"Doctor Who" The Stolen Earth (TV Episode 2008) Poster

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Very, very, very good
lemmingology29 June 2008
Wow. What a set-up for what looks like being a storming finale. I was on the edge of my seat for the whole of this episode, right up until the enormous shock at the end and its subsequent cliffhanger. Quite often the plots of the finale are quite hard to keep up with, but that's certainly not the case here.

Russell T Davies, with his script for this episode, has somehow managed to intertwine his entire "Whoniverse" together. Not just with the characters - all the favourites are back (Jack, Martha, Sarah Jane, and of course, Rose - and even Harriet Jones makes an important cameo) along with the two spin-offs Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures (with Gwen and Ianto from the former and Luke from the latter playing large parts), but also, just like with The Sound of Drums last year, all the seemingly insignificant events from earlier episodes that you dismissed as part of those story lines alone have become massive plot developments. It's obvious just how much careful planning Davies has put into this entire series on the first watch of this. On top of this, we finally discover what the Medusa Cascade and the Shadow Proclamation (complete with random Judoon cameo) are - things that have been talked about ever since Christopher Eccleston's first episode.

Even things that I would normally criticise serve this episode very well. The main thing being Murray Gold's repetitive music - he's borrowed music from all over the rest of the series for this episode and yet it still works really well.

As for the acting, I don't think there was a single bad performance. John Barrowman and Elisabeth Sladen in particular are on top form, Tennant is excellent as always, and Julian Bleach's Davros is frighteningly reminiscent of Star Wars' Emperor Palpatine. And from the trailer that has just appeared on the BBC website, it's only going to get better.

Again, what an amazing setup for next week's finale, and a very convincing episode in its own right. And so begins the anticipation...
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Edge of the seat first parter from messrs Davies and Harper
DVD_Connoisseur29 June 2008
"The Stolen Earth" is an important milestone in "Doctor Who" mythology. Here we have the largest gathering of "Who" characters since "The Five Doctors"....companions old and new are faced with not just the dreaded Daleks but also their creator.

It's been a long wait for Davros but this has made his appearance all the better. As Davies has commented, he wanted the character to remain the same - there's no re-imagining like the "new" Cybermen here.

This is an ambitious tale and it's in safe hands with Graeme Harper. The tale builds to a very memorable cliffhanger. It's an agonising wait for next week's episode and there's no teaser present to put viewers out of their misery.

10 out of 10. Great continuity, beautiful effects and a smörgåsbord of "Who" characters - what more could anybody ask for?
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Greatest Cliffhanger Ever In A Very Variable Self Indulgent Episode
Theo Robertson23 April 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Just to remind you how popular Nu-Who is I overheard a conversation between a couple of schoolgirls at a bus stop the week before this episode was broadcast

" Dae ya ken what's happening on Saturday ? "

" What ? "

" Sarah Jane's coming back and Mickey and Rose's mum "

Hey I thought to myself . Teenage girls think DOCTOR WHO is the most important and coolest show in the universe . Who says the youth of today have little hope ? It's astounding how much of a success the show has become . The only worry is would RTD throw a spanner in the works ? The answer is sometimes yes and sometimes no . Unfortunately the answer yes isn't a clear cut winner with The Stolen Earth

Certainly RTD has pandered to the hardcore viewer weather they be middle aged men or teenage girls . The whole story revolves around continuity and nostalgia so much so that the narrative collapse beneath the weight of it . We see characters like Harriet Jones and the rhino monsters from Smith And Jones brought in to the fray only for them to disappear so abruptly you find yourself wondering was it really necessary to include them in the first place . Davros makes a welcome return and is shown to have embryo Daleks growing within himself but this is skated over so quickly you realise it's only been included because it seemed like a good idea at the time . Being an end of season story we have the obligatory cameos in the shape of Prof Richard Dawkins and Paul O'Grady and a plot line featuring the planet Earth on the brink of inevitable defeat . I for one would have been happier to have substituted nostalgia and spectacle and running around for a bit more drama as wehad in Bad Wolf / Parting Of The Ways

