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David Tennant
The Impossible Planet/The Satan Pit
Tenth Doctor Logo


Synopsis


The Beast
The Beast
 Rose finds herself further away from home than ever before in the orbit of a Black Hole.

 The Doctor faces an impossible enemy, but can he save the entire universe from the Beast?

Source: BBC DVD


General Information

Season: Twenty Eight (New Series 2)
Production Code: 2-8/2-9
Story Number: 174 (New Series: 18)
Episode Numbers:718 - 719 (New Series: 22 - 23)
Number of Episodes: 2
Percentage of Episodes Held:100%
Working Titles:"Satan Pit" (episode 1)
Production Dates: February - April 2006
Broadcast Started: 03 June 2006
Broadcast Finished: 10 June 2006
Colour Status: Colour
Studio: BBC Wales (Unit Q2, Newport)
Location: Wenvoe Quarry, Clearwell Caves (Coleford, Gloucestershire) and The Johnsey Estates (Pontypool).
Writer:Matt Jones
Director:James Strong
Producer:Phil Collinson
Executive Producers:Julie Gardner and Russell T Davies
Script Editor:Simon Winstone
Editor:Mike Jones
Production Manager:Tracie Simpson
Production Designer:Edward Thomas
Director of Photography:Ernie Vincze BSC
Casting Director:Andy Pryor CDG
Costume Designer:Louise Page
Make-Up Designer:Sheelagh Wells
Cameraman:Jamie Harcourt (Operator)
Incidental Music:Murray Gold
Special Sounds (SFX Editor):Paul Jefferies
Sound Recordist:Richard Dyer
Sound Editors:Doug Sinclair and Paul McFadden
Visual Effects:The Mill
Special Effects:Any Effects
Prosthetics:Millennium Effects and Neill Gorton
Stunt Co-ordinator:Bill Davey
Title Music:Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Arranged by Murray Gold
Music Performed By: The BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Number of Doctors: 1
The Doctor: David Tennant (The Tenth Doctor)
Number of Companions: 1The Companion: Billie Piper (Rose Tyler) Additional Cast: Danny Webb (Mr. Jefferson), Shaun Parkes (Zachary Cross Flane), Claire Rushbrook (Ida Scott), Will Thorp (Toby Zed), Ronny Jhutti (Danny Barlock), MyAnna Buring (Scooti Manista), Paul Kasey (The Ood), Gabriel Woolf (The Voice of The Beast), Silas Carson (The Voice of the Ood)Setting: Sanctuary Base, planet Krop Tor Villains: Ood and The Beast

The Episodes

No. Episodes Broadcast
(UK)
Duration Viewers
(Millions)
In Archive
718The Impossible Planet03 June 200645'19"6.3Yes
719The Satan Pit10 June 200647'11"6.1Yes

Total Duration 1 Hour 33 Minutes


Audience Appreciation

Average Viewers (Millions) 6.2
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2006)85.61%  (Position = 2 out of 11)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2009)80.57% Lower (Position = 35 out of 200)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2014)79.19% Lower (Position = 52 out of 241)


Archives


 Both episodes exist and are held in the BBC's Film and Videotape Library.



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Notes


Will Thorp, who plays the part of archaeologist Toby, is famous for playing the role as flirty paramedic Paul 'Woody' Joyner in the BBC drama Casualty.

Shaun Parkes (who plays Zachary Cross Flane) previously starred alongside David Tennant in Russell T Davies' version of Casanova.

The voice of The Beast was provided by Gabriel Woolf, who also played god-like villain Sutekh The Destroyer in the 1975 story "Pyramids of Mars".

The Ood were originally going to be called 'Raxacoricofallapatorians'. The name 'Ood' was a play on the word 'odd'. Executive Producer Russell T Davies named the creatures, rather than writer Matt Jones. It was intended for the Ood to resemble the Sensorites (who appeared in the First Doctor story "The Sensorites"), and that they came from a planet near the Sense Sphere. This was later confirmed in the Season Thirty (New Series 4) story "Planet of the Ood".

Before settling on The Ood, the creatures that would eventually become The Toclafane were considered as the monsters for this story. The Toclafane were originally created as a potential replacement for the Daleks in Season Twenty Seven (New Series 1), when negotiating rights to use the latter hit a sticky patch.

The Doctor rarely has a problem with alien languages. The last major lack of communication was when the Fourth Doctor encountered the lizard-like Foamasi in the 1980 story "Leisure Hive".

The corridor sets from the Sanctuary base were later reused as part of the Totally Doctor Who studio, and were influenced by designs for the Nostromo spaceship seen in classic SCI-FI horror film Alien.

The weightless death scenes were achieved by filming the actors underwater in a special stage/tank at Pinewood Studios.

Previous adventures featuring black holes include the 1973 story "The Three Doctors", the 1980 story "The Horns of Nimon" and the 1986 The Trial of a Time Lord season.

