Sunday, September 4, 2005



With the 11th episode of the new 'Doctor Who' series ("Boom Town"), we were reintroduced to Blon Fel Fotch Pasameer-Day Slitheen.

I put the first two Slitheen episodes ("Aliens Of London" & "World War III") into an alternate TV dimension because of the destruction of Big Ben and Number 10 Downing Street, and the death of the British Prime Minister. When June of 2006 (when those episodes will take place) comes round and no other show set in Toobworld (especially Brit shows like 'Casualty' and 'EastEnders') mention such cataclysms as having occurred, then you'll see that I was right in moving them.

(Forget Toobworld! God help us if those events occur in the Real World!)

But now with "Boom Town", we just can't leave it over there in that alternate dimension, so we might as well ship our dramatis personae all back to the main TV Universe.

There really wasn't any choice in the decision; for no matter what dimension those first two Slitheen episodes are placed, there are too many constraints on the chronology for "Boom Town" to be kept in the same dimension.

The woman who was murdered so that Blon Slitheen could inhabit her skin was Margaret Blaine, an official/operative in MI-5. And yet six months after the bombing of Number 10 Downing Street, she was now the Lady Mayor of Cardiff, Wales. She had a pet project - a nuclear power plant in the center of the city! - near to completion.

And all that after just six months?

When did she find the time to campaign? And how did she do so without the Press snooping for scoop in her background? Surely news of her election would have reached Harriet Jones, backbencher for Flydale North, who knew only too well the dark secret of Margaret Blaine. After all, she saw the Raxacoricofallapatorian strip off the Margaret Blaine skin to strangle Indra Ganesh.

And wouldn't MI-5, as the former employers of "Margaret Blaine", have taken an interest in what one of their own was thinking when she decided to become Lady Mayor of Cardiff?

And then there's the nuclear power plant. Construction - even approval for the construction! - would have taken years.
Trying to squeeze all of that into the same dimension, same timeline, would be similar to squeezing a wet bar of soap in a slippery fist.

Something's gotta give. So I'm moving the main players back over to the main TV Universe.

I'm not just doing this arbitrarily. Don't worry, I've got splainins for all of it.

I'll start with Mickey. The Mickey of the first two Slitheen episodes was the Mickey who always lived in the alternate universe. He had a Rose and the Doctor in his life, so when they showed up again after being missing for nearly a year, he never questioned that they might have been doppelgangers from another dimension. Why should he? Such an idea would have been outside the realm of possibilities for him.

The Earth Prime-Time Mickey never had any experience with the Slitheen family, and for him, Big Ben never exploded. His first exposure to that earlier adventure would have been when the Doctor saw Margaret Blaine's photo on the front page of the Western Mail. What we never got to see was the scene where the Doctor gave the full recap not only to Captain Jack but to this Mickey as well.

(Actually he probably gave the recap only for Jack's benefit and never realized this was not the Mickey he previously praised for his help in defeating the Slitheens. Like I said before, the Doctor could be pretty clueless at times as to where/when he actually arrived in the TARDIS.)

Jack was already travelling with the Doctor and Rose by the time of "Boom Town" and he met them in the main TV Universe. As for Rose and the Doctor, they crossed back over via the TARDIS soon after escaping the destruction of Number 10 Downing Street in that alternate TV dimension.

That just leaves Margaret Blaine aka Blon Slitheen. And it's an easy splainin for her, really: she escaped via her extrapolator "surfboard". Blon used it to escape the fate of her brothers, riding the shockwave of the blast away from the devastation. But when she also used her personal teleport device (which she would use again in "Boom Town") in conjunction with the extrapolator and the explosion, the combined energies thrust her through the dimensional vortex into a new Toobworld.

She probably figured this out for herself soon enough. Once she got her bearings, it might not have taken long to find out that there was already a Margaret Blaine living in this world.... And that would mean having to dispatch her as well in order to maintain the identity.

Margaret Blaine..... In the alternate dimension, she had been working for MI-5 Intelligence. But in the main Toobworld, I think she was instead the Lady Mayor of Cardiff and already holding that office, serving her first term. The construction of the nuclear power plant had been approved and nearly finished long before, perhaps even during a previous administration.

Basically Blon Slitheen was joining 'The Margaret Blaine Show' already in progress.

Once she learned of this other Margaret, Blon would have quickly dispatched her just like she did the first one. (She probably appropriated her skin as well, since the original might have become a little... seedy, after all it had been through.)

And once she learned about the the possible escape the nuclear power plant could offer her, she began her campaign to eliminate all of those who might cause the project to be abandoned before completion.

For all I know, the Margaret Blaine who had been Mayor of Cardiff might have been in agreement to shut down the power plant. But she was killed by Blon before she could sign off on the deal.

With this splainin, we have plenty of time now between the last known sighting of Blon Slitheen in "World War III" and her return to the series in "Boom Town".

Like I said, the Doctor would have been clueless to all of this back-story. Why should he have known? One dimension is pretty much the same as another to him after all this time. And it's been well-established that he never bothers to hang around long after his adventures for the "tidying-up". So he probably never looked into the fact that this world's Big Ben and Number 10 Downing Street never "blowed up real good", and he probably took it in stride that "Rickey" might have been clueless when it came to who Margaret Blaine really was. ("Don't you even know your own name?")

As for Harriet Jones, back-bencher from Flydale North, there could have been alternate reasons as to why she would one day be elevated to the position of Prime Minister in this dimension. And again, it would be the kind of detail the Doctor would probably have ignored once they met again - which they are slated to do in "The Christmas Invasion" tentatively scheduled to air in the UK on December 26th. (If she acts as though she already knows the both of them, then I'll keep that simple: it happened during an unrecorded adventure.)

Of course, if the events of the first two Slitheen episodes do get mentioned during "The Christmas Invasion", then I'll have to start from scratch......

I hope that splainin helps smooth out the kinks in the timeline for 2006! If not, I'd love to hear what you might come up with. I'm always ready to test-drive new theories......


1 comment:

WordsSayNothing said...

I'm not 100% sure, but a brief Google search leads me to believe that the proper title is stated "Lord Mayor of Cardiff", even if the mayor is female. (Either that, or some more recent Lord Mayor have had some really feminine-sounding names.)