Doctor Who, S2E2, Tooth and Claw. Written by Russell T. Davies
All in all, I don’t mind this episode – I like hearing Tennent speak with his native accent, his reference to Rose in shorts as a “wee naked child” and “timorous beastie.”
There are are hooded men taking over a landed estate, harboring another man in a cage. So they’re a traveling prison guard, in a way. They have orange suits beneath their robes and are experts in a sort of martial art that make them hard to beat. Once they fight their way in, they say to the terrified occupants of the house, “May God have mercy on our souls.”
Credits. Blue and red fire tunnel.
Rose “What Am I Wearing?” Taylor and the Doctor (mistakenly) go to Scotland, 1879. (They were actually headed to the Thatcher-led China-invade-Russia Sheffield of 1979. The year after yours truly was born.) They run into Queen Victoria on her way to Torchwood Estate. It was a favorite spot of her late husband and where a Sir Richard lives.
The Queen commands them to join her for the evening, and as they’re walking behind her carriage, Rose says she wants to hear her say “We are not amused.” But she says this in her Cassandra voice. This is a running unfunny theme through the episode.
While in Torchwood Estate, the Sir Richard, being manipulated by the evil monks, adopts a demeanor or normalcy, though the Doctor’s spidey senses are perked.
Sir Richard shows the Queen, Doctor and Rose the observatory, which contains a telescope his father designed. The Doctor is jazzed by it, but notices it’s too powerful for simple stargazing. The queen mentions that Sir Robert’s father was uber-smart and also that her husband Albert was fascinated by local stories of a wolf. The Doctor tries to get the story out of Sir Richard, but he is interrupted by the disguised hijackers.
Unseen by them, the monks put roofies into the soldier’s drinks and whoop! They’re unconscious. Rose leaves to find clothes to cover her “nakedness” (Oh, those crazy Victorians and their clothing standards) and in one wardrobe, she find a servant girl, Flora.
Flora tells Rose about the date rape drugging, but before they can do anything, they are also captured, though not drugged. They’re taken to the basement. Rose sees the caged prisoner (I think we know where this is going, yeah?) and offers to help him.
He declines and shares the Secret Evil Plan to take over Queen Victoria’s body and begin the Empire of the Wolf. (Isn’t that a song or movie or something?) In passing, he makes a comment that Rose has “something of the wolf” about her. (Seems like a different life, yeah?)
Upstairs, over dinner, they’re talking more about the wolf, Sir Richard’s father, Albert, and the telescope. Downstairs, we can see the full moon shining on the caged prisoner and his transformation into a wolf. The others hear the cries from the dining room and go down there to save them.
There a grand escape and the Doctor locks the wolf into the cellar. (Who thinks that will last? Show of hands? Hello?) They evacuate upstairs and the Queen realizes that this is a set up to get her near the werewolf. She fights back, threatening the head monk with her revolver. He scoffs at her, calling her “woman.” In all calm queenly pride, she says “The correct form of address is ‘Your Majesty,” and fires at him. Like a boss.
The Doctor has a brainstorm. The diamond, the telescope, Prince Albert and Sir Robert’s father are all connected. The Doctor forms a theory and gets to test it in the upstairs observatory where the diamond catches the moonlight at the right time that the werewolf came in, dies, fades away in the moonbeam. Sir Robert dies in the process – it’s very sad.
Afterwards, the Doctor notices Victoria’s wrist is bleeding and wonders if the werewolf bit her after all, but the Queen dismisses his concern, saying it was just a splinter from the door. In the morning, she dubs the two travellers Sir Doctor of TARDIS and Dame Rose of the Powell Estate and says, effectively, ‘Thanks for your help, now get the hell out of here.’
On the way back to the TARDIS, the Doctor reflects it was always a mystery how Victoria and from her, her children, contracted hemophilia.
Back at the Torchwood Estate, Victoria tells Lady Isobel, Sir Robert’s wife, that her husband’s sacrifice and the ingenuity of his father will live on. The Queen has seen Britain has enemies beyond imagination, and will establish an institute to research and fight these enemies: the Torchwood Institute. If the Doctor returns, Torchwood will be waiting.
So the stage is set for Torchwood. It’s also the first reference to the Doctor and queen Victoria, though not the last.