Doctor Who (2005– )
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The Empty Child 

When a spaceship crashes in the middle of the London Blitz the Doctor, Rose and the enigmatic Captain Jack Harkness find themselves investigating a plague of physical injuries and a little boy in a gas mask.

Director:

James Hawes

Writer:

Steven Moffat
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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
Christopher Eccleston ... Doctor Who
Billie Piper ... Rose Tyler
Kate Harvey Kate Harvey ... Nightclub Singer
Albert Valentine Albert Valentine ... The Child
Florence Hoath Florence Hoath ... Nancy
Cheryl Fergison Cheryl Fergison ... Mrs. Lloyd
Damian Samuels ... Mr. Lloyd
John Barrowman ... Jack Harkness
Robert Hands Robert Hands ... Algy
Joseph Tremain ... Jim
Jordan Murphy Jordan Murphy ... Ernie
Brandon Miller Brandon Miller ... Alf
Richard Wilson ... Dr. Constantine
Noah Johnson Noah Johnson ... The Empty Child (voice)
Dian Perry Dian Perry ... Computer (voice)
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Storyline

Rose and the Doctor find themselves in 1941 London when the TARDIS receives an emergency signal from another time-traveling vehicle. While the Doctor tries to determine where the object may have landed, Rose goes off in search of a child she can hear calling for help. When she gets herself into a precarious situation, she's rescued by the rather handsome RAF Captain Jack Harkness, who owns a time machine of his own. The Doctor meanwhile meets Nancy who has an interesting way of arranging meals for homeless children. They are also being chased by the child Rose heard calling. The Doctor determines that human DNA is being rewritten but it's not obvious why or by who. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 May 2006 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (50 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital (Dolby 5.1)

Color:

Color
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When the Doctor explains the way Nancy operates to feed the children of London he says "I don't know if it's Marxism in action or a west end musical." This is a reference about the musical Oliver! in which Nancy is the name of a character who is the 'big sister' figure to Fagin's gang. See more »

Goofs

In the opening scene, when the two officers are looking out of the window, the army officer is wearing his '37 pattern web belt upside down with the buckles at the bottom. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Rose Tyler: What's the emergency?
The Doctor: It's mauve.
Rose Tyler: Mauve?
The Doctor: Universally recognised colour for danger.
Rose Tyler: What happened to red?
The Doctor: That's just humans. By everyone else's standards, red's camp. Oh, the misunderstandings! All those red alerts, all that dancing.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Doctor Who Confidential: Bringing Back the Doctor (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Moonlight Serenade
Written by Glenn Miller and Mitchell Parish
Performed by Glenn Miller
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User Reviews

 
Introducing Captain Jack
18 September 2010 | by MaxBorg89See all my reviews

After Paul Cornell's Father's Day, it's another great writer's turn to provide his spin on Doctor Who: one Steven Moffat, creator of Coupling, lifelong fan of the original Doc and author of the hilarious Comic Relief spoof version of the show produced in 1999 (you know, the one with Rowan Atkinson as the Ninth Doctor). With such credentials, greatness was to be expected, and The Empty Child is easily the first season's high point, besides the chilling Dalek.

In fact, "chilling" is an adjective that applies quite well to this episode too: summoned by an emergency signal from a damaged time-ship, the Doctor and Rose land in 1914 London, where a mysterious, deformed child spreads terror with his gas mask-shaped face and constant cries for his absent mother. While the Doctor tries to get to the bottom of this spooky enigma, he and Rose also make a rather different acquaintance: that of Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman), a stranded time traveler who loves to enjoy himself with just about anyone...

Marking a distinct tonal shift that goes beyond even the more suspenseful bits of Dalek, The Empty Child is a pretty scary episode - some scenes had to be edited because of the time slot - that might alienate younger viewers, but will no doubt fascinate older ones thanks to its pitch-perfect writing, subtle atmosphere build-up and impeccable reconstruction of war-time London. Moffat also deserves kudos for the introduction of Captain Jack, a character that blatantly panders to a more adult audience (then again, this is Moffat, the king of awkward sexual tension on the small screen) while also providing the sense of fun and excitement that makes Doctor Who such a great ride. And this is just part one of the story...


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