Doctor Who: The Long Game

The TARDIS arrives in the year 200,000 on a space station responsible for
gathering and distributing all the news in the fourth great and bountiful
human empire. But is it transmitting the truth?

Cast

Christopher Ecclestone as the Doctor
Billie Piper as Rose Tyler
Bruno Langley as Adam
Colin Proctor as Grimy Man
Christine Adams as Cathica
Anna Maxwell-Martin as Suki
Simon Pegg as the Editor
Tamsin Greig as the Nurse
Judy Holt as Adam’s Mum

Written by Russell T. Davies

Directed by Brian Grant

Original Airdate

Originally broadcast on BBC One in the United Kingdom on the 7th
of May 2005

Synopsis

The TARDIS arrives in the year 200,000 on a space station which is
responsible for gathering and disseminating all news in the human
empire. But are they broadcasting the truth?

High Point

  1. ‘Special offer. We installed the vomit-o-matic at the same time.’
  2. All the scenes with Simon Pegg in

Low Point

The Editor-in-Chief didn’t really live up to its reputation.

The Review

The manipulation of the media is not the most original
story in the world, but this is a nice treatment of it and a different way
to approach it. Four out of six.

Once more the effects were almost flawless in design,
although not perfect in execution. How good one can expect giant
slavering aliens and portholes in people’s foreheads to look on a
television budget? About this good, probably. Five out of six.

The story can only be described as ‘good’. Some parts of
it were predictable. Others were not, but all of it was entertaining and
engaging. Five out of six.

Can I complain about the acting this week? No, I can’t. I
particularly enjoyed the performance by Anna Maxwell-Martin as Suki.
Simon Pegg, of course, is excellent. Five out of six.

The emotional response was a little weak. While the story
is entertaining and interesting, it doesn’t particularly tug at the
heartstrings or make the pulse pound. There was only one scene which
particularly made me feel any empathy for one of the characters, and
that was quite strong, but the rest fell a little flat. This is, to be said,
probably Simon Pegg’s fault because he’s obviously enjoying himself
immensely. Three out of six.

The production was up to the high standards we have
come to expect from this series. Five out of six.

Overall, I give this episode four out of six.

Which gives us a grand total of thirty-one out of forty-two.

10 replies on “Doctor Who: The Long Game”

  1. joe__gee says:

    This was a fun episode :)
    Not a lot more to it than that. Fun. Although did Rose get her cell phone back? I don’t think she did …

    I just finished re-watching the 1998/1999 movie. Gawd. Ya know, that movie went downhill at the moment the Doctor regained his memory. “Half human on my mom’s side …” From that point on, yuck. It’s amazing the tricks memory can play on a person. I actually remembered liking it …

    -Joe

  2. J_W_W says:

    Station 5?
    I wonder if there was any tip of the hat intented in having the station be designated 5. I noticed the 5 on the wall right away. Of course this stations purpose was directly opposite of Babylon 5’s, but I still think it may have been a good nod to another excellent series, or of course, it could have been a random number.

    I thought the snapping fingers at the end was a pretty good high point as well.

    Now, looking at the previews for next week, I got the distinct feeling like the Doctor is playing at Willy Wonka. I.E. he’s looking for the companion who won’t abuse the power of travelling with him (first with this show and then with next weeks). I hope they don’t do that too much.

    • Eldhrin says:

      Re: Station 5?
      I doubt they will. I suspect that they will revisit Adam, but the Doctor’s not going
      to pick up any more random people without careful consideration. Not sure if
      Rose got her mobile back… hopefully she did, as she’ll miss it if she doesn’t
      have it. As she said to Adam, it helps stop you feeling so far from home.

      And he does have to be careful about his companions; looking for one who
      won’t try and change the past is pretty important.

      See the teaser for next week’s episode for why.

      • Nakhti says:

        Re: Station 5?

        And he does have to be careful about his companions; looking for one who
        won’t try and change the past is pretty important.

        I have a question about this. This is my first Dr. Who series. Why is it they can’t change the past? I mean technically, isn’t the Doctor changing the timeline anytime he does anything at all, whether in the past or the future?

        • codejnki says:

          Re: Station 5?

          I have a question about this. This is my first Dr. Who series. Why is it they can’t change the past? I mean technically, isn’t the Doctor changing the timeline anytime he does anything at all, whether in the past or the future?

          I’m a bit sketchy on my show cannon (been a few years obviously) but one of the things I remember is that the TARDIS is designed in such a way that it was supposed to prevent you from landing in the same place and time as yourself. Specifically so that you couldn’t go back and “fix” a mistake you previously made.

          When I get a chance I’ll review the Five Doctor’s episode because I think they touched on that little scenario.

          Which is why episodes like the Three Doctors, Two Doctors, and Five Doctors always had some external non TARDIS force causing the doctor to run in to himself.

          Which is why I’m interested to see how things are handeled next week.

          Anybody else thought it strange that every episode has happened on earth or at least in orbit around earth? Here we are half way though the episodes and haven’t once visited another planet.

          • Cymor says:

            Re: Station 5?

            I have a question about this. This is my first Dr. Who series. Why is it they can’t change the past? I mean technically, isn’t the Doctor changing the timeline anytime he does anything at all, whether in the past or the future?

            I’m a bit sketchy on my show cannon (been a few years obviously) but one of the things I remember is that the TARDIS is designed in such a way that it was supposed to prevent you from landing in the same place and time as yourself. Specifically so that you couldn’t go back and “fix” a mistake you previously made.

            When I get a chance I’ll review the Five Doctor’s episode because I think they touched on that little scenario.

            Which is why episodes like the Three Doctors, Two Doctors, and Five Doctors always had some external non TARDIS force causing the doctor to run in to himself.

            Which is why I’m interested to see how things are handeled next week.

            Anybody else thought it strange that every episode has happened on earth or at least in orbit around earth? Here we are half way though the episodes and haven’t once visited another planet.

            In Story 6, The Aztecs, the Doctor states that you can’t change time. That could just be a mandate from the Time Lords, though.

          • zonk3r says:

            Re: Station 5?

            Anybody else thought it strange that every episode has happened on earth or at least in orbit around earth? Here we are half way though the episodes and haven’t once visited another planet.

            actually that was something the production team said they were going to do. more specifically they said the show would be a little more “down to earth” this time around. which isn’t necessarily a bad thing as long as there is a good script to back it up.

        • max_quordlepleen says:

          Re: Station 5?

          I have a question about this. This is my first Dr. Who series. Why is it they
          can’t change the past? I mean technically, isn’t the Doctor changing the
          timeline anytime he does anything at all, whether in the past or the future?

          Dr. Who frequently contradicts itself on stuff like this, but the general
          idea seems to be that The Doctor is a force for the preservation of “the
          timeline”, especially when time-aware species or individuals try to meddle.
          Although sometimes (for example, I recently watched “The Ark In Space”
          which fits this description), The Doctor seems to intervene as though events
          are not fixed and he can influence events towards a “preferable” outcome.
          And there are times (“Genesis of the Daleks”) when The Doctor is actively
          trying to alter past events.

          And then there is “The First Law of Time”, which The Doctor is accused of
          violating in the “Trial of a Time Lord” series, which is supposed to rule out
          intervention with alien species.

          And if Earth gets invaded, all bets are off. :)

  3. Alexius says:

    {{Hugs}}
    I Loved The ‘I’ll Hug Anybody’ Line.

    • J_W_W says:

      Re: {{Hugs}}

      I Loved The ‘I’ll Hug Anybody’ Line.

      He wasn’t exactly rushing to hug the Dalek last week ;-)

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