Mark Watches ‘Doctor Who’: S04E06 – The Doctor’s Daughter

In the sixth episode of the fourth series of Doctor Who, the TARDIS drops the Doctor, Martha, and Donna on the planet Messaline, where the Doctor meets his own daughter. Technically. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Doctor Who.

This episode is all about perspective.

You know, it might just be applicable that all of series four is about seeing the universe through someone else’s eyes. What starts off as a humorous plot device (splitting up Martha from the Doctor and Donna) becomes a much larger rumination on this greater idea: maybe, all along, the Doctor has really needed to see what he does through other people’s eyes.

So, of course, I was shocked at the concept of the Doctor having a daughter and I figured this would fill in some gaps of his past. It’s only technically his daughter, though, since she’s a clone, and I was initially disappointed at the concept. Oh, Stephen Greenhorn, I was so unprepared for where you were taking this story. Not only did I get some more information about the Doctor’s past, but the writers crafted the character of Jenny to be a much deeper reflection on the Doctor’s personality and history. And on top of that, there’s still one fantastically complex and exciting plot to tie it all together. Hell, this might just be one of my favorite Doctor Who episodes yet.

Our time-traveling heroes essentially get plopped down into a gigantic war between humans and a bunch of fish-like aliens called the Hath, who are battling for something known as the Source. For both sides (which we get to see through the split-up characters), it’s a coveted object because it’s believed to hold the power to their creation. I didn’t really take this bit of the story as a commentary on Creationism since the analogy wouldn’t really work. The Doctor has actually seen the beginning of the Universe and knows this isn’t how things have happened; it’s also nice that he’s not terribly condescending about this either. He’s actually intrigued by this origin story the humans have concocted. Why are these two sides really fighting? And how’d they develop the cloning technology they used to create his daughter?

There’s a fantastic X-Files episode by the name of “Monster” in the seventh season that finally gives the viewer the perspective of being the monster-of-the-week in an X-Files story. “The Doctor’s Daughter” is not the same format, but it’s the same sentiment: what if we saw both sides of the battle and sympathized with them as well? (Except General Cobb. Fuck him.) (Also, JESUS I USE A LOT OF EXAMPLES FROM THE X-FILES. I swear I have seen other shows, I SWEAR.)

I feared that Martha Jones would be seriously hurt, possibly killed, because she wasn’t the main companion in this series. That fear disappeared once it became clear that this episode would follow her as she helped the Hath, unknowingly leading them to war. Simultaneous to this, the Doctor and Donna help the humans, bring them to the exact same conclusion. While Martha is off trying to find the Source with the Hath she saved after the tunnel was caved in my the Doctor’s daughter, the Doctor is locked in a cell with Donna and his daughter. Much like Martha’s time with the Hath, it’s a chance to learn more about this war and those involved with it.

For the Doctor though, he’s wildly dismissive of Jenny. If it weren’t for the constant voice of reason (also known as DONNA NOBLE), I’m not sure the Doctor would have ever come around to embrace his daughter at all. Jenny was quick to pick up on a lot of similarities the Doctor has to her, both her nature as a soldier and then, later, her physiology, which resembles that of a Time Lord. I think that the Doctor’s reluctance here might have been a combination of a few things: his ego, his insistence on spelling out the science of it all, and dismissing the chance that she really could be his daughter. Again, as I said before, both Donna and Jenny provide the Doctor with a new perspective on himself. This time, it’s absolutely necessary.

So Jenny has two hearts. Physically, she’s about as close as one could be to a Time Lord. Given the final moments of the episode, is it at all possible that she could grow to become one? She doesn’t see the time vortex like the Doctor does, but what else will we see from her?

I’m getting ahead of myself. SORRY, I JUST HAVE A LOT OF FEELINGS OK. Let’s move back to Donna, who seriously saves EVERYTHING in this episode, and maybe this is a chance for the Doctor to see how necessary she is to him, both as a companion and a new view of the world for him. Hell, I couldn’t figure out the numbered plaques if you had sat me in front of them for a whole day. (Figures that I forgot about the Dewey decimal system. THANKS PUBLIC SCHOOLING.) But when she does figure out that it’s a dating method, it’s proof that this episode also has a mind-melting plot. It’s not just character heavy, which a lot of the episodes do.

Seriously, the great war that lasted generations TOOK PLACE OVER ONE FUCKING WEEK. That is one of the coolest and most fucked up plot twists/revelations I have ever seen on television. GOD BLESS DOCTOR WHO.

The finale of this episode is FULL OF SMILES and then WHAT THE FUCK, well ok, that was sort of expected. But the idea that the two sides have been fighting over LITERAL CREATION is so goddamn fantastic. I wasn’t sure that the Hath and the humans would actually set their weapons down, but it seemed that Jenny couldn’t really last beyond this episode. (This is why the actual final scene is so exciting. Red shirts never come back to life!) After a two-parter that ended with a whole lot of destruction, I’m glad we didn’t have to sit through yet another episode of battle and death. Though…yes, there was a lot of gunfire here. And running. Lots and lots of running.

The Doctor orders these two warring factions to build their new world under the premise of the “man who never would.” I know people complained that “The Doctor’s Daughter” felt too similar to the Sontaran story before this, but I felt that this was merely a continuation on the theme of violence instead. We know the Doctor has an aversion to guns as an “easy” solution to problems. Here, though, I actually believed for a second that the Doctor would act out his revenge on Cobb. (Fuck Cobb, by the way.) But it was an interesting message he gave them: don’t act out of revenge. Don’t be the person to would resort to what had happened over the last week. (A week! A FUCKING WEEK oh my god i love this show). It is rather arrogant of the Doctor, but it’s his style. He saves planets and civilizations! I guess it comes with the territory.



  • This series, so far, has a lot of companions. Three, to be exact. And one possible companion in Jenny. I like this. Keeps me guessing.
  • “Then you need to get yourself a better dictionary. When you do, look up genocide. You’ll see a little picture of me there and the caption’ll read ‘Over my dead body!'” ;AKSDLJFA;SDF Well, at least he’s finally acknowledging this.
  • “All right, cool the beans, Rambo.” Seriously, Donna has all the good lines.
  • “Let’s save your wiles for later. In case of emergency.”
  • “Oh come off it. You’re the most anomalous bloke I’ve ever met.”
  • “He saves worlds, rescues civilizations, defeats terrible creatures and runs a lot. Seriously, there’s an outrageous amount of running involved.”
  • Good bye, Martha Jones. 🙁

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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280 Responses to Mark Watches ‘Doctor Who’: S04E06 – The Doctor’s Daughter

  1. Openattheclose says:

    I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. Normally, I try to stay away from celebrities' private lives, but it had to be done.
    <img src=""&gt;

    Context: Georgia Moffett, who plays the Doctor's daughter Jenny, is the Doctor of the Fifth Doctor Peter Davison, and is engaged and expecting a child with David Tennant. I have no idea if it's a girl or not.
    <img src=""&gt;

    Mark, if you ever get a chance to watch the next time trailer for this, I think you should. I find the trailer for this one to be really funny.

    I really love this episode. Jenny is awesome, Donna is awesome (well duh), Martha is awesome, and the poor Doctor loses something, again. I like the concept of the 7 Days War, but seven days seems a little too short to me. I think it would have worked better if it had been a month or something. Also, I didn't want to say it yesterday, but I think all of the anti-gun talk in SS/PS (Haha not Harry Potter Book 1) was kind of foreshadowing for the way Jenny dies. Maybe.

    (Fuck Cline, by the way.) My sentiments exactly.
    <img src=""&gt;
    "Love the running!"

    • samarkand_ says:

      Well, that's the greatest macro I've ever seen. Officially.

    • Openattheclose says:

      Oops, that should say she's the DAUGHTER of Peter Davison, not his Doctor lol. Too many Doctors.

    • fakehepburn says:

      Calling it right now: that kid for Doctor #13 (or whatever number they're on by the time it's a grownup or whatever.)

    • psycicflower says:

      I just have to say that I think I'm in love with that last gif. It's kind of amazing.

    • leighzzz31 says:

      I choked on my coke while reading the macro. My throat burns but i'M STILL LAUGHING!

    • xpanasonicyouthx says:

      THAT IS AMAZING. I had no idea!

    • Angie says:

      omg that last gif. lol. I have to figure out exactly where I abandoned my Lost watching and get back to it. (I enjoyed it, but I got distracted and haven't returned to it). I love Hurley.

    • knut_knut says:

      that macro is seriously all I could think about while watching this episode. It was highly disturbing

    • electric ashera says:

      I also try to stay away from actors' private lives (I'd like to enjoy their performances and not ever be disappointed by their humanity, so maybe it's actually a bit childish)—but David Tennant, in every interview I've ever seen/everything I've ever read about him, seems to be just a really lovely person.

      So yay for him! And yay for getting to be related to his childhood hero. That must be freaky/awesome for him too.

      • Openattheclose says:

        "but David Tennant, in every interview I've ever seen/everything I've ever read about him, seems to be just a really lovely person."

        Oh I totally agree. He is one of the few "real" people that I crush on. Just watching his video diaries and seeing his joy at playing the Doctor makes me so happy.

      • EmmylovesWho says:

        He does seem lovely. His Desert Island discs interview makes me so happy.

    • EmmylovesWho says:

      DED at that macro.

