Saturday 8 September 2012

655 The Trial a Timelord Part Ten (Terror of the Vervoids Part Two)

EPISODE: The Trial a Timelord Part Ten (Terror of the Vervoids Part Two)
TRANSMITTED: Saturday 08 November 1986
WRITER: Pip & Jane Baker
DIRECTOR: Chris Clough
PRODUCER: John Nathan-Turner
RATINGS: 4.6 million viewers
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who - The Trial Of A Time Lord

Mel escapes from the Hydroponics unit but a guard who comes to investigate is also killed. When others arrived in force they find both bodies gone and the seed pods empty. One of the Morgarian passengers collapses in the lounge, poisoned. The Doctor tries to remove it's breathing gear to save it but is restrained. He points out that the Morgarian isn't a Morgarian: it spoke without it's translator and unmasks it to reveal the thought Grenville who the Doctor, like Kimbur, recognises as the inspector Hallett. Events are now starting to worry Lasky's team who are bickering about whether to reveal their work. Kimber is slain in his cabin by a tiny dart. The Doctor & Mel gain entry to the isolation room Lasky's team are maintaining and inside discover a half human female, half plant creature.

Got a few more bodies to add to the pile this episode: On top of whoever went down the garbage grinder, and Edward's Electrocution we now get a poisoned Grenville / Hallett, and Kimber & a guard slain by whatever was in Hydroponics unit which by the end of the second episode we still haven't seen. That's a bit slow for a four part story. At the moment I'm guessing that the body in the garbage unit was the third Morgarian, killed by Hallet who then took his place but if it was who then killed Hallet? I genuinely can't remember!

I would be remiss if I didn't point out the very phallic nature of the thrusting stamen from the seed pod at the start. We'll see worse in later episodes.....

Since we've shed a few cast members this episode we better look at who's in this story pretty sharpish: Chief Guest Star Honor Blackman. as Professor Lasky, was well known for playing Cathy Gale in The Avengers and appearing as Pussy Galore in Goldfinger. Several of the others have Doctor Who form: David Allister, as her assistant Bruchner, was Stimson in The Leisure Hive while Arthur Hewlett, as Kimber , appeared later the same season as Kalmar in State of Decay. My goodness look at that CV going back to the earliest days of television! He's got an appearance in the Quatermass and the Pit episode The Halfmen as Baines to his name as well as the dual role of Godfrey, Archbishop of Canterbury and William, Bishop of London in The Archbishop episode of The Black Adder. Mike Mungarvan, the Duty Officer, had been credited as Dalek Operator in Destiny of the Daleks but had appeared in an extra in plenty of other stories from the Mutants through to Silver Nemesis but would reappear in The Christmas Invasion. He appeared in both the first and last episodes of Blake's 7, and the only actor who can claim that are Gareth Thomas (Blake) and Michael Keating (Villa): Paul Darrow's Avon is missing from the first episode. Yolande Palfrey, as Janet, also appeared in Blake's 7 as Veron in Pressure Point while Malcolm Tierney, as Lasky's other assistant Doland, was in Star Wars as Shann Childsen as well as appearing as Patrick Woolton in House of Cards.

1 comment:

  1. I like the fact, we are yet to see the Vervoids in action, it's sometimes good to hold the monster back to create suspense. I will agree, much as Pip & Jane creep me out, this is probably the best plotted of the stories in the Trial. It's not the most entertaining - Mindwarp gets that crown.