Monday, 23 March 2015

DW 02-12: Army of Ghosts (1 of 2)

A Guide to Classic Who references (and other references) in New Who episodes.

Doctor Who series 2, episode 12 (Story 21, part 1).  Rose & the Doctor finally learn about Torchwood.

May contain spoilers for:

"Army of Ghosts"

Viewing Order


[OLD] - Things that first appeared in the classic series (or the film.)  Episode List.

For context, the following are also coved:
[1ST] -  The first appearance of things in Doctor Who series.
[NEW] - Things that first appeared previously in the new series.
[UNK] - Unknown, presumably new.

  • [UNK]  Unnamed planet - Looks pretty but don't match any descriptions I recall.  Looks pretty, though.

  • [NEW]  The Army of Ghosts - First appearance, unless you count the Tardisode.  Or not the first appearance, really, if you count what they really are.

  • [NEW]  Torchwood - finally appears.

  • [1ST]  Bazoolium trinket - First mention of this material, this device or ever bazaars being held on asteroids.

  • [1ST]  Jathraa Sunslider - First reference to this race or their craft.

  • [OLD]  The Void - "The Void" or "The White Void" was a location connected "The Land of Fiction" outside of real space in the Second Doctor story "The Mind Robber" where the normal rules of time and space didn't apply.  The Gateway was an almost white location between N-Space (normal space) and E-Space (exo-space) in "The Warrior's Gate" (Fourth Doctor).  It also was a plot point in "The Rise of the Cybermen."

  • [OLD]  The Eternals - Appeared previously in the Fifth Doctor story "Enlightenment."  The Guardians of Time offered Enlightenment to the Eternals who one a race through space.  In "Love & Monsters" the Doctor said that the Living Shadow had escaped from the Howling Halls.  It is unclear if this is related to the Void or the Eternals' name for it.

  • [OLD]  Cybermen & Plastic Sheeting - Reminiscent of events in "Tomb of the Cybermen," "The Invasion" (Second Doctor) and "Earthshock" (Fifth Doctor).

  • [OLD]  Cyber Leader - Highest ranking Cyberman when the Cyber-Controller isn't around.  Usually denoted by a black helmet or handlebars.  Appeared in Revenge of the Cybermen, (Fourth Doctor), Earthshock, The Five Doctors (Fifth Doctor), Attack of the Cybermen, (Sixth Doctor), and the Silver Nemesis (Seventh Doctor).

The 10 Rules to Doctor Who.

(Read the rules here.)

10.  The TARDIS is for arriving at the location of the story at the beginning of the episode and leaving at the end.  This is because Time Travel is the excuse for the story, not that the story is about.  Unless the episode is written by Steve Moffat, then it's definitely about Time Travel.
The TARDIS is carted about, but it's just for used for travel.  [1]

9.  No one can cross their own Time Stream, except when they do.
No one tries. [NA]

8.  There's no situation that can't be briefly defused by a non sequitur.
As usual.  [1]

7.  The Doctor is both the most serious and most frivolous person in the room - any room - at the same time.  And he does that without becoming insane.  Mostly.

As usual.  [1]

6.  The last episode of every series must contain the Master or at least one Dalek.  Every time.  However briefly.
Not a series final, but the Daleks appear in set up for one.  [NA]

5.  The main companion will be a young contemporary British female.  Although, to be
fair, almost everyone in the Universe is British and most things happen in contemporary London.
Rose is a young female contemporary companion. Jackie claims to be 40.  
  (Contemporary London setting.)   [1] 

4.  The more emotionless a species, cyborg or robot the more likely they are to be destroyed by emotions.  This is true of the Daleks.  It is particularly true of the Cybermen.
Daleks and Cybermen appear.  They haven't yet been destroyed.  [NA]

3.  Even if the episode title contains the words "Dalek(s)" or "Cyberman/men" the presence of the Daleks and or Cybermen will at the beginning be treated as a mystery and their revelation a surprise.
The Ghosts appear rather quickly.  The Cybermen and Daleks aren't mentioned in the title so aren't spoilt by it.  [0]

2.  The nature of the threat will be revealed to the audience before the Doctor.  The truth behind the threat will be unknowable by the audience until it is explained by the Doctor.
Jackie notes:  "He's not happy when I know more then him, is he?"  Doesn't change anything but it's nice to see someone notice this trait.  Everyone loves the ghosts, the Doctor realises something's wrong and explains why they are a danger  [1]

1.  The most dangerous creature in any situation is the last of its kind.  This sometimes also applies to aliens other than The Doctor.
The Doctor is the only last of his kind.  Torchwood thinks he's dangerous.  [.5]

Score:  5.5/7.

~ DUG.
More New series Doctor Who episode.

The Time Crash blog was created to help New Who fans understand Classic Who references - and to know if something isn't a reference but a new idea.  If there's a reference I missed or a subject that you feel needs more explaining, please comment.

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