Martha Jones one trip in the TARDIS, the Doctor takes her
back to 1599 to meet one of the most influential people
in history, William Shakespeare. As the bard receives a
standing ovation for his latest play ‘Love’s
Labour’s Lost’, he promises the adoring crowd
at the ‘Globe Theatre’ a new play the following
night, a sequel entitled ‘Love’s Labour’s
Won’, totally baffling the Doctor and Martha as this
play doesn’t exist in his complete works. As they
investigate they discover that not everything is what it
seems and they might be a supernatural influence behind
of the series most ambitious episodes, the Doctor and Martha
travel back to the time of Queen Elizabeth I, but is this
the series' Hamlet or is it much ado about nothing?
world is a stage but in the world of Doctor Who,
time plays a great factor and the TARDIS gives Russell T.
Davies and his creative team the chance to take the series
anywhere. For ‘The Shakespeare Code’ they do
just that as we witness the Doctor and Martha travel back
to 1599 and to visit the Bard himself, William Shakespeare.
the Doctor’s plan of taking Martha back in time to
watch a play by the greatest playwright of all time doesn’t
go smoothly as the pair soon become entwined in an adventure
that could see the world ending and creatures from the dawn
of time taking over the Earth.
Gareth Roberts really has fun with the episode, getting
to create a Shakespeare that we have never seen before and
one that could easily become a hero for the ages. Played
with great wit and aplomb by Dean Lennox Kelly, best known
for his performances in the cult Channel 4 comedy ‘Shameless’,
this Shakespeare is more than a match for David Tennant’s
Doctor, just as clever and just as funny.
script cleverly works in many a nod to his plays as well,
showing were he might have got many of his influences from
and the Doctor and Martha inadvertently dropping many of
his more famous lines into their conversations, with Shakespeare
saying ‘I might use that’.
set design, the visual effects and using the actual Globe
Theatre help make this one of the best looking Doctor
Who episodes since the series returned. Add to this
good performances from Christina Cole and her fellow witches
as the villains of the piece and Freema Agyeman continuing
to grow into the role of the increasingly sexy Martha Jones
and you have an episode that fans should really enjoy.
Shakespeare Code’ is another example of how good Doctor
Who can be and sets a very high standard for the new