Saturday 2 July 2011

222 The Invasion: Episode Three

EPISODE: The Invasion: Episode Three
TRANSMITTED: 16 November 1968
WRITER: Derrick Sherwin & Kit Pedler
DIRECTOR: Douglas Camfield
SCRIPT EDITOR: Terrance Dicks
PRODUCER: Peter Bryant
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who: The Invasion

The Doctor & Jamie explain to Vaughan they're looking for Isobel & Zoe. Vaughan says they left denying they were put in the box. Vaughan says he'll show them inside a box but as they arrive at the train yard the boxes are drawing away on a train. Vaughan takes them to his other factory to meet train. Benton sees them leave in Vaughan's car who reports back to the Brigadier who gets Captain Turner sent to monitor things in a helicopter. The Doctor, Jamie, Vaughan & Packer arrive at factory where they go to Vaughan's office, an exact duplicate of that in London. The Doctor gets his circuits back. Jamie spots the UNIT Chopper through a window, while the Doctor sees what looks like a deep space communications array. Taken to see Professor Watkins, the Doctor blocks monitoring device with magnet so they can talk to Professor Watkins who shows them his Cerebration Mentor, a teaching device that can induce emotions. Vaughan sends Packer to get them but they give him the slip escaping in lift, then when it's stopped climbing the shaft onto the roof, then escaping down fire escape. They make their way back to the railway sidings searching for Isobel & Zoe but are found by guards. Jamie hides in a crate and is alarmed when the contents start moving .....

Right I know that at eight parts The Invasion is a little longer than expected or planed. In fact when Peter Bryant saw the material Kit Pedler had supplied for a six parter he reckoned that Derrick Sherwin should turn it into a four parter but when Paul Wheeler's “The Dreamspinner” went Tango Ultra on them, the Invasion ended up being eight parts and the "reserve script" Terrance Dicks had been knocking into shape got brought into play. So you might expect the Invasion to have a little padding. So when I see characters escaping from a stalled lift through the roof and climbing out which is the oldest trick in the book I'm pretty sure I'm able to identify some of the padding (and when you think about it was all the stuff with the lorry driver necessary?) Fortunately it's terribly good padding and everyone involved is sticking to the adage "if you're going to do something do it well". Troughton and Hines are on fine form, the latter getting to have a bit more comic fun as he gets in the back of the car, leaps out the other side and climbs in the front. The ending to the episode is absolutely top drawer, Jamie is trapped in the crate with something that starts to move. Again this might be a bit of foreshadowing reminding you of previous stories. It's episode 3 and we still don't know who the villains are yet!

The former Guinness Brewery in Park Royal provides the Railway sidings seen in this story. I've got a 1955 railway atlas of the UK but am struggling to find precisely where the railway siding are on the London Map, despite knowing exactly where Park Royal is from the Underground Station. I guess it links to the main line somewhere near Paddington Station. The story has it that Patrick Troughton & Fraser Hines enjoyed a fine lunch courtesy of the Guinness directors and had some trouble with the one brief scene they filmed in the afternoon requiring them to look round a corner. Troughton would later be sent a Christmas Pudding from the company, laced with their famous product, which exploded in his agent's office!

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