Recap: Arriving at Paradise Towers (a huge residential complex or vacation spot or something), The Doctor and Mel find a bizarre culture of young women in gangs called Kangs and the caretakers and the rezzies and the cleaners, and a quite mad Chief in charge of most/all of it.

We leave off with The Doctor and the Red Kangs about to be attacked by the caretakers and Mel about to be eaten by two old rezzies.

spoiler warning

Episode 3:

The Doctor says he’ll buy the Kangs time to escape through an escape route. The girls run off as The Doctor waits by the door that the caretakers are cutting in.

Mel says time for joking is over, but Tilda assures her they’re not joking. Tabby is working in the kitchen and is attacked by a cleaner robot that grabs her and pulls her through the waste disposal. Tilda blames Mel, who had tried to warn Tabby.

Tilda approaches Mel with a knife, but Pex breaks down the door. Tilda throws her knife as Pex just stands, frozen, but the blade misses him. When Tilda runs into the kitchen to grab another knife, the cleaner robot grabs her and drags her into the wall unit, too.

Pex is amazed that he actually saved someone.

A cleaner robot arrives at where the HUNGRY voice is, which keeps chanting it over and over. We see one of the rezzies’ legs sticking out of the robot’s carry-section.

The Deputy Chief says the rulebook says that he is the one to deliver the final blow to the door and the others let him do so. He kicks it in, stumbling in, and is greeted by The Doctor.

You look surprised to see me. I can’t imagine why… after all, it was me you came for,” the Time Lord says. He is seized by the caretakers, who search for Kangs, but find none.

Mel finds a map in the rezzies’ apartment. It seems that Paradise Tower is 304 floors high and they’re on floor 109. Pex asks if Mel is sure she wants to the Pool in the Sky. When she says she has to, he argues, saying only the unalive go there.

Mel sees on the map that the sub-basement is not mapped out and says that no admittance is allowed, on pain of death.

The Doctor is brought before the Chief, who says it’s a good thing they found him else the Deputy would have been taking ‘The Great Architect’s’ place, but would have required much more paperwork.

The Deputy asks about another disappearance he heard about on the radio on their way in, another caretaker’s. He asks if the cleaners are allowed to go on like this, how long before they’re all gone?

The Chief is visibly upset by this question, and The Doctor seems very keen to pay attention to this exchange. The Chief warns the Deputy that he broke many regulations by speaking out of turn and sends him out into the hall to wait, then tells The Doctor they need to have a regulation “final conversation”.

The Chief sits down The Doctor; they talk of The Great Architect’s disappearance. The Chief says he knew he’d always show up, to ruin all his plans.

The Doctor argues that killing him isn’t going to get rid of whomever is sending out the cleaners to kill everyone, unless the Chief is the one giving the orders. The Chief denies it.

The Doctor sits the Chief down, saying he’s aware the Chief is allowing some of his men to die, though he doesn’t know why, but he also knows that others are being killed without his approval or awareness and he knows that frightens him. The Chief is about to deny it, when the Deputy and several other caretakers burst in, saying two “oldsters” have disappeared on floor 109.

The Chief leaves the Deputy in charge, saying he will investigate. He reminds the Deputy the repercussions of a second escape would be high and departs.

The Deputy Chief props his feet up, and addresses The Doctor, “And no funny business with the rulebook, this time?” The Doctor assures him he has too much on his mind to engage in such shenanigans.

Mel and Pex run down to elevator. They fuss with the buttons as a cleaner comes down the hallway towards them. The door closes with moments to spare, but instead of going to floor 304, it’s going down!

Pex tells her that the Kangs like to press all sorts of buttons in random order in the elevators and Mel realises that means they could be going up and down for hours.

The Doctor watches a greeting video for Paradise Towers. As he does, Bin Liner and Fire Escape arrive and, after taking out the caretakers guarding him, lead him to safety.

The Chief is talking to Tilda and Tabby’s friend (whose name I forget). He tells her there’s no cause for panic and she gives him a riot act over that insipid statement. He assures her he’ll make a full investigation and promises there will be “no coverup”, but tells her to keep the matter quiet.

He offers her the chance to move into their flat from her smaller flat. She sees the advantage of this and agrees that she doesn’t want to worry anyone.

He says he’ll continue the investigation in the basement.

Pex and Mel are still in the lift. Mel says they’ll be okay as long as the lift doesn’t get stuck or the lights go out, and they do go out. Pex says he’s afraid of the dark.

The Doctor has returned to the Kang’s brainquarters. He looks for the illustrated prospectus that he was given by the Deputy.

Pex tries to fix the elevator and suddenly it starts going down. Very, very fast.

The Kangs have a video player so they play the illustrated prospectus. They fast forward until he tells them to stop and then sit down to watch. It talks about the Architect, Kroagnon, previously known for Golden Dream Park, The Bridge of Perpetual Motion, Miracle City.

The Doctor recognises the last name.

