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< 1.1 - Rose
1.3 - The Unquiet Dead >

1.2 - The End of the World

Rating Votes
10
1%
1
9
6%
7
8
16%
20
7
44%
54
6
18%
22
5
10%
13
4
2%
3
3
2%
3
2
1%
1
1
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Average Rating
6.7
Votes
124

Latest Community Reviews

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
5
Plot Rating:
5
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
5
Effects Rating:
10
Has Prerequisite(s):
Yes
Reviewed By: DalekbusterScreen5ReviewsReview Date: 4/11/17 2:14 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

Episode twos are always difficult for any television series. Ninety nine percent of the time the production crew tend to focus their efforts mostly on the first episode in order to entice people to watch the show and the second episode ends up overlooked. This is clearly the case with The End of the World, which whilst not terrible isn't quite up to the standards of the previous episode Rose.

The End of the World has a brilliant premise for a Doctor Who episode. The sun is expanding and about to destroy the Earth; on Platform One, the richest beings of the universe are gathering to watch it end on the Observation Desk including Cassandra (Zoe Wanamaker), Jabe (Yasmin Bannerman), the Mox of Balhoon (Jimmy Vee) and the Face of Boe (Struan Rodger). The Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) and Rose (Billie Piper) arrive to find someone is trying to sabotage the space station with robotic spiders.

The problem with this episode is that what should be an engaging narrative is actually rather boring. It doesn't help that the pace is slowed down by Rose's call to her mum Jackie (Camille Coduri). As well-written the conversation between Rose and Jackie is, it doesn't help to enhance the plot and this feels like an episode that would work better with more emphasis on the main story and less on the familial elements (especially when the whole planet is about to die with everyone on it - something that should be very emotional to see for Rose given this is her home planet).

There are some great scenes - the stuff with the Doctor and Jabe in the air conditioning chamber trying to navigate giant rotating fans is a fantastic action piece well-directed by Euros Lyn - but they are too far and few between. I can't help but feel that later into Russell T Davies' run, the production team would have done a much better job as they would have learnt from experience how to execute the concept. It is a very ambitious idea for the first series of the show's idea and one that Russell T Davies should have perhaps kept back for series four.

The special effects in this story however are very impressive and still hold together today. These are some of the best special effects in the new series of the show; it actually feels like we're watching the real sun expanding to destroy the real Earth and every one of the alien guests look like species you may find in a big Hollywood movie rather than a television series:





The Face of Boe is a brilliant character too; there's something immensely likeable about the big head in the jar known as Boe. I'm not entirely sure what it is that's so appealing but I just really enjoy watching his scenes and was glad when he returned in New Earth and Gridlock. I hope one day the series confirms that Jack was definitely the Face of Boe (as stated in the later three parter Utopia/The Sound of Drums/Last of the Time Lords as it would explain how he knows to warn the Doctor about the Master).

Cassandra, on the other hand, I'm not too keen on. I'm not sure how she became a recurring character as whilst Zoe Wanamaker is good in the role, I found her nothing more than an annoying future Katie Price. She's basically what would happen if a Kardashian became the last surviving human and whilst that makes her a suitably unlikeable antagonist for the Doctor, it doesn't make her a particularly entertaining one. She's just plain irritating and initially it was a relief that she
View SpoilersWARNING: spoilers below
seemed to die at the end of the episode
...until they decided to bring her back a year later for New Earth! I mean, what the hell Russell T Davies? Why would you want to inflict that pain on us? If anyone had to return from The End of the World alongside the Face of Boe, it should have been the Mox of Balhoon. He had much more mileage and Jimmy Vee was great in the role.

Let's talk about the main actors: Christopher Eccleston and Rose Tyler. I was never much a fan of Christopher Eccleston's Doctor and I don't think he was too brilliant here. He seemed a bit uncomfortable in the role and it felt like he was phoning in some of his lines during this episode. He certainly wasn't terrible but it wasn't his best performance as the Doctor either (that would be Dalek). Billie Piper, on the other hand, is as brilliant as she always was - especially during her conversation with plumber Raffalo, which helped to demonstrate her character's caring side when realised the plumber wasn't allowed to talk and gave her permission to.

