Satellite Five was a space station in Earth orbit circa the year 199,909. It was a hallmark of the Fourth Great and Bountiful Human Empire, though the reputation that was built up about the satellite across time and space was not what it appeared to be. Satellite Five was deliberately framed in eyes of the public as an innocent technological vestige of humanity to turn their attention away from the ideas it could be subject to corruption, which let its controllers secretly manipulate Earth into a subservient dictatorship. It served as the centre of two major conflicts that threatened the welfare of the planet below, while the residents of Earth were never made aware of the truths behind the facade.
Hydra Combination was used in the construction of the station, comprising the door to at least the observation deck. As the Ninth Doctor stated, that side of the station was reinforced against meteors. (TV: The Parting of the Ways)
At least during the Ninth Doctor's first visit there, Floor 000 served as arrivals and departures. Floor 016 was the surgical level. Floor 500 was the editorial level, where management was based, and the place to which everyone aspired to be promoted — despite the fact that those who did were never seen nor heard from again. The walls were rumoured to be made of gold. However, in reality, Floor 500 was very different: frigid, dilapidated and all but abandoned. (TV: The Long Game) In 200,100, the same area served as a command centre for the Controller. On this level were archives, including Archive Six where the TARDIS was kept. (TV: Bad Wolf) Other floors, for example, Floor 139, contained a food court which was visited by the Doctor, Rose Tyler and Adam Mitchell in the year 200,000. It served junk food, much to the confusion of the Doctor, who believed humanity had "fine food" in this era. (TV: The Long Game)
Satellite Five (199,909 - 200,001)
Satellite Five went online in 199,909 during the Fourth Great and Bountiful Human Empire. According to the Editor, it contained every piece of information within the Empire including birth certificates, shopping habits, bank statements. It was responsible for broadcasting six hundred channels of constant news reports throughout the Empire. Personnel gathered, wrote, packaged and sold the news, sorted using brain chip technology.
In the year 200,001, the Ninth Doctor, Rose and Adam materialised on floor 139 and found humanity was being manipulated by an unknown entity. They discovered that the Jagrafess was subtly manipulating the Empire, changing its social, economic and technological growth and making it more inward-looking and xenophobic. The human race had been reduced to slavery without realising it.
The environmental systems of Satellite Five had been configured to vent all heat away from Floor 500, keeping it cold enough for the Jagrafess to survive, attached to the ceiling of the main control room. When captured by the Editor and about to be killed by the Jagrafess, the Doctor and Rose were saved by Cathica Santini Khadeni, a human journalist who reversed the environmental systems. The Jagrafess overheated, swelled up and exploded. The Editor was caught in the explosion and supposedly killed. (TV: The Long Game) However, the slavery of humanity continued.
Game Station (200,001 - 200,100)
A hundred years later, Satellite Five had become the Game Station. Run by the Bad Wolf Corporation and overseen by the Controller, it broadcast game shows and reality TV. The contestants were not volunteers. Anyone could be chosen at any time and transmatted to the station. The shows included a version of the Big Brother House on Channel 44000, The Weakest Link, What Not to Wear, Call My Bluff, Countdown, Stars in Their Eyes, Ground Force, Bear With Me, Wipeout, (TV: Bad Wolf) My Hazmat Suit Has a Rip In It, Get Me Out of Here!, The Great British Take Off, Just a Minute, Homes Under the Hammer, Through the Keyhole, Bargain Hunt, Strictly Comet Dancing, Only Connect, and Have I Got Killer Robots For You?. (PROSE: Knock! Knock! Who's There?) If the contestants failed, they were, supposedly, disintegrated. This was not the case. Contestants were actually being transported to another location, where they were harvested for genetic material meant to rebuild the Dalek race.
The Ninth Doctor, Rose and Jack Harkness woke up to find themselves on board the Game Station. The Doctor had been transported to a future version of Big Brother. Rose was forced to play a deadly version of The Weakest Link, while Jack appeared in a 2001st century version of What Not to Wear. After escaping, the Doctor discovered that the Daleks had been controlling humanity. They had been hiding their own transmissions within the Game Station signals — and before that, Satellite Five's transmissions, controlled for them by the Jagrafess. (TV: Bad Wolf)
It was from this point that the Battle of the Game Station began. The contestants and some of the staff fought against the Daleks using barricades and bastic bullets in the hopes they could fend them off long enough for the Doctor to construct an operational Delta wave that targeted only the Daleks. The Daleks were finally destroyed when Rose, having made contact with the heart of the TARDIS and transformed herself into the Bad Wolf entity, turned every last Dalek in existence to dust, including their Emperor. The Doctor had to extract the energies of the time vortex from Rose's body to save her life, but it cost him another of his own. He regenerated into his tenth incarnation shortly after suffering cellular degeneration from the vortex energies as they turned corrosive. (TV: The Parting of the Ways, Children in Need Special) Resurrected from death at the hands of the Daleks by the Bad Wolf and abandoned by the Doctor, Jack made his way from the station to Earth. Combined with several starliners and a couple of freight ships, the Game Station was soon repurposed into a new structure, Trear Station. (AUDIO: The Year After I Died)
Behind the scenes
- According to The Visual Dictionary, which is not considered to be a valid source on this wiki, Floor 247 of Satellite 5 specialised in lifestyle programming. The satellite also had several main residential floors.
- According to The Time Traveller's Almanac, which is also not considered to be a valid source on this wiki, people aspired to be promoted to editorial on Floor 500 of Satellite 5. Said floor was also rumoured to be made of gold, and had fifteen different food menus, marble toilets, and double beds. The staff of Floor 500 were also rumoured to have lead positions on the satellite.