The Stolen Earth does have some very good elements . Piper and Tate are both excellent in their roles so much so that it works against the rest of the female cast . Cribbens is also excellent whilst Julian Bleach as Davros is second only to the late Michael Wisher as the best Davros though his part remained underwritten . Undoubtedly though the best part of the story is the ending which contains the greatest cliffhanger the show has ever seen and I'm including the classic series in that equation . When a not so young man who has seen every episode that remains in the BBC archive says that his jaw hit the ground as the end credits came up you know you've been watching event television

This is an episode that is wildly variable . The writing is patchy but that's only to be expected in 50 minutes of television that brings in continuity from the first four series of Nu-Who not to mention the two spin off series TORCHWOOD and THE SARAH JANE ADVENTURES and whilst not as talented as Joe Ahearne director Graeme Harper does the best with the material . If here's a fundamental problem it's mainly down to RTD as a producer who commissions his own writing . One hopes we shall see his autocratic type of producing end when he leaves the show
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Great Part, Shame It Was THAT good That Nothing Could Follow Up
dazthomson2 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Well what can i say. Part 2 in this 3 part tale was non-stop action, drama and emotion from start to finish. Daleks have reappeared yet again to my great delight accompanied by the insane and funny Dalek Cann and the pure evil Lord and creator of the dalek race, Davros himself. Everything is this episode was perfect. Effortlessly bringing the entire 'Whoniverse' featuring Torchwood, UNIT, Rose, SJ and families: the incredible Davros looks more real and sinister than he ever has done; the special effects are on an epic scale; the characters are well tuned and all respond perfectly to the dalek invasion and all go out fighting; the emotional tearjerker scene where Rose and the Doctor finally find each other after soooo long; and of course the most breathtaking unexpected cliffhanger in the history of the world.

Shame Journeys End Was Crap
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ametaphysicalshark5 July 2008
I was wrong. Russell T. Davis IS a great Doctor Who writer. I don't even care what came before it, because "The Stolen Earth" is the most insanely entertaining and epic Doctor Who story since "Remembrance of the Daleks" and really a fine, thrilling piece of writing from Davies. I'd go as far as saying that this is his best work since his New Adventures novel "Damaged Goods".

I didn't love "Doomsday". I hated "Last of the Timelords", and I'm really hoping I won't hate "Journey's End", and chances are I won't because "The Stolen Earth" is beyond just an good setup, it really is half a story, a half so intense and jam-packed that there is literally no time to look away from the episode and, you know, BREATHE. I like the foundation of this story a heck of a lot more than any season finale in the RTD era of Doctor Who, and it would take a LOT to mess this up.

"The Stolen Earth" is absolutely crazy, it's like RTD had a checklist of everything that had appeared in his era and decided to include all of them in this episode. What's surprising is that the story doesn't feel even remotely disjointed! And the best part of this story is that we've got space-Nazi Daleks back! Oh, and Davros. Oh my oh my Davros. How brilliantly-realized was Davros here? THIS is what I've wanted from the Daleks in this new Doctor Who series. THIS is it. THIS is a classic Dalek story updated with fantastic effects and production values. THIS is how they should always be used in Doctor Who.

Absolutely wacky, insanely intense, dramatic, thrilling, and featuring one of the best Doctor Who cliffhangers in all its thirty seasons of existence. What more could a fan ask for?

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All star fan fest, this episode is huge!!
Paul Evans29 August 2015
Warning: Spoilers
This is about as big and bold as it gets, possibly the two parter I remember most vividly

The Doctor and Rose after the Bad wolf warnings return to Earth to discover nothing's wrong, but what a surprise all hell breaks loose and the Earth is moved. We see the effects on Martha and Unit, Torchwood, Sarah Jane and Luke. Rose has returned to Earth, armed. It's apparent that the cause of the planets in the sky and the earth being moved is down to the Daleks. A message is heard and the attacks start. The theme of missing planets that has run throughout the series is unveiled, the missing planets form some sort of engine. The Doctor locates the Earth, discovering that Davros is still alive. Dalek Caan prophecises death.

When you compare Catherine Tate now to her earlier episodes the character has matured so much, it's been a fantastic series performance from her. Once again I find myself more captivated by her then anyone else.

I love the expression of doom on Sarah Jane's face when she hears the 'Exterminate,' her reaction is so much better then anyone else's.