      The child may as well give up, it will never live up to the hype

  2. buyn says:

    Jenny is played by an actress, who in fact is the Doctor's daughter. Her father is Peter Davison. So she's the Doctor's daughter IRL too. And also going to be Mrs. Doctor, as she is engaged to David Tennant…

    Which still creeps me out.

  3. monkeybutter says:

    This episode is all about perspective.

    You're right, because after finding out that David and Georgia are engaged and expecting a baby, this episode is a little awkward! It's still pretty great though. I feared for Martha, too!

  4. Jenny_M says:

    Chris from Skins, Chris from Skins! Sorry, Joe Dempsie is just too adorable.

    In other news, David Tennant loves the blondies!

    • who_cares86 says:

      Wait, wait wait. What have I missed now? Why don't I recognize any of these people when I should. On the other hand I'm not entirely sure if I ever watched this episode again after I discovered Skins.

    • Karen says:

      Chriiiiiiiis. 🙁

      I miss generation 1 of Skins. I haven't even bothered to watch the new episodes.

      • __Jen__ says:

        Me too. I loved them all. 🙁

      • Minish says:

        I gave the second and third series a chance and it was such utter shite that it actually infuriated me.

        I decided if the first episode of series 5 wasn't better than the entirety of the second generation, I wouldn't even give it a chance.

        I haven't seen an episode since.

  5. nextboy says:

    i think this episode gets a lot of unfair stick when actually it’s all really rather good. I remember seeing this before i was ‘into’ the show and liking it then. Clever story, fun script, and the try very attractive Georgia Moffett. Pretty good going for a midseason episode!

  6. Tauriel says:

    This episode is mostly meh, but the concept of a generations-long war that actually lasted only a week is really interesting. And it feels somewhat similar to the first serial with Leela (forgot its name). And an interesting fact: Georgia Moffet is the daughter of Peter Davison and has recently became engaged to David Tennant. Geekiest Who coupling since Tom Baker and Lalla Ward, eh? 😀

  7. kaybee42 says:

    I'm so glad you liked this episode,Mark! I sometimes forget how shit like "It's only been a week!" can be mind blowing! I love reading your reviews 😀
    Also YES DONNA NOBLE AND JENNY! You rock on!
    "she…I like that!"
    I'm sure other people will mention about Georgia being Peter's daughter and her and David, so I'll leave that.

  8. Wookie_Monster says:

    Here'a a little Q&A about the episode, and Doctor Who in general, between Georgia Moffet (Jenny) and her then about six-year-old son:
    Cuteness overload!

  9. I'll admit it, I cried over Martha's Hath friend. He is so cute I could just hug him… if he hadn't been sucked under by the quickgoo. 🙁

    UNPOPULAR OPINION DON'T EAT ME I TASTE LIKE LIMA BEANS: As much as I wanted to like her, Jenny drove me nuts. She seemed like a Red Shirt from the moment we learned she was created from the Doctor, and the lack of character development outside "now I'm nice too" just screamed: "She'll die so the audience will like her better". I know that people won't like this, but I had to say it. Now I taste like broccoli, don't eat me I said!

    Also: Was I the only one who couldn't buy a TimeLord taking a human's word for her being dead, especially since the Doctor has survived being shot many times? A little bit hard to swallow, that.

    On a less finnicky note: I never get tired of Donna telling off Ten. <3

    • arctic_hare says:

      I like lima beans and broccoli. OM NOM NOM.

      No, just kidding! 😀 I was super-sad over the Hath dying too, they are adorable.

      • We need more fish-love.

      • nyssaoftraken74 says:

        Also very sad about Pec the Hath…gone to the great ocean in the sky.

        And poor Martha: (Paraphrasing.) "You can stay here and live your entire life in the shadows, or you can come with me…AND DIE!" 🙁

        Btw, I love the way Freema has of making Martha scared and brave at the same time. Also, her reaction to being petted by the Hath that's kind of `Aww` and `Eww` at the same time. Sort of `Aeww`.

        I'm a doctor and he is my patient and I'M NOT LEAVING HIM!

        Right then, I'm Martha Jones…and who the hell are you?

        Gonna miss you, Martha!

    • Openattheclose says:

      "Was I the only one who couldn't buy a TimeLord taking a human's word for her being dead, especially since the Doctor has survived being shot many times? A little bit hard to swallow, that."
      I completely agree. What exactly does Martha know about regeneration, other than seeing the Master not do it? And Martha, I love you, but your "doctoring" towards Jenny lasted about 2 seconds and then you gave up.

    • mr_bobby says:

      "UNPOPULAR OPINION DON'T EAT ME I TASTE LIKE LIMA BEANS: As much as I wanted to like her, Jenny drove me nuts. She seemed like a Red Shirt from the moment we learned she was created from the Doctor, and the lack of character development outside "now I'm nice too" just screamed: "She'll die so the audience will like her better". I know that people won't like this, but I had to say it. Now I taste like broccoli, don't eat me I said!"

      OMG I LOVE YOU <3
      I just commented saying something to this effect, so… YOU. ARE. NOT. ALONE.
      (Sorry about that, just too tempting… Heh.)

    • sabra_n says:

      Jenny was born wearing leather pants and eyeliner. I distrusted her instantly.

  10. kaleidoscoptics says:


    For what it's worth I'm pretty sure Jenny comes back to life at the end NOT because she's a Time Lady, but because the Source had a little bit of life that it put back into her. Like how the nanogenes in s1 brought the kid back to life.

    I love this episode for pretty much the same reasons that you mentioned. The story of their origin getting mangled so much that no one really knows what they're doing anymore–and the whole thing only happening in a week! It's a kick in the gut. The discussion about the Doctor's past. All the tears. The Doctor's toys in this episode amuse the heck out of me. The little mouse distraction! So perfect.

    • Bobcat says:

      I figured it was because she was still within the first seventeen hours of her incarnation… like how David grew his hand back. The Source probably makes a lot more sense.

      • maccyAkaMatthew says:

        The director, Alice Troughton, confirmed that it's meant to be the terraforming device that did it (that's how I always read it, anyway). Unfortunately, the CGI effect is similar to the leaking regeneration energy effect.

        The big clue for me was always that she didn't change appearance, though.

  11. Angela says:

    Since you really seemed to like the running, I think I'll just leave this here (shouldn't involve spoilers)

    • Angela says:

      Oh, damn sorry. Better only watch until about 2:30 >_<

      • maccyAkaMatthew says:

        I've reported it so it'll probably get deleted – if it does, you can post the link again with a spoiler warning and that'll be fine I'm sure.

        It's worth getting an account – then you can edit or delete posts yourself.

    • Hanah says:

      I have only downvoted you in case Mark (or anyone else!) clicks on the link without expanding the replies and realising that there are spoilers. If it were non-spoilery you would get ALL THE THUMBS UP IN THE WORLD because that may actually be my favourite song ever written. <3 Chameleon Circuit FTW!

  12. arctic_hare says:

    I'm sure I'm not the first or last person to say so, but this episode is just so weird for me now. Augh!

    It's not a bad episode, though, and I actually do like Jenny. Martha's a BAMF as usual, too, as is Donna. I kinda like the Hath too, but then, they're fishpeople, and I like fish. Not to eat, just as animals; I'm fascinated by (read: kind of disturbingly obsessed with) the ocean and undersea life.

    Although, what's with Donna suddenly doing an about-face and declaring that Jenny's not real? I agreed with her telling Jenny off for calling Martha "collateral damage", but this seems so out of character and contradictory with what happened just a little while ago. I don't like how Ten treats her either. I mean, I understand his discomfort with her willingness to fight and kill and die and use guns, but he's just outright mean to her sometimes and ought to cut her a little slack, IMO. It all gets a bit heavy-handed here.

    "You need to get yourself a better dictionary. When you do, look up "genocide". You'll find a little picture of me there, and the caption'll read "Over my dead body"."

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    Isn't… that… what you did to the Racnoss? And in the Time War? Just saying, Doctor. Not that I don't agree with you that obliterating the Hath would be horrible and wrong, but you're being a bit disingenuous here to act like you haven't done it before.

    I do like that he has a windup mouse in his pocket, though. Really, everyone should have one of those. Quite handy for everyday life, don't you think?

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">


    That poor Hath Martha made friends with. 🙁 I have such a soft spot for non-humans in fiction, it's not even funny. Well, maybe a little.

    I like the revelation that they've mythologized their own history. They're hardly the first. 😉

    Ah, now it's time for Tennant to chew the scenery a bit. Sigh. I hate these over the top Ten moments, I really do. Is it too much to ask that we get these ideas across in a less bombastic way, at least sometimes? I agree with the sentiment and appreciate a hero that wouldn't kill out of revenge, I just don't like the way it's written/acted. As I said above, it's all a bit heavy-handed in execution.

    I too like that Jenny came back at the end, for the reasons you said, Mark.

    • RocketDarkness says:

      We need Mark Reads/Plays Phoenix Wright. Oh, how many times his mind would be blown. I do agree with everything else you said, too.

      • arctic_hare says:

        Great minds think alike, I've been thinking that for a while myself!

        • Suspicious Cookie says:

          GENIUS! As soon as I saw the OBJECTION image, that idea popped into my head. He'd need a DS, though…but really, Phoenix Wright is made of win and amazingness :3

    • psycicflower says:

      I agree about the Doctor's comments on genocide. My initial thought was I'm pretty sure there'd also be a caption about you commiting genocide.

