Of course, The Man Who Never Was wasn’t written with the intention of providing final closure, but can they at least send the Bannerman Road crew off on a high note?
The Robot Dog And His Boy
The one thing that eases the blow, by complete coincidence, is the return of Tommy Knight as Luke Smith to meet his new adopted sister and indulge in banter with castmates. The way Luke pops back to visit, rather than flatly disappearing from existence, makes the family feeling of Sarah Jane Adventures more authentic.
We get a few Clyde/Rani moments (and yes, I did smile at “Clani”), reminders that Sarah Jane and cast are selflessly great, and a low budget version of the Teselecta from Doctor Who. The only thing missing was Luke bringing K9 back with him; they teased, but it was not to be.
The story itself wasn’t anything unusual, but it provided excuses for the cast to mix into different groups and play off each other. You may have also caught a sly genitalia reference from Clyde, angling for a new gig on Torchwood.
Goodbye, Miss Smith
So a fun story, but had to end eventually. And in the closing minutes, they slipped in a short montage to remind us that it was good, but now it’s all over. Part of me hopes for a revisitation; surely they could spare a Doctor Who episode to pop over to Bannerman Road, resolve a couple of storylines and pay homage to her?
But after watching this last series, maybe it is better to assume Sarah Jane kept going forever. She might get a brief mention once Doctor Who resumes production, but it’s been a great five years of a warm, funny and smart children’s show, and Elisabeth Sladen’s performance was a huge part of that.
To be honest, I’m glad they went out with a fun adventure rather than a weepy one, as this review would’ve turned sad pretty fast. Check the last episode out on iPlayer and let us know below how you felt about the ending. And so long, SJA. Shame you had to go.