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Jodie Whittaker
The Woman Who Fell to Earth
Thirteenth Doctor Logo


Synopsis


The Doctor and Her Companions
The Doctor and Her Companions
 In a South Yorkshire city, Ryan Sinclair, Yasmin Khan and Graham O'Brien are about to have their lives changed for ever, as a mysterious woman, unable to remember her own name, falls from the night sky.

 Can they believe a word she says?

 And can she help solve the strange events taking place across the city?

Source: BBC Website


General Information

Season: Thirty Seven (New Series 11)
Production Code: 11-1
Story Number: 276 (New Series: 120)
Episode Number:841 (New Series: 145)
Number of Episodes: 1
Percentage of Episodes Held:100%
Production Dates:
Broadcast Date: 07 October 2018
Colour Status: HD Colour
Studio: BBC Wales (Roath Lock Studios, Cardiff)
Location: Sheffield; The Peak District; HTC Plant (near Meadowhall); Cardiff; South Wales
Writer:Chris Chibnall
Director:Jamie Childs
Producer:Alex Mercer
Series Producer:Nikki Wilson
Executive Producers:Chris Chibnall and Matt Strevens
Co-Executive Producer:Sam Hoyle
Executive Producer (for the BBC):Ben Irving
Assistant Directors:Lauren Pate and Sion Eirug
Script Supervisor:Lindsay Grant
Script Editors:Nina Metivier and Hannah Mason (Assistant)
Series Script Editor:Sheena Bucktowonsing
Editors:David Fisher, David Davies (Assistant), Hayley Williams (Assistant) and Dan Rawlings (VFX)
Colourist:Gareth Spensley
Head of Production:Radford Neville
Production Executive:Tracie Simpson
Production Manager:James DeHaviland
Production Assistant:Alexandra Bahiyyih Wain
Post Production Supervisor:Ceres Doyle
Production Designer:Arwel Wyn Jones
Director of Photography:Denis Crossan
Casting Director:Andy Pryor CDG
Line Producer:Steffan Morris
Costume Designer:Ray Holman
Make-Up Designer:Claire Pritchard-Jones
Cameramen:Cai Stephens (Assistant), Drew Marsden (Assistant), Gethin Williams (Assistant) and Mark McQuoid (Operator)
Incidental Music:Segun Akinola
Special Sounds (SFX Editor):Harry Barnes
Sound Recordist:Deian Llyr Humphreys
Dubbing Mixer:Howard Bargroff
Visual Effects:DNEG TV
Special Effects:Real SFX
Prosthetics:Millennium FX
Special Creature Effects:Millennium FX
Stunt Co-ordinators:Belinda McGinley and Crispin Layfield
Stunt Performers:Liam Carey, Marvin Stewart-Campbell, Matt Hermiston, Xavier Lake and Bob Schofield (Wires)
Title Music:Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Arranged by Segun Akinola
Music Orchestrated By: Alec Roberts
Music Mixed By: Goetz Botzenhardt
Number of Doctors: 1
The Doctor: Jodie Whittaker (The Thirteenth Doctor) (Newly Regenerated)
Number of Companions: 3The Companions: Bradley Walsh (Graham O'Brien) (Joins), Tosin Cole (Ryan Sinclair) (Joins) and Mandip Gill (Yasmin Khan) (Joins) Guest Cast: Sharon D Clarke (Grace) Additional Cast: Samuel Oatley (Tim Shaw), Jonny Dixon (Karl), Amit Shah (Rahul), Asha Kingsley (Sonia), Janine Mellor (Janey), Asif Khan (Ramesh Sunder), James Thackeray (Andy), Philip Abiodun (Dean), Stephen MacKenna (Dennis), Everal A Walsh (Gabriel)Setting: Sheffield (September 2018) Villain:Tzim-Sha

The Episodes

No. Episodes Broadcast
(UK)
Duration Viewers
(Millions)
In Archive
841The Woman Who Fell to Earth07 October 201863'04"10.5Yes

Total Duration 1 Hour 3 Minutes


Audience Appreciation

Average Viewers (Millions) 10.5


Archives


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



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Notes


This story is the first story of Season Thirty Seven (New Series 11). It was written by new head writer and executive producer Chris Chibnall and directed by Jamie Childs.

