Thursday 5 January 2012

409 Planet of Evil Part Four

EPISODE: Planet of Evil Part Four
TRANSMITTED: 18 October 1975
WRITER: Louis Marks
DIRECTOR: David Maloney
SCRIPT EDITOR: Robert Holmes
PRODUCER: Philip Hinchcliffe
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who - Planet Of Evil

The officer on the command deck, Reig, is attacked and killed, his screams summoning the crew allowing Vishinsky to save them. Vishinsky argues with Salamar and relieves him of command. With Sarah's information the Doctor works out that Sorenson is becoming anti-matter. The ships internal hatchways are sealed. The Doctor searches Sorenson's quarters and finds the remains of the samples and Sorenson's solution. Sorenson finds him, and after they talk Sorenson, in a moment of clarity, takes the sample and goes to eject himself and them. Salamar seizes the ship's neutron accelerator and stalks Sorenson. They clash with Sorenson killing Salamar and becoming fully mutated due to the neutron accelerator. The Doctor encounters duplicate creatures while he returns to the bridge. The Doctor goes to confront Sorenson. Stunning the real version he drag him into the Tardis which dematerialises taking the Doctor, Sorenson & the samples back to Zeta-Minor. Sarah & Vishinsky attempt to repel the creatures on the ship. The Doctor forces Sorenson into the anti matter pool in the cave which causes the duplicates on the ship to vanish and stops it being dragged towards the planet. The anti-matter universe returns a cured Sorenson which the Doctor returns to the Morestran ship. The Doctor gives the professor a hint as to an alternate source of energy before he & Sarah leave in the Tardis for their appointment in London which they are 30,000 years late for.

Sorry, the last episode didn't save the story for me. I found the whole thing dull and lifeless with no real sense of danger. Essentially it's a "base under siege" story but I don't feel any attachment to any of the characters and so I don't care what happens to them. And as for the awful crew costumes...... Salamar's just loud, shouty and thick. His "Only I can give a red alert" is supposed to represent a descent into madness but it just sounds childish and I'm sure Red Dwarf has done a similar line. Sorry I won't be rushing to see this story again. Thankfully the idea of crewmen trapped on a ship will shortly be done an awful lot better in Robots of Death.

The planet in this story, Zeta Minor, gave it's name to, a DVD website and the home of Roobarb's DVD Forum.

Adapted by Terrance Dicks an novelization of this story was released in 1977. It was repeated 5 to 8 July in 1976. It was released on video in January 1994 and on DVD in 2007

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