BBC Doctor Who - The Stories BBC
QuickNav to a Season: 
QuickNav to a Story: 
 
The Previous Story
Closing Time
 The Previous Story
The Previous Story
(The God Complex)
 The Next Story
(The Wedding of River Song)
Season
Details
SynopsisGeneral
Information
The
Episodes
Audience
Appreciation
ArchivesNotesFirst and LastThe PlotQuote of
the Story
Release
Information
In PrintPhoto
Gallery
 

Matt Smith
Closing Time
Eleventh Doctor Logo


Synopsis


The Doctor's Last Trip
The Doctor's Last Trip
 Sanderson & Grainger, Colchester An ordinary, department store. Closing time. The lights flicker Just another power cut. They happen so often these days. A store assistant cashes up. But there's a noise from the changing rooms. The end cubicle. A glint of silver from behind the curtain. A monster is waiting…

 Not far away, on a leafy suburban street, in the house that Craig Owens shares with his girlfriend Sophie, the same flicker on a hallway light. Sophie barely has time to notice - she's heading off for a weekend away - but she hasn't been gone five minutes before the doorbell rings. An old friend is making a house call (‘Oh, you've redecorated? I don't like it’), and he's detected an alien presence in Craig's upstairs bedroom! It's shrieking painfully, dribbling slime, emitting noxious gases... It looks like the man who never comes back, has come back into Craig's life in the nick of time…



General Information

Season: Thirty Two (New Series 6)
Production Code: 6-12
Story Number: 223 (New Series: 67)
Episode Number:782 (New Series: 86)
Number of Episodes: 1
Percentage of Episodes Held:100%
Production Dates: February - March 2011
Broadcast Date: 24 September 2011
Colour Status: HD Colour
Studio: BBC Wales (Upper Boat, Pontypridd)
Location: Howell's/House of Fraser (Cardiff); Hayes Island (Cardiff); Wharton Street (Cardiff); Church Road (Penarth) and 2 Church Road (Penarth).
Writer:Gareth Roberts
Director:Steve Hughes
Producers:Denise Paul and Marcus Wilson (Series)
Executive Producers:Beth Willis, Piers Wenger and Steven Moffat
Script Executive:Lindsey Alford
Script Editor:Caroline Holder (Supervisor)
Editor:Anthony Boys
Production Executive:Julie Scott
Production Managers:Claire Hildred and Phillipa Cole
Production Assistant:Charlie Coombes
Production Designer:Michael Pickwoad
Director of Photography:Balazs Bolygo
Casting Director:Andy Pryor CDG
Line Producer:Diana Barton
Costume Designer:Barbara Kidd
Make-Up Designer:Barbara Southcott
Cameramen:Becky Pesco (Assistant), Kyle Brown (Assistant), Svetlana Miko (Assistant) and Joe Russell (Operator)
Incidental Music:Murray Gold
Special Sounds (SFX Editor):Paul Jefferies
Sound Recordist:Helen McIlveen-Wilson
Visual Effects:BBC Wales Graphics and The Mill
Special Effects:Real SFX
Prosthetics:Millennium FX
Stunt Co-ordinator:Crispin Layfield
Stunt Performer:Gordon Seed
Title Sequence:Frame Store
Title Music:Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Arranged by Murray Gold
Cybermen Originally Created By: Kit Pedler and Gerry Davis
Music Performed By: The BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Music Conducted and Orchestrated By: Ben Foster
Music Mixed By: Jake Jackson
Music Recorded By: Gerry O'Riordan
Number of Doctors: 1
The Doctor: Matt Smith (The Eleventh Doctor)
Number of Companions: 2The Companions: Karen Gillan (Amy Pond) (Rejoins and Departs) and Arthur Darvill (Rory Williams) (Rejoins and Departs) Guest Cast: James Corden (Craig Owens), Lynda Baron (Val), Alex Kingston (River Song) Additional Cast: Daisy Haggard (Sophie), Frances Barber (Madame Kovarian), Seroca Davis (Shona), Holli Dempsey (Kelly), Chris Obi (George), Paul Kasey (Cyberman), Nick Briggs (Voice of the Cybermen)Setting: Colchester, England (18th - 21nd April 2011); The 52nd century; Lake Silencio, Utah, USA (22nd April 2011) Villains: Cybermats, Cybermen, Madame Kovarian/Eye Patch Lady and The Silence

The Episodes

No. Episodes Broadcast
(UK)
Duration Viewers
(Millions)
In Archive
782Closing Time24 September 201145'04"6.9Yes

Total Duration 45 Minutes


Audience Appreciation

Average Viewers (Millions) 6.9
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2011)73.30%  (Position = 9 out of 13)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2014)65.59% Lower (Position = 165 out of 241)


Archives


 This story exists and is held in the BBC's Film and Videotape Library.



