Recap: The Black Guardian has set a trap for The Doctor. He’s stuck in 1983, where he’s met up with the Brigadier! However, Nyssa and Tegan are earlier, and they, too, have met up with the Brig. Also, they think they have The Doctor, injured and regenerating, but it’s some guy called Mawdryn, who is of a people betrayed by the Time Lords.

It’s all rather fun.

(spoiler)

Episode 3:

Still in Turlough’s room, listening to the Brig’s retelling, The Doctor realises that both the TARDIS and the transmat cube arrived six years earlier. The Brig points out that Tegan and Nyssa thought the stranger was The Doctor. When The Doctor questions what the Brig thought, the mental block inside starts fighting back, the Brig begs off, saying he mustn’t remember.

The Doctor suggests that whatever the Brig experienced, what he can’t/won’t remember, might’ve been the trigger for his nervous breakdown. But, just then, The Doctor finds the crystal. He urgently says he must get to Turlough and the transmat sphere before Turlough repairs it – it might be his only way to recover the TARDIS. He dashes out, the Brig following.

Turlough arrives and enters the sphere.

Tegan accuses Mawdryn of not being The Doctor. She claims that the change is too different, but he plays it off as an effect of the transmat. Nyssa and The Brig are unsure; Mawdryn urges them to return the TARDIS to the ship, claiming he needs medical assistance they should find there.

Nyssa brings up Turlough, saying he doesn’t belong in that time period, confusing Mawdryn.

The Doctor and Brig arrive at the sphere, which Turlough has been unable to start.

Tegan challenges that The Doctor should be in 1983, not 1977. Mawdryn claims it was a side-effect of the beam, saying the sphere was rerouted like the TARDIS was. Nyssa agrees that this could be possible.

The Doctor makes some modifications to the transmitter, while Turlough asks some high-tech questions. The Brig watches on stoically.

Mawdryn appeals to his “old friends”, asking for help. The Brig feels they must give him the benefit of the doubt.

The Doctor returns the crystal to Turlough after they all enter the sphere.

Nyssa starts the TARDIS, using coordinate regression (as instructed by Mawdryn) to return to the previous location, but an alarm goes off instead.

The Doctor sends Turlough out to inspect the transmitter; while the boy is gone, the Time Lord asks the Brig if he entered the TARDIS in 1977. The Brig says he can’t remember, but doesn’t feel it’s important. The Doctor points out if he did, they could potentially meet his former self, which would be very, very bad. “As Tegan would say… zap!”

The transmitter explodes.

The alarm stops; Mawdryn demands they dematerialise. Again, Tegan argues that maybe it was The Doctor. Again, Mawdryn insists he is The Doctor and demands Nyssa dematerialise. Tegan yells, “No!”

The Brig tells The Doctor that he did not go with them, that he remembers watching the TARDIS dematerialise. The Doctor says it’s a moot point, that he cannot leave without something to track the TARDIS with. The Brig says that Tegan left her homing device (as seen earlier, though I don’t believe I mentioned it, bad blogger that I am) with him!

The TARDIS materialises on the ship. Mawdryn orders them to stay in the TARDIS, but Tegan and the Brig argues. Mawdryn claims they cannot go with him, their presence would corrupt his recovery. Nyssa seems to believe him, but Tegan is adamant. Mawdryn gets melodramatic and falls to his knees.

The Brig gives the Time Lord the beacon, but it isn’t working. Disappointed, The Doctor hopes to fix it.

The Brig and Nyssa decide to let Mawdryn out.

The Doctor fixes the beacon and heads to the sphere to home in on the TARDIS.

In the TARDIS, the Brig decides it’s time to have a lookaround, but he orders the girls to stay, making them very unhappy.

Back in the sphere, the Brig complains about going up and down the hill for a third time. Both the Brig and Turlough insist on accompanying him to the ship and The Doctor agrees. They arrive there, even before the Brig asks how long the journey will take.

Mawdryn is seen crawling into a room. He speaks, calling out to… someone or something, “I, Mawdryn, have returned… it is time for the awakening, help me!”

The Doctor says the creature would have left the TARDIS by now, and they need to find it. He sends Turlough to find the TARDIS and stay with Nyssa and Tegan. He and the Brig enter a secret room, where they find some regeneration equipment (used in time of need by Time Lords) that he says must have been stolen from Gallifrey.

Mawdryn collapses.

Turlough seems to be speaking to the Black Guardian, though we only see/hear his side of the convo…. oh, he’s calling out for the Guardian to answer him, but the crystal is unlit.

The Doctor speculates that the creature could be undead. The Doctor says that he doesn’t know what the creature is up to, “But you can be sure it’s no good.”