    • Eric Johns says:

      Then there’s the Vervoids (penis plants)… so he’s committed genocide at least three times…

      So I hate that line. I have to deal with disingenuousness all the time (like you wouldn’t BELIEVE), and I’d rather not be reminded of it by the show I go to when I’m feeling crappy about all that.

      Just my opinion.

      • nyssaoftraken74 says:

        Ah, but the Matrix was altered, so the Vervoids genocide never happened. We never got to see what really *did* happen, though.

    • nanceoir says:

      In regards to that dictionary bit? In the Confidential episode, they spend a good few minutes with RTD and David Tennant talking about the "drawerful of double standards" about fighting and killing and whatnot. So, in terms of discussion, I like that the people involved recognize the inherit contradiction in the Doctor, even if the episodes kind of forget it or gloss over it. (Which, come to think of it, is pretty believable, because people with huge double standards in real life never acknowledge it, no matter how obvious it is to everyone else around them.)

      • arctic_hare says:

        On the one hand, I'm glad they recognized it, but on the other, I wish it had been better acknowledged in the text. Knowing that Ten's hypocrisy was clearly seen yet written the way it so often was makes it more disappointing for me.

        • echinodermata says:

          And that's why I prefer not knowing what the writers/showrunners say and why I don't watch the confidentials.

          I think I'm more pissed at the writers all recognizing Ten's flaws but still keeping with positive narrative than if it were just the fact that different writers have different conceptions of his character.

  13. Allyndra says:

    I like this episode, and I love, love, love that they continued showing that Donna's heart and plausible talents (SUPER TEMP) make a real contribution. But the thing I always take away from this episode is, "Hey, Chris from Skins!"

  14. pica_scribit says:

    For the most part, I'm able to watch Doctor Who with an uncritical and childlike sense of wonder. It's fun, and the characters are great, and it doesn't always have to make perfect logical sense. But this episode bothers me. Maybe it's just that I got so excited when I first heard the title, and then the payoff didn't measure up. It wasn't just that I was disappointed, though. Some of the dialogue actually made me cringe, and I couldn't help noticing on this re-watch that "Jenny" is in a completely different outfit from the other soldier clones. What? Is cool dress sense encoded into the Doctor's DNA?____I'm also weirdly squicked by the fact that the actress is actually the daughter of the fifth Doctor, is playing the daughter of the tenth, and is now engaged to David Tennant and about to have his child. So the kid will be the child and grandchild of the Doctor. Does that strike anyone else as weirdly incestuous? The only way to bring it full circle and make it perfect is if that kid one day plays the Doctor as well.

    • electric ashera says:

      If cool dress sense were encoded in the Doctor's DNA, we'd never have had… uh, well just LOOK at the past Doctors.

      I think hands down, Tennant is the best-dressed Doctor.

    • Suspicious Cookie says:

      Word. I think the main reason I don't like Jenny, and therefore this episode, is the machine doing her makeup and dressing her in cool clothes. It really didn't sit right with me :/

  15. jennywildcat says:

    Okay, before I get into my review, I'll outline what you're probably going to get mentioned ten or twelve times throughout this comment thread, but here we go:

    Georgia Moffett is Peter Davison's daughter (the same Peter Davison who played the 5th Doctor. FYI – Peter Davison's real last name is Moffett – there was already another Peter Moffett, so he had to take on a stage name. Same with David Tennant – his real last name is McDonald). David Tennant grew up watching Peter Davison play the Doctor – in fact, it was Davison's Doctor that inspired Tennant to go into acting just so he could play the Doctor someday. David Tennant and Georgia Moffett started dating sometime after they filmed "The Doctor's Daughter" and are planning on getting married sometime next year and are expecting their first child. So, it's the Doctor engaged to his on-screen daughter, who just happens to be the Doctor's real-life daughter and they're expecting the Doctor's possibly-daughter and granddaughter (unless it's a boy – then that part gets thrown out the window).

    Is your mind sufficiently blown? Brings whole new meaning to "Not impossible… just a bit unlikely," doesn't it?

    Okay – on to my review:

    This is honestly one of my favorite episodes of this season – and that was before I knew anything about Georgia Moffett's familial connections to "Doctor Who" (given how I simply adore Peter Davison, that just makes her even more awesome).

    First off – I watched the "Next Time…" trailer after "The Poison Sky" at 1:00 in the morning. The end of the trailer was the beginning of the episode where the Doctor says "She's my daughter" and I went nuts! (in the trailer, all you see is her stepping out of these really smoky doors – no indication of what those smoky doors actually are). I was left with an impossible choice – go to sleep (and I was tired) or watch just one more episode (and really, who only watches "just one more episode"?) So, I went to sleep – still giddy over the prospect of an episode with the Doctor's long-lost daughter from Gallifrey who somehow managed to survive the Time War…

    …only to find out the next morning that she wasn't from Gallifrey at all – merely a pseudo-clone version of the Doctor – WHUT???

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image Source,Photobucket Uploader Firefox Extension">

    It actually turned out that I enjoyed Jenny far more than I would have if she were actually from Gallifrey. There's such a fun dynamic that develops between the Doctor, Jenny and Donna (if nothing else – Donna wins all the happy points in the world from her insistence that the Doctor acknowledge Jenny as his daughter). I love these stories that explore the Doctor's past – the writers give us just enough to keep us interested, but not so much that the mythos surrounding Gallifrey is lessened any.

    I also love how Jenny starts out just like all the other hardcore-soldiery-soldiers on Messaline, but she slowly learns about her heritage and she discovers who she is and she embraces it. I would have loved it if Jenny had become a regular companion on the TARDIS (the way the episode ended leaves open a possibility, albeit a slim one), but I liked the way it ended just the same. Still, I'm holding out the feeble hope that they bring her back at some point because she's such a great character.

    And you're probably going to get heaps of trivia with this review, but here's what I've got –

    – Georgia Moffett actually auditioned for the part of Rose Tyler. Seeing how her relationship turned out with David Tennant – can you imagine the shipping discussions that would have ensued if she'd gotten that part?
    – We all know that Georgia's dad is Peter Davison (the Fifth Doctor) – but her mother is Sandra Dickinson from "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" (the 1981 mini-series). The girl was born with plenty of geek-cred.
    – The script originally called for Jenny to die for real, but then Steven Moffat came in with the idea that she should live and that's how the ending was written.
    – The wound on The Doctor's hand from the device that took his tissue looks like the scar left on the hand of people who transformed into Empty Children.
    – And, just for a bit of a mind-screw, there's this:

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image Source,Photobucket Uploader Firefox Extension">

    (I can't take credit for that last one. This is where I got it:

  16. _thirty2flavors says:

    I have sort of weird feelings toward this episode. I think it works, for the most part, but I think that's because of a series of things just barely working, rather than because of some overarching genus concept, if that makes sense. I can buy Donna pressuring the Doctor to accept Jenny because it is the Doctor, specifically Ten, and he is massively lonely and Jenny is a Time Lord(-ish), et cetera — but that is the only reason it works. If Martha or Donna had had a clone child, and the episode had wanted me to believe they'd form an instant connection? Um… yeah… I don't buy that you develop an instant parental bond with a fully-grown adult clone baby who is made using stolen DNA. I just don't. I also think, for all Donna pushes him towards Jenny, if it had been her clone baby who had popped out of that machine, she'd be freaking out even worse than he did. So I dunno, I did find myself a bit frustrated by Donna instantly being like "BUT HOW CAN YOU NOT LOVE HER THOUGH SHE IS YOUR DAUGHTER LOLOL". But because it is the Doctor's kid and only the Doctor's kid, and because Jenny is a ~soldier~ and it provides an opportunity for Ten to angst about his dead family a bit, I think it works. But sort of… barely, IMO. It helps that Georgia Moffet is adorable, which endeared me to Jenny as well.

    <img src=>

    Poor Martha always gets shunted off alone to do things. 🙁 But I do like that Dr Jones is off on her own essentially being the Doctor, even picking up a companion on her way (and then LOSING IT TRAGICALLY I c wut u did thar). However, I crack up every time Martha shakes her head in that "no Jenny is totally dead" way. LOL MARTHA since when are you an expert in Time Lord biology jw.

    I was sad to see her go at the end of this episode, though. 🙁 ILU MARTHA JONES.

    <img src=>

    • Yay, Companion hugses! 😀

      • _thirty2flavors says:

        Every episode needs moar of them! I am usually very tetchy about a third person joining the TARDIS (I really like the Doctor/companion bond, I guess, and get tetchy when someone INTERRUPTS) but with Martha, since I was already very attached to her, it was just like YAY MARTHA COME ON DOWN 😀

        • Tauriel says:

          Multiple companions FTW! I always enjoy them, they have a much more interesting dynamic than when it’s just the Doctor + 1. NuWho totally needs a full series with two (or more) companions.

          • _thirty2flavors says:

            To be honest I don't usually like the multi-companion stories as much, with a few notable exceptions I can't elaborate on (but with Martha + Donna being one such exception). I think Adam just set a bad tone for me and ever since then I have kind of a boohiss reaction. I would think it was just shipping, since I do ship Doctor/Rose, but I had the same reaction to Jack showing up in s3.

    • samarkand_ says:

      Yeah, I was a bit perplexed that everyone instantly decided "YOU MUST LOVE HER SHE IS YOUR DAUGHTER." I was more on the Doctor's side as far as the deep suspicion of that whole concept, but I got the distinct impression that the narrative was assuming we'd all be on Donna's side, obviously. But it's way not obvious to me.

