One of the general upsides to Doctor Who being both a sci-fi cultural institution in Britain for decades as well as finally having something of a real budget is the show can get actual familiar faces to do guest appearances, starting with this episode as well-known British comedian and geek Simon Pegg.
But really, this episode is about what a loser companion Adam is.
In the far, far distant future, the TARDIS pops up on a space station that’s part of the Earth Empire. For Rose, this is old hat by now. For Adam, this is amazing. However, I remember even when the show was new seeing this episode and thinking Adam kinda rubbed me the wrong way.
See, the Doctor and Rose trust Adam, first with some future money and second with Rose’s cell phone that can call throughout time and space. This future has everyone hooked up to the web, sort of, with their brains, and Pegg’s character, known only as the Editor (perhaps “Banker” would be a better title given some things he says later), is a cold-hearted guy who uses information to control the human race. Or, more accurately, Pegg does it for the Jagrafess, an alien blob with a lot of sharp teeth that needs very cold temperatures to live. Pegg and the blob are in the secret control room with some remote control corpses running everything. Oh, and the corpses were basically political prisoners for lack of a better word.
Now, as far as the Doctor and Rose go, about all they really do is confuse the Editor, who has no record on either of them, and inspire a woman journalist to fiddle with the temperature controls, causing the Jagrafess to explode and taking the Editor with it (one of those corpses wasn’t quite so dead). Really, the Editor was mostly confused about the Doctor, and that more or less held everything in check.
Except Adam nearly ruined everything.
He just had to go look up future tech, buying a connection for his brain with the Doctor’s money and trying to send tech information back to his mom’s answering machine. And by doing that, he gives the bad guys all the information about the Doctor, Rose, and the TARDIS. They even almost get a key.
That gets Adam dumped back in his own time at his mother’s house, banned from the TARDIS for life, and still with a chip in his head that opens up when someone snaps their fingers. As the Doctor points out, Adam better keep a low profile if he doesn’t want to be dissected.
Adam still freaks his mother out when she snaps her fingers when she gets home.
You know, I don’t think I ever want to see the Doctor angry like that. He’s dealt with a lot of people he doesn’t seem to think too highly of (at first), but Adam makes Mickey look like he’s got it all together. Wikipedia tells me Adam did redeem himself in a comic book story, and apparently everything in Doctor Who is canon for some reason.
But he’s gone. And he was a loser. Moving on…