Doctor Who Logo 'Bad Wolf'
Story Code 1.12

by Russell T. Davies
Who or what is 'Bad Wolf'?

“Don’t try to escape. It’s play - or die.” – Rodrick, ‘Weakest Link’ contestant

The Doctor regains consciousness to find himself as the new housemate on ‘Big Brother’, a reality television programme being broadcast live to the masses by Channel 44000. Elsewhere, Rose comes to in the studio of ‘Weakest Link’, hosted by a robot named Anne Droid, while Jack wakes up in the company of Trin-E and Zu-Zana, two fashion-conscious androids who promptly strip him naked. The Doctor is disorientated, but manages to recall that when he and his companions left Kyoto, Japan in 1336, a powerful transmat beam struck the TARDIS. Rose takes part in the quiz game, treating it as fun, but her attitude is not shared by her fellow contestants, who are all clearly terrified; Rose soon learns why, as the first person to be voted out is disintegrated by a weapon fired from the Ann Droid’s mouth, and another is shot while trying to escape. The Doctor also behaves flippantly - until he sees the latest house evictee reduced to atoms as she leaves the premises. Meanwhile, in the production gallery, two programmers become concerned that the Game Station has intruders, and they decide to inform their Controller. The Doctor learns from one of the contestants, Lynda, that anyone on Earth can be chosen as a contestant, and that currently there are sixty ‘Big Brother’ houses in progress; the Doctor decides to get evicted for property damage, and promptly destroys one of the cameras. Having tried on various outfits, Jack learns that he is to take part in a ‘face-off’, whereby Trin-E and Zu-Zana are to carry out some very nasty cosmetic surgery; however, Jack has hidden a small laser about his naked person, and he rapidly destroys the two androids. Rose learns from one of the contestants, Rodrick, that the station is run by the Bad Wolf Organisation; recalling that she and the Doctor have continually encountered these words, Rose realises that she has been brought here for a purpose… The Doctor is evicted, but, just as he planned, he is not killed; he forces open the external door, and, together with Lynda, steps out of the ‘Big Brother’ house… and straight into Satellite Five, the station that he freed from the Jagrafess’ control one-hundred years earlier. As the Doctor detects massive energy readings all around, Lynda recounts a list of other deadly television shows that the population of Earth are being forced to play for the enjoyment of the viewers; having asked to join the Doctor on his travels, she then shows him a huge sign displaying the station’s owner, the Bad Wolf Organisation. The programmers visit the Controller - a woman connected to a complex system of wires and leads, who monitors the output of the entire station. However, the Controller ignores their notification of a security breach, and instructs them to return to work. Having constructed a gun from the two androids’ defabricator, Jack sets about locating the Doctor, tracking him by his dual heartbeat. Lynda shows the Doctor a view of Earth, a planet shrouded by smog with a population of indifferent couch potatoes; she explains to the Doctor that after Satellite Five was shut down a century ago, the lack of transmissions caused the population to decline to the point that acceptance of lethal reality shows became commonplace; with horror, the Doctor realises that it is his actions that have lead to mankind’s current situation. Jack joins them, and together they set about locating Rose. Meanwhile, Rose is now one of the final two contestants; she does her best in a tense round, but ultimately she loses - and is shot down by Anne Droid before the Doctor and Jack can rescue her. As security guards rush in, a stunned Doctor is arrested, together with Jack and Lynda; they are sentenced to a lunar penal colony, but the Doctor and Jack promptly break free, grab guns, and head for level 500 to confront the Controller. Here the Controller informs them that her masters prevent her from speaking to them, but she allows Jack to gain access to the forbidden Archive 6, where he finds the TARDIS. Solar flare activity begins outside the station, preventing transmissions from leaving the station; as repeats are shown to Earth’s population, the Controller announces that her masters cannot hear her now, and reveals that it was she who brought the Doctor and his companions to the station. The Doctor realises that his life has been manipulated – someone has been playing a long game; but before he can learn who and why, the flares subside, forcing the Controller to resume her silence. Jack discovers that what they took for disintegration rays were in fact transmat beams: Rose is still alive somewhere... Elsewhere, Rose wakes up in a control room on a Dalek spaceship. The Controller decides to defy her masters and give the Doctor Rose’s co-ordinates, but her actions cause her to be transported before the Daleks, who immediately kill her for her defiance. The Doctor and Jack discover that the station is shielding something from Earth’s sensors – and when this field is negated, it reveals a Dalek war fleet of two-hundred spaceships hiding at the edge of the solar system. Having determined that they have been discovered, the Daleks contact the Doctor and threaten to kill Rose unless he agrees not to interfere with their plans. The Doctor flatly refuses, vowing to rescue Rose, save the Earth, and destroy every single one of his enemies. In response, the Daleks launch their invasion of Earth…

Christopher Eccleston (Doctor Who), Billie Piper (Rose Tyler), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Jo Joyner (Lynda Moss), Jamie Bradley (Strood), Abi Eniola (Crosbie), Davina McCall (Voice of Davinadroid), Paterson Joseph (Rodrick), Jenna Russell (Floor Manager), Anne Robinson (Voice of Anne Droid), Trinny Woodall (Voice of Trin-E), Susannah Constantine (Voice of Zu-Zana), Jo Stone-Fewings (Male Programmer [Davige Pavel]), Nisha Nayar (Female Programmer), Dominic Burgess (Agorax), Karren Winchester (Fitch), Kate Loustau (Colleen), Sebastian Armesto (Broff), Martha Cope (Controller), Sam Callis (Security Guard), Alan Ruscoe, Paul Kasey (Androids), Barnaby Edwards, Nicholas Pegg, Daniel Hankinson (Dalek Operators), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek Voice)

Directed by Joe Ahearne
Produced by Phil Collinson
Executive Producers Russell T. Davies, Julie Gardner and Mal Young
A BBC Wales production

11th June 2005 @ 7.00 pm

*Featuring the Ninth Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack

*Part 1 of a 2-part story

*The title of this episode was the last in the season to be revealed, in order to keep the 'Bad Wolf' theme a secret

*Bad Wolf sightings: the television channel broadcasting the deadly reality shows is owned by the 'BADWOLF' Corporation. Also, to tie-in with this episode, the BBC launched a 'Bad Wolf' website at on Friday 3rd June. As well as screen-shots of the various 'Bad Wolf' references, the site also had info and links about other 'bad wolves': Anubis, Fenrir and the BeoWulf. Highlighting the text on the Disclaimer page revealed: "Rose - Are you there? Are you getting this? You've got the point, haven't you? Rose...?", and hovering over the final picture on the clues page showed "23-6-801". Four songs were also available to listen to: 'Big Bad Wolf' by Brian Diamond & the Cutters; 'Bad Wolf' by Urban Shakedown; 'Bad Wolf' by John Kincade; and 'Big Bad Wolf' by French Chansons. When the latter song was played, a voice interrupted quoting part of a poem by William Blake, 'The Sick Rose':

Oh Rose, thou art sick!
The invisible worm
That flies in the night,
In the howling storm,

Has found out thy bed
Of crimson joy,
And his dark secret love
Does thy life destroy.

*The 'Torchwood' Files: One of the answers during the 'Weakest Link' game show notes that the Great Cobalt Pyramid was built on the ruins of the famous Old Earth Torchwood Institute. ('Torchwood' is also an in-joke: an anagram of "Doctor Who", as Russell T Davies used the name 'Torchwood' as a security measure during the production of 'Doctor Who', to disguise preview tapes of the first episodes)