‘That is the dematerialising control, and that, over yonder, is the horizontal hold. Up there is the scanner; those are the doors; that is a chair with a panda on it. Sheer poetry, dear boy! Now please stop bothering me.’ The Doctor
3rd – 24th July 1965
The Memory Cheats
The story was famous for introducing another character from the Doctor’s home. Doctor Who Weekly mentioned it quite early on their run so it held a fascination for me.
My first viewing of it was when it was repeated by the BBC in the 1990s in a series of repeats from each Doctor. I can’t say that I remember it fondly, but looking forward to giving it another go.
The Time Space Visualiser
This is now a hugely different show to the one we started with. The Doctor is amazing, every line seems genius. Steven brings a slight contrast to Ian and Vicki is moving away from just being another Susan. With Ian gone, The Doctor is also now established as the hero of the show. You can feel how the show has evolved. In my last run through I did not get the same sense of a developing television programme as I am this time.
The Saxons and the Vikings do not really add much to the story and make the Tribe of Gum look well rounded characters. Edith is quite good though. I love the Monk’s to do list. There is a TARDIS style humming in the first two episodes when we enter the monastery that should have given the game away. Steven’s shadow appears on the sky. Hartnell and Butterworth work really well together and the Monk a great foil for the Doctor. Vicki and Steven walking in on the TARDIS must have been an amazing surprise to the viewers of this story back in 1965.
A wibbley wobbly timey wimey adventure that suggests all history books would change as would their memories if the monk were successful which calls ‘Back to the Future’ to mind. I found the story much more enjoyable this time.
Episode 81 out of 826. If all of televised Doctor Who so far was an hour, I would be five minutes and fifty two seconds in.
Unprovoked Angry Retort of the Week
The Doctor to Steven: ‘What do you mean maybe? What do you think it is? A space helmet for a cow?’
The first non TARDIS crew Time Lord. It is later suggested that all Time Lords can recognise each other, although in this story, the Doctor seems to deduce that the Monk is from his own planet.
The first time we see a TARDIs other than the Doctor’s.
The first pseudo historical story that begins to sound the death knell of the historical story.
There is no ‘Next Episode’ caption and we see the travellers’ faces superimposed over a star field over the credits.
‘I left through the rear entrance.’ The Doctor, episode three, 4:30
‘Is he coming out yet?’ Vicki, episode four, 17:33
The 500 Year Diary
28th August 1066
Have a stowaway on board! That Steven Taylor with the panda somehow managed to get in before we left Mechanus (at least it wasn’t a Dalek). Rather fortuitous as actually rather missing Ian and Barbara and I’m sure Vicki could do with some young company rather than just hanging around with an old duffer like me! He’s a bit sceptical as to whether the TARDIS is a space time museum… well, I’ll show him!
We land on some cliffs and we find a Viking helmet. Either that or a space helmet for a cow. Steven suggests climbing up the cliff. I’m not a mountain goat and I prefer walking to any day. And I hate climbing. So off I go exploring leaving the two of them there. I’m sure they’ll stay put.
I come across a homestead. Next thing I’ve got a stick in my neck! It was the lady of the house, Edith, who turns out to be very nice and polite and tries to get me drunk on mead. We’ve arrived just before the Viking invasion in Northumberland in 1066. Shame Barbara’s not here, she’d be able to fill in the gaps.
Anyway I’m sitting there, listening to the monks’ singing when all of a sudden it distorts and warps. How strange! So off to the monastery only to find the singing is actually from a gramophone! Just I take this in, I get trapped and this monk starts laughing hysterically at me! Must have been tracking me. He was the watcher all the time!
29th August 1066
The meddling monk locks me up and then tries to feed me breakfast. I throw water at him!
Don’t really just want to hang around so find a secret passage (because there always is one!) in the walls. Time to go!
30th August 1066 am
Find my way back to the homestead to be reunited with Edith. She tells me that Steven and Vicki have gone off to the monastery in search of me. She also tells me that the Vikings have arrived. Perhaps the monk and the Vikings are linked?
So after a game of knock down ginger, I manage to entrap the monk; however, more visitors arrive. I decide to dress up as a monk too, but this backfires as the Vikings want to use me as a hostage. They think I’m the chief monk!
I get put back in the same cell I was in before, but these Vikings are rather stupid as get to bash one over the head from behind (I really enjoy doing that!). A battle of wits as once again I capture the monk! I need some answers!
30th August 1066 pm
This monk is one of own people and is breaking the cardinal law of non-interference. He wants to change history by destroying the Vikings before they land thus ensuring WilliamThe Conqueror loses thus keeping Harald Godwinson in charge. He seems to think this will be a good thing (although seems a bit of as strange bit of history to change).
Had a bit of TARDIS envy. He’s got a mark IV. With a working camouflage circuit (must get round to fixing this one day). And automatic drift control. And he can control where and when he goes. He has gone for the roundel desktop theme too. Never been a fan of all those fancy ones. Anyway he escapes again and manages to convince the Vikings that we’re responsible for causing trouble, so we’re tied up!
We’re saved by the Saxons and Edith unties us. The Saxons are after the Vikings and monk. Well I sorted him, by removing his dimensional control, so he can’t escape. Checkmate! Perhaps on reflection leaving him there to do more meddling was perhaps not the best thing to do. Anyway, leave him a note. Perhaps I’ll come back when he’s learnt his lesson. Maybe I’ll come across the fellow again someday!
Anyway, off we go. Galaxies and universes await!
The Five Word Lords
The one with another TARDIS