Doctor Who Recap: “Dinosaurs on a Spaceship”
With an unidentified spaceship on a collision course with Earth and the clock ticking before missiles destroy it, the Doctor gathers his ‘gang.’ Accompanied by Queen Nefertiti (who seems intent on finding a new husband), he picks up Riddell, a big game hunter from the early 20th century, before materializing the TARDIS around the Ponds. Before they can protest, they are on the spaceship, accompanied by an unexpected guest…Rory’s father, Brian.
Once the Doctor finishes accusing Brian of being a stowaway, Rory tells his befuddled father that he and Amy didn’t go to Thailand after their wedding; rather, they were traveling through all of time and space. The gang runs into dinosaurs, and the Doctor, Rory, and Brian are subsequently teleported onto a beach.
Meanwhile, Amy, Nefertiti, and Riddell evade dinosaurs and gain access to an information bank. Amy discovers that the ship is actually a Silurian ark, carrying the dinosaurs to a new world to prevent extinction. Nefertiti and Riddell’s bickering borders on flirtatious, much to Amy’s dismay.
Ever the handyman, Brian produces a trowel (“What sort of a man doesn’t carry a trowel?”), and starts digging in the sand, only to discover that they’re still on the spaceship. A sudden influx of pterodactyls sends them running, and the trio encounters a pair of crotchety robots, whom the Doctor later dubs “metal tantrum machines.” The robots lead the Doctor to Solomon, an injured man who murdered the Silurians in order to steal the dinosaurs.
With Rory and Brian held hostage to the robots’ mercy, the Doctor is forced to heal Solomon. Immediately thereafter, the trio make their escape on the back of a friendly triceratops. The Indira Space Agency contacts the Doctor, and informs him that the missiles are ready to be launched. Despite his protestations, they refuse to back down.
Rory suggests that the Doctor check the ship for defense systems, leading to an unexpected kiss between the Time Lord and his shocked and dismayed father-in-law (Rory/Doctor shippers, rejoice!). Unfortunately, the Silurians never equipped their ship with weapons, leaving the group defenseless.
Solomon reappears, and demands that the Doctor give him a cargo more precious and rare than the dinosaurs: Queen Nefertiti herself. Solomon kills the helpful triceratops to drive his point home, and Nefertiti gives herself up over everyone’s protestations. The Doctor comes up with a plan to rescue Nefertiti, redirecting the missile’s signal to Solomon’s space craft. For once, the Doctor shows his enemy no mercy; he unflinchingly sends Solomon to his death.
The crisis averted, the Doctor brings Riddell back to the African plains. Nefertiti, it seems, has found a new lover; rather than go back to her own time, she joins Riddell. Brian, having survived a teleport, a dinosaur ride, being shot by robots, and piloting a spaceship (alongside Rory), sits on the edge of the space-faring TARDIS, enjoying his meal and the view of the Earth. His quiet life of fixing lightbulbs and playing golf disrupted, the formerly travel-phobic Mr. Williams becomes a world traveler, sending Amy and Rory frequent postcards…including one from Siluria.