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50yearsofwhovians:

068 PLANET OF THE DALEKS by Terry Nation

Illustrated by carvic

SEASON 10 / STORY 4

The Doctor has been gravely wounded by the Master and is lying on the TARDIS floor, his two hearts only beating once every ten seconds. It is up to Jo to take them to safety and with the help of the Time Lords, the TARDIS lands on Spiradon.

However, this planet is hardly a safe haven. The Daleks are hatching another plot of universal domination but this time, their old enemies the Thals from Skaro are there to stop them. 

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Third Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Jo Grant
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: The Daleks 
  • SPACE & TIME: Space: Spiradon

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This was Terry Nation’s (the Dalek’s creator) first script since the First Doctor’s era.
  • This story is a direct sequel to the previous episode as well as being a continuation of the Daleks from their first story The Daleks as this is the first story to feature the Thals since then.
  • The Doctor mentions his first companions, Susan, Barbara and Ian.
  • The story, plot wise, is a reworking of The Daleks. Many key story beats (the Doctor imprisoned with his legs paralysed, a Dalek city, a ravaged planet, etc) make a return.
  • The character of Rebec was added by the producers as they began a policy of making sure there were more female guest characters in the show.
  • The battles in the jungle were influenced by footage of the Vietnam War which would have been on the News at the time.
  • This is the only time in the Classic Series in which the Daleks successfully shoot the Doctor, which causes him to be paralysed. In the new series, the Doctor was shot in The Stolen Earth, which caused him to regenerate and in The Big Bang which potentially would have eventually killed him had the universe not been reset. 

50yearsofwhovians:

074 PLANET OF THE SPIDERS by Robert Sloman

Illustrated by gaghalfrunt

SEASON 11 / STORY 5

The blue crystal that the Doctor took from Metebelis III in a previous adventure is desperately sought by the Eight Legs, a race of mutated spiders, as the final element in their plan for universal domination. With help from an old mentor, the Doctor realises the only way to foil the plot is to make the ultimate sacrifice. The Doctor must risk death to return to the cave ofthe Great One and save the universe.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Third Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Sarah Jane Smith, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, Sergeant Benton, Captain Yates.
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: The Great One and the Eight Legs.
  • SPACE & TIME: England 1970s and Metabelis III

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This is the final story to feature the Third Doctor as the current Doctor. He regenerates due to exposure to a lethal amount of radiation, caused by an overpowered crystal. We also get our first glimpse of the Fourth Doctor.
  • This is also the final story in which Captain Yates is a companion / ally.
  • This is the first time the word “regeneration” is used to explain the Doctor’s physical change. It was originally known as “renewal” and then “a change of appearance”.
  • The story also features K’anpo Rimpoche, another Time Lord and the first Time Lord other than the Doctor to be seen to regenerate.
  • This story features ex-companion Jo Grant in an important, but off-screen role. She is the one to send the Doctor the Metabelis crystal. This is the first time a previous companion has had an impact on a current story.
  • This story was actually filmed at the same time as the next story, Robot. This meant that Lis Sladen had to dash between being the companion of the Third Doctor and the Fourth Doctor, and that both Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker were the current Doctor on set at the same time.
  • Had Roger Delgado not died, this story would have originally been called The Final Game, a feature him in his final role as the Master. The story was also going to reveal that the Master and the Doctor were brothers. The only element of the story which survived was subtle Buddist themes. 

50yearsofwhovians:

077 THE SONTARAN EXPERIMENT by Bob Baker and Dave Martin

Illustrated by mudsparrow

SEASON 12 / STORY 3

The Doctor, Sarah and Harry arrive on a desolate and apparently deserted Earth to fix a faulty transmat component. They soon learn that a group of shipwrecked astronauts from a human colony, GalSec, have been lured there by a fake distress call. One of their number, Roth, tells Sarah of an alien conducting gruesome experiments on his crewmates and him.

