Six episodes, so two three-episode posts. I’ve never seen this one before, so let’s see how it is!

Episode 1:

 We open with three men, obviously not of Earth (or at least not of the modern time period) talking. One asks, “You’re sure that The Master knows?” There’s a missing doomsday weapon and they suspect The Master of stealing it. Ahah, they’re Time Lords. They discuss using The Doctor, but wonder if he’ll cooperate with them, as he “resents his exile bitterly.”

 This triumvirate of Time Lords is not the same three we saw in THE WAR GAMES, nor are any of the three the one who ‘popped’ in to warn The Doctor about The Master back in TERROR OF THE AUTONS. They decide on restoring The Doctor’s ability to move through time and space, as long as it suits their needs to do so.

 The Doctor is working on the dematerialisation circuit as Jo looks on. The Brig enters The Doctor’s lab and discusses the field reports and the lack of success finding The Master. The Doctor says there’s no point, The Master could be anywhere in time and space. The Brig is aware of this but has to keep looking. The phone rings and the Brig tells them to send someone to his office. It seems one of his agents has picked up a trace of The Master, though The Doctor isn’t too impressed.

 Jo challenges The Doctor’s ability to get his machine working and quips, “What have you got in there anyhow, a policeman?” He opens the door and tells her to go in and find out – this is her first time inside the TARDIS and we get the classic line:

I don’t believe it! It’s bigger inside than out!”

 “Yes, that’s because the TARDIS is dimensionally transcendental.” – The Doctor

What does that mean?” – Jo

It means it’s bigger inside than out!” – The Doctor

 That was a fun bit.

 The interior of the TARDIS seems a bit different than we saw in the previous serial – and not just because the wiring isn’t everywhere. From what I understand a completely different set was built for this one. (Can’t imagine the sense in that, unless filming was at different locations.)

 When The Doctor puts the rebuilt circuit in, the TARDIS doors close on their own and the machine takes off on its own. The Doctor quickly realises that it must be the Time Lords.

 The Brig walks in, to report that The Doctor was right, but he sees the TARDIS disappear in front of his eyes.

 The Doctor tells Jo they’re outside the space-time continuum, and he has no idea where they’re heading. Shortly though, he realises they’re approaching the planet Uxarieus. Jo very much wants to go back to Earth – it seems she’s rather frightened.

 On the planet, we see a robot moving about, apparently searching/scanning for something – perhaps a mining robot? The area is quarry-like. After it passes, the TARDIS appears. Jo seems to almost doubt anything is going on, demanding he open the doors to prove they’re elsewhere. He does so and she is bewildered and scared when she realises it’s true, all his talk of traveling in time and space.

 He talks her into accompanying him outside to have a “quick look around”. From afar, they are observed by an alien that seems to be carrying a spear. The Doctor sees the tracks from the robot we saw earlier.

 The alien approaches the TARDIS, watching The Doctor and Jo from behind it. The two travelers poke around, but Jo doesn’t want to go any further. As The Doctor stops to look at some rocks, a man with a gun shows up, pointing it at them.

 A group of humans are arguing about whether there are creatures on this world; Martin and his lady friend claim they encountered a large lizard but were able to frighten it off with gunshots. The man Martin is arguing with claims he surveyed the world before the colony was established and there were no signs of hostile animal life forms. He asks another man, David, to go over to Martin’s dome and have a look.

 The Doctor and Jo are brought in (at gunpoint) by Leeson, the man who encountered them. Leeson is afraid that they represent the mining combines, afraid that they’ll come in and raze the planet. Ashe, seemingly the leader, says they will stay the night.

 The Doctor examines their crop records and says that he can tell unless things improve, the colony will starve to death.

 Several aliens push the TARDIS onto its side and drag it away.

 Jo is brought to the mess hall; there are several groups seated and several conversations going on, including Martin talking about seeing the creature and complaining that it wasn’t so bad on Earth, though his lady friend (wife? Sister? Associate?) says things were bad on Earth – not a blade of grass anywhere, no room, pollution everywhere and a government that locked you up for thinking for yourself.

 David arrives to tell Martin it’s time to go looking for his monsters. He doesn’t seem too thrilled with the idea of going on a monster hunt.

 A young woman, Mary Ashe, sits next to Jo. They talk about Jo’s fashion, and apparently Jo discovers she’s in the future – the colonists left Earth in 2471.

 We see a calendar that reveals it’s March 3, 2472. Leeson tells his wife that the crops aren’t growing. He complains that they shouldn’t have come there, she says it’s better than being on Earth. He still thinks The Doctor and Jo are spies for a mining combine. They hear a monstrous roar, but decide it must be the wind. They hear it again and go out to investigate.

 A giant iguana is outside. Jane gets on the radio to contact the main dome while her husband takes his gun out to try to fight it off. Jane turns and sees someone, asking who they are, what they want. She cowers, screaming, “Go away,” but we never see who or what is in the dome with her.

 The Doctor is meeting with Ashe, the leader of the colony. The colony has been there for about a year. The crops haven’t been behaving as they should have and that’s why the colony is in danger, food supplies are low. His daughter Mary and Jo rush in to tell him about Jane’s distress call.