Overall, The End of the World is one of those typical second episodes of a television series where the quality takes a sudden drop after a great episode one. The story has a strong premise but ultimately it doesn't deliver, providing a boring story with too many scenes that fail to drive the plot. There are some great scenes though and the special effects are still great eleven years on. The Face of Boe is also a great character who thankfully made the return appearances he deserved. Cassandra is annoying though and Christopher Eccleston seems uncomfortable in his performance as the Doctor.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: doctorwhomoffReview Date: 12/17/15 3:04 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

A decent second story for the ninth doctor and Rose, with some good action, interesting plot devolvement's and unique creature designs and good acting.

The little boy joke from Cassandra did cost this a point though I wont deny.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: traves8853Review Date: 10/30/15 3:13 am
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

I love that the Clerk who introduces people is just a bloke painted blue - just like old times! :D

There are some odd elements at play here. First, there there is the need to justify the reason why the Earth's continents haven't shifted and then there is the "retro" style propellers - So, engineers are also artists in the future? That's not a complaint though because I do enjoy this episode, just an observation. Like noticing that Cassandra's demeanour sets her out as the villain early on. I think they missed a trick there though, they could have had Sil, or one of his kind, back as a red herring. With added bonus of a bit of nostalgia.

It also feels a bit constrained by it's fourty five minute running time but nowhere near as bad as the preceeding episode. In fact it quite amazing that they manage to pack so much into this. Lots of suspenseful writing, but of course we never believe the Doctor won't save Rose, that would have been a shocker! Again, somebody dies, a couple of people actually and there death has impact and meaning. Unlike what happens in the Moffat era.

The Earth dies and we find out about Gallifrey's destruction. It's a nice way of allowing the Doctor and Rose to bond. Last time we found out about Rose, this time we get to learn about the Doctor.

Has anybody noticed how 'Max Capricorn' (from 'Voyage of the Damned') and 'Lady Cassandra' are basically the same character. Part human entities that want to destroy the ship they are on and both bought shares in rival companies to profit from their destruction by design?
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
6
Plot Rating:
6
Acting Rating:
6
Replay Rating:
5
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 3/12/15 3:27 am
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

The Doctor and Rose take their first trip in the TARDIS and it sends them to year 5 billion where it's the world quite literally. The Earth is uninhabited and nature is at last taking its course and Earth is dying. Everything dies, the Doctor tells Rose.

After the mostly Earth-based opener with some effects that were less than spectacular, the End of the World shows the practical effects the new series was capable of and it shows some very vibrant designs.

For Rose, the story affords her chance to explorer her decision to travel with the Doctor and clearly she's processing a lot as she deals with being at the end of the World and meeting the "last human", Cassandra who has become a grotesque parody of humanity.Rose's disgust at Cassandra seemed to challenge her own perceptions. Rose's own awkwardness with alien is challenged by Cassandra's contempt for them. In some ways, the episode seems to be pushing Rose towards expanding her definition of who "people" are to include aliens and a wide variety of lifeforms which is an odd focus given how few of these she runs into.

The story established the darker tone of this first series as the Doctor lets a villain perish, just because everything dies, everything ends. In RTD's world, Earth dies with a whimper and "pure" humanity that refuses to adapt become Cassandra.

It's also a very odd question as to why the Doctor chose this time. The stated reason that he was trying to show up how far the TARDIS would go was lame. Did he want Rose to see the destruction of her world so some other being would understand what he had seen or at least part of it? Was he trying to take her somewhere to see if she'd stay to test her? In the aftermath of the Time War, does he think a "natural death" like Earth is slated to get is a happy ending? And there are other options.

On the other hand, the realization of the villain and the motive is weak. This wouldn't be the last time Russell T. Davies presented us with a fantastic crime committed for the most pedestrian of reasons.

While the series featured lots of guest characters and aliens, there was rarely a sense of the alieness of any of them (and the only interesting one was Jabe), Davies instead extrapolated 21st century trends for parody purposes which seemed to clash with the darker themes of this season.

Overall, a decent second outing for the 9th Doctor that says the stage for future events.


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