Doctor Who: School Reunion   Rewatch 
October 15, 2014 2:16 PM - Season 2, Episode 3 - Subscribe

Physics, Physics, physics physics physics. (First of all, let's get Tardisode 3 out the way) The Doctor is teaching Physics, but one of the children knows far too much! Rose is working as a Dinner Lady Anthony Head is.... Sinister

Mickeys noticed something sinister is going on, and not just Mickey, Sarah Jane Smith is on the case!
The school is a front for the Krillitanes, who are feeding school kids a special oil on their chips to make them super intelligent to crack the base code of the universe itself. (And also, because that seems like a good thing, they're also eating children, so they are after all villains)

  • ose complains that the Doctor leaves his companions behind after a while, but in fact, out of thirty-two companions, only four have been left behind: one got kicked out for bad behavior, another one the Doctor was terrified of, his own granddaughter, whom he believed to deserve a better life and Sarah Jane Smith. All the rest died, were separated from him due to circumstances beyond his control, had their memories erased or decided to leave on their own.
  • Sarah has already encountered two incarnations of the Doctor since leaving: the Seventh Doctor in the comic Train-Flight and the book Bullet Time, and the Eighth Doctor in Interference - Book One.
  • The Doctor has used the pseudonym "John Smith" on and off ever since his second incarnation. He used it consistently throughout his years with UNIT, starting with Spearhead from Space where he needed something like an ordinary name, if only for documentation purposes.
  • During this episode, The Deffry Vale School Website biography of "Mr. Smith" states that he previously taught in Shoreditch. Which means the Doctor probably claimed to have been a teacher at Coal Hill School, where his granddaughter Susan used to attend.
posted by Just this guy, y'know (6 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I loved this episode when it aired because k-9! I love k-9! Also the end when she insists that THIS time he say good-bye. After Liz Sladen died, I went back and watched this episode and even thinking about it now " Mary Jane!" makes me cry.

The ep, to some degree, set up the premise for the Mary Jane Chronicles. The first ep is another ploy for world domination involving our love of food (from our good friends the Slitheen) that results in Mary Jane adopting an alien boy as her son.
posted by miss-lapin at 3:56 PM on October 16, 2014

The one big disappointment of this episode for me is that it means Anthony Head will never play the Master, which is just sad. Otherwise, this is a good episode, and reallly reminds the audience that this is a show with history. It is also lovely that Elizabeth Sladen got to be in this and then the Sarah Jane Chronicles (which were pretty fun) before sadly passing away far too early. As a tribute to a former companion, its pretty terrific. And hey, K9! Who doesn't love K9? Heartless monsters, that's who. Oh, and also a bit of self actualisation from Mickey, finally!
posted by Cannon Fodder at 12:14 AM on October 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

"Oh my god. I'm the tin dog!" Yes, that was a great meta moment after which the character got much better.

Sarah Jane and K-9, of course. I really liked that she was investigating on her own -- a female character with agency for once.

I wasn't so hot on the Krillitanes or the plot, although as a sort of kids' horror story it really did point the way to the SJC.
posted by dhartung at 2:38 PM on October 17, 2014 [5 favorites]

Not sure I'll ever forgive Davies and Whithouse for K-9. Entirely egregious.
posted by ob1quixote at 10:56 PM on November 11, 2014

I… should have waited for the very end I guess. Okay, all is forgiven.
posted by ob1quixote at 10:57 PM on November 11, 2014 [1 favorite]

I will always love the behind-the-scenes story about this episode:

This was one of the very first episodes that David Tennant filmed, and when they were doing the table read, when it got to the point that Lis Sladen was looking at him and calling him "Doctor", he suddenly had this split-second flashback to being eight years old and playing "Doctor Who" in his back yard as a kid and had this mini fanboy meltdown and was all "I need a minute everyone, hang on...."
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:33 AM on September 17, 2019

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