Tuesday, 10 June 2014

DW 01-03: The Unquiet Dead

A Guide to Classic Who references in New Who episodes.

Doctor Who (2005): Series 1 episode 3 (Story 3):  The Doctor and Rose visit Victorian era Wales.

Viewing Order

  • 1-01 "Rose(Suggested viewing - introduction of characters.)


[1ST] - The first appearance of things in Doctor Who series.
[NEW] - Stuff seen previously in the New Series.
[OLD] - Things that first appeared in the classic series (or the film.)  Episode List.
[INJ] - An In-Joke or reference outside of Doctor Who.

  • [1ST]  1860 - Not previously visited in a televised episode.

  • [NEW]  Time Vortex - as described last episode, but blue due to travelling backwards in time.

  • [OLD]  The unreliability of the TARDIS, and difficulty flying it.  Although the TARDIS seemed to go were it was asked in the previous two episodes it, it misses the mark here (both spacially and temporally).  It also seems harder to control this episode.  Again, not unheard of in the old series.
  • [1ST]  Naples - Not previously visited in a televised episode.
  • [INJ]  Barbarella - Is an erotic French Science Fiction comic strip and a film (starring Jane Fonda) based upon it.  The character spends a lot of time naked or scantly clad, which is what the Doctor is referencing here, although it is as culturally taboo in the film.
  • [OLD]  Dressing for the occasion - Sometimes it is required or remarked upon, other times it is ignored.  In this episode all three happen. 
  • [OLD]  Historical figures - The Doctor has met historical figures before (both on screen and via name dropping.
  • [1ST]  Charles Dickens - not previously shown or mentioned on screen.  There are lots of references to his life and works in the episode, but let's not obsess about those too much.  Simon Callow who plays him her is known for writing about and playing Dickens a number of times on stage, film and television.
  • [1ST]  1869 - Not previously visited in a televised episode.
  • [1ST]  Cardiff - Not previously visited in a televised episode.
  • [INJ]  It's Cardiff - The new series is actually filmed in Cardiff and so this is the first of many jokes at its expense.  Ironically the external scenes (like this one) were mostly filmed outside of Cardiff for the Victorian look.  Later in the episode the Doctor emphasises the words "in Cardiff" when noting the ignominy of his impending demise.
  • [NEW]  Bad Wolf - the phrase is used again.

  • [1ST]  The Gleth - Not previously mentioned in a televised episode. 
  • [NEW]  The Time War - Mentioned in the previous two episodes.
  • [OLD]  Time's in flux - Although not really referred to previously there is a constant battle between stories where time is, isn't and can or can't be changed.  In the first story, "An Unearthly Child," the First Doctor and his companions influence and help a tribe of cavemen, whether this was the natural order of events or the tribe died out anyway is never address.  Later in the first season, in "The Aztecs" history teach Barbara tries to convince the Aztecs to stop using human sacrifice to stop their extinction, the First Doctor tells her that you cannot rewrite time.  Many episodes seem to confirm this with actions of the Doctor and companions causing (accidentally or deliberately) with the First Doctor being shocked in "The Romans" when he discovered that his actions inspired Nero to burn Rome and that he had created history.  There seems to be little concern about changing the history of alien cultures, changing thing for future humans (who would be history for later still humans.)  The timeline is certainly changed in the Seventh Doctor story "Curse of Fenric" when the a haemovore (one of a race of creatures evolved from humans) changed the past so his race never existed.
  • [OLD]  I saw the fall of Troy - In the First Doctor story "The Mythmakers" the Doctor even - reluctantly - suggested to the Greeks that they use a wooden horse when all their other plans failed.
  • [1ST]  World War V - Not previously mentioned in a televised episode.  Obvious, this implies a World War III & IV as well. 
  • [1ST]  The Boston Tea Party - Not previously shown in a televised episode.  Barbara did mention it in "Invasion of the Daleks."

The 10 Rules to Doctor Who.

10.  TARDIS:  The TARDIS is used for travel at the beginning of the episode. [1]
9.  Meeting Yourself:  No one tries.  [X]
8.  Non-sequiturs:   Not really this episode.  [0]
7.  Serious/Frivolous:  Shows aspects of both personality.  [1]
6.  Series Final:  This is not a series final.  [X]
5.  Companion:  Rose, contemporary British female.  (Past British story).  [1]
4.  Emotionless:  Not applicable  [0]
3.  Title Spoilers:  The meaning of the title is clear from near the beginning.  [0]
2.  The Threat:  The viewer is aware of the zombies and the gaseous possession before the Doctor, the viewer learns the details with the Doctor but also explains it.  [1]
1.  Last of It's Kind:  The Gelth claim to be the last of their kind and are dangerous.  The Charles Dickens is more so.  [.5]

Score:  4.5/8.
Previous:  "The End of the World"

~ DUG.

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