Return to the top of this page
 


Notes


This story sees the return of writer Gareth Roberts whose previous Doctor Who credits include the Tenth Doctor stories "The Shakespeare Code" (2007), "The Unicorn and the Wasp" (2008) and "Planet of the Dead" (co-written with Russell T Davies in 2009). His most recent contribution was last season’s Eleventh Doctor story "The Lodger".

This is the first time, since the show was revived in 2005, that the penultimate episode of a season has not been the first of a two part story written by the head writer. The end of this episode however, does set up the series finale.

This story is a sequel of sorts to "The Lodger", featuring the return of both James Corden as Craig Owens and Daisy Haggard as Sophie.

This story guest stars Lynda Baron – her third Doctor Who credit. Previously she sang the catchy cowboy number ‘The Ballad of the Last Chance Saloon’ for the 1966 First Doctor story "The Gunfighters" and she also appeared as the villainous Captain Wrack in the 1983 Fifth Doctor story "Enlightenment".

BBC Radio 1 DJ Greg James appears in a non-speaking cameo role, as a man shopping for lingerie.

Directing this story is Steve Hughes - a newcomer to Doctor Who. His previous credits include episodes of Land Girls, Doctors and Holby City.

This is the first story produced by Denise Paul who has previously been credited as the Associate Producer for seven stories during this season.

The Doctor stops by to see Craig the day before he is due to die, as the Tenth Doctor popped in on his former companions before regenerating in the 2009/2010 story "The End of Time".

The Doctor’s comment to Craig ‘Oh, you've redecorated... I don't like it’ is an echo to when The Second said this, about the TARDIS to the Third Doctor, in the Tenth Anniversary special "The Three Doctors" and later in the Twentieth Anniversary special "The Five Doctors", when he was re-united with his old friend The Brigadier. The Fifth Doctor similarly expressed dislike for a TARDIS redecoration in the 2007 special Children in Need story "Time Crash".

Despite expressing a dislike for Craig's ‘redecorated’ house Craig explains to The Doctor that the reason his house looks different is that it is a different house to when they previously met. Craig is also heard to remark that he has inspected the upstairs level, alluding to the false extra floor in "The Lodger".

At one point The Doctor appears to read a book simply by flicking through its pages in less than a couple of seconds. It was established in the 1979 Fourth Doctor story "City of Death" that The Doctor is able to read and absorb literature in this time-saving fashion!

It is revealed again that The Doctor can ‘speak baby (see "A Good Man Goes to War").

While talking about name tags in the toy section, The Doctor reveals to Craig that he often forgets his own name. Madame de Pompadour previously suggested The Doctor's real name is a mystery to him in the 2006 Tenth Doctor story "The Girl in the Fireplace".

The Doctor can make people stop talking by simply saying ‘ssh!’ This is suggested by Craig to be hypnosis. This is not the first time he has used hypnosis. (see the 1977 Fourth Doctor story "The Sun Makers" and the 1985 Sixth Doctor story "Revelation of the Daleks").

The Doctor is heard to state that a robot dog is ‘not as much fun as I remember’ referring to K9.

The Doctor also echoes himself when he recites the mini-poem ‘Not a rat, a Cybermat’ that is from the Target novelisation of the 1975 Fourth Doctor story "Revenge of the Cybermen".

In a short scene it is revealed that Amy Pond has become famous as she's seen giving an autograph to a little girl. Posters seen in the department store indicate that she has taken up a modelling career and is advertising a fragrance named Petrichor which bears the slogan ‘For the girl who's tired of waiting’ – a reference to the numerous times Amy has been left waiting for The Doctor to return – and especially to the story "The Girl Who Waited". The Doctor also frequently refers to Amy as ‘the girl who waited’.

The name Petrichor was a psychic password, given by Idris, in "The Doctor's Wife" and means ‘the smell of dust after rain’.