      Ooooor maybe I'm just a bit too invested in the Doctor being foreveralone.jpeg

      • _thirty2flavors says:

        No I totally agree; like, I think it works in this case explicitly because Ten needs people, but not because he is obligated in any way to love Jenny, if that makes sense. But I did feel like the narrative was telling me Donna was right — and Donna felt like she was saying "you should love her because she's your clone daughter!!!" not "you should give her a chance because you need people in your life" (well, she switched a bit as the episode went on, but initially it felt very superficially "you share DNA YOU MUST LOVE HER"). So I was kind of like "um…. or not." And lol Donna come on if you had a clone baby hop out of that machine there is no way you'd immediately want to buy him/her a prom outfit.

    • Starsea28 says:

      It's not like Martha had equipment to measure her hearts. She could only take a pulse and maybe put a mirror before her mouth. And I got a bit fed up at Martha having to walk the world ALONE. AGAIN. But she's still awesome.

      • _thirty2flavors says:

        But I mean, Martha shakes her head in a "no sry" way before (as I recall… haven't watched this in a while) even, like, touching Jenny or anything, which is what made me laugh. It's sort of like "well my professional opinion from standing over here is that she is totally dead even though all signs point to her being a species that magically comes back to life". It's not a big thing, but it cracks me up when I watch it.

        • Starsea28 says:

          But nobody tells Martha that Jenny is the Doctor's daughter! As far as she knows, Jenny is human and any human who got shot like that would be dead. I mean, I know the Doctor says "you're my daughter" but at the moment when she shakes her head, Martha doesn't know that. And then she doesn't regenerate immediately.

    • notemily says:

      omg when Martha breaks down over the loss of her "companion," I lose it. We have NEVER seen her look that sad before–not about the Doctor, not about her family, not about the Master killing everyone ever. Just seeing her break down and sob gives me ALL THE SADS. T_T

  17. Mr.Fahrenheit says:

    "Then you need to get yourself a better dictionary. When you do, look up genocide. You’ll see a little picture of me there and the caption’ll read ‘Over my dead body!’

    … Except when I do it. Then it's okay."

    Seriously Doctor, you've committed genocide about five times now. Get off your high horse.

    • electric ashera says:

      Yep yep yep. Much like the last episode, I'd have a lot easier time swallowing these lines if it were Nine giving them instead of Ten. While I LIKE Ten's capacity for destruction, I have a much easier time with it when he is either (a) full-on out of control (The Runaway Bride) or (b) doing something he knows to be awful because the good of the many is greater than the good of the few (or the one) (The Fires of Pompeii). When he tells other people not to be awful and then runs around being awful himself I want to shake him by his skinny shoulders…

  18. Openattheclose says:

    I love this comment. All of it.

  19. jackiep says:

    Actually, the cloning technology technobabble which the Doctor came out with (whilst it looked like he was humping the cloning machine) was pretty good. His babble actually seemed to mean that it split the pairs of DNA strands and recreated them to produce another person. Actually, that could work and with humans, this would produce a fair amount of genetic variation (and male humans would produce a fair percentage of female "offspring", so we must assume that Timelord DNA has a broadly similar way of determining gender).

    The Doctor did have a point about finding it difficult to get sentimental about somebody created from tissue stolen at gunpoint, but Donna also realised that as the last of his kind, he needed to realise that he had a future. His hesitant warning about traps was nicely done.

    Donna, not only awesome, but it was hilarious when she started to try to duplicate Jenny's "distract the guard technique" only for the Doctor to decide to use a clockwork mouse, leaving Donna's feminine wiles for a proper emergency 🙂

    I believe that TV Tropes have a term for the Doctor's Daughter marrying the Doctor and having the World's geekiest offspring. It's Cast Incest. Amusingly they only met after Peter Davison and David Tennant did their Comic Relief skit, tempting though it is to caption Doc 5 glaring at Doc 10 with a reference to all of this.

  20. Bobcat says:

    REALLY glad that someone else likes this episode. It gets a bit slated in the fan community but I think it's brilliant. Gloriously acted, a really cool premise for the plot, and the Hath are wonderful.

    Was worried you wouldn't like this. Like you, it became an instant favourite when I first saw it. I've mellowed a little now, but it's still a ruddy cool ep.

    Also, just feel I should mention – the comments section is not loading very well for me, at all.

    • Stephen_M says:

      I realised recently that while I liked this at the time I hadn't rewatched it since it broadcast. Did so over the weekend and think I know why I'm not keen. Two reasons really:

      1) It's horribly rushed. There's enough plot here to easily fill out a two parter and give everyone room to breathe. Instead we get 45 minutes where *deep breath* the TARDIS kidnaps Martha, the Doctor's Daughter is created, Martha meets the Hath, Doctor and Donna meet the humans and big chunks of exposition happen with both sides, the Doctor hates what his 'daughter' represents, bonding ensues, there's a couple of action sequences, the hath sacrificies himself so we get that they're not actually a monster of the week, Donna works out the number thing… and we're not even 2/3rds of the way through!

      2) The ending (uh, sorry, the I NEVER WOULD! ending not Jenny regenerating) is just terrible. Yes, we get it, the Doctor is a technical pacifist but lets just have a count up here shall we? Ten has *deep breath 2* killed a sycorax with a satsuma, killed a load of cybermen with part of the TARDIS, killed a lot MORE cybermen with a mobile phone, killed The Wire via erasure, killed Satan with a black hole (okay, that was kinda justified), thrown the Daleks and Cybermen into HELL via void rift thingy, drowned the entire RACE of the Racnoss via Christmas Ornament Bombs, sentenced the Family of Blood to fates worse than death and, oh yes, just ONE FRAKIN' EPISODE AGO was quite prepared to fire a rather gun-like object that would ignite the atmosphere of a Sontaran spaceship. Hypocritical 10 on full display here.

      Side note, Freema is, IMO, grating here for the first time in her run. God knows why but some of her scenes (the swap of sadness bit in particular) are downright bad.

      Anyway, as I said I liked this when it first went out and still do, it just feels like a real missed opportunity and a bit of VERY heavy handed work to make us realise how wonderful the Doctor is which really isn't necessary.

    • nanceoir says:

      I've also been having trouble with getting the comments to load, but I assumed it was from the lame satellite internet service where I'm at. I mean, it could very well still be that, but it's nice to know I'm not alone.

    • Karen says:

      Huh. I didn't know it was so disliked. I mean it's not my favorite of the series, but I do quite enjoy it.

  21. pica_scribit says:

    Apparently my first comment is awaiting moderation. In the meantime….

    My jaw dropped during the credits on this viewing when I saw the name "Nigel Terry" in the role of General Cobb go by. I thought, "surely not!" But indeed it was. He's been in several other things, but what I know him from is "The Lion in Winter" (1968) where he played Prince John, and "Excalibur" (1981) where he played King Arthur.

    <img src=""&gt; <img src=""&gt;

    • pica_scribit says:

      The Lion in Winter is very worth watching, by the way. Aside from being an exceptional movie of the type Hollywood just does not do anymore, it has Anthony Hopkins (King Richard the Lionheart) and Timothy Dalton (King Phillip of France) having sexy talk and implied slashy past. The dialogue just kills me dead every time.

  22. azurefalls says:

    Just to say, the song that plays during the scene in the prison cell is 'This Is Gallifrey, Our Childhood, Our Home' – ABSOLUTE FAVOURITE TRACK OF THIS SERIES' SOUNDTRACK. MURRAY GOLD YOU ARE A GODDAMN GENIUS.

    • Openattheclose says:

      It's my favorite too! It was great to hear it again!

      • nanceoir says:

        It's tied for my favorite, so I was all, "Ooooh, it's 'This Is Gallifrey…' reprise time, whoo!" when it came up.

    • Suspicious Cookie says:

      'This Is Gallifrey' ties with 'Dearly Beloved' from Kingdom Hearts as my absolute favourite tune ever. I love it so much. I've listened to it so many times but I don't think I'll ever get sick of it 🙂

  23. psycicflower says:

    ARTAX!!! I mean PECK!!!
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    ‘I knew you couldn’t resist it.’ ‘bubble bubble bubble’ ‘Ah, language.’ I love the Hath. I think they're cute and I love their gathering around Martha to thank her for helping Peck. And also Martha's faces when they do. Going back and forth between the Hath and the humans is a great way of showing both sides of the story and the fact that neither group is the bad guy or good guy, apart from Captain Nut Job (love you Donna).
    I love how Donna shines in this episode by making the Doctor really face what's going on with Jenny and for cracking the code which is the key to the whole conflict only lasting a week. Also nice to see Donna's phone getting the companion upgrade.

    I really like the insights we get into the Doctor in this episode. I mean I'm pretty easy for any and all mentions of the Time War but I like that we got another reference to the Doctor's family.
    “Then you need to get yourself a better dictionary. When you do, look up genocide. You’ll see a little picture of me there and the caption’ll read ‘Over my dead body!’” Glass houses Doctor, glass houses.

    We'll miss you Martha.
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

  24. Albion19 says:

    I love any little snippets about the Doctor's past so learning that he had children, more then one, was fantastic. He was originally dismissive of Jenny because the pain of losing his children was too much for him and he couldn't face that again.

