Doctor Who Logo 'The Power of Three'
(Story Code 7.04)

by Chris Chibnall
The Doctor, Rory and Amy

“Invasion of the very small cubes. That’s new.” – The Doctor

July: Amy and Rory finally realise that they have two lives: their life with the Doctor, having adventures all across time and space, and their domestic, hum-drum life at home. But as they wonder whether they should choose one over the other, the TARDIS arrives, and so they decide to set off on another escapade. But all that is due to change; and it starts with the arrival of a small, black cube, which materialises in the Ponds’ bedroom, hovering over Amy and Rory’s sleeping heads, before settling on a nearby table…

The next morning, having returned home after who-knows-what, Amy and Rory are woken by the arrival of Brian, who enthusiastically tells them of the arrival of thousands of black cubes all over the country. Leaving the house to walk the cube-strewn street, the Ponds find the Doctor sitting on a nearby park’s climbing frame, his curiosity piqued by the cube he is studying. While television news reports expound on the global appearance of millions of the cubes, the Doctor herds Amy, Rory and Brian into the TARDIS; the Time Lord is perplexed by the identical cubes, and he doesn’t like not knowing what they are: as Brian suggests, they could be an alien invasion. Leaving Brian in the TARDIS to watch over some cubes, the Doctor takes over the Pond’s kitchen to use as his laboratory, while Rory gets into his scrubs to go to work. But at that moment the house is stormed by armed, black-clad soldiers. With the soldiers holding the Doctor, Amy and Rory (now in his pants) at gunpoint, a woman enters the house: Kate Stewart, the Head of Scientific Research at U.N.I.T. – the Unified Intelligence Taskforce. Having tracked an artron energy spike to the Ponds’ house, Kate greets the man she deduces to be the Doctor. Excited that a science team now runs U.N.I.T., the Doctor is happy to be briefed by Kate: U.N.I.T. have conducted a thorough analysis of the mysterious cubes, but all they know is that the indestructible objects don’t do anything, apart from ingratiating themselves into the public consciousness as the trendy thing to have. The Doctor decides to enlist Amy and Rory’s help in studying the cubes… but after four days of inactivity, the Time Lord is climbing the walls of the Ponds’ living room. Leaving his friends to continue their vigil, the Doctor carries out lots of household chores, and even manages five million keep-ups with a football. But that only kills one hour. Going bonkers, the Doctor heads for the TARDIS, where Brian is still watching his cube. Ushering Brian, Rory and Amy outside, the Doctor promises to return after some more adventures, and he sets the TARDIS to monitor the news feeds in case something actually happens to the cubes….

October: Amy goes to a nightclub with her friend Laura, and ends up agreeing to be her bridesmaid. Rory accepts an offer from his boss, Ranjit, to go full time at the hospital. That evening, Rory and Amy realise that they have made commitments; their real life has finally started, and they like it… Meanwhile, Brian completes the sixty-seventh of his daily video logs detailing the cube’s activities – or rather, lack of them…

December: Rory helps the latest A&E patient, a man with his foot stuck in a toilet; he fails to see a little girl sitting nearby holding a cube, her eyes glowing blue for a second… Elsewhere, a hospital patient is abducted by two orderlies, their faces bizarrely distorted by square-shaped mouths…

June: all across the world the cubes have become a part of everyone’s lives. Meanwhile, Amy and Rory throw a garden party to celebrate their wedding anniversary. Amy phones the Doctor, put out that he hasn’t joined them – and at that moment, the Time Lord in question arrives, bearing a huge bouquet of flowers for her. The Doctor rushes his two friends off in the TARDIS, taking them to the twenty-six of June 1890 for a stay at the Savoy. Amy and Rory are excited at their surprise present – until it turns out that there was a Zygon spaceship under the hotel, and that half the staff were alien imposters. To make up for this fiasco the Doctor takes the Ponds on another jaunt, but Amy ends up inadvertently getting married to King Henry XIII! After seven weeks of more such exploits the trio re-join Brian at the anniversary party, where they have been gone for just a few minutes. As Amy and Rory return to the celebration Brian asks after the Doctor’s other travelling companions; with mounting sadness the Time Lord recounts how some chose to leave him, some were left behind, while others died. Seeing Brian’s concern, the Doctor promises that fate won’t befall Rory and Amy… A short time later, Amy and Rory are surprised by the Doctor’s request to stay with them for a while, because he misses them...

