“She’s climbing out the window, isn’t she?”
“Yes she is.”
That has to be probably my favourite comedy moment of the 2005 run, a run which, by the time we’d got to this, episode eleven of thirteen, was drawing to a close. We know Eccles is off, we know Tennant is coming in, we know the show will be back at Xmas, so this is the last ep where they can do something on a smaller scale where the stakes are slightly less higher, unless your name’s Mickey Smith, that is.
Of all the characters we met in 2005, Mickey was probably the one who slipped the most under the radar since his dramatic function is to be a bit of a plonker and no match for the Doctor. He represents the ordinary, the life you live before the Doctor comes along and, as Sarah Jane will remind us next year, who wants to go back to that? Here again, compared to serial shagger Baron Shlongmeister Der Barrowmanski and The Cleverest Man In The Room, poor old Mickey doesn’t stand a chance. So full marks to Noel Clarke for making him a likeable plonker, one who we know will “man up” next year.
The first story to feature Cardiff’s infamous Rift in Space & Time, a prequel of sorts to the upcoming Torchwood spin-off, there are only three cuts to this ep aside from the slightly shorter throw forward. First is MaggieSlitheen’s chat with the taffy reporter bird in the khazi, a nice character moment yes, but it doesn’t move the story forward. The next is to cut away earlier from Rose & Mickey’s chat, removing his clumsy attempt to suggest a shag if she’s got nowt else to do. That’s much better left for when Tricia Delaney gets mentioned. And the third cut is as a consequence of the first, MaggieSlitheen talking about letting the taffy reporter bird live, the scene which was the first to go. Those three cuts help us lose the usual ten minutes, making for a nice character piece that still hits all the right moments, it just does it a bit quicker.