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Don't Step on the Grass was the four part story arc begun in Doctor Who (2009) #9. It was the first story in the series to be set on modern Earth, and featured the return of newly-married Martha Jones, Captain Magambo and UNIT.


When the Doctor is called back to modern-day London by Martha Jones and UNIT, the last thing he expects are the Enochian Angels of Elizabethan magician John Dee, the secret underground library of Greenwich Park, and an army of angry living trees!


The Doctor is summoned to Greenwich Park by Martha and Captain Magambo who claimed that the trees were moving, three people were ingested by them and the trunks were marked with Enochian symbols, a language invented by mathematician and magician John Dee to converse with angels. The Doctor realises the "angels" were trapped beneath the observatory for four hundred years, but emerged through the trees in the park. While he sends Martha and Matthew to investigate Crane's house, the Doctor, Emily and gardener Mr Crane head into the passages beneath the park to communicate with the "angels", in actual fact aliens waiting in suspended animation for the Doctor to come and take them home. With a UNIT soldier, Martha and Matthew search Mr Crane's house. Matthew discovers a sketch of the Advocate, but the soldier takes it from him, urging caution in his dealings with the Doctor. The soldier is really the Gizou in disguise. Martha, meanwhile, discovers an alien dossier on the Doctor and realises he has been set up. Believing the Enochai's story, the Doctor sets them free, but it was a trick. John Dee had trapped them, but they are now free to take over all of the trees and claim the Earth.

The Enochia realise the Doctor didn't remove the forcefield trapping it and order Crane to shoot Emily. The Doctor and Emily escape but plunge down a hidden shaft into an ancient cavern where they discover a stripped down colony ship containing thousands of Enochians in stasis. A holographic projection of John Dee informs them that the Enochians were energy beings who planned conquest. Emily escapes to the surface but Crane catches the Doctor and the Enochian orders his imprisonment. The Advocate arrives and opens the stasis pods, releasing the Enochia. The trees drive UNIT back, but the situation becomes even worse as the Enochia flood out of the ground.

The angels trapp Central London in a forcefield. A battle with UNIT begins, leaving UNIT seriously outgunned. The Doctor speaks to one of the angels and realises it is the Gizou in disguise. The Gizou reveals that the whole scheme is a set-up. The Advocate appears to Martha and the trapped humans and proposes a way of ending the crisis, by striking at the Enochian ship. Crane, who overhears the Gizou, rescues the Doctor. Martha, meanwhile, escapes the bunker, finds Emily and, with the help of the Knights Arboretum, a select group of gardeners of which Crane was once a member, is reunited with the Doctor. Returning to the bunker, the Doctor confronts the Advocate, but Magambo refuses to allow him time to develop an alternative solution to the Enochia threat and insists on following the Advocate's plan. She arrests the Doctor.

With the help of the Knights Arboretum, Martha and Emily rescue the Doctor. Mr Crane, meanwhile, has returned to the ship on a suicide mission to destroy it. The Doctor arrives and launches the ship into space, which draws all the energy creatures up with it. The Advocate's bomb is no longer needed, but the countdown is accidentally started. Mr Crane spots it in the nick of time, but if he raises his finger from the button, the ship will explode. The Doctor cannot do anything to save him so escapes using a pair of angel wings. The Advocate uses Crane's death to finally destroy Matthew's faith in the Doctor and Matthew elects to instead travel with the Advocate.




  • This story was originally solicited as a two-parter in December 2009.[1] By January 2010, the story was described to retailers as a four-parter.[2]
  • Distribution problems plagued the first part of this story, and it was unusually not released across the United States on the same day. Readers on the east coast were not able to purchase Doctor Who (2009) until 24 March 2010. Readers in the midwest and west got it on its intended release date, 17 March 2010.[3]
  • The Doctor says he "played Hamlet a little while back". David Tennant played Hamlet in a 2008 Royal Shakespeare Company production.
  • This story was reprinted in the IDW graphic novel Tesseract.


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