Doctor Who Logo 'The Empty Planet'
(Part 1)

by Gareth Roberts
The Sarah Jane Adventures - Cast

One evening, Mr Smith detects an alien energy signal – but it vanishes as suddenly as it appeared; concerned, Sarah stays up to monitor the situation, sending a protesting Clyde and Rani home to bed: after all, it’s a school night, and they have homework to do... The following morning, Rani is woken by her alarm as usual; however, today is far from normal: Rani is surprised to find her house deserted, her parents have inexplicably disappeared without a trace. Heading outside, Rani discovers that the rest of Bannerman Road is completely deserted too. Receiving no answer at No.13, she uses the spare key to check inside, but can find no sign of Sarah either – and even more puzzling, Mr Smith has somehow been deactivated... A quick look inside another house shows it just as empty – in fact the only sign of life is an ownerless dog, which runs away in fright. Returning home, Rani discovers that as well as a lack of television or radio transmissions, her mobile phone cannot get any signal, and even the Internet is down. Starting to panic that she may be the only person left on the planet, Rani then hears a knock on her door – and to her delight and relief, she finds Clyde standing there! After a happy reunion, the two friends decide to head into town to see if they can find anyone else: but just like Ealing, they find Central London completely deserted – could they be the last two people in the whole world? After Clyde explains how his mother disappeared mid-sentence the previous night, Rani observes how there are no crashed cars or planes: if the alien energy trace was to blame, then whoever or whatever was responsible for it didn’t want anyone to be hurt… After grabbing breakfast in a nearby café, Clyde and Rani are about to return to Sarah’s house when they suddenly hear signs of movement; catching sight of a boy on a bicycle, they give chase with the aid of two unattended bikes, following their quarry to a council block, where they manage to corner him inside one of the flats. The boy, Gavin, is clearly terrified, but Rani manages to calm him down, even going so far as explaining that she and Clyde believe aliens are to blame for the disappearance of his aunt and uncle. Clyde is annoyed that Rani has given away their secret, but his admonishment of his friend is interrupted by a strange trumpeting noise from outside; as the room begins to shake, Clyde and Rani look out the window, but they cannot see anything unusual – and when they turn round, Gavin has gone. Racing outside, Rani and Clyde find that the boy’s bike has gone too… Deciding to locate the source of the noise, the two friends head back to the high street; unfortunately the strain soon gets to them both, and they fall out over a petty argument. Taking refuge in the café, Clyde swallows his pride and makes up with Rani; friends again, the duo ponder how aliens could have abducted the entire population of the planet. At that moment a strange set of symbols appears on the café’s television set – an image that also appears on Clyde and Rani’s mobiles, and on every television set in the window of a nearby electrical store. Hearing a strange clanking noise nearby, the two friends set off to investigate; however, Rani gets distracted when she catches sight of Gavin down an alleyway, and she sets off to investigate – and then comes face-to-face with a giant, red robot. Meanwhile, Clyde finds himself the target of a similar robot, this one completely yellow; the mechanical giant advances menacingly, training a beam of energy straight at Clyde…

Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Daniel Anthony (Clyde Langer), Anjli Mohindra (Rani Chandra), Alexander Armstrong (Mr Smith [Voice]), Ace Bhatti (Haresh Chandra), Jocelyn Jee Esien (Carla Langer), Joe Mason (Gavin), Paul Kasey (Red Robot), Ruari Mears (Yellow Robot), Jon Glover (Voice of Robots)

Directed by Ashley Way
Produced by Brian Minchin
Executive Producers Russell T Davies, Julie Gardner and Piers Wenger
A BBC Wales production

1st November 2010 CBBC @ 5.15 pm
3rd November 2010 BBC 1 @ 4.30 pm

*Featuring Sarah Jane Smith, Clyde, Rani and Mr Smith