Tooth and Claw

Roots: The werewolf genre - done before in Doctor Who with Loups Garoux and Kursaal, with a single werewolf appearing in The Greatest Show in the Galaxy. The monks are straight out of a kung-fu movie, and resemble those from one of BBC1's idents. The Doctor mentions Ian Dury and the Blockheads' Hit me with your Rhythm Stick being number one in 1979 and plays the song. The Doctor's alias's hometown is the fictional town of Balamory. Ghost Light (aliens influence a plot to assassinate Victoria). Philip Jose Farmer's Wold Newton. The comment about Rose having "something of the wolf about her" is taken from The Curse of Fenric. The Doctor mentions Doctor Bell, and Sherlock Holmes was modelled on Doctor Joseph Bell from Edinburgh University. The light-based weapon using diamonds was a nod to Horror of Fang Rock. The "wolves and anachronistic kung-fu" thing was already done some years ago by the French movie The Brotherhood of the Wolf.

Goofs: Why is nobody in Victoria's party surprised by the TARDIS materialising?

Why doesn't Victoria have a lady in waiting?

Torchwood House has an awful lot of stairs.

How does the werewolf escape from the library? Surely the mistletoe doors should keep him in just like they kept him out. (and yes, the doors do look like they closed). [Perhaps its allergy is strong enough for it to find a different way into the library, but not enough to stop it blasting through the doors when it's trapped inside with no recourse of escape.]

Victoria worrying about the curse of the Koh-i-Noor affecting her is wrong, as the curse is only supposed to apply to men, and not to women.

It's lucky that the moon is in horizontal alignment with the telescope at just the point in the night when the Doctor uses it against the Werewolf, as the telescope clearly isn't capable of horizontal movement.

Why does the moonlight from the "telescope" vanish at the same time as the wolf does? It's unlikely that the moon moves out of the telescope's field of vision at just the same time as the wolf dies.

What happens to the monks after the wolf is defeated? Do they just run away?

The Doctor introduces himself as Dr James McCrimmon of Balamory yet is knighted Sir Doctor of Tardis. Also, knights and dames aren't given a place name as part of their title, so Victoria should simply dub them Sir Doctor and Dame Rose.

The Doctor's musings about Victoria's haemophilia is completely at odds with science, and the family's actual haemophilia is confirmed in The Clockwise Man (and both the Doctor and Rose would be aware of it). Not to mention that Victoria has already had all of her children by the time this happens.

Fashion Victims: As the Doctor says, if Rose had worn her outfit in the late 1970s, she would have been better off in a bin-bag.

Technobabble: The Doctor calls the werewolf a lupine wavelength haemoveriform.

Dialogue Disasters: Rose's numerous attempts to get Victoria to say "we are not amused".

Dialogue Triumphs: The Doctor: "An accident?"
Victoria: "I am the Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Everything around me tends to be planned."

The Doctor: "If I gamble on that it'd be an abuse of my privilege as a traveller in time."
Rose: "Ten quid?"
The Doctor: "Done."

The Werewolf: "I cut out his soul and sat in his heart."

Victoria: "It is said that whoever owns it must surely die."
The Doctor: "That's true of anything if you wait long enough."

Continuity: The Doctor intends to take Rose to a Ian Dury and the Blockheads concert on the 21st of November 1979, but instead ends up in the late Victorian age. He affects a Scottish accent for much of this adventure. He identifies himself as Doctor James McCrimmon from Balamory. In this identity, he claims to have a doctorate from the University of Edinburgh, having trained under Doctor Bell (c.f. The Moonbase). Victoria claims that the Psychic Paper says that the Doctor as has been appointed as Victoria's protector by the Lord Provost. The Doctor is excited at meeting Victoria and stares at the werewolf with wonder. He is knighted Sir Doctor of Tardis, and Rose is made Dame Rose of the Powell Estate, but also banished from the British Empire.

The Torchwood Estate is within a day's coach journey of Balmoral.

In 1540 under the reign of King James V [of Scotland], there was a shooting star near the Torchwood estate. It contained the werewolf - which is from another planet. The Brethren of the Monastery of St Catherine appear to have turned their back on God and worshipped the wolf. Every full moon there is howling in the valley and sheep are found ripped to shreds. Once in a generation a boy goes missing. In fact, the brethren steal an infant and the werewolf possesses its body, which it does by biting the host. Bullets seem to cause it to back off when it isn't expecting them. It believes itself to be allergic to mistletoe, possibly because the brethren conditioned it to think so.

The Doctor says that there are too many forms of light modulation species triggered by specific wavelengths.

Rose recognises the Koh-i-Noor diamond. Victoria goes on an annual pilgrimage to have the diamond recut - Albert always said that its shine is not quite right. When combined with the "telescope" in the house, it magnifies the moonlight to the extent that the werewolf cannot take it.

Victoria either gets cut by the splintering door or gets bitten by the werewolf. The Doctor speculates that Victoria's haemophilia which she passed onto her children and grandchildren was the werewolf infection by biting them. She decides to create the Torchwood Institute to investigate and fight strange and unusual events. She muses that if and when the Doctor returns, Torchwood will be waiting.

Links: The Doctor uses his old companion Jamie's name as a pseudonym. The werewolf says that there is something of the wolf about Rose, and that she burns like the sun (The Parting of the Ways). This scene is very similar to scenes from both The Curse of Fenric and The Unquiet Dead.

Extras: This story has an episode of Doctor Who Confidential. The BBC created a one-minute trailer called a "Tardisode" for each episode of series two, available to download on your mobile or watch at the BBC website. They also made a commentary track available online. There is also a Torchwood Estate tie-in website. The Leamington Spa Lifeboat Museum ( tie-in website mentioned a wolf legend. (Note: Leamington Spa is in Warwickshire, a long way from the sea. The website places it on the East coast). Visit Torchwood is the only one of the extras still online.

Location: The Torchwood Estate, Scotland. Victoria has survived six assassination attempts, placing it between 1872 and 1882. The Doctor claims that it's 1879 as soon as he steps out of the TARDIS, and the tie-in websites agree.

Future History: The Doctor mentions the first anti-gravity Olympics.

Unrecorded Adventures: The Doctor mentions that he nearly lost his thumb helping Skylab fall to earth.

The Bottom Line: 'Leave my world.' Doctor Who always does well when it ventures into the realms of horror, and usually excels at historical drama and Tooth and Claw is no exception to either rule. The Victorian era is well portrayed, and the Werewolf is suitably frightening - even for some adult viewers. The script consistently sparkles and, other than a few lame jokey bits and a couple of small plot holes, the end result is difficult to fault in what is undoubtedly RTD's best Who script up until this point.

Discontinuity Guide by Stephen Gray

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