Tuesday 11 October 2011

323 The Mutants Episode Six

EPISODE: The Mutants Episode Six
TRANSMITTED: 13 May 1972
WRITER: Bob Baker & Dave Martin
DIRECTOR: Christopher Barry
SCRIPT EDITOR: Terrance Dicks
PRODUCER: Barry Letts
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who - The Mutants
Episode Format: 625 video

The Investigator arrives and accuses the Marshall of serious crimes, with the Doctor forced to back up the Marshall's defence. As the Hyperion starts to refuel Kai is quickly taken ill, but they manage to escape from the refuelling chamber. Jaeger denies the accusations laid against him too. Jo, Kai & Cotton burst into the chamber interrupting proceedings allowing the Doctor to reveal what he really thinks, but he is unable to back up what he says with evidence. A Mutant enters the chamber which the Marshall uses to demonstrate his point of view is right. The Investigator gives the Marshall authority over his men. The Doctor, hiding in the lab, analyses the crystal. The Marshall bursts in sending Sondergaard & Jo to the refuelling chamber with the crystal which Sondergaard gives to Kai, which drains the Thesium radiation, causing him to mutate first into the insect mutants we've seen and then into a glowing being of light. The Marshall is forcing the Doctor to transform Solos' atmosphere when the machine explodes killing Jageer. Kai appears and kills the Marshall. He thanks the Doctor and leaves for Solos to finish transforming the Solonians using the crystal. The Doctor & Jo make their excuses and return to the Tardis leaving for Earth.

This final episode, after the procrastination of previous ones, feels like a rush to the finish line with lots happening all at once. By this point the Marshall was really annoying me so I was glad to see Kai show up and finish him off. By an odd coincidence years later in Star Fleet there's a similar ending as Lamia (voiced by Liza Ross, the wife of Garrick Hagon, who plays Kai) becomes a glowing light being and fights the Imperial Master.

I can't say I've got any real affection for what I see onscreen in the Mutants though I read the book from my local library (adapted by Terrance Dicks) several times. Oddly the paperback copy currently in my collection has the words "DR WHO AND THE MUTANTS" on the spine rather than the more commonly used "Doctor Who...." The Mutants was a very late video release towards the end of the range in 2003 and then appeared on DVD early in 2011.

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