Rose Tyler meets a mysterious stranger called the Doctor, and realises Earth is in danger.
“Rose” is the opening episode of the first series of the revived British science fiction television programme Doctor Who. The episode was directed by Keith Boak and written by Russell T Davies who was also one of the three executive producers. It was first broadcast in the UK on BBC One on 26 March 2005. “Rose” was the first Doctor Who episode to air since the Doctor Who television film in 1996.
The plot involves Rose Tyler meeting series protagonist the Doctor, a time-travelling alien Time Lord. She first encounters him in the department store where she works, while being attacked by Autons – living plastic in the guise of shop window mannequins. Rose and the Doctor uncover and defeat a plot by the alien Nestene Consciousness, which aimed to take over the Earth using the living plastic, after which she accepts the Doctor’s offer to travel through time and space with him in his time machine, the TARDIS.
The episode marked the debut of Christopher Eccleston, the ninth actor to play the Doctor since the programme started in 1963, and Billie Piper as Rose Tyler, the Doctor’s companion. Being the first episode of the revived series, several lead characters were introduced; Camille Coduri as Jackie Tyler, and Noel Clarke as Mickey Smith. Viewers did not see the Doctor Who character regenerate from a previous incarnation; regeneration being a plot device in which the character of the Doctor changes body and identity. Russell T Davies felt it would be clearer for the viewer to begin the series with the new actor in place rather than show the previous actor regenerating. “Rose” began filming in Cardiff, the headquarters of BBC Wales, in July 2004, with some location scenes shot in London. “Rose” was viewed by 10.81 million viewers in the UK, the most viewed Doctor Who episode since The Creature from the Pit in 1979 (making it the first episode in over 25 years); and received positive reviews from critics, though there were some criticisms of its use of humour.