Steve Goble

Choose life. (Deuteronomy 30:19)

AKA Tempo Fugitive. ;)

In the TARDIS, the lone tenth Doctor (David Tennant) is scribbling away composing a symphony, when a Graske drops in and hijacks a space portal to invade the Royal Albert Hall during the Prom.

When it comes to the canonicity of these miscellaneous sketches, I guess everyone draws the line in a different place.

In favour of this one's inclusion is that it features the official Doctor Who credits on the start, comes from the production team of the day, and isn't actually impossible within the universe(s) of the series.

Standing against it is that it's an insert in another programme, is quite short, and is just too silly. The audience at the Royal Albert Hall take the interruption to their show (presumably not a Doctor Who-themed one) so obligingly.

Me - I'm just on the side of waving it through, but mainly because the tenth Doctor's era was often written in such a throwaway manner anyway.

After so much high-profile activity recently, the Doctor and the surviving population of Earth really ought to be on speaking terms by now, as evidenced by not just the audience's recognition of him, but all the kids with Police Box and sonic screwdriver toys. The astronomical coincidence required for the wormhole to appear in those two places and times - while the Doctor is composing, and a performance is in progress - are par for the course at this point too.

I'd discount anything before or after these minutes in the actual evening, not least because they feature a Cyberman and Freema Agyeman, although they might just both be more of Martha's identical twin cousins.

Not sure what to do about the live shots of the Doctor through the portal that aren't from the portal's perspective though, other than maybe try to re-edit this. And the orchestra is out of sync… oh all right I'll stop.

If nothing else, seeing the tenth Doctor one more time is always going to be a delight, although I admit that this is the only occasion on which I've ever found him annoying. Perhaps because there is so little else going on to dilute him.

After all, a mini-episode specifically about music requires the rest of the soundtrack to be contrastingly empty of it. (the actual music of the spheres here is more of an atmosphere) Therefore for this one episode only, we can actually hear what's being said. The opening moments have such clarity to them that, on headphones at least, it really makes you feel as though you're inside the TARDIS. So that's what the new TARDIS interior sounds like - I've never heard it before. If only they would learn to mix the regular episodes this way again.

Ironic then that the Doctor's beautiful closing monologue about how great music is, should be so at odds with what makes this mini-episode stand out well.

The Doctor: "Music isn't just orchestras and pop stars and special people with albums and downloads and concerts - it's you. 'Cause the music of the spheres… is all around you. When you're on your own, just close your eyes, and you'll hear it. Music. Inside your head. 'Cause everyone's a musician. Everyone's got a song inside them. Every single one of you. Bye."

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