I was really looking forward to the 3rd series of Doctor Who! After Rose left at the end of the 2nd series, we were getting a new companion and I have to say I really like Martha, the new companion, always did. And since it was at least 10 years since I’d last seen the 3rd series, I really was excited! While Rose wasn’t in love with the Doctor, Martha was, she really loved him, but it was unrequited. This is for Martha the reason, at the end of this series, not to continue being the Doctor’s companion. I found it a real pity she left after only one series. Although she did drop by in series 4 and she also had a short stint on Torchwood after she no longer was a companion of the Doctor. She was there on the 2nd series of Torchwood but only for 3 episodes unfortunately.
But before we plunged into the 3rd series, we got a TV special episode where not Martha, but Donna Knowles was the one-off companion of the Doctor. Not realizing at that moment, as a viewer, that Donna would become the 3rd companion of the Doctor in series 4. It is a funny story about a bride who is about to marry, walking down the aisle, when she is transported to the Tardis without any influence from the Doctor! From then on, their mission is to bring her back to her important day but that seems difficult at best.
Regarding the 3rd series in general, I have to say, after rewatching it for the 3rd or 4th time, as said, with a 10-year gap, it is, for me anyways, a bit unbalanced! Some really exciting stories, best of the lot, without a doubt, “Blink” and some weaker stories, too many for my taste. I think “Gridlock” was my least favorite episode of the 3rd series, nice idea but not entertaining enough executed. It becomes dull very fast, and it doesn’t get much better in the rest of the 45 minutes. I also wasn’t a fan of the two-parter “Daleks in Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks”. Could not really get into it, perhaps this has to do with the fact that I am a bit done with Daleks and for also with the Cybermen for that matter. These two baddies come back too often. It is like The Borg on Star Trek: Voyager! What I did like about the two-parter was what Dalek Sec wanted to evolve into a human-Dalek hybrid, because he realized they were about to become extinct. ”42” also wasn’t a favorite of mine, the Doctor and Martha answer a distress call, and find themselves on a cargo ship hurtling towards the sun. They have only 42 minutes until they're destroyed. Normally I like these “In Space” episodes but for some reason this one didn’t really work for me.
I did like the season opener “Smith & Jones”, where the Doctor meets Martha, which has a really nice introduction. The Doctor admits himself to a hospital where strange things are happening, we meet Martha Jones who is learning to be a doctor when suddenly the hospital building is moved from the Earth to the Moon! “The Shakespeare Code” was an entertaining episode where the Doctor and Martha meet William Shakespeare in 1599. fun episode, phrases the Doctor uses, Shakespeare wants to borrow them. Shakespeare is very taken by Martha, which I can understand completely! “The Lazerus Experiment” was also an solid episode, where we also saw more of Martha’s family. Martha’s mum doesn’t trust the Doctor for one bit. A scientist has made a device which makes him 40 years younger but there is a side effect, he transforms into a monstrous being who sucks humans down to the bone to keep his youthful age. “Human Nature / Family of Blood” is a really nice story, one of the best the 3rd series in my opinion. The Doctor needs to hide because of an alien species who is coming for him, so he hides on Earth, 1913, as a human. Martha is with him, as his assistant, she knows everything, but the Doctor is longer the Doctor, he really is human. Such a great performance of David Tennant in these two episodes.
As said earlier, “Blink” is my absolute favorite, really well done, scary, suspenseful, new scary alien we haven’t seen before in the Doctor Who 2005 series, it was just so nicely set-up. Really was looking forward to the rewatch of this episode and I wasn’t disappointed, not one bit! Funny thing is, I think the Doctor and Martha both have the least screentime of the whole 3rd series in this episode. The final 3 episodes of the 3rd series, “Utopia / The Sound o/t Drums / Last of the Time Lords, can easily be seen as a 3-parter. Especially the last episode is near perfection where also Captain Jack Harkness returns, which is always a treat. In these episodes we meet another Time Lord, calling himself the Master. He too, like the Doctor, hid himself as a human. He, however, is not such a kind Time Lord, has way different ideas as the Doctor. He is a mean, unlikable alien who has the whole world in his grasp. For a long time he has holds the Doctor captive and it is Martha who is the hero here. I really hated the Master character, well done by actor John Simm. Really was uncomfortable watching him. Of course, now we know we haven’t seen the last of the Master…unfortunately! The revelation about the face of Boe, who he was, was marvelous! Martha is saying goodbye to the Doctor in the final moments of the series finale. As explained earlier, her reasoning, which you can understand. In reality I am wondering if actress Freema Agyeman wanted out herself or was it perhaps because she wasn’t as popular as Rose, or was it because they really wanted to have Catherine Tate as the next companion or is there even another possible reason?
All in all, series 3 is more than okay, as I said, for me it is a bit unbalanced, but this also has to be with my growing aversion for the Daleks and the Cybermen. I am just getting more and more bored with these villains and they come back every series. I cannot imagine there aren’t more people like me who rather see some more new aliens instead of these warn out villains? I think I would rate the 3rd series with a 7.5/10.