The alien turns out to be a Sontaran, Field-Major Styre, compiling a report on human physical and mental capabilities as a prelude to an invasion of Ethe galaxy. If the Doctor can stop Styre, they can stop the invasion, but time is running out.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Sarah Jane Smith and Harry Sullivan
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: Styre, the Sontaran
  • SPACE & TIME: Earth

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This is a direct sequel to The Ark in Space. It is part of a lose arc involving the Doctor and his companions travelling without a TARDIS.
  • This is the shortest story of the 70s, being only a 2 parter.
  • It was shot entirely on location and used the same Sontaran costume and ship prop from The Time Warrior. It is therefore among the cheapest.
  • The mask, however, had to be remade as it had exacerbated Sontaran actor Kevin Lindsay’s heart condition. He would die six months after filming.
  • Tom Baker broke his collar bone during filming, but he continued working as his neck brace could easily be concealed under his scarf.

50yearsofwhovians:

079 REVENGE OF THE CYBERMEN by Gerry Davis

Illustrated by ramon-salamander

"This version of the Cybermen was a little hard to draw. Still good practice!"

SEASON 12 / STORY 5

The Doctor and his companions are lost in time.

Expecting to be reunited with the TARDIS following a secret mission for the Time Lords, they instead find themselves on a plague-stricken space stationorbiting the remnants of VogaPlanet of Gold.

The Doctor, Harry Sullivan and Sarah Jane Smith have stumbled into the last battle of an ancient conflict between humankind and one of its most terrifying foes - the Cybermen.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Sarah Jane Smith and Harry Sullivan
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: The Cybermen
  • SPACE & TIME: The Nerva Beacon, 2875

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This story saw the return of the Cybermen as villains for the first time since the Second Doctor story The Invasion and their last appearance until the Fifth Doctor story Earthshock. It is the first Cybermen story to not feature Patrick Troughton.
  • This was the first Doctor Who story to be released on home video.
  • Part of this story was filmed in Wookey Hole Cave, a place renowned for bad luck. An electrician broke their leg, a motorboat went out of control and a stuntman was hospitalised. 
  • At the time of broadcast, this was the only complete Cybermen story as all the other ones had been completely or partially destroyed by the BBC.

50yearsofwhovians:

084 THE BRAIN OF MORBIUS by Terrance Dicks and Robert Holmes

Illustrated by ctrayn

SEASON 13 / STORY 5

Mad scientist Mehendri Solon is building a body from spare parts to house the disembodied brain of the evil Time Lord Morbius. And the Doctor’s head might indeed by the final piece.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Sarah Jane Smith
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: Morbius and Mehendri Solon
  • SPACE & TIME: Karn

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This story famously hints that the Doctor might not actually be in his fourth body by showing the images of many more Doctors on a countdown that starts with his 3rd, 2nd and 1st faces. The faces were provided by members of the production team including the writers and directors. However, these faces can easily be argued to be the earlier incarnations of Morbius, rather than the Doctor.
  • This story is an alien retelling of Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein, part of a loose gothic thematic arc during this era of the show.
  • This story features a Mutt, first seen in The Mutants.

50yearsofwhovians:

085 THE SEEDS OF DOOM by Robert Banks Stewart

Illustrated by mystsaphyr

SEASON 13 / STORY 6

When scientists in the Antarctic uncover two mysterious seed pods, the Doctor is called in to investigate. He soon realises they are extraterrestrial and extremely dangerous. At the same time, however, ruthless plant-lover Harrison Chase has learned of the find and decides he must have the pods for his collection of rare and beautiful flora. And the pods themselves harbour intelligent life with sinister plans of its own…

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Sarah Jane Smith
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: The Krynoids
  • SPACE & TIME: Earth 1970s

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This is first UNIT story not to feature the Brigadier or Sergeant Benton.
  • UNIT would not appear again until the Seventh Doctor story Battlefield.
  • This finale was supposed to be The Hand of Fear but the script wasn’t finished in time. That story then got rewritten as Sarah Jane’s farewell.
  • Two weeks before broadcast, the video tape of Part 1 went missing! The director had already scheduled to reshoot parts of Part 2 in order to make that the first part when the tape was found.

