People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.
The DVD intro screen for The Chase, which consists of Daleks shouting at gargling Mechanoids, isn’t meeting with approval from the Him.
Him: This looks rubbish already.
Me: You’ve seen it before.
Him: I don’t remember it. The Mechanoids look rubbish.
Me: Give ‘em a chance.
And we’re off! The recap tells us what we already knew, namely that the Daleks can travel through time now and want revenge.
Him: They say everything three times.
The title screen comes up. A model TARDIS hangs nonchalantly amongst doilies dyed black. The music doesn’t really help to set the mood of excitement and foreboding that you’d have thought they’d have wanted.
Me: ‘The Jazz Chase’.
Inside the TARDIS, the Doctor is polishing his acquisition from Xeros. Sadly, it’s not a dinosaur.
Him: Is that the Space-Time Visualiser then? Hang on. Jupiter… Saturn… Pluto and Venus. That’s very limited seeing as it’s alien technology.
The Doctor is most unimpressed with Vicki’s whistling and asks her to… leave - although it certainly doesn’t sound like that. Vicki… leaves to annoy Ian, who is sitting on a shirt dressed in a deckchair. Ian’s reading the Boys Guide To Alien Monstrosities.
Vicki: What are you reading?
Me: “Doctor’s Diary.”
Vicki seeks out Barbara and annoys her too, thus collecting the set. There’s a high-pitched whining noise, but it doesn’t appear to be coming from Vicki. It turns out the Doctor’s having difficulty getting the Time and Space Visualiser to tune in. I’ve a suspicion that the full long-winded bafflegab explanation as given might have been written on the back of the machine for William Hartnell to read out.
The Doctor: Do I detect a hint of sarcasm, hmm, dear boy, hmm?
Him: A hint?
Me: This all seems a bit comedic. I’m not sure Terry N wrote this bit.
Me: Yeah. I think his stuff’s yet to start.
I’m sure I’ll be corrected if I’ve got that wrong. It’s a gut feeling that arises from watching someone try on regenerations later in the series. Anyway, more bafflegab explanationing is taking place. Venderham’s Law is quoted. Vicki joins in.
Me: Oop – science.
Him: Barbara doesn’t know what they’re on about, but Ian’s loving it.
Now that’s all out of the way, we can reveal that it’s a big Time Telly. The Doctor turns to Ian.
The Doctor: I want to give a little demonstration. Will you, uh, think of an event in history, hmm?
Ian picks the first thing that anyone would. The Doctor tunes in, as requested, to the unedited version of the Gettysburg Address.
Him: It’s in black and white. I’m disappointed. So it must have Earth as an option.
Leaving aside the fact that it looks a lot more like Aridius than Earth, the Address doesn’t last too long.
Him: I’d love one of those – it’d be awesome because there’s all sorts of things that you could prove – well, you would know what had happened.
Me: Isn’t that a bit selfish? What about the good of humanity?
Him: What’ve they ever done for me?
Me: Made Doctor Who?
Me: They made Doctor Who.
Him: But that was just one team of people.
Me: We’re getting off course and the Daleks haven’t even turned up yet.
Him: So, this one contradicts The Dalek Invasion of Earth?
Me: Almost certainly. I’ve got a fan-theory to run by you later.
Barbara has a go. She pops a cartridge in and-
Him: It plays videos too.
Me: Barbara’s chosen The Shakespeare Code.
Shakespeare pops up. Stuff happens.
Vicki finally gets a go. She selects a classical piece and from the dusty archives of unwiped Top of the Pops crawl Beatles. It’s culturally significant.
Him: I’ve never heard that song. I’ve never heard anything by the Beatles.
Me: You have. They were going to appear all aged-up, but their manager wouldn’t allow it.
Me: Because at this point they were basically the biggest band in the world.
Him: Wow. How can I not have heard anything by them?
Me: You will have. I haven’t got any of their albums though.
Caught up in the excitement, Ian starts dancing, but not like a Dad as you’ll read in some assessments. This is because the true Dad Dance is indistinguishable from that of a gorilla. Anyway, the Him laughs. The Beatles fade into obscurity and are never heard of again.
Me: They’ve been rickrolled.
