Thursday 19 July 2012

604 Enlightenment Part Three

EPISODE: Enlightenment Part Three
TRANSMITTED: Tuesday 08 March 1983
WRITER: Barbara Clegg
DIRECTOR: Fiona Cumming
PRODUCER: John Nathan-Turner
RATINGS: 6.2 million viewers
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who - The Black Guardian Trilogy: Mawdryn Undead / Terminus / Enlightenment

Turlough is picked up by Captain Wrack's ship the Buccaneer. She sends one of her competitors, Captain Davey, a ruby encrusted sword & part invitations to all the other Captains. Wrack locks herself in a vacuum shielded room bellow decks which she refuses to let Turlough enter. Davey's ship attempts to pass the Buccaneer and is destroyed. Turlough attempts to find out what is in the room, discovering an eye like grid in the floor and a red eye like device in the ceiling. The Doctor, Tegan, who has been provided with a dress for dinner, & Marriner travel to the Buccaneer for the party during which the Doctor sneaks away to find Turlough. He realises the chamber is the weapon Wrack is using to destroy her competitors, with the rubies sent in presents as the focusing device. Tegan is spirited away by Wrack who freezes her in time and plants a ruby in her Tiara. The Doctor & Turlough are caught by Wrack's first mate.

Someone in this race isn't 100% playing by the rules. As what is effectively the villain of the piece Wrack's entry into the story is surprisingly late in the third episode and there's no sense of mystery about it: from the moment we see her it's obvious that she's up to no good. We find out the name of Striker's ship here but it isn't in the dialogue: the words "The Shadow" are printed on the ship's life belt.

Replacing the actor originally cast as Captain Striker (Peter Sallis, who was Penley in The Ice Warriors) is Keith Barron, has got an appearance in the first broadcast episode of The Professionals to his name (Private Madness, Public Danger, written by former Doctor Who script editor Anthony Read and directed by Douglas Camfield. But you really should watch Old Dog, New Tricks first...) Keith Barron is unrelated to Lynda Baron, playing Captain Wrack, also famed for her sit com acting (Open All Hours). Previously she sung "The Ballad of the Last Chance Saloon" in the the Gunfighters. Her first mate Mansell was another role recast due to the strike action (David Rhule was originally cast in the role) and in the broadcast version he's played by Leee John of the pop group Imagination, making his TV acting debut. There's a familiar face amongst the Shadow's crew: Tony Caunter plays the teetotal Jackson. He was previously Thatcher in The Crusade then Morgan in Colony in Space and will later find fame as Roy Evans in East Enders.

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