Mel and Pex have arrived at the basement. Pex is terrified. Mel realises this is the forbidden area.

A cleaner brings a body to… whatever it is. The creature or whatever keeps saying SOON… SOON… SOON I WILL BE FREE.

The Doctor says that Miracle City was Kroagnon’s masterpiece, but he wouldn’t let anyone move in. When they got him out and moved people in, nobody lived to tell about it – but somehow he got away with it. He got a job making Paradise Towers, somehow.

The Doctor speculates that the Kangs’ parents must have trapped him in there, thinking if he couldn’t ever leave, they’d all be safe, but obviously that didn’t work out. He says, in the end, he would be sure to get out.

The Chief sees a cleaner just hanging about; when he yells at it, telling it to get back to work, it comes towards him menacingly.

Pex tries kicking the elevator; after the third time, the door closes and it starts going up.

The Red Kangs tell The Doctor they will fight for him. He says they need to tell him all that they know. He asks where the door with the smoke coming out of it is located. They are reluctant, but tell him it is in the basement. They all want to go with him, but he chooses three to accompany him.

However, when he opens the door, the Blue Kangs enter, saying they’ve won the game by entering the Red brainquarters. “Blue Kangs are best!”

This starts a lot of chattering and arguing, until The Doctor gets them to shut up and tries to tell them that this is more important than any game.

In the control room, the Deputy tries hailing the Chief, but there’s no response.

The Blue Kangs agree to go with The Doctor, telling him they saw the Chief heading there. They all head to the basement.

Mel and Pex make it to floor 304. The door opens and they exit, seeing the pool and lounge area. Mel’s all excited about it, but Pex says it’s home of the unalive, and they don’t belong there.

She asks if he’s going for a swim. She says it’s not dangerous here, it’s likely just a caretaker trick to keep anyone from using it, so they don’t have to clean up.

Mel sits down, saying she’s only taking a rest on her feet before she goes swimming. We see, but they don’t, what appears to be an aquatic cleaner robot in the pool.

The Chief is escorted down to the basement, where he asks his “beauty” why it is sending the cleaners for more bodies. It replies, saying BECAUSE THE BODIES THE CLEANERS BROUGHT WERE NOT RIGHT. It says it wasn’t the right body for him to live in. The Chief argues that everyone’s noticing all the missing bodies, but the… whatever it is, says it is of no matter, it is ready, it has a plan.

All the while, the Red and Blue Kangs are sneaking up behind the Chief and cleaner.

The Chief says he’s done so much for it, but it says it needs only one more thing from him, and the cleaner starts pushing the Chief forward to the thing. He argues, saying he won’t give it what it wants.

YOU HAVE NO CHOICE, the voice booms, I AM KROAGNON THE GREAT ARCHITECT AND I WILL PUT AN END TO YOU AND EVERYONE IN PARADISE TOWERS!

A tube drops down around the Chief and we hear a scream. The Doctor tries to get the Kangs to retreat, but a cleaner robot grabs him by the throat… and the credits roll.

Interesting cliffhanger there. Kinda thought that the thing in the basement was gonna be the Architect’s legacy/memory/something, even before we learned about Miracle City.

Episode 4:

The Kangs get The Doctor free of the cleaner and they rush away.

The tube rises, and the Chief is changed; his uniform seems shinier. He address the cleaners and we learn that Kroagnon has placed his intellect in the Chief’s body. He rants on and on and on and on and on, basically recapping what/who he is and why he’s the bad guy.

The Doctor tells the Kangs that they need to gather all the Kangs and prepare for Kroagnon’s emergence from the basement.

Mel is swimming, telling Pex there’s nothing to be frightened off, but then the pool cleaner attacks her.

The Doctor tells them when the others arrive, they have to make it to the Great Pool in the Sky.

Mel screams for Pex to help her, but he just asks what to do. She screams and struggles and he starts calling out for help. Finally, he hands her his gun and she shoots the pool cleaner with it. (C’mon, couldn’t he at least have become heroic then?)

The Deputy issues a communique to all caretakers, initiating “Regulation ZZZ” (that’s Zed Zed Zed in British speak), overriding “all other rules and regulations”. All caretakers are ordered back to control and to use “extreme caution”.

Mel apologises to Pex; I’m not sure why, though. She hears a rustling sound and goes to investigate, only to find The Doctor! The Kangs follow out and The Doctor and Pex are introduced.

The Archi-Chief leads a cleaner through the hallway, spreading gas that knocks out or kills a caretaker as they pass.

The Kangs, talking to Pex, decide that Mel is a Kang, after all, since she killed the pool cleaner instead of him. The girls make fun of Pex, while The Doctor says all the factions are so divided, there’s no way to unite them all, but Mel says they have to find a way if they’re to defeat Kroagnon.

Pex, taunted by the Kangs (Blue and Red alike), storms off, but stops as several rezzies (led by the one who knew Tilda and Tabby). She says they wanted to talk, that they need their help.