  25. mr_bobby says:

    "Seriously, the great war that lasted generations TOOK PLACE OVER ONE FUCKING WEEK. That is one of the coolest and most fucked up plot twists/revelations I have ever seen on television. GOD BLESS DOCTOR WHO."

    But other than that, and I know mine is the unpopular opinion in this case (awaits the downvotes), I REALLY HATED THIS EPISODE. Almost from the moment Jenny appeared, she irritated me beyond belief… LIKE LITERALLY FROM HER FIRST LINE. I just didn't like the whole "action hero" thing which basically defined her character, and her development after that didn't do anything for me either. Which is sad, because the actress is awesome.

    I thought it was just a bit sensationalistic as well to have the whole Doctor's daughter plot, and the way it was done made me completely uninterested in their relationship. It wasn't particularly emotional, even though it was clearly intended to be, and I wasn't at all surprised by her death at the end… Also, the Doctor's emotion just didn't feel real to me :-/ after seeing his reaction to losing Rose, the death of the Master, then the ENDLESS SADS of John Smith, this just seemed kind of cheap. I mean, in so many episodes now the Doctor seems to be RAGING or ANGSTING about something, and while I get why this is necessary to advance the plot etc, it started to annoy me by this point.

    Having said that though, DONNA. IS EPIC. She's by far my favourite companion, but unfortunately I found it hard to really engage with this series as a wholedue to disliking several episodes (this and the Sontaran two-parter mainly, again I know that's the unpopular opinion) and also my increasing irritation with Ten.

    </end rant>

    *awaits next week when I stop being so rage-filled and negative about stuff*

  26. who_cares86 says:

    It was actually Steven Moffat's idea to have Jenny survive in the end. Smart man. Killing her off is so cliché.

  27. Anon says:

    This is a bit of a meh episode for me, although i do love the line about being a monkey's uncle makes me laugh so much.

  28. kohlrabi says:

    I was the same, I thought it would be the Doctor's actual daughter which made me disappointed and crabby for most of the episode. I think I'm going to like it a whole lot more on a rewatch since by the end I was going, "this is awesome!!"

    Oh and it may be because I had heard about my dog's cancer the day before watching this so I was in a weak emotional state, but I bawled for a good 20 minutes over the Hath dying to save Martha. Poor fish dude.

  29. RocketDarkness says:

    I agree with Mark about the overarching themes, and I do like how they were accomplished. The episode was actually pretty fun, but sadly Ten's "A MAN WHO NEVER WOULD" speech kind of drowns out all the good bits in my long-term memory. Makes me physically cringe every time I hear it.

  30. I'm kind of half and half on this ep. I do love it for the reasons you mentioned, but likewise I sort of think it was a tad heavy handed at times. But I do have a sort of wacky theory about Jenny that can't I say at this point so I'll keep quiet for now.
    Another line from BAMF!Martha: "I'm Martha Jones, now who the hell are you?"
    Also: Donna-"You're completely impossible."
    Doctor: "Not impossible. Just a bit unlikely."

  31. Anon says:

    Have to wonder who's Georgia Moffet's favorite Doctor? Her Dad or her Fiancee? Or is it someone completely random like Sylvester Mccoy, their kid is going to be a god at school having two Doctor's in the family.

  32. Kaci says:

    I really like this episode, but like you said, it demonstrates Ten's arrogance. Which I also like–the reason I loved Ten so much was because for all the absolute joy and fun he was, he was also an arrogant douchebag with a Jesus Complex. (Seriously, build your civilization on ME. Come on, Ten.) I both loved and hated that about him.

    And seriously, Donna Noble. Donna HBIC Noble. If she were American or I were British, I would vote for her as President/Prime Minister. Hell, I would vote for her for the leader of the United Federation of Planets, if I could. Donna Noble for ALL THE WINS.

    Also, Mark, FYI: your sites are blocked at my office, but I figured a way around it by going through Google Reader. This is only relevant because I hate typing comments on my phone. /

  33. Meenalives says:

    I saw the Doctor's reluctance to accept Jenny a little differently than Mark, I guess. It's stated that the Doctor lost everything (which must include his own children, though we don't learn anything about them) in the Time War, and he still grieves for them. Being expected to suddenly take on a parents role without any say in the matter to a fully-grown replacement daughter would be difficult even without that level of emotional trauma.

    Does anyone else have a really hard time imagining the Doctor as a parent? I've watched some of the early episodes with Susan, and I can see him as a grandfather, but I have a hard time imagining him as a very committed father to young children, even before he left Gallifrey.

    • Openattheclose says:

      I completely agree with this comment. Regarding his children, this episode seemed to imply that he lost them in the Time War or some other battle, and that was not the impression I had gotten from Classic Who. I don't know how to say it without spoiling Mark for Classic Who, but I rather thought he wasn't close with his children by his/their choice.

      • Meenalives says:

        Well, I'm sure they did die in the Time War along with all the other Time Lords if they were still alive at that point, but the fact that they aren't mentioned before then does seem significant.

      • Hokuto says:

        Yeah, I tend to not take Ten all that seriously when he's broken up about Gallifrey. As far as I know he never went back to Gallifrey of his own free will in any of the serials (don't know about the radio plays), it just seems weird that he'd care SO MUCH.

        • PeterRabid says:

          I think it would be one of those "You never know what you have until it's gone," kind of things. He may have hated most of his fellow Time Lords, but he did have some friends and family. Also, he had a telepathic connection to his people. I imagine it would be like having a low murmur in the back of your head for nine centuries suddenly taken away. It would be like the opposite of the Master's drums. The silence would drive you mad.

  34. fakehepburn says:

    You are not prepared…

  35. Starsea28 says:

    Here's something to make go 'awwwwwwww': Georgia Moffat went to school with Colin Baker's daughter (who played the Sixth Doctor) so she believed that being the Doctor was A NORMAL JOB FOR DADS. Bless.

    I think this is a good episode but ever since it came out that David and Georgia are engaged (and have a sprog on the way) I can barely watch it. I just sit there and go "But you two are GOING OUT, this is so WEIRD X(". Donna is hilarious and awesome in the way that she pricks the Doctor's defensive ego bubble and makes him confront his feelings about himself through Jenny. Georgia Moffet makes Jenny charming and bubbly and very endearing.

    But Martha's storyline? Eurgh. It seemed lke just because Martha says she misses travelling with the Doctor A LITTLE BIT, they feel the need to punish her and make her have a horrible, horrible time. Thanks for making Martha walk over the surface of the world ALONE. AGAIN. I'm sure that wasn't traumatic AT ALL. /sarcasm

    My reaction on Donna saying she was going to travel with the Doctor forever: "No, Donna, DON'T SAY THAT, ROSE SAID THAT."

  36. pica_scribit says:

    It is pretty stupid. I mean I understand that actors have to wear makeup when on camera, but did her eye makeup really have to be so obvious? Why would the machine dress her and do her makeup at all?

    • mr_bobby says:

      PRECISELY THIS. I think, as superficial as it is, this is one of the main reasons that Jenny really got to me. There are other reasons as well which I've explained in another comment, but HONESTLY GUISE, I can't quite see the machine going "WAIT, HANG ON A SECOND, I NEED TO DO YOUR EYELINER" before sending her out.

      • sabra_n says:

        PEOPLE AFTER MY OWN HEART. The leather pants and eyeliner had me instantly suspicious of Jenny when she appeared.

    • I was going to say, I need one of those machines to do MY liquid liner with such flawless precision.

  37. PeterRabid says:

    <img src=""/&gt;

    A lot of fandom hates on Jenny, but I freaking love her. She so happy and perky, but you can tell she’s just a baby really, no matter how much military training was installed into her brain in that machine.

    The Doctor’s being heavy-handedly against guns once again, but in this episode I approve. He’s been in battle and he knows the horrors of war. That’s not what he wants for any daughter of his, no matter how set he is on denying that she’s really his child.

    And of course, as soon as he’s accepted her, Jenny gets taken away from him. Why is the universe to set against Ten having any iota of happiness (except Donna of course)? The thing is, the first time I saw this episode, the version I watched had the ending cut off for some reason. So, I really thought Jenny was dead until I rewatched it on BBC America. This was me: “Oh God, time for Jenny’s death… *sadness forever*… wait a sec… omgwutcjdcghjvmxYAY….”
    <img src=""&gt;

    Georgia and her dad being ADORABLE:
    <img src="; height="400" width="396">

  38. maccyAkaMatthew says:

    I really enjoyed this one on first viewing but on the re-watch I had to stop because of the resolute silliness of the set-up. Normally that sort of thing doesn't bother me much but knowing in advance how things play out completely overshadowed all the really good stuff in the episode for me. I think this crosses a big "does not make sense" line in several ways and I was unable to bend it into shape in my head. UNTIL LAST NIGHT! So, here is some major fanwankery to hopefully make this story re-watchable for me again.

    The Doctor is wrong about the progenation machine taking the chromasome pairs of a single parent, splitting them and recombining them in a different order. That way you could only get the same chromasome pairs as your parent or two indentical chromasomes paired together (and both the same as one of the chromasomes from your parent). That's a recipe for genetic stagnation and all sorts of weirdness. What actually happened was the Doctor's DNA was combined with someone else's already in the machine. That's why Jenny can't regenerate – she's half-human. This is possible if you follow the fan theory that the Time Lords imprinted their form on a number of developing species in the early days of the universe – which is why Time Lords, humans and several aliens all look the same. Accelerated sexual reproduction is perfect for colonising a world. Jenny says "Hello Dad" because the machine programmed her to recognise a parent if present. The Doctor's DNA isn't available for any more children because that machine was destroyed when Jenny blew the tunnel.

