‘In this strange complex of time and space, anything can happen.’ The Doctor
28th May – 18th June 1966
The Time Space Visualiser
Another big concept science fiction adventure with the notion of a futuristic race depending on a ‘lower’ life form to The Elders seem to know of the Doctor and have been following his travels through space and time. With The Toymaker and The Monk, the legend of the Doctor is beginning to grow.
By the end of the story with the gift of hindsight, there is a sense of the impending change as the Doctor is growing weary following the draining of his life force by the Elders. Steven leaving and the impending departure of Dodo in the next story also signal that the times they are a changing.
Possibly because it is missing I found the story hard to engage with. Steven’s departure is perhaps the saving grace of this story. You do get the feeling that his travels with the Doctor have impacted on him hugely and he is a very different character as he leaves to lead the savages to the imprisoned astronaut who joined in The Chase.
‘A place of light and learning.’ Once more we meet humans from the future who wear robes and talk in lofty hyperbole. In the future, it seems, we turn into nobs! ‘All do what he is best able to do.’
We are far into the future or we are on another planet. How can we make it all look so alien when we can only really travel as far as Surrey? I know, let’s use a gravel pit.
The savages aren’t the savages! It was the Elders all the time. We thought they were the goodies!
Episode 1 5:30
The Doctor: this is my RV you know, my reacting vibrator!
The first story to have an overall title. Individual episode titles disappear from here on in until the series returned in 2005. They will be sadly missed. Terry Nation’s were the best and often had nothing to do with the episode at all. It was also an end of an era for the viewers back then in that they did not know how long each arc of episodes would last.
Catchphrase Error of the Week
Chal pleads with Exorse, ‘Leave the girl, take me in her place.’ Everyone knows it’s ‘Leave the girl; it’s the man I want!’
The 500 Year Diary
27th October 5000000099 am
We’ve landed in the far future in an age of prosperity. Go outside to investigate with my reacting vibrator. Outside someone is watching me. As I call out, am approached by two soldiers who address me as the traveller from beyond time and they were expecting me for many years. They are surprised to find I have companions with me. I go off with Edal to meet the Elders of the city whilst Exoirse goes off to find the other two – Think they’ve had a row, Steven is very tetchy with Dodo.
The lead Elder is a fellow called Jano. They have been stalking me for some time! I am given the honour of High Elder and a nice costume to wear. Steven and Dodo are given gifts too before they go off on a tour. I question the Elders on how they have become so advanced. They can harness life’s vital force and transfer the energy into themselves. Animal vitality – impressive, but am rather suspicious.
27th October 5000000099 pm
Dodo got lost. Steven seems most concerned.
He eventually finds her and we go off to the TARDIS under the ruse of getting time travel files. Once away from the Elders, listen to Dodo’s story. Something’s not right here. We come across one of ‘the savages’ in not a good way at all. As Steven and Dodo go off to get some D403, I am approached by Edel who reveals his contempt for the man. This gets my dander up, but am forced a lightgun point back to the city where I argue my point with the Elders – it is protracted murder. They’re worse than the Daleks.
I’m then taken the lab where I’m to be the next victim as a higher form of life. Try to escape, but I’m strapped to a gurney and wheeled into a cubicle…
27th October 5000000099 eve
Where am I? What’s going on? I can’t speak. I can’t move. Help!
28th October 5000000099
Manage to recover myself in the caves of the ‘savages’. Awake just as Steven is about to shoot Jano. Intervene in the nick of time. Dodo just wants to leave, but we have to destroy the Elders’ machinery. It seems that the intransference from me to Jano has left him with a conscience.
So back to the city to smash up the equipment much to the dismay of some of the Elders. Jano asks me to stay and mediate between the early days of the new society. The job’s not for me, but I know a man who can! Steven! Initially he seems unsure, but he seems to be a good choice for everyone else. We say our goodbyes and he leaves. Another one gone. I’m sure he’ll do well, a dear dear boy.
And for once no-one dies.
The Five Word Lords
The beginning of the end.