithereens. The steel box that was the Cabinet offices tumbles end over end into the street, and the Doctor, Rose and Harriet emerge, alive and intact. When Price rushes up to investigate, Harriet immediately takes charge, ordering him to contact the UN and inform them that the crisis is over. The Doctor and Rose watch happily as Harriet addresses the press, telling them that the human race has survived the crisis undefeated. She’s come a long way from the flustered backbencher she was yesterday -- and the Doctor now knows where he recognised her name. Harriet Jones is going to be a future three-term Prime Minister, the architect of Britain’s forthcoming golden age.

Rose returns home for a tearful reunion with her mother, while the Doctor returns to the TARDIS and disperses the Slitheen’s signal before any interested parties can pick it up. Jackie still doesn’t trust the Doctor, but she’s now willing to listen and learn more about Rose’s new life. When the Doctor calls Rose on her cellphone and learns that Jackie has invited him to dinner, he turns the invitation down without hesitating and instead offers Rose a choice: stay home with her mother, or come with him to see things she’s never seen before. When Jackie finishes making tea in the kitchen, she finds Rose packing up her belongings -- and, though she tearfully begs her daughter to stay, Rose continues packing.

Night falls over London, and the Doctor forces the young boy who spray-painted “BAD WOLF” onto the TARDIS to scrub it clean again. Mickey has bought a newspaper, and is upset to find that the alien attack is already being dismissed as a hoax; it’s almost enough to make him agree with the Doctor that humans are all idiots. The Doctor concedes that Mickey’s not as bad as he thought, and gives him a CD-ROM containing a virus that will erase all mention of the Doctor from the Internet, thus ensuring that nobody can get into trouble by following him. He also invites Mickey to accompany him and Rose, but Mickey admits that he can’t handle the pace of the Doctor’s life. He asks the Doctor not to tell Rose, however, and when Rose shows up and invites Mickey to join them, the Doctor speaks up, stating that Mickey isn’t invited. Jackie, upset, pleads with Rose to stay, but Rose assures Jackie that she’s just going off travelling for a while -- and, since she’s travelling in a time machine, she can be back in ten seconds no matter how long she spends out there. She and the Doctor step into the TARDIS, which dematerialises as Jackie and Mickey watch. Ten seconds pass, and the TARDIS does not return. Upset, Jackie returns to her flat... while Mickey settles down with the newspaper to wait a while longer.

Source: Cameron Dixon

Continuity Notes:
  • Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf: In a trend begun in the first episode and continuing up to the series finale, each episode contains references to the "Bad Wolf".

    In Aliens of London, The phrase "BAD WOLF" is painted on the side of the TARDIS by a young man. A sign held by an individual in the crowd desiring to see the alien read "BAD WOLF IS COMING." The false alien is a little pig. A clearer image of the pig can be found on the secure section of the Unit Website, under Operations Board: Operation London 26/03/05.

    In World War Three, the AMNN news reporter is named "Mal Loup," French for "bad wolf." This name can clearly be seen on the "Who is Doctor Who" website on the link for US News Report. The true aliens wear human flesh, like a wolf in sheep's clothing, or the big bad wolf dressing as Grandmother.

    During this episode, the "Who is Doctor Who" website issue Hoax This had an editorial from Mickey. In it he stated the Doctor was off making decisions for us all "I'm the big bad wolf and it's way past your bedtime."

  • The Slitheen’s plan to convert an inhabited planet into radioactive fuel is similar to the intentions to the evil aliens in The Dominators.
[Back to Main Page]