The Shakespeare Code


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The Shakespeare Code

Series 3

Episode 2

First Transmitted

7 April 2007

Final Ratings





Series 3 volume 1


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Regular Cast

David Tennant (The Doctor), Freema Ageman (Martha)

Guest Cast
Dean Lennox Kelly (Shakespeare), Christina Cole (Lilith), Sam Marks (Wiggins), Amanda Lawrence (Doomfinger), Linda Clarke (Bloodtide), Jalaal Hartley (Dick), David Westhead (Kempe), Andree Bernard (Dolly Bailey), Chris Larkin (Lynley), Stephen Marcus (Jailer), Matt King (Peter Streete), Robert Demeger (Preacher), Angela Pleasance (Queen Elizabeth 1).


Written by Gareth Roberts
Directed by Charles Palmer
Produced by Julie Garner and Phil Colinson


Martha takes her first trip in the TARDIS, all the way back to Elizabethan England. She and the Doctor witness a series of bizarre deaths and discover that playwright

William Shakespeare is being controlled by dangerous witch-like creatures. It seems the time-travelling duo must defeat ancient forces to prevent history from being rewritten.


  • The Doctor has met Shakespeare before in the comic strip A Groatsworth of Wit and claimed to have helped him write Hamlet in City of Death. He has also met him in the Big Finish plays The Time of the Daleks and The Kingmaker.
  • The Carrionites were banished to the void (referenced in Army of Ghosts / Doomsday) by the Eternals, seen in the The Fifth Doctor story Enlightenment.
  • The Tenth Doctor has seen a man drown on dry land before in The Mind of Evil.
  • The Doctor’s reaction to Martha adopting a Jacobean dialect is similar in tone to that of hearing Rose speaking in a Scottish in Tooth and Claw.
  • An arrow has been shot into the TARDIS door before, in the story Silver Nemesis. and later in Robert of Sherwood
  • The Doctor’s reference to a Sycoraxlinks back to his first full story, The Christmas Invasion. The character of Sycorax appears in the Shakespeare play The Tempest.
  • The Tenth Doctor claims to have met Shakespeare in Planet of Evil, believing his acting to be awful. Also, The Doctor, Ian, Barbara and Vicki, although not meeting him, saw Shakespeare’s visit to Elizabeth’s court through the time/space visualiser in The Chase.
  • The Tenth Doctor uses the title of “Sir Doctor of TARDIS”. (Tooth and Claw)
  • The Doctor’s psychic paper fails to work again because the person on the receiving end is able to outsmart the trick it plays on the mind. (Army of Ghosts)
  • The crystal ball imprisoning the Carrionites reappears when The Doctor is fishing through a TARDIS chest for an Agatha Christie novel. (The Unicorn and the Wasp)
  • After arriving in 1599, Tenth Doctor tells Martha to “walk like you own the place.”the Seventh Doctor told Ace something similar while they were investigating at Windsor Castle. (Silver Nemesis)

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