The Doctor: Now you’ve squashed my favourite Beatles.
The Him arfs.
Me: That was a lucky guess.
Him: What was?
Me: That the Beatles would end being so influential.
Him: I notice Cradle of Filth haven’t been in the new series.
Him: I notice Cradle of Filth haven’t been in the new series.
The TARDIS lands in a new adventure on what appears to be a beach, so it’s lucky that Ian dressed for the occasion.
Me: “Meanwhile, on a beach.” And Terry N starts writing.
Everyone leaves the TARDIS for a look around. Barbara finds it hot. The Doctor puts this down to the two suns.
Me: “We’re on Tatooine.”
Vicki reckons there might be something interesting on the other side of the dune to the left and she’s off like a beach rabbit, with Ian in pursuit.
Me: That looks alright.
Vicki stands on some smelly old seaweed and then spots a trail.
Ian: It’s probably blood.
As they head off to explore, a tentacle rises from the sand behind them. Elsewhere, Barbara and the Doctor are sunbathing. The Doctor is singing with delight.
Barbara: What’s that awful noise?
We laugh. Turns out it’s the Not-A-Dinosaur. Luckily it’s tuned into Dalek TV.
Me: Barbara’s dream continues and now she’s a Dalek agent – deep undercover.
The Daleks reveal their nefarious plans out loud. They’ve got a time machine and they’ve found the TARDIS. They’re so happy they all start singing.
Me: It’s a musical.
The Doctor and Barbara are horrified. The Daleks reveal where the TARDIS has landed – which is clever, as the Doctor’s never too sure. It’s Aridius.
Him: So it must be arid.
Black Dalek: THE-DOC-TOR-AND-THE-THREE-HU-MANS-DE-LAYED-OUR-CON-QUEST-OF-EARTH!
Him: Hang on. That means that the Daleks must’ve succeeded later on.
The Daleks launch their shiny new time machine in pursuit and The Chase gets going properly.
Him: What’s that?
Me: It’s the DARDIS. But nobody makes the mistake of naming it as such onscreen.
Ian and Vicki, unaware of the impending threat, are looking for things to get attacked by.
Him: They’re casting very long shadows.
Ian finds a ring in the sand which prompts a story from Vicki that’s so long that by the time she’s finished it’s got dark.
Ian: Well, shall I pull it or shan’t I?
Naturally, Ian pulls it. Drawbridges are mentioned. A hole opens up in the set.
Him: Oh – cool.
Ian lets Vicki climb down for a look. Back near the TARDIS, Barbara and the Doctor want to leave.
Me: He’s wearing his Fifth Doctor hat.
Ian and Vicki are having a poke around under Aridius. There’s some creepy music but…
Him: There’s nothing there.
Another tentacle appears and closes the door. Something gurgly begins the long shamble toward Ian and Vicki. On the surface, the Doctor and Barbara are caught in a sandstorm. The next day Barbara and the Doctor emerge from the sand, to find that the landscape’s changed. How will they find the others and the TARDIS?
Him: Ian’s got a magnet.
Because we need a cliffhanger, a Dalek tries to pull itself out from the sand.
Me: Why’s it moaning?
THE DEATH OF TIME
The recap Dalek’s still stuck.
Me: The music’s a bit jaunty for this.
Daleks are all over the beach.
Him: That one’s hovering.
Me: We’ve seen the Daleks coming out of water and sand so far. What’s next?
Barbara and the Doctor prepare to continue their search, but are surprised by mermen. Elsewhere, Vicki screams. Ian, being an old hand at this type of thing, offers some sage advice.
Ian: Don’t just stand there and scream you little fool! Run!
Ian and Vicki run straight into another one. Ian adopts the Bung-A-Rock-At-It defence.
Him: “Maybe if I annoy it, it’ll make a mistake.”
The Daleks have found tracks. An Aridian pops up to welcome them to the planet and gets exterminated. The Doctor and Barbara have met Malsan the Aridian who isn’t played by Hwyl Bennett, and Rynian who is. The sad tale of Aridius is told. Basically it was wet, but now it’s dried up. The drying up has made the flesh-eating Mire Beasts really hungry. Luckily the Aridians have been trapping them underground so they can blow them up. Which might cause Ian and Vicki some problems.