This story was widely marketed as a landmark Doctor Who story because it was the first to star a female Doctor. It was further notable for introducing an all-new regular cast - the largest since the 1983 Fifth Doctor story "Terminus" - and a new production team under show runner Chris Chibnall. As a result, this story had the biggest crew shift since the 2010 Eleventh Doctor story "The Eleventh Hour".

This story premiered without traditional opening credits, as had occurred before with "The Day of The Doctor" in 2013 and "Sleep No More" in 2015. The title of this story along with credits for Writer, Series Producer and Director were shown at the end just before the main credits. Viewers also had to wait until the end of this story to hear the new arrangement of the Doctor Who theme by incoming composer Segun Akinola. This new arrangement though is partially played in the scene in which we are introduced to The Doctor.

The end credits are followed by a Coming Soon trailer of clips featuring a preview of the remainder of the season, similar to the Eleventh Doctor story "The Eleventh Hour" and the Twelfth Doctor story "The Pilot". This includes the names of the upcoming guest stars - including Mark Addy, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Shane Zaza, Shobna Gulati, Shaun Dooley, Brett Goldstein, Josh Bowman, Siobhan Finneran, Lee Mack, Lois Chimimba, Susan Lynch, Hamza Jeetoa, Art Malik, Suzanne Packer, Vinette Robinson, Amita Suman, Ben Bailey Smith, Phyllis Logan, Alan Cumming and Chris Noth.

The closing credits have returned to a scrolling sequence, not seen since the 2013 Eleventh Doctor story "The Time of The Doctor".

The initial two broadcasts on BBC America did not feature the end credits. Viewers in America had to wait until this story was available on demand to hear the full, new theme arrangement. Instead, BBC America ran a live after party celebrity analysis of this story beginning immediately after the final scene.

The title of this story while at first glance appears to reference The Doctor's fall from her TARDIS, it is also potentially a reference to Grace's death since it is framed as a story that Ryan Sinclair is telling about the greatest woman he ever knew, his grandmother Grace.

This story is the first to be led by Chris Chibnall, alongside Executive Producer Matt Strevens and Co-Executive Producer Sam Hoyle, after Steven Moffat and Brian Minchin stepped down at the conclusion of the previous season. This marked the third era of production in the revived series, following Russell T. Davies' run from 2005–2010, and Steven Moffat's run from 2010–2017.

This is the first Doctor Who story not to be scored by Murray Gold since the start of the revived era in 2005.

This is the first full story to star Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor, and introduces her new companions – Bradley Walsh as Graham O'Brien, Tosin Cole as Ryan Sinclair, and Mandip Gill as Yasmin Khan. This story also guest stars Sharon D. Clarke, Johnny Dixon and Samuel Oatley. Actress Sharon D. Clarke appears as Ryan's grandmother and Graham's wife, Grace.

At the premiere of this story, in Sheffield on the 24th September 2018, Jodie Whittaker revealed that for this story only, she did all of her own stunts. Tosin Cole additionally added that he acted being bad at riding a bike. This would prove to be because the character of Ryan has dyspraxia. At the same event, Bradley Walsh revealed that he's wearing a wig for the entire season, due to his character's requirement to look older and because Bradley Walsh is still hosting the ITV game show The Chase at the same time as the filming for this season.

The Doctor makes her entrance by crashing through the ceiling of the stopped train, after having been ejected from the TARDIS in the previous story "Twice Upon a Time".

The Doctor's scream, as she falls through the roof of the train, is reused from the previous story "Twice Upon a Time" in the scene where The Doctor falls out of the TARDIS straight after she regenerates.

The Doctor has previously fallen from a great height and survived (see "The End of Time") albeit once by regenerating ("Logopolis").

The Doctor once again suffers from post-regenerative memory loss (see the 1996 Eighth Doctor film "Doctor Who: The Movie" and "The Time of The Doctor") and loses consciousness because of the process (see "The Christmas Invasion" and "Deep Breath").

The Doctor recalls having just been a ‘white-haired Scotsman’ and that her TARDIS is now missing.

The Doctor spends almost the entire story wearing her predecessor's clothes, as the Eleventh Doctor had previously done in the "The Eleventh Hour".

The Doctor exhibits a northern English accent. The Eighth Doctor and the Ninth Doctor also previously had one (see the 1996 Eighth Doctor film "Doctor Who: The Movie" and the 2005 story "Rose").