 The Doctor heads off with Ashe to investigate. They arrive to find both Leeson and Jane dead. David (having returned from checking out Martin’s dome, apparently) says there was nothing they could do, both were dead when they got there.

 David confirms that they saw the creature, opened fire and it didn’t react, just vanished into the darkness. The Doctor questions how such a large creature could have gotten through the dome into the door.

 The colonists argue; Ashe wants to stay, David and others advocate leaving. The Doctor says there are no reasons why the planet could not sustain their crops and that something must be inhibiting the growth.

 A man, sorely injured, is brought in. He’s obviously not one of the colonists, though he says he comes from another colony on the planet. He’s been wandering nine months, says that the other colony was destroyed by giant lizards and he’s the only one left.

 We see two green skinned aliens in a dome, picking up debris. The Doctor and Ashe walk in and one of the aliens moves to attack The Doctor with a knife, but Ashe stops him, saying he’s a friend. He tells them they cannot take the things, they belong to the colony. The aliens do not talk, but seem to understand him, and The Doctor posits it must be a rudimentary telepathic ability.

 Ashe tells the aliens they must go and they comply. The Doctor says he’s not sure what he’s looking for, but hoping to find some evidence to persuade the colonists to stay. Ashe leaves to return to the main dome. As The Doctor pokes around, the robot we saw before the TARDIS arrived comes in and The Doctor panics… and the credits roll.

 Interesting so far – a colony at risk, a mystery and wondering where the Time Lords, The Master and the “doomsday weapon” fit in…


Episode 2:

 A man in a red and black uniform stops the robot (which has IMC clearly on its front – I’m guessing Intergalatic Mining Corporation) and tells The Doctor to get up. The man says according to Earth Control, this planet hasn’t been colonised. He’s with IMC – Interplanetary Mining Corporation – doing a mineral survey.

 The man insists The Doctor come with him; when The Doctor informs him two people were killed the night before, he seems rather upset at this information.

 The man from the other colony says after the lizards killed most of his colony, the primitives attacked and finished off the rest. David uses this information to support his belief they should leave.

 Ashe and a primitive come in and the man grabs a weapon, saying they can’t be trusted. Ashe talks him down and has him escorted away. When he tries to get food for primitive, David tries to stop him from giving the food away.

 The Doctor and the IMC man ride a little buggy to where the TARDIS should be, but it’s gone. They then drive onward. We see the IMC craft, and inside, other men in black and red discussing the minerals on the planet. It seems they already know the planet is assigned for colonisation, though the apparently leader quips, “Does it matter?”

 When they see The Doctor and Caldwell approaching, Morgan wonders why “the colonist” is in fancy-dress.

 “All colonists are eccentric, Morgan, otherwise they wouldn’t be colonists.” – the apparent leader.

 They discuss using the “usual story” of being shocked to discover there’s a colony there.

 The Doctor is brought in and asked to wait in a room while Caldwell goes to report to his colleagues. The Doctor sits down at the Entertainment Unit console, pressing a button, which opens a screen on the wall, which begins playing scenes of warfare.

 Caldwell reports in that Morgan killed two people, which he isn’t supposed to do. The leader asks Morgan about it, who claims it was an accident, that he was spotted and they fired on him. Caldwell’s protests are subdued when they show him the mineral reports on the planet.

 “Your bonus will be big enough to retire on.” – the leader (whose name hasn’t been given yet.)

The Doctor is approached by Captain Dent (the leader who is now named), who says there’s been a mistake. When The Doctor says he’s glad to hear that and expects that IMC will be leaving, Dent didn’t say it was their mistake. They begin discussing the needs of Earth for the minerals. The Doctor takes the stand that Earth needs new colonies, where people can live like people and not cooped up like hens.

 Captain Dent leaves, saying they’re obviously on opposing sides. The Doctor asks about his “equipment”. Dent talks to Morgan, discussing suspicions that he might be from Earth. Morgan is given orders to take The Doctor back to the wrecked dome and have The Doctor’s dead body found there.

 Morgan and The Doctor head back to the wrecked dome; three aliens impede their progress, brandishing spears. Morgan pulls out a gun, but The Doctor stops him from firing it. Instead, the Time Lord gets out of the vehicle, catches a spear as it is thrown, and uses it to fight off the three primitives. He gets back in the vehicle and they drive on.

 Mary and Jo are preparing food for the colonists. Ashe arrives, asking about Winton (David), but Mary says he is showing Norton (the man from the other colony) around. Jo comments that Norton’s made a remarkable recovery.

 Winton shows Norton to the power room, where a primitive is seen assisting the man tending the power room. They discuss the ability of the primitive to always know what tool he needs next (again, supporting The Doctor’s suspicions of some telepathic ability), and Norton specifically asks where they get their power from – the answer being the ship’s nuclear reactor. (I suspect Norton of some chicanery. A bit later, they talk about how Jim in the only engineer they have, and how they’d be lost without him… I don’t know if Norton is working for IMC or is part of a third force at play here – we still haven’t seen any sign of The Master yet, or anything that would worry the Time Lords.)