Him: So this planet has always been called Aridius, even when it was full of water?
Vicki is grabbed by a Mire Beast. Or is she?
Him: They’ve spelt her name wrong.
Me: That might be this Dalek story’s subtitle in-joke/deliberate mistake.
The explosion explodes.
Me: That looks good.
Fulfilling his contractual requirements, Ian gets caught in one final rockfall.
Him: And Ian’s dead.
The Doctor, Barbara and the Aridians have reached another entrance to the city. Elsewhere, excited at having discovered the whereabouts of the buried TARDIS, there’s a marvellous Dalek conversation taking place. It goes like this:
First Dalek: IT-MUST-BE-UN-COVER-ED-BE-FORE-WE-CAN-DE-STROY-IT!
Second Dalek: YES!
First Dalek: WE-WILL-TAKE-SOME-AR-ID-IANS-PRIS-ONER!
Second Dalek: YES!
First Dalek: AND-USE-THEM-TO-DIG-THE-SHIP-FREE!
Him: Triple ‘yes’ for the win…
Second Dalek: YES!
First Dalek: WELL?!-SEE-TO-IT!
Back with Barbara and the Doctor and lunch is being had. The Aridians pop back to lay down some exposition.
Him: Maybe that’s what the Voord look like under their helmets.
Me: Almost certainly.
The Daleks, being swines, have offered the Aridians an ultimatum. I’m pretty sure by now that you can guess what it is.
Me: Nice shot of Hartnell there.
Vicki manages to dig her way back up to the surface, just in time to see the Aridian prisoners of the Daleks uncover the TARDIS. The reward is extermination.
Him: Got two with one shot.
Excited, the Daleks try a TARDIS extermination. It fails. They decide to wait. Vicki heads back underground. The Doctor and Barbara await their handover. Ian wakes up but Vicki gets nabbed by an Aridian and rejoins the Doctor and Barbara. Suddenly, a Mire Beast attacks and our heroes escape in the confusion. Ian finds the TARDIS and our heroes are reunited. Ian has a plan.
Ian: Oh, Barbara, could I, uh, have your cardigan?
Barbara: Oh, not again!
Him: That’s right. Ian took Barbara’s last cardigan in the Space Museum. And unravelled it.
The scheming pays off and following a distraction, the Dalek guarding the TARDIS falls down a hole. Or at least that should be what happens, it’s quite hard to tell.
Me: Oh. That’s interesting.
Me: I could hardly see that, it was so dark.
We check the production subtitles and they say it’s day.
Me: There’s a bit on the extras where it shows the shot as day, I’m sure of it. I know it’s only a small point but I think I’m a bit annoyed.
Him: By what?
Me: By the fact that I couldn’t see what was going on. There’s been a mistake somewhere, I’m sure.
Our heroes escape Aridius but the Daleks aren’t giving up.
NEXT: FLIGHT THROUGH ETERNITY1
Me: So, that’s the end of episode two of The Chase.
Him: It was alright.
FLIGHT THROUGH INFINITY
On the TARDIS escape celebrations are taking place. A beeping interrupts the festivities.
The Doctor: That’s my time path detector. It’s been in the ship ever since I constructed it.
Him: Did that mean the Doctor built the TARDIS?
Me: Right. I’m going to use the fabulous “Doctor comma who is required” argument here. The Doctor’s talking about the Time Path Detector being constructed and then left in the TARDIS afterwards.
The Daleks are in hot pursuit. On the DARDIS is a type of Dalek we’ve never seen before…
Him: Slow Dalek.
Me: But he’s a genius – Christopher Eccleston said so. Or, maybe he’s usually the Architect Dalek and he’s been press-ganged into the Execution Squad to make up the numbers.
Back on the TARDIS, Vicki offers Barbara some chocolate.
Barbara: What flavour is it?
Him: What’s a guava?
The Doctor’s calculated that there’s no escape. They need to land for at least twelve minutes to give the computers time to warm up. But where to land? Oo – stock footage…
Me: Great. Daleks in Manhattan.
Him: That’s New York.