The Doctor emits regeneration energy while resting. We previously witnessed this in the Tenth Doctor story "The Christmas Invasion" and the Eleventh Doctor story "The Eleventh Hour".

The Doctor admits to craving for a fried egg sandwich. The Eleventh Doctor also experienced cravings after regenerating in "The Eleventh Hour".

The Doctor makes her own sonic screwdriver. Amy Pond once similarly created a sonic probe in the 2011 Eleventh Doctor story "The Girl Who Waited".

While making her sonic screwdriver, The Doctor holds up a spoon excitedly, as the Twelfth Doctor had done in the 2014 story "Robot of Sherwood" and the 2015 story "Heaven Sent/Hell Bent". The Doctor wears similar safety goggles to the ones the Eleventh Doctor once used in the 2011 story "The Doctor's Wife".

The Doctor confronts Tzim-Sha (called Tim Shaw in the closing credits) on a rooftop with her companions. He also mentions that she is not human. The Eleventh Doctor had a similar confrontation with the Atraxi immediately after his regeneration in "The Eleventh Hour".

This is the third post-regeneration story to feature no scenes inside the TARDIS, following the Third Doctor story "Spearhead From Space" and the Fourth Doctor story "Robot". It is also the first post-regeneration story in which the TARDIS does not appear at all and is the tenth television story overall in which the TARDIS does not appear at all, following "Mission to the Unknown", "Doctor Who and the Silurians", "The Mind of Evil", "The Dæmons", "The Sea Devils", "The Sontaran Experiment", "Genesis of the Daleks", "Midnight" and "The Lie of the Land".

Earth has been used as a hunting ground before (see the Big Finish Productions Torchwood audio story "Moving Target").

Before jumping from the crane The Doctor is heard to say ‘If you want something done’ without finishing the sentence (see also "The Time of The Doctor").

This story was the first to be broadcast on a Sunday instead of a Saturday, as it had been since Doctor Who was revived in 2005.

This story was simulcast in the United States on BBC America. Unusually, this story had a global premiere, with many markets around the world having at least the same start time. Oddly, though, it was initially broadcast in an altered visual form in some markets. Although it was the first story of the programme filmed in a 2:1 aspect ratio, its global premiere on networks like BBC America and Space was actually in the previous standard of 16:9. This had the effect of truncating some of the frame.

The premiere of the new series was held at the Light Cinema in Sheffield on the 24th September 2018, as part of a red carpet event for the story and Season Thirty Seven (New Series 11). This story was released in the Brazilian cinemas on the 7 October 2018, in selected Australian cinemas on the 8th October, and in the United States of America on the 10th and 11th October 2018.

This story earned the highest ratings since the 2013 Eleventh Doctor story "The Time of The Doctor" and was the most-watched debut for a new incarnation of The Doctor since the Ninth Doctor's initial story "Rose" when the show was revived in 2005.



First and Last

The Firsts:

 The first story of Season Thirty Seven (New Series 11).

 Jodie Whittaker's first full appearance as the Thirteenth Doctor.

 Bradley Walsh's first story as companion Graham O'Brien.

 Tosin Cole's first story as companion Ryan Sinclair.

 Mandip Gill's first story as companion Yasmin Khan.

 Chris Chibnall's and Matt Strevens' first involvement in the show as Executive Producers.

 The first Doctor Who story to be directed by Jamie Childs.

 The first Doctor Who story to be produced by Alex Mercer.

 The first Doctor Who story for Nikki Wilson as Series Producer.

 Arwel Wyn Jones' first involvement in the show as Production Designer.

 Hannah Mason's first involvement in the show as Script Editor.

 Nina Metivier's first involvement in the show as Script Editor.

 First time Segun Akinola's version of the signature tune, sound and music is heard in the show.

 DNEG TV's first involvement in the show providing the visual effects.

 The first Doctor Who story to be broadcast on a Sunday instead of a Saturday, as it had been since Doctor Who was revived in 2005.


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The Plot

WARNING: May Contain SpoilersHide Text
The Thirteenth Doctor
The Thirteenth Doctor

Ryan Sinclair is trying to ride a bicycle with his grandmother Grace and her husband Graham O'Brien, on a hillside in Sheffield. Ryan struggles because of his dyspraxia, and falls off the bike. Frustrated, he throws the bicycle over a cliff and into a wood below. Grace and Graham try to comfort Ryan, though insist that he collects the bicycle, to try again another time, while they head off to the train station. As Ryan ventures to retrieve the bicycle, he sees some strange glowing golden lines suspended in the air. Curious as to what they are he taps one of them and a purple coloured, plant-like pod emerges. Ryan decide to call the police, receiving help from PC Yasmin Khan, an old school friend.

