David Tennant’s Contributions to Doctor Who Episodes
“Sarah Jane Smith” Edition

Excerpt from Benjamin Cook’s interview with David Tennant from DWM 440:

He stops mid-sentence, and smiles.  “I got to call her Sarah. Everyone else had to call her Sarah Jane. When we did School Reunion, she was very much written as Sarah Jane, and that’s how she referred to herself. It was Lis who came to me and said, ‘It’s a wonderful script, but the Doctor always used to call her Sarah, back in the day.’  I said, ‘You’re absolutely right. Of course! I remember that vividly.’  It was Lis’ idea, although I was very happy to go along with it.”

“What almost never happened when I worked on Doctor Who was, the scripts just never needed tinkering with,” he continues.  “If there were anything to change, Russell and I might have a brief chat, but once the cameras had started rolling, the scripts basically remained unchanged. That name thing was an exception. Lis and I just did it. It was a little tribute to the days of old. A couple of times, people queried it, and we’d just go, ‘Ah, no, that’s just… that’s what it’s meant to be.’  We were kind of stubborn about it. Until, in the end, a line or two was put in to slightly explain why I was calling Sarah something different to everyone else,” he laughs.

Orig.Poster’s note: This post is part of a series on some of the contributions that David made to episodes of Doctor Who, because he sometimes gets questions about ad-libs or input he may have had to episodes, but he tends to not take credit for his various additions/suggestions - so I figured I’d list some for him.  Most of the credit for this one actually goes to the lovely Elisabeth Sladen for bringing it to David’s attention.  I love his telling of the story above, with he and Lis conspiring together to go off-script and being “kind of stubborn about it”. 

Full set of David’s Contributions Posts (tag):
Bigger on the Inside Edition
Walking on Theatre Chairs Edition
Scanning a Planet Edition
Shakespeare Code Bedroom Edition
Interrupting Jackie Edition
Sarah Jane Smith Edition
Stone Arm Edition
Hand in a Jar Edition
Killing the Vespiform Edition

Clyde & Rani + 'That Langer Boy'

One favourite Clyde Langer moment per televised story

The Man Who Never Was | good ol’ switcheroo

Mr Smith [deciphering Morse code message]: Grab Harrison’s P-E-N. Full stop.
Clyde: Never been so glad to see a full stop. But what does it mean?
Rani: Well, what it says. Grab his pen!

NewCompanionHopes: Daniel Anthony and Anjli Mohindra


Okay, okay, I know what you’re thinking, but hear me out:

  • Rani and Clyde were main characters on The Sarah Jane Adventures and while it’s been several years, that never stopped the Doctor from coming back, did it? They had a huge fanbase and it would certainly create a lot of buzz and interest to bring back these beloved characters.
  • Both the actors already have extensive experience in sci-fantasy and the Whoniverse in particular.
  • The characters are not newbies. They know the alien ropes from Sarah Jane.
  • We haven’t had a full time MOC companion and full time male companions in general are few and far between. Mickey was recurring, Danny was recurring (and not really a companion although he was an important character), Jack was recurring and white, and Rory was white. Anthony would be an excellent addition to the male companion fold.
  • Mohindra is of Indian descent and there has yet to be a full time companion of Indian descent in NuWho.
  • We haven’t haven’t had two POC companions at the same time. This would add some great diversity to Team TARDIS.

It’s true, the drawbacks of this include two more 20-something, modern day companions and another couple on the TARDIS, if they were to keep the previous SJA continuity that was leading Clyde and Rani toward couplehood. But by far the biggest obstacle is the issue of Sarah Jane herself. I don’t, however, believe she makes a Clani+Twelve Team TARDIS impossible.

Unlike Luke, Rani and Clyde were friends of the Smiths. In the distant future, Rani lives in Sarah Jane’s house, so unless time is rewritten again, it’s probably safe to say the SJA group remains close. That said, Luke went off to University and Clyde and Rani will too. Twelve could take up with them there, adventure with them a while, and drop them right back off where he found them. If the issue of Sarah Jane and Luke ever came up, you could potentially show the TARDIS landing in front of Sarah Jane’s house or in the attic at the end of an episode (possibly include an archive footage voice clip of her welcoming the new Doctor into her home from off-screen) and leave the rest of the meeting to the audience’s imaginations.