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Army Of Ghosts

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Army of Ghosts

This is the story of how Rose (Billie Piper) died...

The TARDIS materialises in a playground on the Powell Estate to visit Jackie (Camille Coduri) who is overjoyed to see both Rose and the Doctor (David Tenannt), but causes Rose concern when she says that she is expecting Rose's grandfather, Grandad Prentice, to come by any minute. Rose explains to the Doctor that her grandfather has been dead for ten years. However, a blurred, ghost-like figure appears in her kitchen at ten past the hour. Stunned, Rose and the Doctor run outside and see more ghosts all around the estate. Jackie follows and tells them that they won't be around for long as "the midday ghost shift only lasts a couple of minutes". Elsewhere in London, a technician pulls a huge lever and the ghosts fade away. A woman called Yvonne Hartman steps out of her office and informs her staff that they've just had an excellent ghost shift.

Back in Jackie's flat, the Doctor observes various TV cash-ins on the ghosts including Trisha Goddard, Eastenders and Most Haunted, and he asks where it all started. Jackie tells him she just woke up one morning and they were just there. The Doctor notes from Jackie's description of the cigarette smell of the Grandad Prentice ghost that the ghosts are using humans' desires in order to imprint themselves upon the Earth, e.g. Jackie's wish that her father was still alive fuels the non-existent smell of the ghost impersonating him. Back in the London office, Yvonne contacts Dr. Rajesh Singh (Raji James) who works in a lab somewhere in the building. She asks if he's seen any reaction from the Sphere, a huge black spherical spaceship, and he says it still doesn't exist according to his readings. Two workers on Yvonne's floor, Adeola (Freema Agyman) and Gareth (Hadley Fraser) have an office romance going on, and they sneak out to the section of the building under construction work for a snogging session. Gareth goes back without Adeola, and she goes into the section to look for him. She sees a tall, oddly shaped sillhouette, which she asks about Gareth's whereabouts. It lunges at her and she screams.

In the playground where the TARDIS has landed, the Doctor sets up equipment to find the origin of the ghosts by triangulation. It works as a ghost appears in the centre and takes a swing at him before disappearing. The interruption in the ghost shift has been detected, and Yvonne has a worker tap the CCTV network to get visual. The Doctor goes back into the TARDIS, headed for the source of the ghosts, and the CCTV boots up, showing the TARDIS, which Yvonne and the worker recognise. The Doctor realises he's accidentally took off with Jackie still onboard the TARDIS, and they land in the office building with her complaining all the way. Noticing the armed guard outside, the Doctor says he's going alone, but Yvonne's knowledge of him forces him to bring out Jackie, introducing her as Rose. Rose stays inside the TARDIS as Yvonne welcomes the Doctor and Jack to Torchwood. They soon find out that Torchwood's motto is "If it's alien, it's ours" and so the TARDIS is seen being taken away to storage.

Yvonne tells Rajesh that the Doctor has turned up, and she, the Doctor and Jackie head down to the lab with the Sphere in it, hoping the Doctor will identify it. On the way, Yvonne explains that the Doctor has been the whole basis of Torchwood since Queen Victoria set it up following their encounter with the werewolf. Her naming of the Doctor as an enemy means that he is now a prisoner in Yvonne's eyes. They arrive in the lab and the Doctor immediately identifies the Sphere as a Void Ship, a ship capable of travelling through the nothingness between dimensions. He is told that it came through a breach in time and space that is in the office upstairs, and the ghosts followed it. The Doctor tells them to send the Sphere back to the Void, and demands to see the breach. Upstairs, he tells Yvonne to cancel the next ghost shift, which she does after a fair amount of bluffing by the Doctor.

Meanwhile, Rose has come out of the TARDIS, found a lab coat and brought the psychic paper with her, and is now trying to find out what's going on. She goes into the Sphere room, and tries to fool Rajesh into believing she is a technician sent to check up what's happening with the Doctor by using the psychic paper. Unfortunately, Torchwood employees have psychic training and so the paper remains blank to Rajesh, who calls security. He tells a man in a lab coat called Samuel to keep an eye on her. As Rose discovers, "Samuel" is really Mickey (Noel Clarke). Upstairs, the Doctor explains that the ghosts are bleeding through the faultlines caused by multiple ghost shifts, out of their world and into ours. Rajesh contacts Yvonne and tells her about Rose, and she asks the Doctor if he knows her. He tries to bluff but it doesn't work, and he admits that she's Rose. At that moment, the ghost shift continues regardless. Yvonne tries to order the workers to stop, but Adeola and Gareth, amongst others, are unresponsive.

The Doctor notices they're all wearing earpods, and says he's sorry to Adeola before deactivating her earpods with his sonic screwdriver. She dies, and so do the other workers, but it's too late to stop the ghost shift, unless the Doctor can find the signal origin of the earpods. He traces it to the construction area, where he tells Yvonne that their universe is colliding with another. He traces the signal to his left, and a Cyberman bursts out of the plastic sheet beside him. All around them, Cybermen burst out, and the Doctor tells the soldiers to do as they're told, as they're all frogmarched back up to the office by the Cybermen. They start to kill remaining workers as the ghost shift begins. Millions of ghosts now come through, all over the world, and one by one, they lose their disguise as ghosts and become Cybermen. In the Sphere room, the readings suddenly go wild as the Sphere suddenly exists. Rajesh unsuccessfully tries to contact Yvonne, as Mickey tells Rose that the Sphere has some kind of super-Cyberman in it.

The Doctor notices on a monitor in the office that the Sphere has been activated and asks the Cybermen where they got the technology to build a Void Ship. The Cyberleader tells the Doctor that it does not belong to them, and they simply followed it through the breach it made. In the Sphere room, Rajesh, Mickey and Rose gather in front of the opening Sphere, as Mickey recovers a concealed gun from under a table. He points it at the Sphere, but when he sees what comes out of it, he realises he's wrong. Rose is astonished by the sight of what's really in it. A black Dalek, followed by three gold ones and a strange device, flying towards them screaming "EXTERMINATE"...

Grade (on a scale of 10): 7

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