Tourists are fluttering around the top of the Empire State Building as attempts at fulfilling the show’s educational remit are rattled over.
Me: There’s a lot of ‘visual shorthand’ going on here.
Him: It’s like Friends all over again.
Me: How so?
Him: It’s where Friends was set.
Me: On top of the Empire State Building?
The TARDIS lands, startling hillbilly tourist Morton Dill.
Me: A subtle, underplayed performance here.
Barbara and Morton exchange dialogue until Vicki emerges. Vicki recognises ancient New York from the stock footage.
Vicki: There were pictures of it in our history books. It was destroyed in the Dalek invasion.
Me: Which is ironic, seeing as they built this building in the first place. Hey – maybe the Architect Dalek’ll get the idea for designing the Empire State when he visits it.
Ian and the Doctor emerge. It’s too much for Morton and, as his brain begins to expand to fatal proportions, his hat falls off.2
Ian: This is no place to meet the Daleks. A lot of innocent people could get hurt.
Me: And a lot of innocent fans will get upset.
Me: Dalek/Human hybrid. Tch. What a pile of Sensorite.
The TARDIS leaves. Morton fills in the time until the DARDIS arrives blustering gamely. The Daleks are met with derision.
Me: I love the eyestalk, the way it follows him.
Him: And it doesn’t kill him.
Finding no intelligent life, the DARDIS leaves.
Me: And you didn’t recognise him?
Him: I didn’t.
Me: It was Steven.
Him: “Don’t be blue, Peter”?
Me: The same. Pulling a Karen Gillan there by appearing as a different character before becoming a companion. Ian Marter did it too. And Freema.
Him: Freema did? Oh yeah – the Doctor pulled her brain out the first time.
Me: That’s right. Ian Marter played Harry.
Him: Of course – he was in Carnival of Monsters as the guy on the boat. And Karen Gillan was in Fires of Pompeii. I remember that because you made me rewatch it so we could see her after it was announced that she was going to be a companion.
Me: Lalla Ward too.
Him: Yes – Princess Astra.
Me: There were fan rumblings that Cary Mulligan might be back but then she started getting nominated for grown-up awards so I doubt it’ll happen.
Him: Who’s Cary Mulligan?
Me: Sally Sparrow.
Him: She should come back.
Me: I don’t think she will, but she was very good.
Back in the story, the TARDIS continues to flee.
Me: I don’t know if you count Catherine Tate.
Him: No. Because she’s a companion in The Runaway Bride and she’s Donna.
Me: Who would you like to come back as a companion? Which actor?
Him: “I’ve got an ant now. Ants are cool.”
Me: I meant more from the new series.
Him: Amelia Pond. She should be a companion.
Me: I think she’s had a pretty good crack at the whip to be fair. Stormaggedon?
Him: Bit young. The Doctor couldn’t be carrying a companion in a papoose.
There’s a pause while I regain my composure.
Him: I wish he could have Zombo as a companion – that’d be cool.
Me: Well, Steven Moffat did say that there’d be a new companion in 2012 and was vague about whether or not we’re looking at a him, a her or an it, so you might be in luck. I’d imagine that the odds against it would look like a pure mathematics equation though.
Him: 2 to 1.
Me: I feel you’ll be disappointed.
Him: Why? A giant ant as a companion would be amazing.
Me: Anyone else?
Him: You just want a Zygon.
Me: That would be great. You could have a different companion every story.
Him: They did that already with Kamelion.
Me: They could’ve, but they didn’t. Kamelion got popped in the corner to soak up dust.
Him: An Adipose! The Doctor could keep it in his pocket.
Me: For when he got stressed?
Him: No! “Fat attack!” What else? Baby Macra? A tiny Maggot?
Me: I’m returning to The Chase.
The TARDIS is landing, whether the Doctor likes it or not.
Him: What’s that?
Me: It’s a boat.
Him: Which one? The Mary Celeste?
The TARDIS lands as one of the ship’s crew writes down details on a small blackboard. It’s a nice touch, for reasons that will become apparent.
Me: Oh. That’s good.
Barbara emerges and gets captured as a stowaway.
Me: She’s done it again.
Him: Why did she need to go anywhere in the first place?
