The Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) hears distress calls coming from the planet Ranskoor Av Kolos. With her companions Graham (Bradley Walsh), Ryan (Tosin Cole), and Yasmin (Mandip Gill), she finds wrecked spaceships on the planet’s surface and a psychic field that alters one’s perception of reality. They meet an amnesiac pilot named Paltraki (Mark Addy) and help him regain his memory. Then he receives a video signal from Tzim-Sha (Samuel Oatley) who demands the return of a rock floating in a protective shell if he wants his kidnapped crew back alive. Tzim-Sha, whom the Doctor likes to call Tim Shaw, was the being who killed Graham’s wife a few episodes ago, and Graham intends to kill him.
The group enters Tzim-Sha’s ship. While Yasmin helps Paltraki with his memories, Graham and Ryan search for the kidnapped crew. The Doctor confronts Tzim-Sha and learns that he won the loyalty of the religious Ux race, who can manipulate reality. They think he’s God. He spent 3000 years combining their powers with Stenza technology to create a life-support system and a weapon that shrinks planets. Yasmin and Paltraki discover four such planets in stasis. Tzim-Sha intends to get his revenge on the Doctor by Shrinking Earth, her favorite planet, but she cautions him against threatening reality.
The Doctor stops the Ux from shrinking Earth by convincing them that Tzim-Sha exploited them. They use the TARDIS and Tzim-Sha’s ship to restore all the planets. As Graham and Ryan free the kidnapped crew, Tzim-Sha finds Graham in his trophy room, ready to kill Tzim-Sha, but he and Ryan only shove him into a stasis chamber forever. The Ux leave with Paltraki to return the crew to their own worlds.
The episode—the last of Season Ten—was written by Chris Chibnall and directed by Jamie Childs. It received mixed reviews. Chris Chibnall wasn’t thrilled with the episode because they had to film the first draft. He thought it was not good enough for a season-ender. Planets were also compressed in a 1963 Doctor Who episode called The Pirate Planet. In the background, one can hear the four-beat sound of a Time Lord’s heart. The Doctor recalls that one of her previous incarnations used the TARDIS to tow Earth across the galaxy. She calls the Ux faith-driven dimensional engineers. They can tap into the maelstrom of psychic energy that is their planet. Their religion foresees the return of their deity, The Creator, and Tzim-Sha arrived just in time to convince them he was that deity.
The Stenza, Tzim-Sha’s people, are unable to innovate, so they force other races to create weapons for them. Apparently, the TARDIS is a bit prickly about being summoned by the sonic screwdriver. The Doctor’s reluctance to kill her enemies sometimes results in their becoming more dangerous. At the end of the first Jodie Whittaker season, despite her attractive manic charm, we’re still waiting for the Doctor to show signs of the rage and grief that made some of her previous incarnations powerful and compelling. But in this episode, Graham shows that depth and he kind of stole the episode.