This is the first story since the show's revamp in 2005 to be filmed in a quarry. Quarries and sand pits were often used to fill in for alien planets in the original run of the show.

The confrontation between The Doctor and The Beast was filmed at Clearwell Caves, previously used as the Sycorax ship in "The Christmas Invasion".

The TARDIS has previously used a form of tractor beam to tow a spacecraft in "Delta and the Bannermen" (in 1987) and hold a neutron star in "Creature From the Pit" (in 1979).

This story was the last, since the shows revival in 2005, to have its studio work recorded at Unit Q2 in Newport. A new purpose-built dedicated studio space had been constructed for Doctor Who at Upper Boat near Cardiff.

The 58 second TARDISode for the first episode of this story depicted Captain Walker (who has died by the time the story itself starts) being assigned the expedition. The clip ended with Walker being watched by an Ood. The 57 second TARDISode for the second episode depicted a Sanctuary Base crewmember discovering documents relating to the legend of The Beast amongst the now-deceased Walker's personal effects, only to be victimised by the strange phenomena associated with the Beast's awakening. The clip conclued with another crewmember finding the man's corpse, covered in symbols. Both were filmed on the 1st April 2006 - the first at the BBC Broadcasting House in Cardiff, the second using the command centre set built at the regular Doctor Who studio space of Unit Q2 in Newport. As with all the other TARDISode's - all of which were written by Gareth Roberts - they could be downloaded from the BBC Doctor Who website or via a mobile phone a week before the broadcast of each episode.

Before the title sequence in episode two there is a brief recap of the main events that took place in the first episode.

Unlike the previous double episode story in this season ("Rise of the Cybermen/The Age of Steel"), the first episode of this story does include a trailer for the next episode - this follows immediately after the end credits. The end credits also include a title card reading "To be continued...". The ending of the second episode of this story also includes a trailer for the next story - This being "Love & Monsters".

Following on immediately after each episode of this story, on BBC3, were the eighth and ninth chapters of the second series of Doctor Who Confidential. These being "You've Got the Look" and "Myths and Legends". Both were presented by Mark Gatiss.

This story has the accolade of having an episode ("The Satan Pit") that has to date the lowest viewing figures (6.08 million) for an episode of the revived series.



First and Last

The Firsts:

 The first appearance of the Ood.

 The first time, since the show's revamp, where the TARDIS uses a tractor beam to tow a spacecraft.

 The first story, since the show's revamp, to be filmed in a quarry.

 The first Doctor Who story to be written by Matt Jones.

 The first Doctor Who story to be directed by James Strong.


The Lasts (Subject to Future Stories):

 The last time, since the show's revamp, to be recorded at Unit Q2 in Newport.


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The Plot

WARNING: May Contain SpoilersHide Text
Rose Talks to an Ood
Rose Talks to an Ood

The TARDIS materializes in a Sanctuary Base far out in deep space. The Doctor and Rose Tyler start to explore and discover strange symbols on the wall that defy the TARDIS' ability to translate, which indicates that the writing is older than his people might know.

Then they are surrounded by a group of bizarre alien creatures - which they later discover are called the Ood - who they believe are attacking them but are, in fact, seem to be docile subordinates to the humans who inhabit this base.

When a massive impact hits the base, The Doctor and Rose realise where they are... an impossible planet, an airless world orbiting a black hole which cannot possibly exist. They learn, from the human occupants, that the expedition is now stuck here, monitoring the black hole in a place where by all scientific probability it - and they - cannot exist. The team is drilling to reach a power source, which keeps the world in balance, ten miles below... something buried down within the planet that they have not yet identified.

The Doctor and Rose
The Doctor and Rose

The Doctor then realises that they themselves are trapped because when the impact hit, it wiped away part of the base where the TARDIS had materialised. But before they can start to worry about this misfortune The Doctor and Rose get caught up in other strange events.

Archaeologist, Toby, who has been examining the ancient writing, has started hearing voices while the ancient symbols start to appear on his hands, and soon he is not in control of his body. Then he goes outside the base, watched by Maintenance Trainee Scooti, who is then killed when Toby shatters the window. But by the time The Doctor and company respond, Toby has returned to normal and has no memories of what's happened.

Ancient Writing
Ancient Writing

Rose and Danny start to hear the otherwise docile Ood say things that they shouldn't and are all confined after demonstrating further unusual behaviour and worrying psychic patterns.

When the drill reaches its destination ten miles below, The Doctor accompanies scientist Ida down the mine shaft where they discover a huge cavern, the ruins of an ancient civilisation and a huge engraved seal protecting something even deeper in this impossible planet.

Back on the base, Toby is once again transformed into a hideous servant of something called The Beast. The Ood are now completely possessed as an army for this 'beast' and break free from their confinement and start to kill the humans.