The effects are sensational, everything is done on such a big scale, the attacks on earth look so good.

How exciting was it to see the return of Davros, last seen in the finale of Remembrance of the Daleks. Julian Bleach puts in a great performance, hopefully he'll return one day. I love his seeing Sarah Jane scene.

The Supreme Dalek just needs a Swarowski crystal studded eye stalk and glittered hat, a really garish, awful creation, way to over designed. Bring the black Supreme Dalek back!! The order of the Daleks is very well realised, Davros, Caan etc.

The story is so incredibly clever, to have combined the Show with it's spin offs Torchwood and Sarah Jane adventures was incredible. They cram so much into it, but it works, to even bring the Judoon and Harriet Jones in, was so clever.

Some fantastic humour, I wish we'd got more of Wilf and Sylvia throughout the series they are truly funny.

All in all it is absolutely insane how good this episode is, and boasts a truly devastating cliffhanger, 10/10

Finally the sense not the give the conclusion away in the trailer.
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Stolen Worlds and Stolen Friends in peril...who will save them from the greatest threat yet?
lordzavulon6666 July 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This is DEFINITELY the most anticipated chapter in Doctor Who Series 4. And to celebrate it with Director Graeme Harper at the helm and Russell T Davies giving all he has left into this episode and the next and finale conclusion.

Throughout the fourth season, the Doctor and Donna have traveled throughout time and space, seeing wonders and extraordinary events that touched their lives. But throughout their journeys, hints and clues of missing planets, bees disappearing, and the return of ROSE TYLER, the Doctor's former companion from Seasons 1 & 2, (reprised by Billie Piper), all come full circle in THE STOLEN EARTH, the 2nd chapter in the SERIES 4 FINALE TRILOGY. The Earth has been stolen and all of the Doctor's companions from the spin-offs, TORCHWOOD and THE SARAH JANE ADVENTURES, are in endanger and attacked by old enemies from the Doctor's past. But another old enemy also returns, bringing forth a plot so massive in epic scale that could mean the end of every thing.

Russell T. Davies has his Ups and Downs in some of his stories. But when it comes to finales, he never disappoints. His writing is in top-notch form along with the explosive epic-scale action. Graeme Harper is behind the director's chair, bring his all as usual with his cinematic style of directing the action and the characters. SOMEBODY PLEASE GIVE THIS GUY A BLOCKBUSTER FILM TO WORK ON!!! He is too good of a director to just remain doing television. But as long its Doctor Who, he's a must-have.

As for the music of Murray Gold, its the most bombastic and dramatic exciting score yet, bringing the foreboding sense of dread and doom and also bringing back some old favorite pieces from previous DW works.

THE STOLEN EARTH, as if has with all finale sagas, has the most INTENSE CLIFFHANGER yet. And then, it all concludes with JOURNEY'S END....
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It was everything one could hope for in a Doctor Who episode!
RoboHoss29 June 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This episode, "The Stolen Earth," was truly a spectacular event. An epic and instant classic. It brings together elements from all four seasons and incorporates those varied bits in such a symmetrical and coherent way that it makes me wonder if Russell T. Davies, Executive Producer, hadn't had this all in mind from the start? It couldn't have all come together or worked any more perfectly if he had, in my view.

Certainly no modern Who adventure has had so many guest-stars and cameos. And they are all given their moments. How RTD managed to pack so much in one 45 minute episode and do it all justice is astonishing to me. His skill as a writer, producer and show-runner is undeniable and this episode is proof of his mastery of his craft.

The return of Davros, an insane Dalek Caan and the best cliffhanger ending ever (thank gawd we only have to a wait a week!) also serve to make this an outstanding and forever memorable installment. Truly an "A+" effort in all respects.
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The-Dan30 June 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Oh ho, what a episode. Lets look at the check list. Daleks - check. Earth in Peril - Check. Funny Lines - check. Epic action - check. Heck of a cliffhanger - triple check.