Turlough finds the alcove that Mawdryn was in, calling out to the others. One of the statues speaks to him in the Black Guardian’s voice, and the visage of the BG appears. When Turlough apologises, BG says that all is working towards the “total humiliation” of The Doctor and says Turlough has done well. (I thought he wanted The Doctor dead, not humiliated?)

BG instructs Turlough to hold out his hand; reluctantly, the boy does so, touching the statue face, which opens a secret door. Inside, he finds others like Mawdryn, who slowly awaken from some sleep or stasis. Frightened, Turlough rushes out.

The Brig suggests going back to the TARDIS, but The Doctor is too interested in the equipment. He says that it’s been heavily modified and would do damage to a Time Lord, were they to use it. The Brig is distracted by something he hears outside and slips out. The door closes behind and he walks on, just missing his younger self by moments!

Mawdryn continues to crawl about. In their chamber, his compatriots waken, wondering where Mawdryn is.

The older Brig returns to the chamber, finding Mawdryn, who calls out to him by name.

Tegan decides to go out, saying she’s going to look for the real Doctor, but just then, The Doctor enters.

The older Brig helps Mawdryn, hooking him up to the machine, but confronts him, saying he’s not the Doctor. Mawdryn agrees, and when the Brig threatens to shut off the machine, saying he’ll die, Mawdryn says he cannot die.

The Doctor demands to know where Turlough is and mentions the Brig; when Tegan says they brought the Brig, he gets mad and yells at them. The three head out, hoping to stop the Brigs from meeting.

Young Brig hides from Mawdryn’s people as they march through the halls.

Tegan is left outside the regeneration chamber to stop the Brig.

Turlough enters the TARDIS.

The Doctor and Nyssa rejoin the older Brig in the regeneration chamber, where Mawdryn greets The Doctor, “I am Mawdryn… welcome to my ship, Time Lord.”

At the TARDIS console, Turlough works the controls. On the scanner, the BG appears, saying he cannot work the TARDIS. Turlough says with BG’s help, he can, but the BG says that Turlough will “remain on the ship and witness the nemesis of The Doctor!”

We learn of Mawdryn’s story – he stole the regeneration equipment from Gallifrey, but using it has induced mutation. He and his fellows were banished to the ship as punishment. He says that every seventy years, the ship is guided near enough to a planet that, with the combined mental energy of the other seven, one may go planetside, to take appearance of the locals and to seek help.

Nyssa asks why he stabilised in the TARDIS, and Mawdryn says it’s the atmosphere in there. He says it is the Time Lord’s curse, that they degenerate but can never die. The Doctor says they brought it on themselves, but Mawdryn says they could have given them the missing element.

Tegan enters the regeneration chamber, warning that Mawdryn’s fellows are approaching. Mawdryn asks for the help to die, but The Doctor says that he cannot – were he to give them his energy, it would be the end of him as a Time Lord… and the credits roll.

I like that cliffhanger; not an immediate danger, but a gut punch nonetheless.

Episode 4:

The Doctor explains that he would have to give them his remaining regenerations to help them – there are eight of them and he has eight regenerations left. The Brig and companions urge The Doctor to flee, before they get hostile, but Mawdryn says they have no weapons and that The Doctor can only help if he chooses to do so.

The BG tells Turlough that the double presence of the Brig might threaten his plans. BG orders Turlough to find the younger Brig and keep him away from the older one.

Mawdryn and his fellows argue with The Doctor, saying that they have tried and there is no cure, other than what The Doctor can do for them. Again, he refuses. Mawdryn tells him to “leave now with his friends, but accept the consequences of your actions”, but doesn’t explain what he means.

Turlough finds the young Brig, saying he’ll take him to The Doctor.

Mawdryn assures his friends that The Doctor will soon change his mind.

The Doctor fills in the older Brig about the presence of the younger Brig.

Turlough leads the younger Brig into the room where Mawdryn’s associates were sleeping and traps him in there.

The Doctor instructs Turlough to find the young Brig and take him to the transmat capsule, which has been rigged to transmat to the center of the TARDIS. He tells him to keep the young Brig in there. Turlough sets off, but hides from Mawdryn and his people as they are traveling about again.

Nyssa says she finds the idea that the “mutants” will travel for the rest of time to be terrible; The Doctor agrees, but says sometimes you have to live with the consequences of your actions. The Doctor activates the TARDIS and it dematerialises as Mawdryn and company arrive. Again, Mawdryn assures the others that The Doctor will return.

As the TARDIS leaves the ship, Tegan and Nyssa are stricken by a degernative effect much like Mawdryn and his people suffer. The Doctor reverses their transit, reversing the effect.

Young Brig finds his way out of the room.

