Recap: Doctor Who S27 E2 "The End of the World"
"You lot, you spend all your time thinking about dying, like you're gonna get killed by eggs, or beef, or global warming, or asteroids. But you never take time to imagine the impossible. That perhaps you make it. Maybe you survive. This is the year 5.5/apple/26, five billion years in your future, and this is the day... Hold on... (the sun starts to become a red giant)
This is the day the sun expands. Welcome to the end of the world."
— The Doctor
Rose expresses a wish to visit the future, and the Doctor cheerfully obliges... but scorns her idea of a mere hundred years in the future in favour of five billion
years. Nothing succeeds like excess!
It's the year 5.5/Apple/26 when the Doctor and Rose materialise aboard Platform One, a cruciform space station orbiting a dying star. The star is, in fact, our sun; and in a few minutes, it will finally expand and consume the Earth. This is considered high entertainment in the future — Snuff Film
writ large — so there's a collection of the rich aboard the platform. The guests include a giant face in a jar called The Face of Boe (who will become important later); the last pure human, Lady Cassandra O'Brien.Δ17 (who will also become important later) and a group of tree people. One of them, Jabe, twigs (heh) to the Doctor's oddness, and persuades her PDA to identify his species.
The Doctor seems well at ease in this company, but Rose is completely at sea. She wanders off and has a few second thoughts about this adventure business, as she realises that she is five billion years in the future in the company of a manic alien.
Meanwhile, some serious weirdness is transpiring aboard the platform. Little spider robots are crawling all over the place, pulling fun pranks like lowering the space station's sun visors so as to give anyone unfortunate enough to be around a fatal suntan.
The Doctor rejoins Rose, and they watch doomed Earth spin. Rose anxiously presses the Doctor for more information on his people, homeworld, etc.; the Doctor snaps at her for excessive nosiness, gives her mobile an upgrade to make up for it, then goes off to explore the station. Rose calls her mom for a bit of reassurance. (Although the call accidentally overshoots a little, and reaches Jackie some time before
Rose met the Doctor.)
After Rose insults Cassandra, the mysterious Adherents of the Repeated Meme place her in a room where another set of sun filters are descending. The Doctor saves her, but the door is stuck after being struck by high temperatures.
Investigating the air conditioning following a mysterious shaking in the space station, the Doctor finds one of the spiders. With the help of Jabe, the Doctor sends the spider back to its masters. The Doctor realises the Adherents of the Repeated Meme is just a meme, an idea, or in other words remote controlled robots. The actual culprit was Cassandra. She intended to create a hostage situation. She teleports away, causing her spiders, having infiltrated the station deep, to break the safety and the glass on the station's exterior to break.
The Doctor and Jabe rush to find the button to reset the computer, restoring the safety; the space station was manned entirely by computers, computers the spiders compromised, and the makers of the "unsinkable" space station didn't account for this. Jabe holds down the switch to slow the deadly pathway of fans so the Doctor can reach it. Unfortunately, she's made of wood, so she catches fire and dies, and the fans start moving quicker just as the Doctor's at the last one. The Doctor, concentrating, passes through and resets the computer, ordering it to reactivate the shields at the point of the Earth's destruction. Cassandra is returned thanks to the Doctor's ability to reverse the teleport with the feed that allowed her to teleport through the heat. As she begins to dry out, She pleads The Doctor to "moisturize her", but he lets her die, saying "Everything has an end."
Space station saved, the Doctor and Rose go out for chips. The Doctor confides that his home planet is destroyed
, and that he's the Last of His Kind
. So that's why he's been a bit moody recently. Unfortunately, it'll take another four years
before we find out exactly what happened
, and another eight
to find out the circumstances
that lead to what happened.