Saturday, 10 March 2012

474 The Invasion of Time Part One

EPISODE: The Invasion of Time Part One
TRANSMITTED: 04 February 1978
WRITER: David Agnew
DIRECTOR: Gerald Blake
PRODUCER: Graham Williams
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who - The Invasion Of Time

Leela & K-9 remain locked in the Tardis while the Doctor is outside in a spaceship conferring with a race of alien beings signing an agreement with them. The Tardis materialises on Gallifrey where the Doctor visits Chancellor Borusa and claims the presidency of the High Council of the Time Lords. The Doctor has the Castelan redecorate his rooms in Earth style, with the panels made of lead. Leela is taken to find clothes in preparation for the Doctor's inauguration where he will be introduced to the Matrix and take control of it. He is presented with the Sash & Rod of Rassilon, and charged to seek the Great Key. The coronet that connects him to the Matrix is placed on his head but the Doctor collapses in agony.

Ah, back to Gallifrey again. The Doctor's up to something here but at this stage we're not really sure what. It's a bit non committal on the identity of the aliens he's conferring with and who are watching him. We get to see the Tardis bath room for the first time in this episode but a couple of the other rooms are slightly odd, noticeably the darkened console room and the echoey landing area where the footsteps can be heard.

So who is this David Agnew who is writing this episode? Well he's not writer David Weir who was scheduled to write serial 4Z. An old friend of script editor Anthony Read, who had script edited & produced Weir's The Troubleshooters scripts. (Weir goes on to write the English translations of The Water Margin and Monkey). Weir came up with a script called, depending on who you talk to, either "The Killer Cats of Geng Singh" or "The Killers of the Dark". However when the production team received the script they discovered there were certain elements that would be difficult to film: a Wembley stadium sized arena is the one that's usually quoted. So at a late stage Weir's scripts were binned and Script Editor Anthony Read and producer Graham Williams locked themselves away and produced The Invasion of Time, sticking out under a regular BBC Pseudonym, David Agnew. This wouldn't be the last time that Williams, as Doctor Who producer, would help to put a script out under the Agnew name. The next time however he would have a rather more famous collaborator....

So we have a script ready to go. What could go wrong? Join us tomorrow as we talk about the Play School Clock!

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