8 / 9. Human Nature / The Family Of Blood

Series 3 - 2007

Writer: Paul Cornell
Produced by: Susie Liggat
Director: Charles Palmer
Music: Murray Gold


The Doctor and Martha are being pursued and manage to get into the TARDIS. The pursuers haven't seen Martha, but have seen the Doctor and are chasing him because he is a Time Lord. The only way to escape is to hide from them – and to do that the Doctor must become human. Everything that the Doctor was is held inside a pocket watch.

Mr. John Smith, a teacher at a public school in 1913 awakens to his maid, Miss Jones, bringing him breakfast. He having dreams about being an adventurer in the future where his maid is his companion. During the day, whilst Mr.Smith teaches, Martha cleans the school, dealing with racist remarks from the pupils.

In the corridors Mr. Smith meets nurse Joan Redfern. She invites him to a dance. Taken aback he falls down some stairs. Nurse Redfern sees to his head, and Martha rushes in to see if he is okay, which surprises both Smith and Redfern as this behaviour is not expected from a maid. Smith tells Redfern about his dreams, and how he imagines he has two hearts, which of course he does not. He also shows Redfern his 'Journal of Impossible Things', which contains sketches of strange creatures (Daleks, Cybermen) and people (Rose and previous regenerations).

In a dormitory the usual public school hierarchy applies where prefects order around lower year groups.One boy, Tim Latimer, seems to have the ability to guess future events. Whilst he is told to done a prefect's homework another boy, Baines, goes off to to get some drink.

Whilst talking another maid, Jenny, at night Martha sees a green flash in the sky. Redfern also seems the flash and is frightened by it. Smith reassures Redfern that it was only a meteorite, but Martha isn't convinced and goes to investigate. Baines is in the woods looking for booze when he sees the light descend and walks into an invisible spaceship. He finds a door and enters the craft. When Martha and Jenny arrive there is nothing to see.

Inside the ship Baines is taken over by one of 'the Family'. He returns to the dormitory without any beer and seems a little vacant.

The next day Martha goes to an old building housing the TARDIS. Inside everything but the console has been powered down where memories about the Doctor becoming human using the Chameleon Arch come flooding back. The Doctor left her instructions, but there is nothing about dealing with meteorites - or falling in love, as Smith and Redfern start getting closer.

Latimer goes to Smith's office to collect a book, and can see through the perception filter on Smith's pocket watch. When opens it he can hear the voice of the Doctor. All Smith can see is a watch. Latimer takes the watch with him when he leaves. When Latimer opens the watch Baines can sense its presence, and orders the soldiers to be activated.

The soldiers are scarecrows. When a local man, Mr. Clark, sees one move he assumes that it is a lad messing around. When he goes to confront it he is kidnapped, as it a little girl, Lucy Cartwright, walking down a farm lane. A while later Jenny is also captured. When Smith and Redfern are walking he notices a scarecrow moving and reattaches it to its cross.

Back at the school the boys are practising firing machine guns. Although the headmaster says they should imagine that the targets are tribesmen, Latimer can foresee a future war in which he can can see the death of himself and a boy called Hutchinson.

Jenny goes to see Martha, but Martha becomes suspicious that something is not right. When she leaves she is fired at by Jenny. Martha tries to convince Smith to leave, that the Family has found them. When he doesn't believe her she slaps him to bring him round, and is promptly dismissed as a servant.

The Family (Baines, Clark, Jenny and Lucy) are looking for Smith, and crash the village dance, where Martha is talking to Redfern. The people at the dance are terrified when the Family and the scarecrows enter the hall. Lucy has heard the talking and they realise that Smith is the Doctor, even though Smith has no idea what they are talking about. To persuade Smith to turn back the Family hold a gun to the heads of Redfern and Martha and ask him to choose one.

Latimer, hiding in the crowd, distract the Family by opening the watch, allowing Martha to get one of the guns and takes Jenny as a shield. Martha tells Smith to get everyone, including himself, out of the hall. One of the scarecrows gets the gun off Martha but she manages to escape. Jenny can smell where Martha has been and tells Clark to go to the old building, whilst the rest go to the school in pursuit of Smith. At the school Smith commands the schoolboys to take arms, warning of an enemy at the door.

Outside Baines provokes the headmaster and shows off the scarecrows and explains they are animated by molecular fringe animation. Baines orders the headmaster to give them Smith. As the school is barricaded Baines orders more scarecrows into position. Lucy tells Baines to wait as she suspects Smith is hiding something.

Meanwhile in the old building Clark find the TARDIS and surrounds it with scarecrows.

Inside the school Latimer is wondering what to do with the watch - when it warns him about Lucy. He opens the watch and directs it at Lucy. Sensing the watch Baines orders the scarecrows to attack. As the scarecrows attack, and the schoolboys return fire, the Doctor is unable to shoot, and watches as the scarecrows are cut down.

The Family are searching the school for Latimer and the watch. When he opens the watch in the dormitory Jenny and Lucy, along with some scarecrows go after him, but he escapes out of the window into the forest. The Family return to their ship and start to power up the systems.

