Doctor Who: Season 4, Episode 0

Voyage of the Damned (18 Apr. 2008)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Drama | Family
7.6
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The Doctor finds his TARDIS colliding with a spaceship based on the RMS Titanic during a Christmas party. With the help of a waitress named Astrid, the Doctor must take on the race called ... See full summary »

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Title: Voyage of the Damned (18 Apr 2008)

Voyage of the Damned (18 Apr 2008) on IMDb 7.6/10

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The Doctor finds his TARDIS colliding with a spaceship based on the RMS Titanic during a Christmas party. With the help of a waitress named Astrid, the Doctor must take on the race called the Hosts as the lives of the Titanic crew and those on Earth are in danger. Written by Anonymous

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18 April 2008 (USA)  »

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Mr. Copper was offered to Bill Treacher who turned down the part because of a back problem. See more »

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When Mr. Copper is talking about how what they're doing could get them ten years in jail, the cut on his forehead changes sides. See more »

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The Doctor: Okay, okay. Tch, tch. First things first. One: we're going to climb through this ship. B... no... two: we're going to reach the bridge. Three - or C: we're going to save the Titanic. And, coming in a very low Four or D or that little "iv" in brackets they use in footnotes... why. Right then, follow me.
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In Memory of Verity Lambert OBE, 1935-2007. See more »

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References Passenger 57 (1992) See more »

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Doctor Who Theme
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Written by Ron Grainer
Arranged by Murray Gold
Performed by BBC National Orchestra of Wales
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User Reviews

 
Ticks several boxes in the worst of...categories
27 August 2009 | by (Clydebank, Scotland) – See all my reviews

After series three of Nuwho came to a close with a whimper with the below par finale which was "Last of the Time Lords". I was counting that while Russel T. Davies wasn't the greatest writer when it came to family directed sci-fi that he might at least partially redeem himself. And while not completely awful. LOTTL was marginally better than this woefully insipid, vacuous way to bring an end to 2007's offerings. As about as welcome as walking in on your parents doing the deed and no where near half as entertaining. "Voyage of the Damned" not only earns the title of Turkey of the year. But It's one of the worst entries in Who history. Yes old and new series combined. And when you consider that it is up against dross which includes "Silver Nemesis" and "The Android Invasion" you realise that you're on to a bad thing.

Immediately starting off from where the climax of LOTTL left off. VOTD places Tennant's tenth incarnation aboard a luxury space liner which is the hi-tech equivalent of the infamous HMS Titanic. Originating from an un-designated point in the future but orbiting 21st century and carrying a extreme amount of rich and not so wealthy passengers. It's hardly a shock when the worst happens as science fiction art partly imitates history and the liner is struck by a series of asteroids, with the vessel in partial ruins, many of the crew dead and only so many survivors. It is left to the Doctor with the assistance of a maid named Astrid (played by Australian pop princess Kylie Minogue) to save the day, so far so ho-hum.

Its then that RTD makes the unappealing error of transforming the whole Farrago in to a "Posieden Adventure" inspired disaster movie in space rip off. I wouldn't mind so much but it's as uninspired and unsubtle as a brick being tossed through your window. Transferring key moments from the iconic 70's blockbuster with such haphazard third rate unsubtly that I shook my head at the sight of it. While the less about some of the dreadful dialogue the better. It's with some merit that the cast of supporting players which include veteran actors Clive Swift(notably famous for playing the long suffering Richard in "Keeping up Appearances")and Geoffrey Palmer(the dour faced star possibly known more for 80 sitcom "Butterflies)struggle to forge decent enough performances in this drivel. As do the rest of the actors. Tennant is reliable as ever while Minogue not largely known for her talent as an actress manages to be just about acceptable.

The plotting is lazy and while it's pacing is even enough it doesn't compensate for some of the interminable dialogue and poorly developed characters. One of which is the obligatory sweet petite alien/cybernetic thrown in for good measure who utters some of the more inane babble imaginable. The added insult of a brief sub-plot where the Doctor has to prevent the ill fated liner crashing head long in to Buckingham Palace would be bad enough. Were it not the mournfully cheesy adage of witnessing a pseudo-cameo of the Queen outside running down the stair of the place in her night gown and slippers with the gratuitous shot of her corgi's thrown in for good measure. Throw in a jaw dropping moment of her waving thanks to the heroic Time Lord as in a hackneyed and derivative moment of patronising heroism. He manages to steer the figuratively sinking vessel from disaster at the last minute. Hurrah! Frankly I think it would have been more enjoyable had it crashed in to the old building. At least it would have been small mercy but this is "Doctor Who" after all and if our hero died then there would be no more series, would there.

Throw in the requisite self centred passenger who should get his comeuppance, one half of a eccentric middle aged couple who is a thinly veiled variation on Shelly Winters character in TPA, less than terrifying robot enemies called hosts which resemble golden angels. And add the one dimensional mystery moustache twirling villainous mastermind behind the whole disaster (and I don't mean RTD) and what we're left with is an ironically speaking a real disaster, hindered more so by the shameful need to create a bit of romantic sparkle to the whole tawdry affair. You would have thought that after the show's long history not to mention that the previous years "The Runway Bride" was moderately diverting by not sinking to this level. But with eye candy like Minogue I suppose it was somewhat inevitable. Although It comes as little surprise when something "dreadfully unforeseen" occurs. Oh shock horror! The unmentionable happens! Finally driving to a coda where it all ends on what is I presume supposed to be a warm hearted yet somber conclusion. It once again sinks in to schmaltz driven, vomit drenched sentimentality. Tennant makes good with his fare wells and It couldn't be a moment too soon. Paving the way for a brief glimpse of what was to come in 2009's fourth series. And while thankfully appearing to seem half ways bearable. What would spring forth would be a mixed bag, although none of it could be quite as dire as what had preceded it. VOTD deserves to be condemned to the garbage bin of any "Doctor Who" encyclopedia as tremendous abomination, worst Christmas special and one of the worst stories ever.

BTW, as a note of interest. Look out for the up and coming "Being Human" star, Russell Tovey as Midshopman Alonso Frame, a fine actor who deserved more than to have starred in this bilge.


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