The Doctor realises that somehow, though the experimentation, the mutation has taken on viral properties. He doesn’t know why he nor elder Brig have acquired it, though. If they travel through time, it accelerates the degeneration – but they cannot leave the ship and escape the warp ellipse that is part of it without entering the time/space vortex.

In a throwback to the Third Doctor, The Doctor wonders about reversing the polarity of the neutron flow…

Young Brig arrives just in time to see the TARDIS dematerialise again. He confronts Mawdryn and his fellows. Mawdryn’s fellows realise that the Brig is also in the TARDIS, and they rush him back to the transmat sphere.

This time, since they’re traveling in the opposite direction from the ellipse, Tegan and Nyssa turn into children. Again, The Doctor returns to the ship, restoring the ladies to their proper ages. An alarm goes off, letting him know the transmat sphere has been activated, but he says it cannot come into the center of the TARDIS while they’re on the ship, and it will return to its pod – The Doctor assumes it is Turlough and the younger Brig (but he’s only half right.)

Turlough runs about, returning to the chamber to find the young Brig, but discovers young Brig is already gone. He pulls out the crystal, which glows bright. BG chastises him, saying he has failed him. Turlough says it isn’t his fault. BG threatens to destroy Turlough if the boy fails him again.

The Doctor and companions depart the TARDIS; Mawdryn admits that the knew what would happen. He tells the girls that they’ll have to stay on the ship for the rest of their lives. The Brig pleads with Mawdryn to help, but he says there is nothing they can do. The Brig turns to The Doctor, as do the girls.

Reluctantly, The Doctor tells Mawdryn’s people, “Take me to your laboratory.”

Young Brig takes the homing beacon from the sphere (the one older Brig said he got from Tegan, remember?) and departs.

On the way to the chamber, Mawdryn explains to older Brig that once this is complete, The Doctor will no longer be a Time Lord.

Young Brig arrives at the TARDIS, finding it empty.

As The Doctor explains to older Brig what to do, the military man seems lost.. or perhaps remembering something. When asked, he assures The Doctor that he is fine. Nyssa and Tegan are hooked up to the equipment as well – enough of The Doctor’s remaining regenerations will be routed to cure them as well.

The Doctor gives older Brig the order to activate the machinery.

Young Brig walks around, hearing the machinery.

Turlough runs about, looking for young Brig. BG booms in his ear to hurry, they are so close, but the young Brig must be found and stopped!

The older Brig is counting down.

Turlough sees young Bring heading towards the regeneration chamber and tries to stop him, but the Brig shoves the boy aside. He opens the door.

Older Brig is at thirteen and counting down…

Young Brig walks in and sees his older self. Shocked, they both reach out and touch and there’s a great flash of light.

Turlough stops and consults the crystal – he sees that it is cracked!

The Doctor unhooks Tegan and Nyssa from the machinery. He explains that there was a massive discharge of energy at the moment of transfer. Young Brig is unconscious but older Brig is waking. The Doctor instructs Nyssa to take him to the center of the TARDIS and keep him there until he gives her the all-clear.

The Doctor tells Tegan that he is still a Time Lord, that the energy for the transfer came from the time differential being shorted out from the two Brigadiers touching, the crossing of the time lines.

Mawdryn breathes his final breath, dying. The others have already died.

Tegan thanks The Doctor for being prepared to risk everything for her and Nyssa.

Nyssa takes older Brig deep into the TARDIS. The Doctor and Tegan help younger Brig to the TARDIS, as the ship begins to die, now that the mutants are dead.

In 1977, Doctor Runciman stands at the top of the hill (where the Brig instructed him to meet with him), calling out for the Brigadier. The TARDIS arrives (unseen to the doctor, it seems) and Tegan and The Doctor bring out the still unconscious younger Brig, laying him in the grass for the doctor to find. The younger Brig wakes up just in time to see the TARDIS dematerialise.

Older Brig and Nyssa return to the console room now that his counterpart is gone. He remarks on the changes in the TARDIS and The Doctor replies, “One has to move with the times.”

The Brigadier says he hasn’t felt so well for at least six years. The TARDIS arrives in 1983, and the Brig, The Doctor and the girls depart. Outside, they say their farewells, but when the Brig asks where Turlough is, everyone panics, thinking he’s still on the ship, which is soon to self-destruct.

Saying quick goodbyes to the Brig, they rush back in, only to find Turlough at the console, looking over the controls. He asks if he can join them and The Doctor offers his hand, saying, “I think you already have.”

Turlough shakes his hand enthusiastically, much to the disappointment of Tegan and Nyssa… and the final credits roll.

This was a great serial, a lot of fun. I love the crossed time lines and the Brigadiers, and of course, Turlough. I have always liked Turlough – his being intended to kill The Doctor, the darker touch to him. Can’t wait for the next serial, too!

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