Redfern leads Smith and Martha to the Cartwright's empty home. Latimer meets them there with the watch. Martha takes the watch and hands it to Smith. Smith doesn't want to become the Doctor, the man in his dreams, and Latimer tries to persuade him. Smith takes the watch as the Family start firing at the village. Martha urges Smith to change. She tells him that the Family are after a Time Lord otherwise in three months they will die. But if they get the watch or a Time Lord they will live to cause destruction forever.

Smith finds his way to the Family's ship and urges them to stop. Whilst talking he starts hitting switches. He hands over the watch, but when they open it nothing happens. Smith has already opened the watch, and the Doctor is pretending to be Smith. All the time in the ship the Doctor has been causing a feedback in the ship. The Doctor escapes from the ship, followed by the Family as the ship explodes.

The Doctor then shows a sinister side when dealing with the Family. Clark is locked in unbreakable chains, Jenny is imprisoned forever, Lucy is trapped inside a mirror, and Baines is suspended in time.

Regular Cast

  • Martha Jones: Freema Agyeman

Guest Cast

  • Joan Redfern: Jessica Hynes
  • Jenny: Rebecca Stanton
  • Tim Latimer: Thomas Sangster
  • Baines: Harry Lloyd
  • Hutchinson: Tom Palmer
  • Clark: Gerard Horan
  • Lucy Cartwright: Lauren Wilson
  • Rocastle: Pip Torrens
  • Phillips: Matthew White
  • Doorman: Derek Smith (8)
  • Mr. Chambers: Peter Bourke (8)
  • Vicar: Sophie Turner (9)
  • Older Schoolboys: Harry Ferrier, Tom Bishop, Christian Byard, Sam Hawyes, Jake Kedge, Jolyon Westhorpe, Benji Talbot
  • Schoolboys: Elliot Blackler, Owen Griffith, Harry Penketh, Louis Ryan, Adam Smith, Eifon Ap Cadno, Alex Robertson, Alex Varney, Jack Walker Williams, Jack Palmer, Tom Ferriman, Ben Bodycombe, Matthew Gourlay, John O'Gara, Josh Clarke, Alex Francis, Simon Morgan, David Jacket
  • Mr. Snell: Simon Morgan
  • Scarecrows: Pete Symonds, Mat Doman, Ken Hosking, Rauri Mears, Claudio Laurini, Adam Sweet, Sean Saye
  • Soldiers: David Morris, Hopcyn Huw Henry
  • Lady with Pram: Caroline Martell
  • Child with ball: Charlie Perkins
  • Workmen: Julian Hensey, David Brewer, Simon Cornish
  • Villagers: Alwyn Scott, Jason Shepherd, Tim Driscoll, Stephen Evans, Simon Challis, Charlotte Fortune, Lydia Horton, Ken Hosking, Rauri Mears, Adam Sweet, Sean Saye, Pete Symonds, Mat Doman
  • Band: Nick Madge, Julian Hensey, Doug Kirby, Jon Childs
  • Village Dancers: Alwyn Scott, Jason Shepherd, Mark Spriggs, Iestyn Jones, Tom Driscoll, Stephen Evans, David Brewer, Andrew Bullivant, Simon Challis, Simon Cornish, Richard Knott, Jon Lloyd, Janet Leigh Thomas, Franco De Marco, Natalie Danks Smith, Cath McGowen, Catrin O'Neil, Adele Orchard, Lydia Horton, Nina Haggett, Maddi Knibbs, Deborah Light, Charlotte Fortune, Heidi Hollis, Gabrielle Windsor, Amy Baker, Robin Brewer, Louise Maddy
  • Village Workers: Mat Price Evans, Simon West, Elen Florence
  • Double for Baines: Kristen Hicks
  • Uncle: Anthony Brannan
  • Male Guests: Tony Was, Stephen Reynolds
  • New Born Baby: Cole Coombs
  • Young Boy (10yrs): Corey Evans
  • Young Girl 1 (9yrs): Abigale Piontecki
  • Young Girl 2 (8yrs): Rebecca Owen
  • Old Lady: Margaret Taylor
  • Old Tim: Huw Rees
  • Public: Tony Was, Stephen Reynolds, Susana John, Anthony Brannan, Mike B. Jones, Elved Lovey, Gordon Styles, David Morris, Hopcyn Huw Henry, Jonesy T. Jones, Bryn Middleton
  • Choir Voices: Simon Morgan, Jack Walker Williams, Jack Palmer, Oliver Ferriman, Christopher Woodwood, Tom Boulding

Original broadcast on the BBC

Channel Title Date Viewers Rating
BBC 1 8. Human Nature Saturday, May 26, 2007 7:10 PM - 7:55 PM 7.7M 86
BBC 1 9. The Family Of Blood Saturday, June 2, 2007 7:10 PM - 7:55 PM 7.2M 86

Click here to show repeat broadcasts on the BBC


  • Upper Boat Studios, Trefforest

Outside Locations

  • BBC Broadcasting House, Llandaff
  • Cwm Ifor Farm, Caerphilly
  • Llandaff Cathederal, Llandaff, Cardiff
  • Neal's Soils, Wentloog Road, Cardiff
  • St. Fagans National History Museum, St. Fagans, Cardiff
  • Treberfydd House, Llangasty, Brecon
  • Tredegar House, Newport