It has been revealed that writer Gareth Roberts considered bringing the character of Craig Owen back when James Corden was cast and he saw his performance, saying that ‘It already felt like he was one of the Who family’. It was also his idea to bring back the Cybermen, because there were no other returning monsters in the series and he thought that ‘there should be a sense of history about The Doctor's final battle to save Earth before he heads off to meet his death'.

The Cybermen seen in this story, like those in "A Good Man Goes to War", do not bear the Cybus Industries logo on their chests.

Craig is unfamiliar with the Cybermen, suggesting that either the Battle of Canary Wharf (see the 2006 Tenth Doctor story "Army of Ghosts/Doomsday") was erased by the cracks or Craig simply didn't see the Cybermen like Donna Noble.

This story sees the first appearance of the Cybermats in the revived show – and their first appearance since "Revenge of the Cybermen".

The Cybermen's robotic helpers, first appeared in the 1967 Second Doctor story "The Tomb of the Cybermen". They then returned in the 1968 Story "The Wheel in Space" and again in the "Revenge of the Cybermen". More recently they featured in The Adventure Games story "Blood of the Cybermen".

When The Doctor tries to deactivate the Cybermat and discovers it has shielding, he says to Craig ‘Don't worry; I have an app for that’ - parodying the slogan used by Apple to advertise the iPhone's versatility. The sound of this ‘app’ used one of the ‘bonus sounds’ found on the toy version of the Eleventh Doctor's sonic screwdriver, unheard on the show until now.

Craig asks The Doctor if the Cybermen's teleport is like ‘beam me up’ from Star Trek.

Craig successfully throws off the Cybermen's conversion process. Mercy Hartigan managed to also do this shortly before her death in the 2008 Tenth Doctor story "The Next Doctor".

When The Doctor leaves Craig’s house for the final time he is seen taking some ‘TARDIS blue’ envelopes. Craig also gives him a Stetson as a parting gift. Both these items were seen in "The Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon" – the opening story of this season (which for the ‘older’ Eeventh Doctor takes place after this story). The Doctor uses the envelopes to bring Amy, Rory, River Song, Canton Delaware and his younger self to Lake Silenco. While he is seen wearing the Stetson at the start of that story.

Given that in "The Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon" the different versions of The Doctor give their ages as 909, and 1103, and all subsequent stories occur within a short time for Amy and Rory, this story therefore must take place approximately 200 years (from The Doctor's perspective) later than "The God Complex".

At the very end of this story part of the nursery rhyme, from "Night Terrors", is sung by Madame Kovarian with some new lines added.

River Song does not seem to remember Madame Kovarian or The Silence from her childhood.

Interestingly Madame Kovarian does not appear to be affected by The Silence's ability to make people forget their existence (see "The Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon").

This story confirms that the ‘impossible astronaut’ is River Song.

This is the first single-episode story in which River Song appears, and her first appearance in a story that has not been written by Steven Moffat.

This is also the first regular-season story, since the show was revived in 2005 in which The Doctor does not have a regular companion with him at some point.

Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill were, however, credited in the opening sequence, as they had been during the rest of the season, despite them only appearing on screen for less than a minute. This marks the first time in the show that an actor's name has appeared in the opening credits for less than one minute of on-screen appearance. Arthur Darvill (who plays Rory) also does not have any lines in this story.

Following on after this story, on BBC3, was the twelfth chapter of the sixth series of Doctor Who Confidential. Titled "Open All Hours" it was presented by Russell Tovey and looked into the making of this story. The use of the title "Open All Hours" is a reference to the shop-based sitcom of the same name that starred Lynda Baron which aired from 1976 to 1985.



First and Last

The Firsts:

 The first regular-season story, since the show was revived in 2005 in which The Doctor does not have a regular companion with him at some point.

 The first single-episode story in which River Song appears, and her first appearance in a story that has not been written by Steven Moffat.

 The first full Cybermen story in the Eleventh Doctor's era.

 The first appearance of Cybermats in the revived television series and the first for 36 years - since the 1975 Fourth Doctor story "Revenge of the Cybermen".

 The first time, since the show was revived in 2005, that the penultimate episode of a season has not been the first of a two part story written by the head writer.

 The first Doctor Who story to be directed by Steve Hughes.

