The new Doctor has 20 minutes to save the world, and only Amy Pond – the girl who waited – can help him.
The episode saw a complete change in cast and production crew. The episode was written by new head writer and executive producer Steven Moffat and directed by Adam Smith.
In the episode, the newly regenerated Doctor (Matt Smith) crashes his time and space machine, the TARDIS, into the small English village of Leadworth, where he meets a young Scottish girl named Amelia Pond (Caitlin Blackwood). The Doctor is forced to leave, but promises Amelia he will return in five minutes. However, he arrives twelve years late and is confronted by the grown-up Amelia, now known as Amy (Karen Gillan), who does not trust him. He attempts to gain her trust to help return the shape-shifting alien Prisoner Zero to the galactic police, the Atraxi, before they destroy the planet.
The episode is the debut of Smith as the eleventh incarnation of the Doctor and Gillan as his new companion. It also introduced Arthur Darvill as Amy’s boyfriend Rory Williams, who would later become a main cast member. The show’s tradition is for the Doctor to rest after he regenerates, but Moffat decided to have him save the world instead. The episode sets up the main story arc of the series by introducing the cracks in the universe. The episode received positive reviews from critics, who welcomed Smith and Gillan into the series.