Wednesday 5 January 2011

044 Planet of Giants Part 2: Dangerous Journey

EPISODE: Planet of Giants Part 2: Dangerous Journey
TRANSMITTED: 07 November 1964
WRITER: Louis Marks
DIRECTOR: Mervyn Pinfield
SCRIPT EDITOR: David Whitaker
PRODUCER: Verity Lambert
FORMAT: VHS: Doctor Who - Planet Of Giants

The travellers keep still and the cat looses interest and wanders off. They see a figure approaching and hide, Ian & Barbara in Farrow's brief case. Forrester lies to his colleague, the scientist Smithers, about Farrow's death: Smithers sees through the story. Forrester decides to fake an accident on Farrow's planned holiday so that Smithers' experiment can continue and Forrester can make his money. The briefcase is put in the lab where Ian & Barbara escape. They find wheat seeds in the house which Ian believes have been sprayed with insecticide. The Doctor and Susan climb up inside a drain pipe to get access to the house. While Ian tries to escape from the table top they're on Barbara is menaced by an wasp and faints. The Doctor & Susan enter the lab through the plug hole in the sink. The wasp flies away, lands on the wheat and dies instantly. Susan yells and Ian & Barbara hear them and reply. Ian & Barbara go to climb down to the sink but Forrester & Smithers come into the lab causing The Doctor & Susan to hide in the plughole. Forrester is going to amend Farrow's report. Smithers washes his hands, pulling the plug out unleashing a torrent of water....

Hmm. Great model & set work again, but a little slow moving compared to the first episode.

The "Tardis in a land of giants" idea had been thrown around since the earliest day of Doctor Who when CE Webber proposed it as an idea for the first story following on from the opening episode. The idea passed through a number of hands before it was finally written as the debut script by Louis Marks (not to be confused with Louis Marx, the manufacturer of Dalek toys in the sixties!) Marks would return to the show to write a number of stories for Jon Pertwee & Tom Baker in the Seventies. Why then team were so keen on the giants idea I don't know,perhaps one of them was a big fan of Gulliver's travels. Two of the most obvious possible influences Irwin Allen's TV show Land of the Giants (first broadcast September 1968) and the film Fantastic Voyage, released August 1966 are some way in the future at this point.

Planet of Giants was the last of the William Hartnell stories to be novelised, finally appearing in print in 1990 over 25 years since it's original transmission and was the penultimate novelisation written by Terrance Dicks.

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