 The first Doctor Who story to be produced by Denise Paul.


Return to the top of this page
 


The Plot

WARNING: May Contain SpoilersHide Text
Craig and Sophie
Craig and Sophie

After the events of "The Lodger", Craig Owens and Sophie have had a baby, Alfie, and have moved into a new home. Sophie is going away for the weekend to rest leaving Craig to look after their baby son. However, soon after Sophie leaves the house, after making sure that Craig can cope with their son, Craig hears a knock on the door.

He finds The Doctor standing on his doorstep for what he claims is a social visit, but The Doctor becomes intrigued by a series of electrical disturbances. Craig suspects that there is something wrong, but The Doctor refuses to allow Craig to help. After inviting himself in The Doctor, on interpreting Alfie's cries, finds that Craig is having difficulties being a father.

The next day Craig encounters The Doctor working in the toy section of a department store, searching for the cause of the power fluctuations and the case of a missing saleswoman. Other people have been vanishing, and The Doctor is sure there is a connection to the flickering power. When The Doctor tries to get Craig and Alfie out of the shop, via a lift, they find themselves aboard a spaceship where The Doctor recognises a Cyberman heading towards them. The Doctor though manages to reverse the teleportation before they are discovered - disabling the teleporter in the process. He tries to get Craig to leave the store so he can investigate, but Craig refuses to leave as he believes the safest place for him and his son is by The Doctor's side.

The Doctor
The Doctor

A little later, as The Doctor gossips with Val his co-worker, he learns of a ‘silver rat’ that has been sighted in the store. The Doctor then silently observes Amy and Rory shopping, and notices that Amy is featured in an advertising poster for perfume. That night The Doctor and Craig hide in the department store and capture a Cybermat. The Doctor explains to Craig that it has been causing the power fluctuations by siphoning power to the Cybermen’s spaceship, but The Doctor is surprised by how little power it is drawing.

On further investigation The Doctor finds himself in the basement where he discovers the dead body of one of the security guards. He is then attacked by a Cyberman. But survives due to it being made from malfunctioning spare parts. Having earlier disabled the teleporter he is at a loss to explain how the Cyberman could have returned to the store so soon.

Cybermat Hunting
Cybermat Hunting

Returning to Craig’s home The Doctor works on the Cybermat while Craig looks after his son. The Doctor is then left alone with Alfie when Craig leaves to get some milk. Tending to Alfie's cries The Doctor is unaware that the Cybermat, that he had left downstairs, has become active. It attacks The Doctor and the returning Craig, but The Doctor manages to destroy it, by changing a setting on his sonic screwdriver, but not before it makes a mess of the house.

The following morning, The Doctor returns to the department store on his own with the reprogrammed Cybermat. Craig soon follows with Alfie. The Doctor then discovers that the Cyberman’ spaceship is not in space - but rather, it crashed on Earth centuries earlier and is now buried beneath the store. The Cybermen having created a secret tunnel whose entrance is in the department store’s changing room. The Doctor though is captured by the Cybermen and he learns from them that they are using power lines installed for the department store to supply power to their spaceship, and the crew of six plan to convert the entire human race when there is enough power.

Upstairs Craig, leaves Alfie with Val and follows The Doctor into the tunnel. However, as soon as he arrives he is captured and is placed in a conversion machine. The Doctor reveals his own impending death and urges Craig to fight, but the conversion appears to be complete - Alfie's cries can be heard over the closed-circuit television echo in the spaceship.

A Cyberman
A Cyberman

The sound of his son in distress enables Craig to fight the conversion, sending the Cybermen into overload as they painfully feel the emotions they have repressed. Once free of the conversion machine and the Cybermen, The Doctor and Craig teleport away as the Cybermen’s spaceship explodes – the blast being contained by the underground cavern.

Back in the store Craig is reunited with Alfie as The Doctor slips away unseen. But when Craig returns home he finds that The Doctor has used the TARDIS’s time travel abilities to clean the mess from the previous night. The Doctor then leaves, just before Sophie returns, acquiring a set of ‘TARDIS blue’ envelopes from Sophie's stationery drawer and a Stetson hat from Craig – given to him as a parting gift.

With everything seemingly back to normal Craig tells Sophie that nothing out of the ordinary has happened, but Sophie becomes suspicious when the Alfie utters this first word: ‘Doctor’. Nearby, The Doctor tells the TARDIS this is their last trip and offers some parting words to a small group of children.

