Monday, November 15, 2010

SJA Checklist: Goodbye Sarah Jane

..alas, no, I've got to keep on doing this for another year.

Crowds of People Under Alien Influence
: No, they can't afford both crowds of people and a CGI stomach that splurts.

Tie-in with Doctor Who story
: Not actually a canonical one, but one of the authors of this story did a Big Finish audio featuring an imposter version of the Doctor turning up and trying to take over. Plus Sarah gets to repeat her personal narrative about how she met the Man Who Changed Her Life.

Rani's Mum is Annoying/Is Absent: Episode one: the former. Pushy, nosy, gossipy, insisting on painting the house a pale lemon yellow. Episode two: she has a complete personality transplant and is suddenly the sweetest, kindest, least embarrassing mum in the world. This doesn't contradict anything, it just comes as a bit of a shock. Oh, and there's another implication that her husband is sneaking around behind her back with Sarah Jane.

Luke/K9 Cameo: Since it's the final story, they actually turn up in person this time-- well, Luke does, K9 is clearly still immobile after the kebab-van incident.

Sarah Jane Waxes Maudlin: Lots of it. As well as her traditional speech about how wonderful her gang are, episode one sees her going on about the Doctor, about how old and feeble she is (at fiftysomething), how nobody needs her, and how she wants to pass the torch to Ruby. The latter demonstrates her fitness for the job by making speeches about how wonderful the universe is (could this be... Ruby Wax-es Maudlin? Ahem). Ruby's faked message in which Sarah Jane waxes maudlin about the responsibility of her job is unsurprisingly spot on. Because it's the last episode, too, we get guest waxing: Clyde gets a nice maudlin Last Message on his mobile and Luke gets to go on about his special mum.

Mobile Phone as Plot Device: Episode Two is practially deus ex mobile, as Rani's camera-phone not only provides the clue to Ruby's identity but a means of shutting down her computer. Clyde also gets to record his last message on his smartphone.

Racism Towards Aliens: The moment Sarah Jane trusts one, she turns out to be an evil soul-devouring creature. Give those damn aliens an inch and they'll take a yard.

The Crimes of Sarah Jane: Surprisingly, none.

Sonic Lipstick: Handed over to Ruby as Sarah Jane leaves. There really is some kind of female rite-of-passage thing going on here.

Wristwatch Scanner: Within ten seconds of the opening.

One or More of Sarah's Companions Falling Under Alien Influence: Oh, go on, guess.

Sarah And/Or Companion Acts like a Selfish Cow: When Ruby turns up, she's rude, brusque and selfish... and Clyde's first reaction is to blurt out "she's just like you, Sarah Jane!"

And, because it's the last episode of the season:

Wide-eyed speech about the wonders of the universe and how great it is to be in Sarah Jane's gang: Yes, though a surprisingly brief one.