Next, we go to Pompeii, 79 AD-on the day the volcano erupted. The Doctor discovers that a group of aliens-the Pyroville-are using the volcano to try to convert the human race into volcano-like creatures. They are aided by a local cult, with a member who soon will become familiar to Doctor Who fans later on-as she’s played by actress Karen Gillian.
But even more familiar, this guy-Peter Capaldi, who would later play the Twelfth Doctor:
He’s Caecilius the Patriarch of a local Roman family who the Doctor befriends after he buys the TARDIS, thinking it’s just a sculpture.
The Doctor figures out in order to stop the aliens, he has to make the volcano erupt. Alhough this will kill those people, it’s a fixed event in time that he can’t alter without severe consequences and there’s nothing he can do. However, after Donna’s pleading, the Doctor rescues Caecilius and his family from the volcano’s eruption, dropping them off at a safe distance. This act of mercy and saving people will have an impact on the Doctor down the road-as a visual reminder of sorts-but that’s still a few regenerations away 🙂
“Come with me!”
The Doctor next travels to the Ood Sphere, the planet of the Ood, who were in last season’s Devil story. This time he learns the Ood have been exploited and enslaved all along, and helps them overthrow those controlling them, allowing them to build a civilization of their own. However, they start to prophecy a bit-Calling Donna “The DoctorDonna”, saying the Doctor’s “song will end soon” and “She is returning”.
Next, the Doctor and Donna return to Earth, as the Doctor receives a call from Martha, asking for his help. She’s joined UNIT as a Doctor, and there’s there’s a mysterious new device being installed in cars, called Atmos. In fact, Atmos is being used to poison the atmosphere, making it ripe for an invasion-from the Doctor’s old potato-headed clone enemies the Sontarans.
It’s also during this adventure that the Doctor finally meets Wilf again, and learns that he’s Donna’s grandfather. With the help of UNIT the Doctor is able to squash the Sontaran’s stratagem. Martha also briefly rejoins the Doctor for more TARDIS adventures.
The next adventure has the Doctor in the future, where he’s unexpectedly cloned. What emerges is a young woman-“Jenny”-with full memory and personalities, ready to fight in a war with a mysterious group of enemies that have also been cloned, the Hath.
Georgia Moffet-who is the real life wife of David Tennant, AND Peter Davison’s daughter!
The Doctor is initially reluctant to accept this clone as his ‘daughter’, as he’s thinking about his ‘real’ family (Who we know very little of)-but it turns out that she has two hearts and other features of his time lord biology.
Unfortunately at this conclusion of this adventure, Jenny is shot. She appears to die, but it’s later revealed she’s inherited some regeneration powers from her ‘father’ (although she retains the same body) and starts her own adventures
The Doctor next meets Agatha Christie, and helps her solve a murder mystery involving a giant alien wasp.
The next adventure is very important, as it sets up one of the major recurring characters in the series-River Song.
The Doctor arrives at a large planet sized library that’s been sealed for 100 years, where some one has sent him a note summoning him. She and Donna then meet River, who is an archaeologist at this point. She’s unusually familiar with the Doctor-and we soon find out why-she’s from his future, but from his POV, they haven’t met yet! She doesn’t intend to let him have any “spoilers!” though.
Turns out that the library is host to Pirahna-like aliens called the Vashta Nerada, who exist in shadows. However, the library’s computer has been able to upload several of the libraries’s patrons-and even some of those who have died-to an computer simulation. Donna is also absorbed into the computer, where she lives out a sort of fantasy existence.
River eventually sacrifices herself to stop the Narada, although her story isn’t quite over yet, as her younger incarnation is in the Doctor’s future. However, he is able to save her mind by uploading her to the computer using her own sonic screwdriver, a future version a future Doctor gives her.
Next up, the Tenth Doctor era draws to a close with even more familiar faces-including one that gets a lot more faces too…