Doctor Who Logo 'The Gift'
(Part 1)

by Rupert Laight
The Sarah Jane Adventures - Cast

Sarah and the gang are in hot pursuit of a fat kid who has stolen a matter converter from the Pharos Institute. Chasing their quarry into a warehouse, Clyde and Luke split up from Sarah and Rani – only to discover that the boy, Chris, is in fact a Slitheen child in disguise! After giving his pursuers the slip Chris joins his comrade, another disguised Slitheen named Dave, in the makeshift control room they have set up. After connecting the matter converter to their systems the two aliens begin preparations for generating a compression wave, in their plan to create a giant websnare around the Earth to crush the planet and transform it into a giant diamond. Having lost sight of the Slitheen, Sarah summons K-9 from her car. By tracking the alien’s psychospoor and pheromones the robot dog quickly leads Sarah and her friends to the Slitheens’ control room, and they arrive as the countdown to the destruction of the Earth rapidly approaches zero. When Sarah demands that the Slitheen deactivate their machine the greedy green creatures flatly refuse, taking Rani hostage to deter K-9 from opening fire on their sonic-resistant systems. However, at the last second two other, orange-skinned Raxacoricofallapatorians teleport in, stopping the Slitheen in their tracks before destroying their deadly machine. Declaring themselves to be from the High Council of Raxus Prime, the creatures charge Chris and Dave with fraud, theft and high treason, and then teleport them to their spaceship to stand trial. Sarah and her friends are somewhat gobsmacked, particularly when the two aliens introduce themselves as Leef and Tree Blathereen, bounty hunters dedicated to tracking down the criminal Slitheen family and bringing them to justice. In recognition of Sarah’s famous exploits saving the Earth from danger, the Blathereen suggest that they all have dinner together; Sarah is unsure, but is talked into accepting by Rani. While the Blathereen teleport back to their vessel to freshen up, Sarah and her friends return to 13, Bannerman Road, where Clyde uses his culinary skills to prepare a meal of tomato soup and shepherd’s pie. After Leef and Tree arrive everyone settles down to enjoy dinner – or at least the Blathereen do, tucking into the food with stomach-churning gusto. After the meal, Leef and Tree offer Sarah a gift as compensation for the Slitheens’ behaviour on Earth: a small, green plant known as Rakweed. This is a staple food on Raxacoricofallapatorius, a delicious and nutritious plant that can grow anywhere – which could end famine on Earth. Offered the chance to become the Blathereens’ ambassador on Earth, Sarah is unsure whether to heed her suspicions or seize the opportunity to save millions of lives; taking Rani’s advice that that they give the aliens the benefit of the doubt, Sarah accepts their offer in principle, on the caveat that Mr Smith analyse the Rakweed first. Leef and Tree are pleased, and after Sarah has accepted their ‘Claw of friendship’, they bid farewell and teleport back to their ship. After Mr Smith’s analysis of the Rakweed deems it no threat, Sarah considers the huge impact the plant will make to the planet – and also to her, because going public will mean her alien adventures will no longer be a secret. As Sarah sends Luke and Rani off to their respective beds, Clyde stays behind to ask K-9 for a favour with his forthcoming GCSE Biology exam, and then sneaks the robot dog out of the house… The next morning, sunlight streams in through the attic window and falls onto the Rakweed; the plant suddenly flowers and releases a cloud of spores, which fly out through the open skylight and onto the gardens all along Bannerman Road… Getting ready for school, Luke searches the attic for his tie and inadvertently breathes in a second cloud of spores; it isn’t long before he starts feeling woozy and sick… Sarah is worried by her son’s illness, as Luke has never been sick before; after telling Rani to go to class alone, she phones Luke’s school – failing to notice that her garden is now full of Rakweed plants, all in flower… Learning that Luke was in the attic when he fell ill, Sarah immediately links his condition to the Rakweed; racing upstairs she instructs Mr Smith to reanalyse the plant, only to learn that it has somehow mutated and become deadly: the Rakweed spores seek out life forms deemed to be a threat, and drain their victims’ life force until they fall into a never-ending coma… Joining Clyde at Park Vale Comprehensive School, Rani is outraged to learn that her friend has smuggled K-9 in under his desk, and is using the robot dog’s help via an earpiece to cheat in his exam. Outside the classroom window, the school garden is now filled with Rakweed… Back at Bannerman Road, Luke’s condition has gotten worse, and strange marks have appeared on his chest. As Sarah struggles to keep her son awake the Rakweed unleashes another cloud of deadly spores – which home in straight on Sarah and Luke…

Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith), Thomas Knight (Luke), Daniel Anthony (Clyde Langer), Anjli Mohindra (Rani Chandra), Alexander Armstrong (Mr Smith [Voice]), John Leeson (Voice of K-9), Miriam Margolyes (Voice of Leef Bathereen), Simon Callow (Voice of Tree Bathereen), Paul Kasey (Leef Bathereen), Ruari Mears (Tree Bathereen), Calvin Dean (Chris), Jimmy Vee (Chris Slitheen), Edward Judge (Dave), Sarah Paul (Miss Jerome)

Directed by Alice Troughton
Produced by Nikki Wilson
Executive Producers Russell T Davies, Julie Gardner and Piers Wenger
A BBC Wales production

TX (BBC 1 & BBC HD):
19th November 2009 @ 4.35 pm

*Featuring Sarah Jane Smith, Luke, Clyde, Rani, K-9 Mk IV and Mr Smith

*Working title: 'Gift of the Blathereen'