Wednesday 2 March 2011

100 The Daleks' Master Plan Part 10: Escape Switch

EPISODE: The Daleks' Master Plan Part 10: Escape Switch
TRANSMITTED: 15 January 1966
WRITER: Dennis Spooner, from an idea by Terry Nation
DIRECTOR: Douglas Camfield
PRODUCER: John Wiles
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who - Lost In Time

The mummified figure is the Monk who'd been imprisoned by the Doctor. The Monk, Steven & Sara are held prisoner by the Daleks who demand the Taranium core in return for their release. The Doctor conducts the swap at the Great Pyramid passing the core to Mavic Chen at which point the Daleks are set on by the Egyptians who are swiftly exterminated. The Doctor has stolen the Monk's directional unit, sending the fleeing Monk to a planet of ice, and uses it to attempt to follow the Daleks back to Kembel. However as the Tardis is in flight there's a blinding explosion in the control room......

Happy 100th Episode Doctor Who! And we celebrate well with the Doctor, a favourite slightly less than serious adversary in the Monk and the Daleks being the Daleks. They look superb in the pre filmed battle sequences in this episode. There's four Daleks here, as there has been all series, but no Supreme so I assume he's had a respray since Episode 8. I spot Broken Neck Ring in the back of some scenes with Camfield again trying to hide the damaged section from view a lot of the time. Camfield favourite Walter Randall makes his third Doctor Who appearance as an Egyptian and there's a speaking part for Derek Ware, the fight arranger for many Doctor Who stories. He'll later appear as Rozzer, in The Italian Job and found the stunt agency HAVOC used on many 70s Doctor Who stories. He's not the last actor from The Italian Job that Camfield will cast in Doctor Who either!

Oddly most of Doctor Who's anniversary episodes from the sixties exist: The 50th (Dalek Invasion of Earth 5), 100th, 150th (Moonbase 2) and 250th (War Games 7). Sadly the 200th (Fury from the Deep 3) doesn't spoiling the pattern somewhat!

Sadly here we say farewell to the Monk and Peter Butterworth. Top performance on both appearances and superb when acting against Hartnell. It's a shame that he never came back for a third go. You could argue that the Monk is a more mischievous and less evil prototype for another member of the Doctor's race , at this point unnamed, that we'll meet later.

Confession time: I fell asleep watching this episode on the first go for this blog: I was tired, it was cold and I was in bed. It deserved better as it's not that bad. In it's defence I've slept through better and worse episodes of Doctor Who in my time.

Unfortunately that's that for pictures in this story, we're back to CD for the remaining two episodes and all four of the next story.

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