 After they reach the mess hall and Mary tells Winton her father needs to see him, Norton makes excuses to leave, saying he’s tired and going to lay down. He returns to the power room, attacks the primitive assisting Jim, and then grabs the primitive’s spear and approaches Jim menacingly.

 Mary and Jo enter Ashe’s office, but the power goes out. Norton shows up, grabbing Ashe, saying he has to come with him. He leads them to the power room, where Jim and the primitive are dead. The relays have been destroyed and Ashe says Jim was the only one who could fix it.

 Captain Dent contacts IMC HQ via a scrambled message, reporting the rich minerals and the presence of colonists. Caldwell comes in, saying the mineral strike is the richest they’ve ever seen. As they talk, Caldwell realises that The Doctor is in danger with Morgan. Dent says The Doctor is a government spy, but Caldwell says it’s still murder. Dent pressures him, bringing up that Caldwell is up to his ears in debt, and if he crosses them, he’ll be blacklisted and never work for anyone ever again.

 Morgan and The Doctor arrive at the wrecked dome. The Doctor suggests that the damage could have been faked by a mechanical device. Morgan activates a switch and asks, “You mean something like this?” The robot comes in with giant claws on his arms, threatening The Doctor.

 Morgan pulls a gun on him, saying it’s only business, nothing personal… and the credits roll.

Episode 3:

 The Doctor disarms Morgan, who runs out the door. The Doctor grabs the control device from where Morgan dropped it and shuts it down.

 The colony only has power for a few days. Norton and Winton have been working on the power relays (like that’s going to turn out well). Ashe, Jo and Mary are talking about finding The Doctor when they hear the landing of a spacecraft.

 The IMC ship lands just outside the main dome of the colony.

 Captain Dent meets with Ashe, pretending he has no idea about the colony being there. Winton gets aggressive with Dent, but Ashe gets him to back off. The Doctor shows up and makes accusations against Dent about the fake monsters. Dent goes off to contact the Ajudicator’s office.

 The Doctor says he’ll help with the power relays in exchange for help finding his TARDIS later. He and Ashe leave to tend to it. Norton says he’s been hunted by the giant lizards, and turns to Winton. Winton says, “I saw something… it could have been faked.” Norton tries to discredit The Doctor, and Jo suggests to Winton that they try to find some evidence for The Doctor’s story. Norton overhears their discussion.

 On the ship, Dent receives a call from Norton, who informs him about Jo and Winton boarding the ship.

 Jo and Winton skulk about the ship, avoiding robots and crewmen. Various doors (blast doors?) slide down after they pass through them. They seem to be herded into an office, where Dent and an armed party greet them.

 The Doctor gets the power supply up and running and The Doctor says that Norton might have been working to make things worse. Mary comes in to say that Captain Dent has Jo on the ship.

 The Doctor arrives on the ship, where Dent says that Jo is under arrest for trying to steal things off the ship. He informs The Doctor that Jo and Winton have been attached to a bomb and if he doesn’t tell the Adjudicator a different story when he arrives, he’ll detonate the bomb.

 Winton gets some grease off the bomb casing and greases her wrist so she can slip out. She breaks the chain on Winton’s manacles so he can get free. The guard grabs Jo, but Winton escapes. Dent sends guards after Winton.

 A patrol of guards sees Winton (still manacled) and he runs. They give chase on their little buggy-truck and open fire on him. He runs from them, but ends up running into another guard.

 As the two guards give chase, they hear gunfire. The other guard calls out to them, “Don’t bother, I got him for you!” They wave and head back.

 Caldwell is the guard that Winton ran into; he tells Winton to get up after the other two leave. He helps him into the survey shack where he was at, takes off Winton’s manacles and tends to Winton’s injuries.

 Winton returns to the colony, intent on leading an attack on the ship. The Doctor asks Winton where he could find Caldwell and goes to see him. The two men talk and Caldwell agrees to free Jo but tells The Doctor to stop the colonists from attacking, otherwise it’ll be a slaughter.

 After Dent receives a message from Earth Control, confirming an Adjudicator is nearby and on the way (but not whom, which makes me have suspicions about who the Adjudicator is going to be), Caldwell tells Dent to bring Jo back to the spaceship or the survey stops. Reluctantly, Dent agrees and sends a man to get her. While the guard is fetching her, primitives enter and when the guard draws a gun to shoot, they spear him.

 The Doctor argues with Winton against a frontal attack. Winton is stupid and doesn’t listen to a damn thing he says. The Doctor says that since he can’t stop them, he’ll help them – first, he tells Winton not to trust Norton and secondly, he’ll help them with a better plan to attack.

 The Doctor leads an assault on the ship. They make it to the bridge and take over the ship. The Doctor goes to find Jo, after finding out that Dent has lost contact with his guard. He and Ashe go and find that Allen, the guard with Jo, is dead.

 Ashe says the primitives would have likely taken Jo to their city; he says in the early days, two colonists went there and never returned.

 Jo is led by a group of primitives into a secret door in the rock face. She’s taken inside, where it is dark, only her eyes are lit as the door closes behind them… and the credits roll.  

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