July: Brian completes log three-hundred and sixty-one, with still no change in his cube. In the living room, the Doctor, Amy and Rory relax in front of the television, watching ‘The Apprentice’ accompanied by fish fingers and custard. Brian nods off – but is quickly woken up as the cube actually moves… Later, unseen by Amy and Rory, the cube in the kitchen starts to glow. Entering the bedroom, Amy sees another of their ‘pet’ cubes glowing with a blue light; when she touches the object it stabs her with several small needles, and then proceeds to display her pulse on one of its sides. Meanwhile, he Doctor’s game of Wii Tennis is interrupted by the arrival of yet another cube, which hovers in front of his face – and then opens fire on him with a blue energy beam! Fleeing from the cube’s onslaught, the Doctor watches as the cube floats into the living room and starts to assimilate the internet via the Pond’s smart television; he then meets up with Rory, Amy and Brian, who are now all too aware of the cubes’ activities. Rory gets a phone call from Ranjit: people are being attacked by the cubes, and the hospital needs his help urgently. As Rory rushes off to work accompanied by Brian, the Doctor receives a summons from Kate on his psychic paper; with Amy in tow he races to U.N.I.T.’s base under the Tower of London. Kate and her team are monitoring fifty cubes, with more coming in every moment; each cube is held in a containment booth, and each displays a different function: one is giving off flames, one causes a human to experience mood swings, and one is currently playing ‘The Birdy Song’! With the world’s governments screaming at U.N.I.T. for help, the Doctor is more interested in Kate’s heritage: she is the daughter of his old friend, the Brigadier, proudly carrying on in her father’s footsteps. The Doctor is only too happy to help, but he needs fresh air to think. Sitting on the bank of the Thames with Amy, the Doctor admits that he knows his friend is going to leave him soon; when Amy explains that she has built a life with Rory, the Doctor tells her he understands: their lives run differently, and while he wants to explore all of time and space, he knows that the Ponds’ want to settle down at last. At that moment the Doctor has a flash of inspiration: the cubes have what they want: they each shut down after getting an analysis of their subject’s response. Racing back inside U.N.I.T. H.Q., the Doctor and Amy join Kate just as all power in the complex cuts out – and then every cube suddenly displays the number ‘7’ on its surface. The same happens to every cube all over the planet… and then the number changes to ‘6’. As the countdown continues the Doctor instructs Kate to warn everyone to get away from the cubes; the devices have slowly and deliberately inveigled themselves into peoples’ lives, allowing them to profile their targets in preparation for an invasion. As the global news reports alert the world’s population to the danger, the cubes count from ‘5’ down to ‘4’. At the hospital, Rory and his colleagues clear the building of cubes; nearby, the little girl clutches her cube, which counts down to ‘3’. Brian goes to get supplies for his son, but soon finds himself abducted by the two sinister orderlies, who bundle him onto a gurney and race him towards a nearby out-of-order goods lift. Looking for his dad, Rory is just in time to see him propelled into the lift; Rory gives chase – but the lift is now empty. Investigating the lift’s walls, Rory discovers a dimensional portal, which takes him to the bridge of an alien spaceship in orbit around the Earth… Back under the Tower of London, the Doctor locks himself inside a booth with a cube, which now displays a ‘2’ on its surface. As Amy and Kate look on, the Doctor sits expectantly in front of the cube, which counts down to ‘1’… and then finally reaches ‘0’. The cube then opens… to reveal absolutely nothing inside. Puzzled and disappointed, the Doctor leaves the booth and crosses to the bank of monitors monitoring CCTV of the cubes all over the world; together with Amy and Kate, he watches as hundreds of people begin to collapse and die. At that moment the Doctor falls to his knees: his left heart has stopped. With only one working heart, the Doctor deduces that the cubes are power cutters designed