Yasmin at first presumes Ryan is just pulling a prank but Ryan remarks that he can't even touch the pod, as it is freezing. Yasmin touches it but finds it burns her hand. Bewildered, she continues questioning Ryan. Meanwhile, Grace and Graham are riding in a train carriage with a man named Karl when there is a disturbance which causes the train to come to a screeching halt. They find that the other passengers have fled the train. When they try to do the same they find that the doors are locked. They then find themselves trapped by an encroaching floating orb of writhing tentacles and electricity. Scared they call Ryan who rushes to the scene with Yasmin.

Graham orders Grace and Karl to the back of the carriage. Then before the creature can reach them, they are temporarily saved as The Doctor comes crashing down through the ceiling of the carriage and electrocutes the creature with a metal pipe. The orb then departs after hitting everyone with an energy bolt.

Graham O'Brien
Graham O'Brien

With the danger over Karl leaves the train. The others decide to stay as The Doctor questions them about the creature. While doing so she discovers the orb implanted DNA destroying bombs into each of them, and they are liable to explode at any time. Ryan then mentions about the pod that he found earlier in the woods, which Yasmin agrees to take the group to. However, when they get there, they find it has disappeared. Initially unbeknown to The Doctor it has been taken to a warehouse and is being watched over by a person called Rahul who took the pod from the woods as he connected it with the disappearance of his sister. Suddenly the pod becomes active, breaking open and exploding all of Rahul's cameras. Arming himself with a crowbar Rahul witnesses a large, biomechanical creature emerge from the broken pod. Rahul demands to know about his sister, who had previously gone missing but the alien creature kills him by freezing his face.

Meanwhile The Doctor tasks the others to find out if any strange alien activity has taken place recently. While Yasmin checks with her police station and Graham asks some of his bus driver friends, Grace and Ryan take The Doctor back home. While Ryan checks on social media, Grace notices The Doctor's body coursing with and exhaling regeneration energy, intriguing them both. Concerned Grace checks The Doctor's pulse and is surprised to find two instead of one.

Ryan Sinclair
Ryan Sinclair

On waking up The Doctor reformats Ryan's phone, and uses it to track the source of the disruption which leads them to the warehouse where Rahul had been killed by the creature from the pod. They arrive on the scene as the alien creature flees, The Doctor and Yasmin chase after it but lose it in the mist. The other's find Rahul's body in the warehouse and The Doctor notices the absence of one of his teeth. Ryan then spots the empty pod and The Doctor inspects it, identifying it as a transport pod. Yasmin and Ryan go to investigate the warehouse and in a small room they discover files of various missing people and a video on Rahul's computer.

After examining the pod The Doctor decides to build herself a new sonic screwdriver from spare parts. While gathering materials from around the warehouse and the transport pod, The Doctor tells Graham and Grace about her experiences with regeneration before proceeding to construct her new screwdriver. When she finishes, Ryan and Yasmin show them Rahul's video in which he talks about his sister Asha's disappearance and his desire to find out the truth in the knowledge that it may kill him.

Scanning the pod again The Doctor discovers a recall circuit. She also deuces that the alien from the train and the pod are at war and are looking to fight on Earth. Graham then gets a call from his friend Kevin, who has information about the alien's whereabouts. The group then depart the warehouse and intercept the orb creature. The Doctor nullifies it and, on scanning it with her sonic screwdriver, she identifies it as a mass of biological data-gathering coils which collects and correlates information. She checks the data it has collected, all of it information about Karl from the train. The second alien, who killed Rahul in the warehouse, then arrives. It reveals itself as a Stenza warrior called Tzim-Sha (mispronounced as 'Tim Shaw' by The Doctor). Tzim-Sha has been sent to Earth on a hunt to seek out a randomly selected human without technology or assistance to bring him back home. However, The Doctor deduces Tzim-Sha has secretly sent the Gathering Coils ahead in advance and thus has broken the rules. On removing his mask Tzim-Sha reveals his face implanted with his victim's teeth. The Doctor is furious and demands that Tzim-Sha leaves the planet. Tzim-Sha ignores this, collecting the data of his target, Karl, who they met on the train earlier, from the coils before teleporting away to hunt down Karl, leaving The Doctor very frustrated.

