The End of the World (tx: 02/04/05)
In Fiction: The last human, lady Cassandra, has brought along a vintage “ipod” to play to intergalactic delegates as the Earth implodes. It’s actually a 1950s Whirlitzer jukebox - hoho! – and the “classical music” she’s admiring is actually by American superharlot Britney Spears and ‘80s electropop rockers Soft Cell. Hohoho!
In Fact: Haven’t we heard this gag before…? Writer Russell T Davies specifically requested these songs in his script; although unusual choices for songs to reflect humanity's greatest hits, these were both international (and, evidentally, intergalactic) chart-toppers. Toxic made it to number one in 22 countries, whilst Tainted Love was Britain’s best-selling single of 1981.
The music was, of course, a challenge to Rose's first experience of time travel: could this really be the future, if music like this is around? Such familiarity, but frighteningly out of context, is an idea explored for the first time in the series; it certainly didn't freak Ian and Barbara out in The Chase to see The Beatles inside the TARDIS, or disturb Ace that, of all the times and place in the universe they could explore, the Doctor has taken them to watch Courtney Pine at a garden fete in Silver Nemesis! The tracks themselves have narrative relevance too; the lyric "i've got to run away," and the generally doubting tone of Tainted Love almost seem to bring Rose to her senses as she stands amongst aliens just minutes after leaving Mickey behind in 2005 London, whilst Toxic was clearly Russell T Davies' prompt to the production team to turn up the pressure on the action sequences with a thumping, pounding soundtrack!
Tainted Love – Soft Cell
Cuts: 1'15" is heard, 10 minutes into the episode, as Cassandra first demonstrates her “iPod”, giving the Doctor good reason to dance like your Dad.
Releases (select releases): originally recorded by Northern Soul diva Gloria Jones in 1964, Soft Cell’s electronic reinterpretation was released on 7” and 12” vinyl in July 1981 (Some Bizarre BZS 2), spending two weeks at number one, and again in July 1991 alongside new remixes (SOFT 2). The track featured on Soft Cell’s first album, ‘Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret’ (Some Bizarre BZLP 2), released December 1981, and has since been released on many electronic and 1980s compilations.
Availability (select releases): readily available on assorted compilation albums and on the CD reissue of ‘Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret’ (Mercury 5325952), released June 1996.
Toxic – Britney Spears
Cuts: 0'44" is heard, 28 minutes into the episode, as Earth-Death begins, with an edit made to remove three guitar riffs from the beginning of the track and cut straight to the vocals. The song then blends seamlessly into Murray Gold's incidental music, which underscores the sun-filter's descent onto Rose in the same key and with a very similar rhythm and sound.
Availability (select releases): still available on ‘In the Zone’ and Britney’s greatest hits compilation ‘My Prerogative’ (Jive 82876666162), released November 2004.
Aliens of London (tx: 16/04/05)
In Fact: this was added in at the editing stage – there is no specific mention of it in the script. It’s a great choice, though: David Bowie played an alien in the seminal science-fiction movie ‘The Man Who Fell to Earth’ (1976), and wrote many sci-fi inspired tracks under his Ziggy Stardust persona – including Life on Mars and Space Oddity – that are regularly used in film and television soundtracks. What better way to welcome an alien invasion?
Cuts: 1’04” is heard quietly in the background, 14 minutes into the episode, playing inside one of the Brandon flats as the Doctor hands Rose the TARDIS key. As the Doctor walks away (and sees the “welcome” banners), a thumping drum beat is heard coming from another of the flats; this appears to be either stock music or something provided by Murray Gold; and as Mickey emerges from his own flat we hear his television playing a news bulletin theme: this also seems to have been taken from either stock or written specially.
Availability (select releases): readily available on the CD reissue of ‘The Rise and Fall…’ (EMI 5219000), released September 1999, and various Bowie, 1970s and sci-fi compilations.
Father's Day (tx: 14/05/05)
In Fiction: the Doctor is taking Rose on a whistle-stop tour of her parent’s life, which includes a fair amount of the dodgy hairstyles, dress sense and music that characterised the 1980s. As the TARDIS lands on the corner of Walterley Street SE15, amidst Socialist Worker posters and vintage cars, someone's radio is playing The Communards; and as Pete Tyler drives his own daughter to church, Rick Astley is replaced on his car stereo with the unmistakeablely 21st century sounds of The Streets... the Reapers are coming, and they know how to party.
In Fact: Doctor Who managed to make it right through the 80s without so much as a half-bar of Tainted Love intruding into the show, only for the 2005 series to include a 45-minute 1980s retrospective packed with authentically cheesy electro-pop. Hide behind the sofa!
Paul Cornell’s script did not specify which song to use as the TARDIS landed, but did request music playing from a distant radio that was appropriate to 7th November 1987. Later, as Pete drives Rose to the church, the script called for ‘The Number One Song in Heaven’ by The Sparks playing on his stereo, to be interrupted by “2005 pop that couldn’t be from anywhen else,” with Pete commenting “this acid house stuff goes right over my head." The acid house reference was dropped during filming, and the songs changed in post-production to ‘Never Can Say Goodbye’ by The Communards and ‘Don’t Mug Yourself’ by The Streets, a track actually released in 2002 but still, as Paul Cornell says on the DVD commentary, “the most modern possible thing!”
The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances (tx: 21 & 28/05/05)
Cuts: Moonlight Serenade 1'32" plays inside Jack's ship, 26 minutes into The Empty Child, with a further 0'11" and 2'18" routed through the disconnected radio receiver 16 and 17 minutes into The Doctor Dances (with the scene interrupted by a cut to Nancy at the bomb site), continuing as the Doctor attempts to "resonate concrete" and reluctantly dances with Rose - before being teleported on-board Jack's ship. Finally, 0'53" is played inside the TARDIS console room, 39 minutes into the episode. In each case, the music is played from the beginning of the track with no cuts made.
In the Mood 0'48" plays during the final TARDIS console room scene in The Doctor Dances, with a natty light display to match. One edit is made, with the track cross-fading seamlessly from the beginning to the end of the recording to squeeze it into the episode.
Releases (select releases): Moonlight Serenade Glenn Miller’s own composition – his first international hit record, and the tune that propelled his orchestra to fame – was first released in America in 1939. It quickly became his orchestra's signature tune; the romantic and yearning melody gained a bittersweet poignancy when the group was reformed after Miller's disappearance in the Second World War. It was first released in 1939 (RCA Victor BS 035701-1, USA), and has been released so many times that no-one, no-where seems to have had the confidence to write a complete discography. We’re not about to buck that trend here.
Availability (select releases): both tracks are readily available on albums such as ‘In The Mood – The Definitive Glenn Miller’ 2CD (BMG 82876560302), released October 2003.
Bad Wolf (tx: 11/06/05)