    The war did indeed take seven days but the reason why nobody remembers it is that General Cobb manipulated the whole thing, reprogramming the machines for war and wiping out the original crew. That's why he's older than everyone else. Cobb's plan was to rule the colony once the Hath were wiped out – that's why he doesn't come around in the end.

    By the way, you're getting Cline and Cobb mixed up – Cline is lovely Joe Dempsey from Skins.

    We've already seen, in The Fires of Pompeii that a big event can echo backwards and, in some ways contribute to its own ocurrence (which is also the paradox in Blink, where is the original cause for all the effects?). The paradox that creates itself here is to do with a time eddie, which is a hazard for time travellers, especially with no Time Lords around to sort things out. Basically, there's a lot energy in potential actions (the Weeping Angels live off it) and the potential of things cause flux and tensions in the space time continuum. The potential of combining a progenation machine with the Doctor is so huge that the flux was stirred up to a point where the energy would eventually burst through and pull the TARDIS to Messeline to create a paradox. The TARDIS was particularly susceptible to this at the moment it happened because it hasn't been that long since it was a paradox machine and the Doctor has had to rebuild her, probably a bit ineptly. Also, it's the first time Martha has been in the TARDIS for a while – and she's bound up with the Toclafane paradox.

    There you go, if you squint enough that almost makes sense, doesn't it?

    Regarding the guns, I always though the Doctor being arsey about it with UNIT was a deliberate pointing up of his hypocrisy on the issue, which is usually let slide. So yes, it's a set up for the whole "I never would" speech which is such a lie because clearly fully intending to shoot Cobb before he stopped himself. "I didn't" is accurate, "I never would" is just bullshit.

    • jackiep says:

      >>That way you could only get the same chromasome pairs as your parent or two indentical chromasomes paired together (and both the same as one of the chromasomes from your parent). <<

      That's why cloning is limited in its uses. They cloned the Doctor because they noticed straight away that his hands weren't scarred yet. So each person is only allowed to make two clones because of genetic effects (also with males, for every 4 attempts, 1 would be female, 2 male and 1 dead as yy just doesn't work). Of course, the Doctor might well be able to have rather more offspring that way than humans if the theory about his past regenerations' DNA existing in each cell too. That gives potentially 100 different combinations of every gene pair for him (as opposed to up to 4 for humans). He really could populate a planet of his species should he wish.

    • Very neat comment. I'm glad I'm not the only one!

    • echinodermata says:

      See, just the fact that Time Lords have DNA specifically always pisses me off (it's entirely unimaginative to use the same molecule as humans for genetic material, okay?), so as to the science of this ep, I just go lololol and move on.

    • sabra_n says:

      Do we know that Time Lord genetics work the same way as human, though?

      • echinodermata says:

        Okay, since you asked, here's my take.

        It's been said in canon that Time Lords (or at least the Doctor) have DNA. DNA is not itself synonymous with genetic material but is in fact a very specific molecule. RNA, for instance, is another genetic material, and is chemically different from DNA.

        However, alien DNA could have different nucleic bases (so not ACTG but some other bases) and may not be limited to 4 bases, nor does the code have to be read in triplet codons as in the case of Earthly-lifeforms. So there's a lot of room for potential changes to the alien genetics, although the writers having used DNA specifically makes me doubt anyone's put much effort into thinking about this.

        In this episode, the Doctor references diploid and haploid cells, and I believe he implies that Time Lords are in fact diploid. That means, like humans, the Doctor has 2 sets of chromosomes, and that they pair so that you have 2 different copies of chromosome 1 for instance.

        It's also been said somewhere in an episode (and possibly multiple episodes) that the Doctor has enzymes. Enzymes are by definition proteins, although there are other biological catalysts that exist other than proteins (eg RNA). So the basic molecules of life are the same between humans and Time Lords, apparently. I'll take enzymes, especially since amino acids seem to be pretty easy to make (see Miller-Urey), but honestly I think DNA as genetic material is lazy.

        What I ultimately take away from this is that 1, the writers are not being imaginative since they're defaulting to what works for humans; 2, that Time Lords likely have the same basic genetic arrangement (diploid cells with homologous chromosomes); but 3, that there is room for variation in the actual genetic code of Time Lords, even if it's never been said in canon that this is the case.

        So to answer your question, no we don't know. But the writers probably think so, or aren't interested in changing it up.

    • notemily says:

      HMM. I guess I always assumed that they took reproductive cells (gametes) and somehow combined two of the Doctor's, but then they probably wouldn't be taking samples from his HAND…

  39. Hotaru-hime says:

    I liked this episode when I first saw it, but the more I ruminated on it, the less I liked it. Jenny seemed to be the only female clone of the lot- why is that? All the other human soldiers were male and if they are straight up clones, please explain to me how she is not. It's like when people try to explain away X-32 as Wolverine's clone- I WON'T FUCKING BUY IT THANK YOU.
    But yeah. I'll miss Martha, but YAY DONNA

  40. "Dr Jones I do not think you got your license treating Time Lords."

    This comment is so beautiful I cannot even tell you!

  41. Karen says:

    I swear. The world is conspiring against me being able to participate in Mark Watches this week. The past two days, I’ve been so busy with previous real life commitments that I hadn’t even had time to write a proper review. And then today, the internet in my building decided to be full of fail. So now I’m in the public computer room, and going to drop this comment off (once again without pictures due to the lack of internet that I’ve had this evening) and then not be able to hang around much to chat. AND I’m stuck using IE instead of firefox because that’s all this crappy computer has, so my comment is going to have to be split up into a million segments. FML.

    As I’m sure various people have already mentioned, Georgia Moffet, the actress who portrays Jenny aka the titular Doctor’s daughter is actually the Doctor’s (aka Peter Davison) daughter. And she is soon to be the Doctor’s babymama because she is currently engaged to David Tennant and is pregnant with his baby. BE MORE INCESTUOUS DOCTOR WHO, I DARE YOU.

    OH HAI. IT’S CHRIS FROM 1ST GENERATION OF SKINS. ILU CHIRS. Even if you apparently are easily swayed by a pretty face.

    • Karen says:

      I love Donna in this episode, getting after the Doctor to not be a deadbeat dad. The Doctor isn’t too keen on bonding with Jenny, but Donna encourages him to connect with her. That moment where Donna forces the Doctor to hear that Jenny has two hearts and therefore is Time Lord is really quite wonderful. The Doctor really does need Donna in his life.

      Doctor: Donna, I’ve been a father before.
      Donna: What?
      Doctor: Lost it all a long time ago- along with everything else.
      Donna: I’m sorry I didn’t know. Why didn’t you tell me? You talk all the time but you don’t say anything.
      Doctor: I know. When I look at her now, I can see them. The hole they left and the pain that filled it. I just don’t know if I can face that everyday.

      I love that much like with Rose (think of that moment in “Fear Her” where the Doctor casually drops the information that he’s been a dad before), the Doctor is just able to open up to Donna. He always has been, ever since he met her after he lost Rose. I love that about their relationship.

      • Karen says:

        She also is pretty awesome about asking the right kinds of questions. Why are there windows if the buildings were meant to be underground? What do those numbers mean? I love that Donna is the one to figure out that they’re time stamps.

        Even though it is a bit frustrating that Martha was brought back only to spend most of the past two episodes as a clone and spends most of this episode separated from the Doctor, I do really love her in this episode. Even though the Hath has jut kidnapped her, she helps him with his dislocated shoulder. In general Martha is kind of adorable in her interactions with the Hath.

        Her connection to that one Hath whose shoulder she relocated and who later dies while saving her life is really sweet. Her speech to him is just wonderful. I LOVE YOU, MARTHA JONES.

        Martha: You can stay down here and live your whole life in the shadows or come with me and stand in the open air, feel the wind on your face. What’s it gonna be? It’s up to you, but nothing’s going to stop me.

        • Karen says:

          Speaking of the Hath, I think they’re a pretty interesting alien species, using the bubbly things to communicate.

          I do also quite like the idea of a war that’s only been going on seven days, but it’s so deadly that they’ve gone through generations of soldiers.

          Jenny: It’s our inheritance. It’s all we know. How to fight and how to die.

          But I do think it’s an interesting commentary on the point of war, even in our world, how often are there wars that we get into that start over something, but then it becomes mutated and nobody really knows exactly what they’re fighting for anyway.

          Doctor: Call me old fashioned, but if you really wanted peace, couldn’t you just stop fighting?

          • Karen says:

            I think that the conversation the Doctor has with Jenny where he talks about where he comes from is really enlightening as far as to why the Doctor hates fighting and war. He’s just seen too damn much of it. He’s killed too many people. The look in his face when Jenny asks him if he fought and killed is just so haunted by his past. We see another glimpse of this later when Jenny wants to go back to fight and hold off the colonel.

            Doctor: Listen to me. Killing- after a while- it infects you. And once it does, you’re never rid of it.

