‘I’ve had bad experiences with aliens bearing gifts.’ The Sarah Jane Adventures revisits The Claws of Axos with seemingly-friendly aliens offering the solution to world hunger, only for that gift to turn deadly. The good news is this is much (intentionally) funnier than The Claws of Axos, with a script that’s well balanced between the comedy of Sarah Jane entertaining the Blathereen for dinner, or Clyde borrowing K9 to cheat a biology test, with Luke succumbing to the effects of the rakweed spores.
Now K9 can be a full-time member of the team, Laight’s script actively looks for ways to get him involved. This is wise: he’s just a better idea than Mr Smith (hence the brilliantly bitchy, ‘A break from the dog is most appreciated.’) I guess it creates a quandary – K9 isn’t confined to the attic which opens up opportunities, but these have to be judged against the show becoming K9 and some kids tagging along. I think this gets it exactly right: he’s not infallible, losing the Slitheens’ scent, and Rani points out ‘He makes a right racket’. But something about him makes this feel complete.
Next Time: The Gift – Part Two