to produce an electrical surge that short-circuits the nearest human heart. U.N.I.T.’s scan of the planet identifies seven points across the globe, all emitting a signal that is creating a dimensional wormhole around the planet – and the station in England is located at Rory’s hospital. Inside the spaceship, Rory sees his dad lying unconscious on a plinth along with several other kidnapped people; when he tries to help Brian, he is stopped by the two menacing, square-mouthed orderlies holding syringes... Back on Earth, the Doctor, Amy, Kate and U.N.I.T. arrive at the hospital. While Kate leads her team into the building, the Doctor uses his sonic screwdriver to detect the emission of strong alien signals nearby; tracing them to the little girl holding the cube, her face glowing blue, the Doctor identifies her as a monitoring android and he promptly shuts her down. Then the Time Lord falls to the floor, in agony from his heart failure. Thinking fast, Amy grabs a portable defibrillator device, and shocks the Doctor’s left heart into starting again. Now full of life, the Doctor leads Amy to the source of another energy signal, the goods lift, where they quickly find the portal; stepping through, the duo arrive on the bridge of the alien spaceship, in orbit one dimension away from the Earth. Finding Rory and Brian amongst a number of people lying unconscious on gurneys, the Doctor immediately resuscitates them with his sonic; however, before he can wake the others he is zapped by a bolt of energy from a creepy-looking man in a black cloak. As Amy and Rory rush Brian to safety, the Doctor confronts his attacker, whom he recognises as one of the Shakri: an ancient race from Time Lord mythology. The Shakri explains that he is using the seven portals in conjunction with the cubes to implement ‘The Tally’, a means to halt “the human plague” before it can colonise space. Amy and Rory return in time to hear the Doctor denouncing the alien’s actions to destroy what it sees as a contagion as nothing more than the actions of a pest controller, laying down slug pellets to attract and destroy its victims. The Doctor implores the Shakri to stop, extolling humanity’s greatness; but the Shakri ignores his words, and, after setting the ship’s controls to unleash a second wave of the murderous cubes, he vanishes into thin air. Explaining to Amy and Rory that the Shakri was merely the ship’s automated interface, the Doctor accesses the vessel’s systems and disconnects all the Shakri ships from the portals, casting them adrift into space; he them reverses the cubes’ controls, using them to reactivate their victims’ hearts. Seeing that his actions have caused an energy ricochet, the Doctor urges Amy and Rory back through the portal – just as the ship explodes! Later, as news reports cover the global phenomenon of the cardiac arrest victims coming back to life, Kate bids a fond goodbye to her new friend, the Doctor. That evening, the Time Lord enjoys a meal with Amy, Rory and Brian, expecting it to be the last he shares with his friends; however, to everyone’s surprise Brian encourages his son and daughter-in-law to continue their travels with the Time Lord. Stepping into the TARDIS with her husband once more, Amy reflects how ‘cubed’ also means ‘the power of three’…

Matt Smith (The Doctor), Karen Gillan (Amy Pond), Arthur Darvill (Rory Williams), Mark Williams (Brian Williams), Jemma Redgrave (Kate Stewart), Steven Berkoff (Shakri), Selva Rasalingham (Ranjit), Alice O'Connell (Laura), Peter Cartwright (Arnold Underwood), David Beck (Orderly 1), Daniel Beck (Orderly 2), David Hartley (U.N.I.T. Researcher)

Directed by Douglas Mackinnon
Produced by Marcus Wilson
Executive Producers Steven Moffat and Caroline Skinner
A BBC Wales production

TX (BBC 1 & BBC 1 HD):
22nd September 2012 @ 7.30 pm

*Featuring the Eleventh Doctor, Amy and Rory, and introducing Kate Stewart

*Working title: 'Cubed'

*Like the previous episodes, the logo for this story is updated to reflect the story, this time with the texture of the surfaces of dozens of cubes

*Music heard in this episode: 'Titanium' by David Guetta featuring Sia; 'Merry Christmas Everybody' by Slade; 'Don't Falter' by Mint Royale, featuring Lauren Lavern; 'Sense' by the Lightning Seeds'; and 'The Birdie Song' by The Tweets