|'The Temptation of
Sarah Jane Smith'
by Gareth Roberts
Amid the ruins of what was once London, the Trickster gloats in triumph, overjoyed that Sarah’s actions have allowed him to break out of limbo and into this world. Faced with the apocalyptic repercussions of her deeds, Sarah reopens the time rift and leads Luke back into the past, desperately hoping that they can find a way to put things right. Elsewhere, Clyde and Rani take in the desolation of their new surroundings, and realise that the alien box protected them while history was altered. Sarah and Luke arrive back in Foxgrove on August the 18th, 1951, just as the skies begin to darken with angry black clouds – the Trickster is beginning to break through into reality. Seeing the approaching storm, the villagers decide to move their fete to the village hall. Wracking her brains for a way to stop the Trickster without having to let her parents die, Sarah is elated to see a police box standing nearby, believing that the Doctor has arrived on the scene to help; however, Sarah’s hopes are immediately dashed when she finds that it is a real police box, containing not a brainy Time Lord, but a policeman, grumpy at being disturbed from his rest. In the alternative future, Clyde and Rani see the Graske, Krizlok, walking amongst the rubble. Deciding to follow the diminutive alien, the duo soon come across a dishevelled work party of human slaves; seeing her mother, Gita, amongst the workers Rani unwittingly cries out, alerting the Graske to her presence – but for some reason the creature is too scared of her and Clyde to do anything. Talking to Gita, Rani and Clyde learn that these bedraggled people are all that is left of the human race, who are being forced to dig for minerals; when Gita doesn’t recognise her, Rani realises that in this world she doesn’t exist, as her mother never met her father. Gita explains that according to legend, the world died after Sarah Jane Smith was tricked into handing it over to the Trickster, an act that created a hole in the world at Abbot’s Gateway, that allowed the Trickster cross over and suck the life from the world; hearing this, Clyde and Rani vow to find a way to warn Sarah. As the storm above Foxgrove continues to worsen, Sarah and Luke rejoin Barbara and Eddie at the village hall; while Barbara agrees to help her new friends look for anything strange, Eddie stays behind with the baby Sarah Jane. Clyde and Rani confront Krizlok and learn that the Trickster is using the minerals his slaves have dug up as a source of power, which he will use to go into space and wreak havoc across the stars; Krizlok also reveals the he too was tricked by the Trickster: facing death aboard his critically damaged spaceship, Krizlok saw a vision of the Trickster, who offered him a way to live at his side; the Graske readily agreed – not realising it meant becoming the Trickster’s personal slave. Clyde and Rani strike a deal with the diminutive alien: in return for his help in reopening the rift into the past, they will give him the box, allowing him to break free of the Trickster’s control. Using his belt control device, Krizlok opens the time fissure, and while Clyde stays behind as a hostage, Rani steps into the past to find Sarah and Luke. Meanwhile, Sarah uses her wrist scanner to track an unusual energy reaction, leading Luke and Barbara to a ruined church. Rani arrives at the village hall, where her ethnic appearance causes a stir with the townspeople. When Rani asks after Sarah Jane, Eddie shows her his baby; confused, Rani describes the friends she is looking for, and learns that they are calling themselves “Victoria and David Beckham”; as Rani sets off to look for them, Eddie decides to follow, leaving his baby with the town busybody, Mrs King. Finding Sarah and Luke at the church, Rani warns them of the Trickster’s plans to break into this world, and learns from Barbara that Abbot’s Gateway is an arch in the church grounds, right next to where they are all standing. Barbara wants to know why Rani addressed ‘Victoria’ as “Sarah Jane”, but there is no time for explanations – a black cloud suddenly appears in the archway as the Trickster begins to manifest. At that moment Eddie arrives, and, on seeing the Trickster’s ghostly form, he drags Barbara back to the safety of the village hall. Eddie and Barbara are dismayed to find that everything they now touch decays into dust in seconds – something is wrong with them… As the Trickster’s manifestation continues, Sarah tries desperately to use her sonic lipstick to send him away, but to no avail. Back at the hall, Barbara works out that Victoria is her baby, somehow transported back through time, and that she and her husband hold the key to defeating the Trickster. As Sarah, Luke and Rani struggle to find a way to beat the Trickster without killing Sarah’s parents, Barbara, Eddie and their baby arrive on the scene; to Sarah’s amazement, they reveal that they know who she is, and that they must leave in their car if history is to be saved. Luke realises that Sarah was never abandoned as a baby – her parents left her behind to save her. Barbara and Eddie embrace their grown up daughter, giving Sarah the chance to tell them how she feels about them, and in turn her parents tell her that they are glad to have met her; then, having said goodbye to their baby, Barbara and Eddie get into their car and drive off on their fateful journey…. The Trickster appears, wracked with pain as history begins to reassert itself; the evil creature takes small comfort in the fact that he still managed to defeat his enemy, but Sarah merely replies that he overlooked her parents – they were the ones who defeated him in the end. With a scream of anger, the Trickster dissipates into nothingness. As the storm clouds above fade away, Luke tells Sarah to leave her infant self behind, so that they can return to the present. In the alternative future, Clyde and Krizlok cling to each other as the world around them returns to normal, and they find themselves back in the abandoned shop at the mall. Fulfilling his side of the deal, Clyde gives the box to Krizlok; freed from the Trickster’s power, the little alien teleports away. Arriving on the hill above Foxgrove, Sarah reopens the rift, allowing Luke and Rani to step through and rejoin Clyde; with a last look behind her, Sarah follows them, before destroying the control device and sealing the rift forever. Some time later, after Rani and Clyde have returned home to their parents, Sarah and Luke relax in their attic. Showing Luke the photo of her parents, all she has of left of them now, Sarah remarks that although she is sad to have lost them, she is pleased that she finally knows how wonderful they were; giving her a hug, Luke responds that he is lucky to have Sarah as his mum.
Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Thomas Knight (Luke), Daniel Anthony (Clyde Langer), Anjli Mohindra (Rani Chandra), Mina Anwar (Gita Chandra), Alexander Armstrong (Mr Smith [Voice]), Anjli Mohindra (Rani Chandra), Ace Bhatti (Haresh Chandra), Rosanna Lavelle (Barbara Smith), Christopher Prizzley (Eddie Smith), Paul Marc Davies (The Trickster), Jimmy Vee (The Graske [Krizlok]), Georgie Glen (Mrs King), Robert Madge (Oscar), Philip Hurd-Wood (Voice of the Graske)
Directed by Graeme Harper
Produced by Matthew Bouch
Executive Producers Russell T Davies and Julie Gardner
A BBC Wales production
24th November 2008 @ 5.15pm
1st December 2008 @ 4.35pm on BBC 1
*Featuring Sarah Jane Smith, Luke, Clyde, Rani and Mr Smith