Wednesday 8 June 2011

198 Fury from the Deep: Episode One

EPISODE: Fury from the Deep: Episode One
TRANSMITTED: 16 March 1968
WRITER: Victor Pemberton
DIRECTOR: Hugh David
SCRIPT EDITOR: Derrick Sherwin
PRODUCER: Peter Bryant
FORMAT: CD: Doctor Who: Fury from the Deep
TELESNAPS: Fury from the Deep: Episode One

The Tardis materialises at sea causing it's crew to row a dingy to shore. Seeing the cliffs they realise they are back on Earth and in England. The Doctor is curious about the foam he finds on the beach. Finding a pipeline marked Euro Sea Gas the Doctor locates a black box which he opens using his brand new Sonic Screwdriver. He puts a stethoscope to the pipe and hears a pumping sound just before they are shot with tranquilliser darts. They wake in the control room and are interrogated by Robson & Harris who suspect them of sabotage. They have lost contact with one of their gas drilling rigs. Harris' Wife, Maggie, is prevented from leaving the base by a guard under Robson's orders. The Doctor tells Harris he heard something in the pipe. The missing rig briefly makes contact. Harris wants to turn off the gas flow and investigate but Robson won't let him: the gas has never been turned off while he's been in charge. Harris' notes are stolen from his bag by a white gloved man. Believing he's left them at home he goes back to find them. The Doctor, Jamie & Victoria have been locked in a bunk room and are trying to escape. When they do the Doctor asks Victoria to stay behind but she wanders off exploring. Harris meets Maggie and asks her to fetch the file. She finds it on his desk but is stung by a piece of seaweed within which she throws onto the veranda outside. Robson argues with Van Lutyens, the technical advisor from the Dutch government. Robson is contacted by Chief Baxter at the control rig: he can hear something in the pipes. Maggie is reacting badly to the weed sting. Victoria hides in the Oxygen store room but a white gloved gas masked saboteur is opening the gas cylinders. He locks Victoria in and opens the ventilation system where something lies in wait. While Jamie & The Doctor explore white foam and seaweed pour into the store and Victoria's screams echo round the base.

Welcome to "the one with the foam and the seaweed". This is the first time the Tardis doesn't materialise on dry land, although it did land on it's side in the Ice Warriors. This initial episode is OK but what I mainly take from it is lots of people arguing with Robson. Incidentally the character's name isn't that far from Hobson, another base chief we saw in an earlier story. There's a nice piece of dialogue here mentioning Megan Jones, the company head, prefiguring her appearance in a few episodes time.

Fury from the Deep is the last story which has no complete episode existing, but there's a brief clip of the Tardis materialising at sea the I first saw on one of Blue Peter's many Doctor Who articles. Said clip is actually taken from episode 10 of the War Games which reuses the footage from the episode. I can remember a full page pinup of Troughton opening the pipeline box in an early episode of Doctor Who Weekly too. I read the book when I was younger and enjoyed it, then bought the CD the day it came out and listened to it on the train to Stoke where my friend Naomi was living at the time (co-incidentally her surname is Harris like the couple in the story). Naomi will provide us with a top Doctor Who story when we get to Robots of Death.

Famously this episode sees the first appearance of the Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver. Here it's just a penlight torch which will evolve over subsequent appearances into a more familiar form. For once it is actually unscrewing something here!

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