            • Karen says:

              I think the Doctor knows from experience. For the Doctor this episode is all about loss. With the creation of Jenny the Doctor was forced to confront the lost of his family. And then again at the end of the episode, he loses the potential new family he’d found in Jenny. Originally Jenny was supposed to stay dead, and to be honest, I would have liked that ending better. Maybe I just enjoy doom and gloom too much, but I just feel like it’d fit in better with the themes of this episode of loss and the price of war if Jenny didn’t get brought back to life. I think that it cheapens the themes of the episode.

              The Doctor just breaks my heart as he holds Jenny’s body and cries. He’s just lost so much. Gallifrey, Rose, and now Jenny. It’s just too much. Just as he comes to term with maybe actually having a family again, he loses her.

              • Karen says:

                On a final and completely unrelated note:

                Doctor: Hang on, hang on. A second ago it was “peace in our time” and now you’re talking about genocide.

                The historian in me is really annoyed with that misuse of that quote. Neville Chamberlain said that in reference to his policy of appeasement with regards to Hitler. That has absolutely nothing to do with anything that is going on in this episode. JUST SAYING.


  42. Angie says:

    This isn't my favorite episode. I don't dislike it, but it's simply not one I single out for repeat watching.

    * I just love the Hath. They are just so neat and scifi and kind of cute with their little bubble tubes.
    * "I'm Dr. Martha Jones. Who the hell are you?" Martha, you rock so hard.
    * The Doctor's coat is like Hagrid's. The pockets of immeasurable depth and things within.
    *Seriously, there's an outrageous amount of running involved. I couldn't handle all the running irl. I hate running.
    * I was genuinely sad to see Martha's friend die.
    * I like Jenny. She's lively.
    * Donna continues to be HBIC. I love how she notices things that none of the other characters notice and how she cuts straight to the heart of the matter.

    * It occurs to me (and I might be wrong) but that mark on the back of The Doctor's hand after he removes it from the progeny-maker looks a lot like the mark on the back of Jamie's hand (The Doctor Dances). Yes?

  43. Minish says:

    Bye Martha Jones! Even though I thought your send-off in series 3 was… appropriately timed, it was nice having you back in the TARDIS, even if just to give us a perspective of part of one of the warring factions. (You know how I love a full TARDIS!)

    Also, helloooooooooooo Georgia Moffett.

    And HI CHRIS FROM SKINS! I know your actual name is Joe Dempsie, but you'll forever be Chris From Skins. Oh, Chris From Skins, you brought me many laughs and tears.

    Really loved how this episode showcased Donna's companioning skills. Donna, you are the BEST EVER.

    Also, IT LASTED A WEEK. Oh Doctor Who, you haz all teh surprises.

    Fuck Cobb.

  44. kilodalton says:

    I will never ever be able to think of this episode as anything else than "the one where the fish drowned to put himself out of his misery"

  45. NB2000 says:

    This may be one of the most uninteresting comments because I just CAN'T rewatch it. I sat in front of my DVD menu unable to select it. It's not because the I don't like the episode or think it's in any way bad…it's just very weird now. He's playing her dad…but they're getting married and she's having his baby and *brain melts* As I said before (I think it was in the Time Crash post) that child NEEDS to appear on the show some day.

    Like I said, the episode itself is fine. Not one of my favourites but I don't hate it either. Donna and Martha are both absolutely awesome. Love Martha insisting on being allowed to finish treating the injured Hath.

    Will from Merlin! Or, Chris from Skins to some (I've never watched it). I was convinced he wasn't going to survive the episode so that was a nice surprise when he lived. I kind of wish Jenny had let him go with her when she left. Come on Jenny you need a Companion if you're going to do this properly.

  46. psycicflower says:

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

  47. echinodermata says:

    I like this ep more than most people do, it generally seems. I love Jenny a lot, too. And she gets a pretty badass intro. I generally like the weird fish creatures since they're pretty damn bizarre, and I love that Martha's instinct is to help the injured alien, even at gunpoint. Also?
    <img src=""&gt;
    Hearts forever.

    <img src=""&gt;
    I love this scene. And I love Donna for it.

    And then Jenny with the cheesy gymnastics scene that's always fun even if it's overdone and makes no sense. And then she and the Doctor, getting along. And an invitation to travel! And then Ten actually talking about his past, even if it's only briefly.

    And then Donna working out the numbers! How much do I love that she's good with numbers?

    And I'm glad Jenny isn't dead, since she's a wonderful character and I'm gleeful at the idea of seeing her again in the future.

    Basically, I think this episode is awesome, and I love so many aspects of it.

  48. who_cares86 says:

    It's totally not what it looks like at first glance. It's an awesome show for guys even if it doesn't look it. But yeah it's probably better if people don't know about it. It's the kind of thing the internet was invented for you to fangasm over.

  49. Openattheclose says:

    "yeah man she's totally dead, COMPLETELY DEAD".

    Martha, she was only MOSTLY DEAD!

    • arctic_hare says:

      And mostly dead is kind of alive!

      • Openattheclose says:

        <img src=>

      • nyssaoftraken74 says:

        But surely Jenny WAS dead and only got ressurrected due to the Source interacting with her unique physiology.

        Plus, Martha is in UNIT, so she has no doubt read up all the notes about the Doctor's physiology from all the time he spend with them in the 70s (or was it the 80s) including Harry Sullivan's examination of a Time Lord immediately post regeneration. Oh, and who knows what secrets she might have seen in the Torchwood files? The only thing she hasn't done is have access to an actualy specimen of the species. Which, OK, is a rather large gap, but I'd still say she has a pretty good level of knowledge.

        Besides, it's not as if the Doctor was *really* seeking her medical opinion. He was just reaching out, desperately hoping despite *knowing* there would be no regeneration.

        • notemily says:

          OH interesting, I didn't realize that about the Source. I thought it was all Time Lord stuff, and so I was pissed when she didn't become a different actress, but maybe the Source recognized her as something that could live and so brought her back to life? I DUNNO.

          • nyssaoftraken74 says:

            Well, it's speculation, obviously, but it seems to me the only options for her `recovery` are:

            1. Regeneration – but then why she didn't change?
            2. Time Lord protective coma – but then what was the light that came out of her?
            3. The Source doing what it was designed to do – bring life.

            Now, there is no evidence of other recently dead bodies coming to life, so my conclusion is that it only worked on Jenny because her physiology is unique.

    • There are several kinds of "dead".

    • _thirty2flavors says:

      lol I have an lj icon of Jenny that says that!

  50. Ivey W says:

    This isn't spoilery at all, just a little detail that I noticed, the X's on the back of the hands of the people that "birthed" the clones were the exact same X's that Jamie had on "The Empty Child". Don't know if that's significant, just thought it was interesting.

  51. sabra_n says:

    As is typical of S4, even a mediocre episode like "The Doctor's Daughter" has some outstanding elements to it. For example, the opening sequence in the TARDIS sounded hilariously like a threesome with all that panting and screaming. 😛

    I'll start with the good stuff: My absolute favorite thing about this episode was the explosion of the Doctor's contention that he isn't a soldier. Of course he was a soldier, and of course he's killed, which is why all his anti-gun and anti-military ravings have always reeked of insecure hypocrisy. But when Ten spoke about how being a Time Lord is so much more than genetics, when he finally admitted to being soldier – that was the first time I was moved by a mention of the Time War since Nine. It was also some of the best acting Tennant did in his run.

    I also loved Donna being brilliant, as I always do. At last, in Ten's third season, the writers were able to bring themselves to let a companion to be great while sharing the stage with the Doctor, instead of only allowing it when they're separated. And they did it in a nice, economic way that makes total sense given Donna's background. Nicely done all around.

    Donna and the Doctor's argument about fatherhood was an interesting one. It was one of the few times I found myself thoroughly on Ten's side in a disagreement between the two. I'm sorry, but genetics isn't a sufficient reason to act all fatherly to an insta-clone that was created against your will. And I love that the episode gave Ten good, sound reasons for his feelings. It wasn't just the fact that Jenny was a soldier, or a fear of fatherhood, or even the fact that she was an insta-clone with no notion of what it means, culturally, to be a Time Lord – it was the fact that he'd been a father before, and he'd lost everyone, and he wasn't ready to just let a randomly generated "daughter" into his life. For once I was on the side of the Doctor's grief. Again, Tennant did some of his best work in this episode.

    It's lovely that Ten and Donna can have these arguments where both have sound points, because life is complicated like that. They were both right and wrong in Pompeii, and they were both right and wrong this week. Ethics and family and grief and war are all messy things, and it's so much better when there's a real back-and-forth about those issues than when we must all bow down to Tinkerbell Jesus.

    The "seven days" twist was kind of awesome, and I'm endlessly entertained by the Doctor pulling random objects out of his pockets. Oh, and I enjoyed grinning smugly at the Creationism smackdown that was the terraforming sphere. HEE.

    The thing is, two big problems prevented "The Doctor's Daughter" from actually being good television for me: One is that Jenny – born wearing leather pants and eyeliner – didn't move me enough for me to particularly care about her fate. I also thought her "regeneration" was a crap idea – whatever happened to the Doctor being the only Time Lord? I like Moffat as much as the next fangirl, but his insistence on keeping Jenny alive is a decision I seriously disagree with. She is very "Moffat Blonde", though, isn't she? Perky, pretty, and just this side of a Sue. Georgia Moffett did decent work, but blergh. The whole "Doctor's daughter" notion is so fanficcy, and not in a good way. (And I say this as an avid fic reader.)