50yearsofwhovians:

091 THE TALONS OF WENG-CHIANG by Robert Holmes

Illustrated by citrusapples

SEASON 14 / STORY 6

The Fourth Doctor brings Leela to Victorian London to see how her ancestors lived, but is rapidly drawn into a fiendish plot involving Chinese Tongs, disappearing women, an Oriental stage magician, a murderous ventriloquist’s dummy and giant rats in the sewers.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Leela
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: Magnus Greel
  • SPACE & TIME: London, 1889

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • Jago and Litefood, the Victorian friends that the Doctor and Leela make ended up having their own popular spinoff series with Big Finish.
  • The war criminal Magnus Greel is terrified of Time Agents, which get mentioned in this story for the first time.
  • The Doctor is shown to have a Batmobile in his pocket.
  • The Doctor dresses as Sherlock Holmes throughout the story, and the appearance and character of Magnus is similar to that of the Phantom of the Opera. 
  • This is the only story in which the Doctor doesn’t wear his famous scarf at all.
  • This story, although popular, is very controversial (well, racist) in that some of the Chinese characters are portrayed by Western actors with makeup. It was due to this that it wasn’t aired on my stations in the US and Canada.

50yearsofwhovians:

094 IMAGE OF THE FENDAHL by Chris Broucher

Illustrated by lonlonmilk

SEASON 15 / STORY 3

The present day: just as the Fourth Doctor and Leelaarrive in FetchboroughEngland, Professor Fendelmanprepares to experiment on a fossilized skull which science says should not exist. The skull is actually an artefact of the Fendahl, a god-like being who feeds on the life force of others. It has begun to awaken and kill. Worse yet, others seek to exploit the Fendahl’s dreadful power.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Leela, K9
  • ENEMIES & ALIENS: The Fendahl
  • SPACE & TIME: England, July 1977

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • Despite joining the TARDIS as a new companion in the previous story, K9 never leaves the TARDIS and barely features in this story. This was because the writer was unaware of the decision when writing.
  • This story explains that (as well as Mondas) there was another planet in our Solar System which we are unaware of. It was between Mars and Jupiter and destroyed by the Time Lords, thus creating the asteroid betl.
  • This story features a new outfit for Leela, a new variation of her famous “leather bikini”. 
  • This story features the actor Wanda Venthan in her first TV role since giving birth to her son Benedict Cumberbatch.

50yearsofwhovians:

102 THE POWER OF KROLL by Robert Holmes

Illustrated by Bree Rubin

"Tried to get a vintage pulp feel for this Power of Kroll poster :)"

SEASON 15 / STORY 5

The Doctor and Romana arrive on the marsh moon of Delta Magna in search of the next segment of the Key to Time. They are caught in the conflict between the native Swampies and the crew of a chemical refinery. The presence of a gun runner complicates matters; to make things worse, the Swampies intend to awaken Kroll, the giant god that lives beneath the swamps.

FACTS ~

  • DOCTOR: The Fourth Doctor
  • COMPANIONS: Romana I, K9
  • MAIN ENEMY: Kroll
  • SPACE & TIME: Delta III

DID YOU KNOW? ~

  • This is part of the Key to Time arc.
  • The K9 prop would not work on swampy ground and so does not appear in this story. However, John Leeson appears in the role of Dugeen. He took the part after the actor originally cast became unavailable.
  • Working titles for this story included Moon of DeathHorror of the Swamp and The Shield of Time.
  • The BBC’s Head of Serials, Graeme MacDonald, was so unimpressed by the set designs in this story that he ordered that designer Don Giles was never to work on the series again. By coincidence, episode 3 includes a line of dialogue in which the Doctor criticises the decor of the Swampies’ execution chamber and recommends its architect be fired.
  • The green make-up for the Swampies was specially ordered from Germany. Unfortunately for the actors, the remover wasn’t and so they either had to undergo chemical showers at RAF Bentwaters or have their skin scoured in the hotel. Many had a green tinge to their skin for weeks.
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