It has come to my attention that some people are severely lacking in their Doctor Who spinoff knowledge. Oh, they say, we have Torchwood when we want a group of kooky misfits from demographics underrepresented on mainstream telly being awesome and saving the world in morally ambiguous circumstances. How can a generic kids show ever manage something like that?

Well, how amazing is Sarah Jane Adventures? Let me count the ways. The main kids are:

  • a black, sensitive, streetwise artist who cooks, somehow manages to be a cool Star Wars fan, and understands what makes people tick, while also making every single alien menace explode from simply being in his awesome presence. Has been implied to be the Doctor v.2 multiple times
  • a brave, practical lesbian with so much heart played by a mixed-race actress, who is possibly having an affair with the universe and electrocutes gun-weilding maniacs and makes everyone want to be her best friend just by breathing
  • a white, dopey, non-delinquent, happily adopted lad who is completely well-adjusted, adores his adoptive mother, is a walking collection of Victorian/Lovecraftian/sci-fi horror tropes and basically exists to be kidnapped and rescued by everyone else
  • an Indian girl who loves writing, sexily empathises with everyone from hot time war refugee girls to lonely teen queens of England on death row, has to know everything and refuses to take any shit she doesn’t deserve, and is sarcastic and weirdly fantastic at doing impressions of bad guys.
  • Oh, and a little girl who explodes robots and stuff, just for the sake of having an action girl preteen who explodes robots and stuff, and is all about getting shit done and pointing out when the other characters are being a bit thick.

And their leader is a gorgeous fifty year old woman who just happens to be the best companion from some other scifi show, who kicks ass and welds things and bullies people holding guns and is the best journalist in the world and will sometimes ride a motorbike through lasers and also has serious grown up problems and is visited a lot by her ex and everyone knows they are having secret makeouts off-screen, including all the kids and the computer.

All the episode names are parodies of Victorian feminist fiction, 60s horror and campy scifi. How can you not love that?

And every kids show needs unambiguously evil menaces. So the main villain is a creepy faceless dude who’s evil repertoire includes saving people who are about to die, setting them up for long, happy lives, and helping them find kickass soulmates. And he can only be defeated by moving scenes where the main characters convince these innocent victims of circumstance to commit suicide. Other recurring villains include: a traumatised little boy whose family were killed by the main characters; the biological mother of aforementioned adopted lad who has lost her mother and siblings (because the main characters murdered them, natch) and is desperate to reconnect with someone; and a man who survived a genocide, goes mad with grief and loneliness and must be stopped from trying to save the last members of his species.

Also Alexander Armstrong lives in the chimney and is a huge attention whore. And is having a gay romance with a metal dog.

2 years ago with 68 notes