Doctor Who: The Doctor's Daughter
(S04E06) The Doctor gives birth to a daughter. And he didn't even get any snu-snu out of it.
A quick synopsis: The TARDIS suddenly dematerializes unexpectedly before Doctor Martha Jones has a chance to leave and finds itself on the planet Messaline in the year 6012. There is a generations-long war between the two occupying races, the humans and an alien race called the Hath.
Gallery: Doctor Who: The Doctor's Daughter
It turns out that the humans replenish their soldiers using advanced cloning technology. After sticking the Doctor's hand in a progenation machine, a full-grown female clone (later named "Jenny", short for Generated Anomaly) emerges within seconds. The humans and the Hath are fighting over something called "The Source" and the episode becomes a race to get to the Source first. Things get more complicated when Martha is taken captive by the Hath and then befriends one of them.
Georgia Moffett, who plays Jenny, along with being extremely cute, is the real-life daughter of Peter Davison, the 5th actor to play the Doctor on television. He also recently co-starred withTennant for the Children In Need special "Time Crash". Originally, Jenny's character wasn't going to survive. Her "regeneration" at the end was the idea of future showrunner Steven Moffat. It wouldn't surprise me if she was being developed as a future companion for our erstwhile Time Lord, or possibly even as a replacement for the main character himself (he's not getting any younger, you know).
The use of Martha for this episode seemed unnecessary. The story may even have been more interesting if Martha's character was eliminated and Donna took her place, thereby having the Doctor and Donna on opposite sides of a war. However, there was that pesky three-episode contract to deal with (although she will be appearing again before the end of the season). Plus, the more Martha is associated with Doctor Who, the more accepting the audience will be if/when she becomes a regular cast member on Torchwood.
This episode represented one of the rare times the setting of the adventure have been on an alien world. Usually the episodes up until now have been fairly Earth-centric (and usually the ones set on Earth get better ratings). The landscapes used a gothic swamp motif that came across very well.
The episode itself was somewhat slow moving and kind of dull. I would have preferred more interaction between the Doctor and his daughter, but the ending left the possibility of that in the future. Donna seemed almost unused, although her deductions were responsible for a major plot point. This is the second time this season her skills as a temp have moved the plot forward.
The episode touched upon the Doctor's family history. The fact that he had been a father once was mentioned in a few episodes of the new series previously. Anybody who has watched it since the beginning knows that originally, in the William Hartnell years, the Doctor was travelling with his granddaughter Susan (although whether he's her biological grandfather or the title is used as an honorific is still subject to debate). Family has been a huge theme of Russell T. Davies' tenure on Doctor Who. This is most easily seen in the fact that the family relationships of all the companions are central to the show.
It did seem somewhat redundant after the Sontaran two-parter that this episode focused on cloning as a plot point. I wonder if the two events are related? Perhaps they got the cloning technology from the leftovers from the attempted Sontaran invasion. The UNIT logo is seen in the background at one point in the episode.
It also seemed kind of silly that the reason the TARDIS went to Messaline in the first place was the very event that it caused. Time-travel paradoxes can be such a headache.
I like how the ending mirrored the beginning of the Doctor's own adventures. Jenny steals a spacecraft and goes to explore the universe.
Checking the credits, two of the Hath are named Peck and Gable. This is likely a reference to legendary screen actors Gregory Peck and Clark Gable.
Overall, a decent if not great episode. The writing itself seemed subpar but the possibilities of the Doctor having yet another offspring are tremendous. They could very well spin Jenny off into her own series.