Tales from /lost+found 32: Lost in Adaptation

Yeah, I know. But stealing liberally from the TARDIS Data Core is fun. Text below the fold.

Human Nature

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Human Nature was the eleventh episode of the first season of the US series of Doctor Who. It introduced the Vampire Lords who sought to acquire the Doctor’s Time Lord biodata after he used Jagaroth technology to make himself human. The episode was based on a novel of the same name.


On the eve of World War I, Lieutenant-Colonel John Smith, guest lecturer at The United States Military Academy at West Point experiences amazing dreams of living an incredible life as a mysterious adventurer called “the Doctor”, fighting monsters and seeing far away worlds.


At Kennedy Space Center in the near-future, the Ninth Doctor watches helplessly as Mondas explodes in the sky above.

In April 1917, British Army Lieutenant-Colonel John Smith wakes up from this dream. Lizzie comes in as his maid to bring him breakfast. He explains to her that he sometimes has dreams of being an alien adventurer who was responsible for destroying an entire planet. She suggests that his dreams are due to shellshock from his recent injuries on the Western Front, reminds him that he is giving a series of lectures on military history at West Point, and assures him that he is completely human…

In flashback, we learn that several days have passed since the destruction of Mondas. The Doctor was badly shaken by guilt at having sacrificed Mondas to save Earth. In order to determine whether humanity really had the right to survive at the cost of the Cybs, he decided to experience life as a human, and used technology recovered from the Jagaroth to replace his biodata with that of a human, storing his Time Lord essence in a large pocket watch.

Later, Smith runs into Joan Redfern, a nurse, and they chat about the war. Smith talks about dreaming that he has two hearts but a stethoscope easily shows this is not the case. He shows Joan his journal of his various dreams and the creatures he has seen such as Cybs, Ice Warriors, and the TARDIS. Redfern leaves with the book and when Lizzie goes after her, she asks how Lizzie came to be there with Smith. Redfern becomes suspicious of the details of Lizzie’s story, which is made up of random elements of Legends of the Fall, Lawrence of Arabia and Gallipoli.

John lectures a class of cadets about the Hundred Years’ War, but has an awkward moment when he unthinkingly claims to have been present at the battle of Agincourt. Though he attempts to play it off as a joke, he is clearly disturbed apparent slip.

That evening, Lizzie shares a meal with her fellow maid Virginia. Lizzie complains about sexism. Virginia is amused by her modern attitude and playfully accuses her of being a suffragette. After Lizzie leaves, Virginia notices a green light and a cacophonous sound similar to that made by the TARDIS. When she goes to investigate, she is met by the Vampire Lord Hemeretus, who immediately feeds on her to restore himself after the stress of time travel.

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