Yasmin Khan
Yasmin Khan

Chasing Tzim-Sha to a construction yard, where Karl is a crane operator, The Doctor discovers the orb creature part way up the crane that Karl is operating from the control cabin at the top. The Doctor sends Graham and Grace to evacuate the site while she, Yasmin and Ryan make for the top of a second crane to save Karl from the Stenza which is climbing up Karl's crane forcing him to leave the control cabin and crawl along the arm of the crane.

When the trio make it to the top of the second crane The Doctor orchestrates a plan in which Yasmin and Ryan move the crane arm around to meet Karl's crane so he can jump across. But before he has a chance to do so Tzim-Sha captures Karl. The Doctor takes a running jump over to the other crane instead to confront Tzim-Sha. The Doctor, recalling her identity, orders Tzim-Sha to leave him, or face losing the pod's recall device and being stranded on Earth. Tzim-Sha detonates the DNA bombs, but The Doctor reveals that she transferred the bombs into the coils, which were then unwittingly self-implanted into Tzim-Sha when he downloaded the data. The Doctor then thrusts the recall device at Tzim-Sha and Karl kicks him off the crane as he teleports away - much to The Doctor's anger.

Meanwhile Grace and Ryan successfully destroy the orb creature, by electrocuting it with power from the construction site's electrical mains. But the kickback from the electricity shocks Grace and throws her from the crane, severely injuring her. Knowing her injuries are too severe she tells Graham not to be afraid and dies just as The Doctor, Yasmin and Ryan arrive, leaving Ryan and Graham grief-stricken.

During Grace's funeral Graham gives a heartfelt speech. Afterwards The Doctor decides to go and look for her TARDIS, when Yasmin suggests that she change her clothes first. With a new outfit selected, The Doctor returns to the warehouse and, using the remains of Tzim-Sha's technology, she lashes up a rudimentary teleport that will track the TARDIS' trail of Artron energy. As she prepares to leave she says her goodbyes to Graham, Ryan and Yasmin but inadvertently teleports all four of them instead. But instead of finding the TARDIS The Doctor is shocked to see her friends floating behind her all of them suspended and stranded in deep space.

 
Grace
Grace
Regeneration Completes
Regeneration Completes
The Sonic Swiss Army Knife
The Sonic Swiss Army Knife
The Stenza Warrior
The Stenza Warrior
 
Karl
Karl
Grace's Sacrifice
Grace's Sacrifice
New Clothes
New Clothes
Not The TARDIS
Not The TARDIS




Quote of the Story


 'I carry them with me. What they would have thought, and said, and done. Make them a part of who I am. So even though they’re gone from the world, they’re never gone from me.'

The Doctor (about her family)



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Release Information

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)Code NumberCover ArtRemarks
Video
DVD
The Complete Eleventh Series Box SetJanuary 2019BBCDVD 4296Photo-montageDVD boxed set containing 10 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Eleventh Series Box SetJanuary 2019BBCBD 0437Photo-montageBlu-Ray boxed set containing 10 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Eleventh Series Box Set (Limited Edition Steelbook)January 2019BBCBD 0455Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray Steelbook boxed set containing 10 stories
Audio
CD
Original Television Soundtrack - Series 11January 2019Photo-montageMusic by Segun Akinola


In Print

No Book Release
Doctor Who Magazine - PreviewIssue 530 (Released: November 2018)
Doctor Who Magazine - ReviewIssue 531 (Released: December 2018)
Doctor Who Magazine - Time TeamIssue 532 (Released: Winter 2018/2019)

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Photo Gallery


The Doctor and Companions

 
Jodie Whittaker
The Thirteenth Doctor

   

Bradley Walsh
Graham O'Brien
Tosin Cole
Ryan Sinclair
Mandip Gill
Yasmin Khan
   




On Release

Complete Series DVD Box Set
Complete Series DVD Box Set

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

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

BBC
VIDEO
Original Television Soundtrack Cover
Original Television Soundtrack Cover

BBC
AUDIO
   



Magazines

Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 530
Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 530

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Review: Issue 531
Doctor Who Magazine - Review: Issue 531

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 532
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 532

Marvel Comics
   

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