In the far future, River Song, a new Doctor of Archaeology, reviews eyewitness accounts by those children, and also notes the date and location of The Doctor's death. However, she is interrupted by Madame Kovarian and agents of The Silence. River Song is alarmed when Madame Kovarian tells her that she is still theirs, and will be the one to kill The Doctor. Despite her struggles they place her in an astronaut's suit and submerge her in the lake to await The Doctor’s arrival.

 
Val
Val
Amy and Rory
Amy and Rory
Craig is Attacked by a Cybermat
Craig is Attacked by a Cybermat
Craig Encounters the Cybermen
Craig Encounters the Cybermen
 
Craig is Converted
Craig is Converted
A Present for The Doctor
A Present for The Doctor
River Song is Captured
River Song is Captured
The Impossible Astronaut
The Impossible Astronaut




Quote of the Story


 'Hello, Stormageddon. It’s The Doctor, here to help. Be quiet. Go to sleep. No really. Stop crying. You’ve got a lot to look forward to you know. A normal human life on Earth. Mortgage repayments, the 9 to 5. A persistent nagging sense of spiritual emptiness. Save the tears for later boyo. Oh, that was crabby. No, that was old. But I am old, Stormy. I am so old. So near the end. But you, Alfie Owens. You are so young, aren’t you? And you know, right now, everything’s ahead of you. You could be anything. Yes, I know. You could walk among the stars. They don’t actually look like that, you know - they are rather more impressive. Yeah! You know, when I was little like you, I dreamt of the stars. I think it’s fair to say, in the language of your age, that I lived my dream. I owned the stage. Gave it a hundred and ten percent. I hope you have as much fun as I did, Alfie.'

The Doctor



Return to the top of this page
 


Release Information

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)Code NumberCover ArtRemarks
Video
DVD
Series 6 Part 2: - Episodes 8-13October 2011BBCDVD 3429Photo-montage
Video
Blu-Ray
Series 6 Part 2: - Episodes 8-13October 2011BBCBD 0152Photo-montage
Video
DVD
The Complete Sixth Series Box SetNovember 2011BBCDVD 3430Photo-montageDVD boxed set containing all 12 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Sixth Series Box SetNovember 2011BBCBD 0153Photo-montageBlu-Ray boxed set containing all 12 stories
Video
DVD
The Complete Sixth Series Box Set (Limited Edition)November 2011BBCDVD 3564Photo-montageLimited Edition DVD boxed set containing all 12 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Sixth Series Box Set (Limited Edition)November 2011BBCBD 0193Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray boxed set containing all 12 stories
Audio
CD
Original Television Soundtrack - Series 6December 2011Photo-montageMusic by Murray Gold
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 Sixth Series (2014 Re-release)August 2014BBCDVD 3970Photo-montageBoxed set containing all 12 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Sixth Series Box Set (Limited Edition Steelbook)Due: August 2020Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray Steelbook boxed set containing 12 stories


In Print

No Book Release
Doctor Who Magazine - PreviewIssue 439 (Released: October 2011)
Doctor Who Magazine - ReviewIssue 440 (Released: November 2011)

Return to the top of this page
 


Photo Gallery


The Doctor and Companions

 
Matt Smith
The Eleventh Doctor

   

Karen Gillan
Amy Pond
 
Arthur Darvill
Rory Williams
   




On Release

DVD Cover
DVD Cover

BBC
VIDEO
Blu-Ray Cover
Blu-Ray Cover

BBC
VIDEO
DVD Box Set
DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Blu-Ray Box Set
Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
   
Ltd Edition DVD Box Set
Ltd Edition DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set
Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Original Television Soundtrack Cover
Original Television Soundtrack Cover

BBC
AUDIO
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 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 439
Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 439

Marvel Comics
 
Doctor Who Magazine - Review: Issue 440
Doctor Who Magazine - Review: Issue 440

Marvel Comics
   

Return to the top of this page
 
 
Who's Who
KJ Software
Who Me
Episodes of the
Eleventh Doctor


Season 32 (New Series 6) Press to go back to the previous visited page References
 
 
Doctor Who is the copyright of the British Broadcasting Corporation. No infringements intended. This site is not endorsed by the BBC or any representatives thereof.