Vicki spots that Barbara’s in trouble. In the TARDIS, the Doctor and Ian are catching a swift rest.
Ian: Barbara’s got a case of ‘call of the sea’.
The Doctor: Ah, I’m sorry about that too.
Me: Nice throwaway line there.
Vicki clocks Barbara’s assailant and then Ian as well, for good measure.
Me: Check his hand for a black spot.
Our heroes bundle back aboard and the TARDIS leaves the ship. On the DARDIS…
Me: They’re watching Doctor Who again.
The DARDIS lands.
Me: You could see the name of the ship then.
The Daleks startle the crew who begin abandoning the ship. There’s a Dalek overboard and the ship’s name is revealed.
Him: Oh – it is the Mary Celeste!
On the TARDIS, Ian’s wound is being tended. He reveals he caught sight of the name of the ship. The policy of non-interference proves to be rather pliable. Especially for a history teacher.
Me: Barbara does it again.
2. No it doesn’t.
JOURNEY INTO TERROR
Me: Yay! That looks great.
The TARDIS lands in a dusty old castle. Our heroes emerge and assess whether or not it’s a good location to make a stand.
Ian: Ideal place to fight Daleks, you know? Good stout walls, an upper storey, stairs. Daleks don’t like stairs.
Him: That’s a great line.
The lights flicker and bats flap. The Doctor allays Vicki’s fears about vampires with a quick burst of biology. He suggests the girls guard the TARDIS, whilst the boys make a proper assessment, starting with the upstairs.
Me: “After you, Chessington.”
Him: What’s burning in those things?
Me: No idea.
Barbara and Vicki do a bit of cowering then start looking around, starting with the fireplace.
Him: Secret switches? No. Just glowing eyes.
Me: It’s an odd story.
Ominous laughter sounds as the ladies open an empty casket. Then a skeleton lands on them. The Doctor and Ian have found a ghost.
Him: That was weird – Ian looked more like a ghost.
The Doctor’s found a familiar looking laboratory. There’s a shrouded shape on the table in the middle of it which turns out, naturally, to be Frankenstein’s Monster. Barbara and Vicki bump into Dracula, Vicki vanishes, and then:
Grey Lady: Unshriven!
Me: That’s got to be one of the weirdest moments of the whole series so far.
Not quite, because the Doctor’s about to say possibly the most important line in Doctor Who’s history.
The Doctor: Yes, we’re in a world of dreams.
Me: Yes, you are and they’re Barbara’s.
The Doctor: Creaking doors, thunder and lightning, monsters, and all the things that go bumpety bumpety in the night! Hmm?
Him: “Bumpety bumpety?”
Ian counters that the house is real. And that’s when this happens:
The Doctor: Yes. Yes, it exists in the dark recesses of the human minds. Millions of people secretly believing. Think of the immense power of all these people, combined together, makes this place become a reality, hmm?
Me: Now then. I’ve been teasing you with this all being Barbara’s dream since The Romans, even though I should’ve said it’s been going on since she bumped her head on the way into the TARDIS back in An Unearthly Child, because that’s when it all starts getting truly odd. But what the Doctor says here about the TARDIS being able to land in the world of imagination is very important. He thinks it’s possible. And we’re a long way from The Mind Robber yet.
Him: Isn’t this just an amusement park though?
Me: It is. This time. What I mean is – and bear with me – the TARDIS could actually land in the world of Doctor Who.
Him: No. No. No no no! NO! Doesn’t make sense! It always lands in the world of Doctor Who.
Me: Thought I’d give your brain a bit of a stir.
The Doctor and Ian discover the girls have gone. The Doctor calls for them.
Me: He forgot her name.
At this moment, the DARDIS lands – and reveals that the story’s taking place on Earth, rather than within Ideaspace or anything daft like that, and back in the real world Frankenstein’s Monster is kicking seven rels out of a Dalek.
Me: You just keep telling yourself that.
Keeping the Abbot and Costello theme alive, in the grey corner we have a Dalek versus Dracula. Then everyone starts fighting as our heroes, mostly, escape. I say mostly, because Vicki gets left behind.
Me: It’s gone mad.
