Sunday 16 January 2011

055 The Romans Part 2: All Roads Lead to Rome

EPISODE: The Romans Part 2: All Roads Lead to Rome
TRANSMITTED: 23 January 1965
WRITER: Dennis Spooner
DIRECTOR: Christopher Barry
SCRIPT EDITOR: Dennis Spooner
PRODUCER: Verity Lambert
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who: The Rescue & The Romans

Ascarius enters the Doctor's room and they struggle. Vicki enters threatening him with a vase and he accidentally tumbles out the window! The Doctor boasts how he enjoyed their fight. Barbara has arrived in Rome where she is locked up in a cell. She wonders where Ian is: he's found himself rowing on a Roman galley. The galley master tells them bad weather is expected. A slave buyer has taken an interest in Barbara: the bald Tavius. He asks the traders if he can buy her but they insist she will be sold at auction. The boat Ian is on has met the promised bad weather and sinks. Vicki ^ The Doctor have also now arrived in Rome and narrowly miss seeing Barbara being sold at the auction: They believe she's still at the villa with Ian. Tavius wins the auction with a huge bid. Ian has been washed up on the shore with another prisoner, Delos, who frees him from his chains. Ian intends to make for Rome to find Barbara. Tavius tells Barbara he was impressed with her actions in caring for another prisoner: He has brought her to Nero's house where she will be a servant for Nero's wife Poppaea. They are interrupted by a servant who tells Tavius that Maximus Pettulian (who we know is the Doctor) is here to see Nero: after first wanting to summon him here, Tavius leaves to meet him with Barbara narrowly missing the Doctor again. During their audience Nero arrives. The Doctor bluffs to try to avoid playing the lyre for him. Ian too has arrived in Rome with Delos. The Doctor & Vicki find the body of the murdered centurion and wonder what has happened. Ian has been captured and delivered to the same slave traders who sold him earlier, where he is noticed by the girl Barbara cared for earlier. He is destined to fight in the arena as a gladiator against the lions!

This episode drew a smile as the comedic elements started to show: the narrow misses between The Doctor & Vicki and Barbara, the camp Emperor Nero and the antics with the lute and Ian ending back with the same slave traders. Hartnell, as in the Spooner's previous story the Reign of Terror, seems to be having some fun here with the comedic elements.

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