    The second big problem for me was Martha's story. What was the point of it, exactly? The "seven days" revelation was more than enough to point out the absurdity of the war. So as far as I can tell, we just got Martha separated from the Doctor yet again, suffering and taking the harder route yet again, and being a parallel-Doctor yet again – all things we've seen from her before. I love Doctor Who to pieces, but that's twice they've mishandled companion reunions now.

    So I don't love "The Doctor's Daughter", but as an examination of Ten's issues and a Ten/Donna friendship episode it worked very well.

  52. Ali says:

    Obligatory 'yay for X Files reference!' comment! ^^
    Seriously though, I really like episodes like 'Monster' that give a different perspective than the main characters; episodes that really let you see what goes on through the eyes of an outsider and challenge your view of the status quo.
    Although, I equated that particular episode more with 'Blink' than 'The Doctor's Daughter'. That same feeling of just being on the edge of the main characters plotline.

    I find most long running shows do at least one episode in that kind of style, and it's invariably one of my favourites each time. Star Trek did it a few times with their 'lower decks' episodes, House had that episode from the perspective of a paralysed guy…

  53. nyssaoftraken74 says:

    Can I just say, I would really love to get into Georgia's pants…

    …I mean that literally – those trousers are awesome – rather than figuratively…


  54. carma_bee says:

    This episode’s commentary:

    some things from it:
    – RTD said that the Hath don’t get translated for us because hearing just the bubbles is more fun.
    – Georgia auditioned to be Rose way back when the show started. David jokes about how young she was (14, he says, which is wrong), but Georgia’s only two years younger than Billie and she would have been 19 in 2004, I think, which was Rose’s actual age. She was originally auditioning for an episode later this series too, and when they saw her then they thought she’d be great in this episode.
    – Two of the hath’s names are Gable and Peck, which come from Clark Gable and Gregory Peck.

  55. trash_addict says:

    This episode isn't right up there on my favourites list, but it's pretty solid. I love the work by all the women – I found Georgia to be completely charming (and Jenny almost as much), Donna with her awesome bossing around of the Doctor and Temp Skillz (own it!) and Martha cranking out the emotion – if I recall correctly she did a pretty good Ugly Cry (I know, unlikely, Freema being ugly) for her Hath mate.

    And bye, Martha! I'm glad you got a decent re-farewell and no horrible people decided to bring you back just to kill you off or something :/

  56. DLXian says:

    which episode of X-Files are you referring to when you bring up Monsters? I couldn’t find any such titled episode on Wikipedia, IMDB, or my collection of X-files DVDs.

    • echinodermata says:

      Not familiar with X-files myself, but I looked on Wikipedia and I would guess Mark meant 7×03, Hungry, given its description:

      "In a unique episode told from the point-of-view of the “monster”, a fast-food employee with unusual cravings becomes the focus of an FBI investigation. "

    • Mauve_Avenger says:

      I'm pretty sure that the episode Mark's talking about (which I'm not entirely sure I've seen, though the "monster" does look a bit familiar) is actually called "Hungry."

  57. hassibah says:

    I don't really have a lot to say about this episode. I mean I think everything is awesome that everybody else thinks is awesome (ILU DONNA) and I wasn't personally squicked out by the marriage thing cause this is just acting and I can separate the two in my head.

    I don't know if it's just me, but it seemed totally illogical for them to assume that Jenny wouldn't regenerate and not at least wait a couple of hours to see if she did before they left. Which is weird because I'm not normally the kind of person that gets mad at tv for not making sense and I know they wanted to only have the actress on for one episode but this time it just bugs me.

    Also I'm still behind on rewatching, but I remember having a lot of admiration for Martha's jacket. OH and shit the Hath were awesome.

  58. Pingback: Tweets that mention Mark Watches ‘Doctor Who’: S04E06 – The Doctor’s Daughter | --

  59. Hotaru-hime says:

    Here's another annoying thing- YOU CAN HEAR THE HUMAN HEART ON THE RIGHT SIDE.
    I mean, if Donna had the stethoscope over by the 5th rib in the midaxillary line, yeah, I'd buy it, but when you put it directly right to the sternum, YOU WILL HEAR THE HEART. More specifically, you will hear the aortic valve open and shut for systole and diastole and that is where you listen for heart murmurs related to valves. SO JUST PUTTING IT OVER HERE A LITTLE BIT TO THE RIGHT DOESN'T MEAN A GODDAMN THING.

  60. dcjensen says:

    I don't think Jenny regenerated, I think she healed. It might be Time Lord physiology, or the fact that her body was just created. Maybe it's something like when Ten got his arm cut off, things were still in flux.

  61. Sierra says:

    One of your favorites?! Oh, Mark. Now I has a sad. This is perhaps the only episode of Doctor Who that I genuinely hate. I would rather watch Love and Monsters and Fear Her and last season's Dalek two-parter on a continuous loop than this one. Ick. I hope Jenny never comes back, ever.

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  63. electric ashera says:

    As others have said, I think the single best thing about the way Donna kicks ass in this episode is not that she's learnt anything NEW travelling with the Doctor. It's that she learns to put the skills she already has to new uses. (Leading to the awesome awesome week-long war twist.) I think it's a lovely counterpoint to say, Rose's arc. Rose grows up and into something like the Doctor (eventually working for Torchwood in the parallel universe and becoming another Defender of the Earth—Martha does something similar in going to work for UNIT). Donna, on the other hand, is a grown woman who's already awesome and just needs the chance to put everything she already knows to use.

    Let's stop taking clerical staff for granted! THEY ROCK! They keep everything together.

    And then here is the Doctor in this episode:
    <img src=""&gt;
    Srsly Doctor. TONE IT THE FUCK DOWN, OK?

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  65. Lipton says:

    ILU DONNA NOBLE! Seriously, after loving Martha as much as I did I was unprepared for how much I would adore Donna. And together they are BETTER THAN EVERYONE ELSE EVER!

    And Mark, never feel like you have to apologize for referring to The X-Files. It is the alpha and omega of television and all other, lesser shows bow down before it. All shall love Mulder and Scully and despair!

  66. qwopisinthemailbox says:

    JENNY!!!!!!!! >W<

  67. Nin says:

    BB, the episode's name is "Hungry".

    My dork cred; feel it burn.

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

    Irrelevant pots is irrelevant.

  68. Shiyiya says:

    JENNY, I LOVE YOU FOREVER. Jenny needs a spinoff.

  69. notemily says:

    Plus the hairstyle! And I bet her armpits and legs were hairless, too. Just like Milla Jovovich in The Fifth Element. That shit pisses me off.

  70. notemily says:

    Hmm, this episode was "meh" for me. I found the religious imagery just too overwhelming. They've got their own Creator myth and that's fine, but then when they find out that their entire world has been created over the past SEVEN DAYS and then the thing they're fighting for turns out to be THE GARDEN OF EDEN, I was just like "okay… yeah." And then the Doctor tells them to create the new world in his image–what an ego trip. Let them sort their own shit out!

    I also found Jenny a bit annoying. She was a bit too perfect-perky-blonde-pretty-girl for me. I'm used to seeing that kind of stuff on American TV but I expect a bit more depth from Doctor Who. Also, she didn't look like the Doctor at all, aside from being white. AND THEN SHE DIDN'T CHANGE TO A DIFFERENT BODY AT THE END. Someone mentioned she might be only half-human, or that the Source had something to do with her regeneration, or that since she was just created that day her "regeneration" process was still in flux like with the Doctor and his hand. Which are all fine explanations if they had been given in the episode, but the way it was just seemed like they half-assed it by being like SHE IS REGENERATED AND SHE IS OKAY NOW but we don't want to change actresses so we won't.

    I also found it interesting, and a bit annoying, that we never get to hear the Hath's side of the story. For a show that normally has the TARDIS translate every conversation, I was fascinated that it apparently couldn't translate "glug glug," because the Hath HAVE to have some way of communicating with each other (and with the humans if they were going to start a world together). The fact that we only get to hear the humans' side of the story makes the episode a bit lopsided for me. Although, I did like the one that became Martha's friend and it was super sad when he sacrificed himself to save her and Martha cried. But it's hard for me to get a read on who exactly the Hath are if we never hear them speak. This show is normally great at coming up with alien cultures, so again I felt it was lazy writing to not give the Hath an identifiable culture.

    (Although, did I miss something? Martha apparently knew Pec's name, but how? I may have been getting more cornbread at that point in the episode.)

    And the whole "laser field that you have to use gymnastics to get through" annoys me every time. They can handwave Jenny being able to flip around like that because she was created with ~mad skillz~ (and a perfect hairstyle and makeup and clothes, which what), but they can't handwave that LASERS DON'T WORK LIKE THAT. You can't just SEE them going through the air unless there's a lot of particulate matter around. I don't know much about science, but I do know that. Because I read TVTropes. Ahem.

  71. Meadow says:

    FYI, DT and GM had their baby. It's a girl, to make the paradoxes even more awesome.=)

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  97. kateydidnt says:

    One thing that struck me a LONG time after I watched this episode–Cobb himself. He is OLD. As far as we can tell the clones come out of the progination machine fully grown–but there is nothing to indicate that they age at a progressive rate. Meaning that Cobb is one of the ORIGINAL settlers on the ship. He's been there the whole week and knows the goal of this settlement was a peaceful coexistence between Hath and human. But I don't know what his story is, but he just couldn't let that happen and so when that power vacuum came up…he just let, probably encouraged, everything to fall apart!

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