The Doctor reinforces his theory that the TARDIS landed in an area of human thought. Following a tasteful camera pan we find we’ve been in a theme park all along.
Him: Why were they attacking them then?
Me: Maybe it’s all gone Jurassic Park.
After a couple of days Vicki’s absence is noticed. On the DARDIS, the Daleks have calculated that the TARDIS will next land on the planet Mechanus. Not only that, but they’ve repaired their new bit of kit – the Reproducer. No mention is made of how it got damaged, but I reckon the Architect Dalek was involved.
Me: Ah. The Daleks think the Doctor’s human here.
Vicki sneaks out from where she’s been hiding and tries to phone the TARDIS.
Him: Really? Of all the places to hide.
Me: It’s not like Ian would ever do that. Or Jo. Or Turlough.
The Daleks decide to make a copy of the Doctor.
Me: Here goes with an unthought-out rubbish theory. What if the Daleks are using the Flesh for their replicas?
Him: They aren’t. They make robots.
Me: It was worth a shot – I warned you it was a rubbish theory. I prefer saying that the Flesh’ll turn out to be what the Rutans really are. That’s my theory, Chris. My theory. What it is. And it’s mine. Cough.
Ian decides that the best way to find Vicki is to capture the DARDIS. He’s right, of course. On the DARDIS itself questions are being asked.
Me: The Architect Dalek’s a bit confused there.
Him: See? It’s a robot, not Flesh.
Me: I was really using it as an excuse to bring up my new Rutan theory without having to wait until – well, August at the earliest if we get back on track, but more likely October, when we get to Horror of Fang Rock.
Doctor Whom is revealed.
Him: It’s rubbish!
Me: Good idea though.
Him: And they’re using William Hartnell for the close-ups.
NEXT: THE DEATH OF DOCTOR WHO
Me: Oh, God! Now we’re stuck with it! Thanks, Terry. Therry.
The credits roll and the Grey Lady catches my attention.
Me: Oo – Unshriven Menoptra Wrangler. Why is it that whenever Roslyn turns up, reality pops out for a walk?
THE DEATH OF DOCTOR WHO
We recap. We’re on a world of killer vegetation with Daleks on the way – Terry N written through it like a piece of Cromer rock. Barbara, Ian and the Doctor are looking at the undulating plant life.
Me: What’s that?
Him: It’s not a tree.
Ian decides it must be a living fungoid and gives one a swift left jab.
Ian: They sting!
Me: Well, you did punch it.
Suddenly, lights go on, forming a corridor through the stinging mushrooms. The Daleks have arrived and adopted a scorched earth policy. Doctor Whom is sent off to find our chums. Vicki sneaks off the DARDIS. Barbara, the Doctor and Ian continue their amble – followed by Doctor Whom. Vicki gets attacked by a mushroom but escapes. The Doctor, Ian and Barbara have run out of lights and found a bit of a cave. Barbara finds a mushroom scarer. Vicki has found the TARDIS, but it’s empty. The Doctor and Ian prepare a trap for the Daleks while Vicki wanders throughout Mechanus – she gets stung again which alerts our chums. The Daleks aren’t doing much better with the mushrooms either.
The Doctor and Ian find Vicki – she’s collapsed. Back in the cave, Doctor Whom finds Barbara and lies to her. The bounder. Ian and the Doctor carry Vicki caveward. Barbara’s not there.
Him: Is that not the Doctor? Is that the other guy?
Me: It is. Billy’s tearing around the studio like a mountain goat in order to get to his next mark.
Vicki recovers enough to deliver some story.
The Doctor: A robot exactly like me?
Vicki: Every detail.
Me: “Except the face.”
Barbara and Ian are reunited and the Doctor and Doctor Whom confront each other. But which one’s which?
Him: See which one gets his lines wrong.
Ian starts a fight with the Doctor, which is careless. Doctor Whom goads Ian on, but in doing so, makes the mistake of calling Vicki ‘Susan’. Ian twigs and stops beating up the proper Doctor. The Doctor is not even slightly amused about being impersonated.
|Iconic Moment #41|
Me: Right. Going on past performance, Hartnell’s going to do his best to actually kill this bloke.