Archi-Chief arrives at control and tells the Deputy that all the “living flesh” must be gotten rid of. The Archi-Chief says that his instructions cannot be argued, it’s in the rulebook, but the Deputy points out that there are exceptions allowed for by the rulebook, such as when the Chief Caretaker “just isn’t the Chief Caretaker”.

The Deputy dashes off before the Chief or cleaner can get him.

The rezzies say that the cleaners are on a pogrom, working their way up. They’re at level 115 now, and the remaining rezzies have moved upward to try to hide.

The Kangs accuse the Rezzies of being liars and untrustworthy. The Rezzies say they need to set aside the differences, but apologise for their part.

The Doctor asks the Kangs (who huddle together, Red and Blue alike, noteworthy there) and they agree to work with the Rezzies. At The Doctor’s insistence, they even agree to work with Pex, but assert they will “Never, ever!” work with the caretakers.

Just then, the Deputy arrives, asking if he can have a word with them.

The Archi-Chief marks off through level 170, apparently having cleared off all floors up that far. He says the others will be heading to the top floor. (Oh, I see, he’s saying how many floors are left.)

The Doctor says they need to immobilise the cleaners and try draw out Kroagnon from the control room. The Deputy says that there’s an emergency supply of explosives. Everyone gets excited and Rezzies and Kangs start making plans on working together.

Kroagnon tries to view the pool, but the computer tells him, per the express order of the Great Architect, surveillance of the swimming area is not permitted. The Archi-Chief is not happy.

The Doctor says he will be the bait for the trap to draw out Kroagnon. Someone will have to go to The Great Architect to offer to lead him to The Doctor, and Pex volunteers, despite the teasing of the Kangs.

In the control room, The Doctor comes on the screen, addressing Kroagnon. The Time Lord says that Paradise Towers suffers from Kroagnon’s usual flaws and offers to work with him if the wants to talk, then signs off.

A group of Rezzies ambush a cleaner, covering it with a tablecloth, and then Kangs attack, shooting it and taking it out of commission.

The Doctor gives Pex his instructions – get Kroagnon out of the control room ASAP (so he doesn’t see the attacks on the cleaners) but then take his time bringing him to wherever they’re going. “We need time,” he tells the young man, “no heroics, just a cool clear head.”

Mel gives Pex a bracelet from the Kangs, saying they say he’s a Kang now. Two Red Kangs exchange a look and I almost expect a trick. Pex gives Mel his gun, saying he can’t use it this time, and the two Kangs seem impressed.

Mel gives him a peck on the cheek.

A cleaner is assaulted by a group of Caretakers, Rezzies and Kangs and they blow it up. They all celebrate, having set aside their differences, it seems.

Pex is on a video screen, offering to take Kroagnon to The Doctor. Pex tells them that the “other… mobile rubbish” have found a hiding place they think Kroagnon doesn’t know about and are there, planning against him.

Kroagnon tells Pex if he gets The Doctor, he’ll give the boy a safe way out.

The Kangs and The Doctor hustle to make plans for Pex and Kroagnon’s arrival, hoping that the boy doesn’t rush.

En route, Kroagnon asks Pex if this is a trap. The young man says it’s not. The Archi-Chief says he’s enjoying walking around his “marvellous Towers in this body”, but warns him that he won’t deal kindly with anyone who would lay a trap.

Pex is visibly frightened and says they should hurry. Kroagnon agrees and he and two cleaners follow the boy. Kangs follow and keep an eye on their progress, one calling in to the brainquarters to warn them.

Kroagnon and Pex arrive where The Doctor is, having just rushed the Deputy and others away. The Doctor mocks Kroagnon, saying the place is shoddy and poorly designed, saying he couldn’t even design a door knob.

He tries to push the Architect into a trap, but the Architect is too strong. Pex runs off, but sees Mel’s disappointed face, and he turns back to help The Doctor. He shoves The Doctor aside and leaps at the Archi-Chief, and the two of them fall through the door, into an explosion.

Next, we see everyone gathered, mourning Pex. Aw…

In life, he was not a Kang, but in death, he was brave and bold, as a Kang should be.”

The Red and Blue Kangs hail Pex in their ceremony as Caretakers and Rezzies look on.

Mel mourns Pex, but The Doctor says that Pex’s death brought everyone together, pointing out that the Kangs and Rezzies and Caretakers are all together, something that would not have happened before.

The Kangs present The Doctor with a two sided scarf, one blue, one red, saying he has been made an honourary Kang. He and Mel say a quick goodbye, and slip into the TARDIS.

When the TARDIS fades away, we see wall-scrawl behind it, a gun with a red and blue line crossing it out and the words PEX LIVES underneath it… and the final credits roll.

Okay, much better than Time and the Rani, I will say that. I’m still not remotely fond of Mel and not sure how I feel about Seven. I guess we’ll find out as we go along, what what?

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