Russell T Davies proves to us all that he can write brilliant Doctor Who. Davros was captured perfectly and was performed with a wonderful subtle sinister tone by Julian Bleach. All the companions got their fair share of screen time, which many people doubted. It felt well paced rather than rushed. All strands of the series were brought together perfectly. The Bees, the lost planets, Rose. One or two gripes however. The Shadow Proclamation felt a little pointless, as if it was just there to give the doctor something to do, while the companions fretted about the Daleks. However this did not detract from my enjoyment of the episode. Magnificent acting from David Tennant, Catherine Tate, Billie Piper and John Barrowman. However the absolute best acting has to go to Elisabeth Sladen and Julian Beach, who were both brilliant as Sarah Jane and Davros respectively. Special mention to Gary Miler who played Scared Man too. I really hope Journey's end is this good. I really hope RTD can sign off his last series with style. but come Saturday we'll know.
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Elisabeth Sladen R.I.P.
ShadeGrenade4 May 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I re-watched this the other day by way of a personal tribute to Elisabeth Sladen, who died last month, aged 63. It was the penultimate story of Season 4, and, like previous 'episode twelves', served as a lead-in to the season finale. 'Turn Left' ended with the Doctor receiving an ominous warning from ex-companion Rose Tyler ( Billie Piper ). On Earth, with Donna ( Catherine Tate ) in tow, he is relieved to find everything normal - it is Saturday, and a milkman is on his rounds. No sooner are the time travellers back in the TARDIS then the ground starts to shake. When the Doctor next opens the doors, the Earth has gone! Sarah Jane ( Sladen ), Luke ( Tommy Knight ), Captain Jack Harkness ( John Barrowman ), Gwen Cooper ( Eve Myles ) Ianto ( Gareth David-Lloyd ), Martha Jones ( Freema Agyeman ) are all at different parts of the globe when this strange phenomenon occurs. The morning has become night, and suspended in the sky like giant Maltesers are 26 planets! Panic sweeps the globe, and even Professor Richard Dawkins ( Lalla Ward's husband ) and Paul O'Grady are unable to calm everyone down.

Spaceships head towards Earth. Captain Jack and Sarah Jane hear a terrifying voice from the past: "Ex-term-inate! Ex-term-inate!". The Doctor goes to The Shadow Proclaimation - an intergalactic police force whose base is a space station - where he meets the Judoon ( last seen in 'Smith & Jones' ). The Shadow Architect tells the Doctor how planets have been vanishing from all over the universe, among them Pyroville and Adipose. The Doctor and Donna escape to The Medusa Cascade, a sort of Aurora Borealis in space. Even he looks bewildered at what is going on.

The Daleks show up in force, and we are treated to a thrilling invasion sequence, possibly the best ever done for the show, in which the metal meanies make mincemeat of Earth's defences, including the Valiant ( so that's where the budget for 'Midnight' went! ). There is not much for the Doctor to do here, so he is kept away from the front line for much of the time. Ex-P.M. Harriet Jones ( Penelope Wilton ) uses the Sun-Ray Network to bring the Doctor's friends together. What a great moment it is too. By linking Martha's phone to the Torchwood time rift they are able to jolt the Doctor out of his reverie and bring him to where the Earth has been moved. Rose is around too, armed with a gun that Rambo would kill for. She and the Doctor clap eyes on each other for the first time since 'Doomsday', but their emotional reunion is cut short by a Dalek shooting the Doctor. Aboard the TARDIS, he starts to regenerate...

There was much press speculation as to whom the Doctor might become next. I wondered whether this was a cunning ploy on the part of Russell T.Davies to excuse Tennant from the season finale, just as he had been absent for much of 'Last Of The Time Lords'. As it turned out, it was a clever game of bluff. Tennant finally announced his departure from the role at the N.T.V. Awards later that year.

The story also saw the return of Davros, the Daleks' creator, now played by Julian Bleach. While not on a par with the original - the late Michael Wisher - he still outshone David Gooderson and Terry Molloy.

'The Stolen Earth' is big, bold and utterly bananas. I loved every explosive second. Both this and 'Journey's End' comprise a far more satisfying season finale than 'The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang' which was too confusing to be really enjoyable. Though one of many characters, Sladen stood out. Her tear on hearing a Dalek voice for the first time in years was incredibly touching. Sladen took what was essentially a stock character and brought her to life. Those of us who grew up in the 70's watching her on Saturday nights on B.B.C.-1 owe her a real debt of gratitude. She was our Sarah Jane.
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