Series: Doctor Who
Episode: “Planet of the Dead”
Starring: David Tennant, Michelle Ryan, Lee Evans
WARNING! MINOR SPOILERS!
The Doctor is finally back in the first of four specials marking the end of the David Tennant era. The end of last season left me pretty broken up, what with Donna no longer being “bovvered” and all. So I was torn between being anxious for more and never wanting to see it again. After such a downer season ending, “Planet of the Dead” wisely maintains a pretty lively, upbeat tone throughout. We’re treated to only one actual reference to Donna in the episode, but by the end, we understand the lasting effect she’s had on the Doctor. But who is Doctor Who without his lovely companion? So, this time around they’ve given him Lady Christina de Souza (Bionic Woman‘s Michelle Ryan), a thief and adrenaline junkie who seems perfect for the Doctor’s run-for-your-life lifestyle. Their chemistry works, and by the end of the episode, I was imagining how useful a thief would be for the Doctor to have around.
The episode itself involves the Doctor, the thief and a busload of Londoners getting zapped into a wormhole and ending up on a seemingly deserted alien planet. Well, “seemingly” is never what it seems on Doctor Who, as the adventure kicks in with a race against time to get everyone safely back to London, avoid the alien beasties and save the Earth from a fate worse than The Langoliers. The return of Tennant and the series is bittersweet, though. Yes, it’s grand to have a new adventure, but just as he’s warned at the end of this episode (and by a bunch of Oods from last season) the Doctor’s song is ending. Hopefully, the remaining Tennant/Davies episodes will build to a great finale for everyone’s favorite Doctor. “The Planet of the Dead” is a good start.