The central message is clear and inspiring - you can turn right and pick a seemingly stable 20k per annum career that means a predictable future full of staplers and wandering hands. Or you can turn left and take a bold risk by temping, keeping your options open and clinging onto your hopes and dreams. Take the gamble and you might just meet someone very special... perhaps with a fondness for the phrase 'Allons-y'.
(Note to students: Taking a permanent job will most likely not lead to London being blown up, America beng turned into living fat and the eventual destruction of planet Earth. So don't use that as an excuse!)
Russell T. Davies's script rewards regular viewers of the show (eight million of them!) by incorporating events from previous Donna Noble episodes - and giving them a very dark twist. There's mass bloodshed, but never at a loss of the humanity and spirit that Davies effortlessly weaves into the narrative. Just witness the emotive rendition of 'Bohemian Rhapsody' in the cramped house of beleaguered evacuees.
The return of Billie Piper to the show has launched a thousand headlines, but sadly her performance as Rose Tyler serves largely as a distraction. She looks fine, with her haunted eyes signalling that much heartache and darkness lies ahead. There's no doubting she's a superb and proven actress. But the voice - those familiar chavette tones of Rose Tyler - oh dear. Has Rose had some major dental work over in her parallel Earth and had her mouth numbed with local anaesthetic?
The stars might be disappearing, the darkness is apparently coming, yet we're too busy trying to figure out Rose Tyler's speech impediment. Maybe she assimilated Chris Eubank while passing through the Void? Fortunately, she finds her character's voice again in the next episode and is back on fine form.
Who would have thought Oliver Morgenstern from 'Smith And Jones' would make a random comeback? It seems a shame that the demise of various companions like Sarah Jane and Martha occur off-screen, but it could be argued that one's own imagination can fill the gaps in a more harrowing way than any images could.
Take the evacuated Donna's Italian housemate, who she calls 'Mussolini' in a rather incongruous but non-malicious piece of racial stereotyping. He appears to be a nauseatingly cheerful stock character, but suddenly we're stunned and affected by the fact that he's being carted off to a concentration camp.
This is powerful writing for a family show, especially as Wilf poignantly remembers the similar horrors he has experienced in the last World War. "It’s happening again," he movingly states. Can someone please knight Bernard Cribbins asap? Preferably The Queen, assuming she's not busy digging a Titanic spaceship out of her back garden.
Inevitably, the effectiveness of the drama is watered down by a strong feeling that The Doctor will be restored to life by the end of the episode. The point is slightly laboured about The Doctor's importance to the well-being of the world, but there's plenty of fun and thought to be had throughout the story.
But when everything is seemingly restored to normality, the big Bad Wolf comes a-howling again. The season finale is upon us...
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