There’s a fight and good wins. The Daleks have found the TARDIS. Our heroes decide to have a sleep. Whilst they slumber there’s the ultimate boom-in-shot shot. The next morning a city is revealed in the daylight.
Me: I remember you enjoying this story from here on.
The Doctor, excited, wakes everyone up.
Me: Why’s the Doctor keep calling her ‘Barb’?
Him: It’s better than ‘Bub’.
Me: In an alternate universe there’s a version of the X-Men where William Hartnell plays Wolverine.
The Daleks are drawing closer.
Me: Blimey! The Jazz Daleks are back.
The Doctor pretends he’s really Doctor Whom, but the Daleks aren’t having any of it.
The Doctor: They know now who’s Who.
Him: Great joke, Terry.
Suddenly the cave wall opens and a Mechanoid appears. It’s such a shock even the subtitles are thrown.
Me: I’m going to put my neck out a bit here and say that I quite like the Mechanoid voices.
The Him does an impression.
THE PLANET OF DECISION
We recap with different subtitles as our heroes follow the Mechanoid.
Me: The Daleks sound like Gumbies.
Him: What’s that thing on the top of the Mechanoid? It’s just bubbling away.
The Daleks are flustered.
Him: I notice the Architect Daleks got a tiny butterfly net. “OO!-A-RED-AD-MIR-AL!”
Our heroes enter the Mechanoid city.
Me: ‘Enter. Enter. Zero. Stop.’
Prodded into a holding pen, we meet a bearded gentleman. This is Steven Taylor, and we’ll be seeing more of him.
Him: Is that Steven?
Me: It is.
Him: I don’t like him. He looks weird. I’m used to Ian now.
Steven introduces our friends to his friend, a cuddly panda named Hi-Fi. Everyone has a chat next to the climbing frame Steven’s built for himself.
Him: Where’d Steven get all the wood?
Me: From the jungle, I reckon.
Ian comes up with a mad plan to escape. Downstairs, there’s a battle made in licensing heaven with Dalek versus Mechanoid.
Him: How’d the Daleks get in?
Me: That Mechanoid was a bit of a pushover.
Our heroes must escape by lowering themselves to the ground. Vicki’d rather not do it, despite a helpful suggestion.
Me: I couldn’t do it blindfolded, I think that’d be a lot worse.
Fire breaks out. The scrap downstairs is moving to the next stage.
Him: Whoah! What was that? What are the cartoon explosions for?
Me: It’s alright, Richard Martin’s since apologised.
Boom! and indeed, Zap! Our heroes have escaped.
Me: Oh – they left Steven.
Him: I’m pretty sure he’s a companion.
The Mechanoid city is destroyed.
Me: That was a big explosion. Thank the Lord for stock.
Our friends find the DARDIS. There’s a little bit of rejoicing before Ian and Barbara realise that they can now get home using the DARDIS.
Me: “And thankfully, the Daleks will never make another one.”
Ian and Barbara decide to ask the Doctor if he’ll help. Steven is stumbling through the jungle, being jumped by fungus.
The Doctor: I don’t want to know! I don’t… I want none of it! I’ve never heard such nonsense in my life! You’ll end up as a couple of burnt cinders floating around in Spain- In space! You idiots!
Me: It doesn’t sound as funny in context. I’m not sure that all this is being acted.
Vicki calms the situation. Barbara and Ian and the Doctor say their goodbyes.
Him: Why don’t they just use the TARDIS? Apart from the ‘can’t-land-anywhere-twice-in-a-row’ thing that comes up at random, there’s no reason not to.
Me: Maybe the Doctor can’t bluff them anymore.
Ian and Barbara land in White City. The DARDIS is destroyed and there’s a quick recon to celebrate. We last see Ian and Barbara about to be thrown off a bus for fare-dodging. I’m a bit choked up, but I don’t tell anyone. The Doctor and Vicki reminisce. The Doctor has aged.
Me: That was really sad. Following it in order changes everything, I think.
Him: They’re gone. It’ll be weird not having them around.
NEXT: THE WATCHER
Him: Hang on. Where’s Steven?
And that question will remain unanswered a little longer, chums. Because this is what we’ll be having a look at in our next instalment: