Mild-mannered Edwardian schoolteacher John Smith is baffled when alien monsters turn up and demand that he turn himself into "The Doctor". But the strangeness is jogging memories deep inside him, memories of a life he's sure he never lived but only dreamed, and more and more fragments of his dreams are turning out to be real. Deny it he tries, but eventually even John realizes that Martha and the aliens are telling the truth: "the Doctor", his dream-self, is the reality, and John Smith is the fabrication.
Still frightened and confused, John quizzes Martha on the Doctor, and is horrified by what he hears: a thousand-year-old survivor of the universe's greatest holocaust, as remote and inhuman as a force of nature, probably incapable of love as a human would understand it. John would rather stay human and marry Joan, with whom he has fallen in love. He even has a brief vision of that future: a long and happy life and a peaceful death, secure in the knowledge that everyone he loves is safe. But even that future is illusory, as the aliens are closing in on John and will spread destruction across the galaxy if they win. John must sacrifice himself and become the Doctor, though he doesn't even know if any fragment of his identity will survive.
Thu Apr 23 2009 01:16:21 GMT+0100 (GMT Daylight Time)