December 3, 2023

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

Doctor Who “The Impossible Planet”

The TARDIS lands on a planet that somehow holds a stable orbit around a black hole.

Wait…”The Impossible Planet”?

Jimmy, do you have something you’ve been holding from the rest of us?

Once again, the TARDIS lands somewhere, but by this time, Rose and the Doctor can make a joke about how they could just stay in the TARDIS and try going somewhere else.  After that gave them both a good laugh, the pair goes exploring in the industrial-looking space station that at least looks like a pretty impressive set.  They find a rest area with some writing on the wall. In English, it says “Welcome to Hell”.  Underneath it is a language that apparently is so old, even the TARDIS’s translation circuits can’t decipher it.

That freaks the Doctor out.

Then some squid-faced aliens show up, looking to feed.

That freaks the Doctor and Rose out, but then some humans show up, and the aliens, it turns out, had a short in their translation orbs.  They’re the Ood, and eventually we all learn that they’re, well, a slave race, low-level telepaths that will literally not do anything unless you tell them to do something.

Oh, there are humans here too.  There’s Jefferson, the head of security; Zachary, the acting captain; Ida, who’s very friendly; Danny, the ethics guy who swears his job is more interesting than it sounds; Toby, the sullen archaeologist who thinks there’s a civilization worth exploring where they are; and Scooti, an attractive young woman so you know when this thing turns into a horror movie, she’ll be the first victim.

So, where are they?  Oh, that’s easy and something that is complete defiance of the laws of physics:  on a planet on a stable orbit around a very hungry black hole.

Yeah, that really freaks the Doctor out.

Granted, the station they’re on is subject to frequent attacks of space turbulence.  And when one batch hits just after the Doctor and Rose meet the crew, and the station loses some corridors to the core of the planet, the source of the weird power source that the people on the station are looking into.

And the TARDIS was in that section, so now the TARDIS is deep inside the planet where the Doctor can’t get to it.

OK, he and Rose are stuck there, so he freaks out one more time.

That said, they took to the possibility of being stuck in the future with some level of good humor.

Well, the Doctor may be done freaking out, but there are other people here to freak out, starting with Toby.

He’s hearing voices.

Voices that tell him that the speaker is standing behind him, but if Toby looks, Toby dies.

Voices the Ood might also be hearing.

Voices about something being awake.

Something that also gets messages out to various computers and Rose’s cell phone.

Voices that apparently can possess Toby, turning his blue eyes red and covering his face and hands with that weird writing that even the Doctor can’t translate.

And then he can go for a walk on the planet’s surface without a space suit and kill Scooti by breaking a window and sucking her outside.

And then Toby will be fine when the others find him.

So, more of the station is damaged, and Scooti is spotted floating outside the observation lounge.

But then the drill reaches the bottom and the Doctor volunteers to go with Ida to see what’s down there.  And that’s when things go wrong because the Ood, usually a telepathic level 5 went up to 30 before the Doctor left (and that’s the level for shouting) and then up to 100 after he got down there (and that’s the level for brain dead).

And then the Doctor and Ida get down there and really bad things happen.  Toby becomes possessed again, but not for long as the intelligence moves from Toby into the collective minds of the Ood.  There’s a trap door down there that opens up, and something down there says it’s free.  And the planet starts to go into the black hole.

Oh, and the thing in the pit has many names, some of which suggest it’s the devil.

Now I may be freaked out.