The Control Center
The Control Center

Suddenly the planet's gravity field starts to collapse and the world starts moving toward the black hole, while in the depths of the planet, The Doctor and Ida watch helplessly as the seal opens and something alien inside starts to become free - An alien known as The Beast who, acting through the Ood, takes control of the viewscreens to deliver a stark message to the crew. He even announces to Rose that she "will die in battle, so very soon"…

The Doctor tries to restore some confidence and faith in the crew by explaining how The Beast just preys on basic fears and how they can rise above it. And he seems to succeed until The Beast snaps the cable supporting the lift so trapping The Doctor and Ida deep below the surface of the planet. As they only have one hour of oxygen left Ida suggests she ventures into the Pit as they have not much left to lose. The Doctor disagrees and suggests he go instead.

It is therefore up to The Doctor to discover who The Beast is and to find a way of defeating him while Rose, along with the rest of the crew, has to find a way of defeating the Ood and to find a way of this planet before it is consumed by the black hole.

Luckily for The Doctor discovers where the TARDIS is and Rose discovers that the crew have a rocket that can be used for all those still alive on surface to escape in. But will she leave The Doctor and what of Toby – will he allow the humans to leave the planet? And if The Doctor and Rose do manage to escape what of The Beast’s prediction to Rose?

 
The Black Hole
The Black Hole
Toby
Toby
Toby Possessed
Toby Possessed
The Ood
The Ood
 
A Red Eyed Ood
A Red Eyed Ood
The Doctor Exploring Underground
The Doctor Exploring Underground
The Beast
The Beast
Toby Transformed
Toby Transformed




Quote of the Story


 'Oh, don't worry about me. Okay... we're under a black hole... on a planet which shouldn't exist. Right, I've changed my mind, start worrying about me.'

Rose



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Release Information

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)Code NumberCover ArtRemarks
Video
DVD
The Impossible Planet - The Satan Pit - Love & MonstersAugust 2006BBCDVD 1963Photo-montage
Video
DVD
The Complete Second SeriesNovember 2006BBCDVD 2122Photo-montageBoxed set containing all 11 stories
Video
DVD
The Complete Second Series (Amazon Version)November 2006BBCDVD 2122Photo-montageLimited Edition 'Cyberman Head' box set containing all 11 stories
Audio
CD
Original Television SoundtrackDecember 2006SILCD1224Photo-montageMusic by Murray Gold
Video
DVD
Series 1 - 4 Box SetOctober 2009BBCDVD 3058Boxed set containing all 43 stories on 23 Discs
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Series 1-7 Box Set (Limited Edition)December 2013BBCBD 0242Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray boxed set containing all Series 1-7 stories at full 1080p high definition
Video
DVD
The Complete Second Series (2014 Re-release)August 2014BBCDVD 3966Photo-montageBoxed set containing all 11 stories
Video
DVD
The Complete David Tennant Years Box SetNovember 2014BBCDVD 4000Photo-montageBoxed set containing all 37 stories on 26 Discs
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Second Series Box SetAugust 2015BBCBD 0262Photo-montageBlu-Ray boxed set containing 11 stories
Video
DVD
The Complete Second Series Box Set (Limited Edition Steelbook)July 2017Photo-montageLimited Edition DVD Steelbook boxed set containing 10 stories (Amazon Exclusive)
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Second Series Box Set (Limited Edition Steelbook)July 2017Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray Steelbook boxed set containing 10 stories (Amazon Exclusive)


In Print

No Book Release
Doctor Who Magazine - PreviewIssue 370 (Released: June 2006)
Doctor Who Magazine - After ImageIssue 373 (Released: September 2006)
Doctor Who Magazine - Time TeamIssue 449 (Released: July 2012)
Doctor Who DVD FilesVolume 11 (Released: June 2009)
Doctor Who DVD FilesVolume 12 (Released: June 2009)

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Photo Gallery


The Doctor and Companion

 
David Tennant
The Tenth Doctor

   

 
Billie Piper
Rose Tyler
 
   




On Release

DVD Cover
DVD Cover

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series DVD Box Set
Complete Series DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
DVD Box Set<BR>(Amazon Version)
DVD Box Set
(Amazon Version)

BBC
VIDEO
Original Television Soundtrack Cover
Original Television Soundtrack Cover

BBC
AUDIO
   
Series 1-4 DVD Box Set
Series 1-4 DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series 1-7 Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set
Complete Series 1-7 Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series DVD Box Set<BR>(2014 Re-release)
Complete Series DVD Box Set
(2014 Re-release)

BBC
VIDEO
Complete David Tennant Years DVD Box Set
Complete David Tennant Years DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
   
Complete Series Blu-Ray Box Set
Complete Series Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series DVD Limited Edition Steelbook Box Set
Complete Series DVD Limited Edition Steelbook Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series Blu-Ray Limited Edition Steelbook Box Set
Complete Series Blu-Ray Limited Edition Steelbook Box Set

BBC
VIDEO



Magazines

Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 370
Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 370

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - After Image: Issue 373
Doctor Who Magazine - After Image: Issue 373

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 449
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 449

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 11
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 11

GE Fabbri
   
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 12
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 12

GE Fabbri


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