Thursday 15 September 2011

297 Colony in Space: Episode Five

EPISODE: Colony in Space: Episode Five
TRANSMITTED: 08 May 1971
WRITER: Malcolm Hulke
DIRECTOR: Michael Briant
SCRIPT EDITOR: Terrance Dicks
PRODUCER: Barry Letts
FORMAT: VHS: Doctor Who - the Master Tin Set: Colony In Space & The Time Monster but DVD release due on October 3rd
Episode Format: 525 video

Ashe interrupts, asking the Master, as the adjudicator, to intervene in the fight. Winton captures Dent forcing IMC to surrender. They are taken as prisoners to their space ship. Trying to get evidence that the Master is an imposter the Doctor & Jo plan to break in to his Tardis, disguised as the Adjudicator's space ship. Dent prepares to leave but contacts Earth to check the Adjudicator's identity. The Doctor & Jo get past the Master's alarm system and search his Tardis. The IMC's ship orbits Uxarieus when confirmation that the Adjudicator is a fake arrives. The Doctor & Jo find the credentials for the real adjudicator but in her haste to leave Jo activates the alarm system causing her & the Doctor to be gassed. IMC return to the planet 50 kilometres from the colony and plan to attack & kill the colonists. The Master uses Jo as a hostage to get the Doctor to guide him to the primitives' city. The IMC guards enter the colony taking Ashe hostage, forcing the other colonists to surrender. IMC hold a show trial and exile the colonists from the planet. Ashe protests that their ship is old and won't survive the trip. The primitives attack the Doctor & Master destroying their vehicle. Caldwell confirms Ashe's claims and says the ship may blow up on take off, but Dent is unconcerned. Caldwell & Morgan, attempting to locate the Adjudicator, find the key to the Master's Tardis that the Doctor dropped earlier. They gain entry to the Tardis setting of the alarm system which notifies the Master causing him to activate a mechanism to flood the chamber holding Jo Grant with poisonous gas.

How stupid is Jo Grant? Well as stupid as the story needs her to be obviously. After the Doctor's made such a fuss about getting into the Master's Tardis she forgets everything he's said about the alarm system and sets it off in her haste to try and get the Doctor out of there. Deary me. I suppose you can lay some blame at the Doctor's feet for not deactivating the alarm in the first place but.....

The location work for this story was filmed in Old Baal Claypit in Cornwall. Wet weather conditions, which livened up the fight sequence we'll see in the next episode, caused some problems. The robot prop was left outside overnight and unsurprisingly it's plywood & cardboard construction didn't prove to be water proof. The IMC buggies used during filming were also damaged necessitating a payment to the hire firm they were rented from for their repair. Jon Pertwee had driven his own car to the location, rather than ride on the coach with the rest of the cast & crew, and parked it in the quarry. The underside had been been caked in the china mud while it was there and driving the car home baked it turning it into china which then had to be carefully stripped away.

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