Friday 15 November 2013

190 The Enemy of the World: Episode Five

EPISODE: The Enemy of the World: Episode Five
TRANSMITTED: 20 January 1968
WRITER: David Whitaker
DIRECTOR: Barry Letts
PRODUCER: Innes Lloyd
FORMAT: iTunes The Enemy of the World
DVD Preorder:: Doctor Who - The Enemy of the World
TELESNAPS: The Enemy of the World: Episode Five

"Why not me? WHY NOT ME???? Salamander, take me with you! TAKE ME WITH YOU!!"

This time Bruce does not fall for The Doctor pretending to be Salamander. They tell Bruce they have evidence on Salamander. He tells them that Farriah is dead. Benik is holding the unconscious Jamie & Victoria at the research centre. The Doctor talks Bruce into taking him to the research centre to get evidence. In the Underground base Colin is wanting to go outside. Swann finds a scrap of newspaper stuck to a crate "holiday liner sinks with the loss of many lives" He knows they have been lied to about the war. He accuses Salamander of being a murderer and forces Salamander to take him to the surface. When Salamander announces Swann is coming with him to the surface Colin is distraught that it wasn't him who was chosen. Benik interrogates Jamie and Victoria but is interrupted by "Salamander" and sent away. This turns out to be the Doctor. Salamander takes Swann into the tunnels above the base, but Swann wants to go to the surface. Astrid distracts the guards and flees allowing Kent to escape. While outside she hears cries for help and finds the injured Swann lying in a tunnel mouth. She asks him what has happened and he says he was attacked by a man named Salamander.

I'm still bowled over as to how Salamander's pulled this deception off especially as it comes crashing down so easily here. This episode rolls along nicely and you can feel things warming up for the story's conclusion. According to Barry Letts in his autobiography Who And Me this episode had to be re-written after it was discovered there were no scenes featuring guest star Mary Peach who plays Astrid.

Benik is very sinister during this episode, especially in the sequence where he interrogates Jamie & Victoria, summed up by this exchange:

JAMIE: You must have been a nasty little boy.
BENIK: Oh I was. But I had a very enjoyable childhood.

Appearing throughout the story is Colin Douglas as Donald Bruce. Douglas will return to the program 10 years later as Reuben in Horror of Fang Rock. His 1967 self however looks and sounds like the actor Rupert Vansittart who was General Asquith in Aliens of London and World War Three. Compare and contrast for yourself. The same pompous manner that Bruce has is familiar in a lot of Vansittart's recent roles.

The only reason I've heard of Andrew Staines, playing Benik's Sergeant, is that I've read the production subtitles on Planet of Spiders. He was a favourite actor of Barry Letts: indeed 4 of his 6 acting credits on are Doctor Who roles with Barry Letts directing: He's also the scientist Goodge in Terror of the Autons, the Captain in Carnival of Monsters and finally Keaver, one of Lupton's gang, in Planet of the Spiders. There's been another Letts regular in episodes 4 & 5: Christopher Burgess as Swann. He had appeared with Barry Letts, while the later was still acting, in This Man Craig: The Good Chemist during 1966. He'll go on to play Professor Philips, the other scientist Terror of the Autons 1 & 2, and Barnes, another of Lupton's gang, in Planet of the Spiders.

Remember Fraser Hines' cousin, Ian Hines, appearing as a guard in earlier episodes? Well in this and the next episode we have David Troughton, son of Patrick, also as a guard. He'll be back in a bit part in The War Games plus a starring role as King Peladon in the Curse of Peladon. He famously was Doctor Bob Buzzard in A Very Peculiar Practice (which has finally got a complete DVD release at long last) with Peter Davison before returning as Professor Hobbes in the 2008 New Series episode Midnight. One of my favourite actors he can do an excellent impression of his late father which he does to good effect narrating several of the Target audiobook readings. IMDB (and every other Who publication I've read) reckons this is his first Doctor Who appearance but my friend Ralph heard David Troughton speak at a recent convention where he claims to appear in episode 1 of this story as one of the thugs on the beach, specifically the one that jumps Jamie!

OK back to our geography. There's a tunnel leading from the shelter to the surface. The tunnel comes out near to where Kent's caravan is located: Astrid stumbles across Swann who can't have got far from the entrance in that state. The tunnel doesn't seem to be at a huge incline yet we know the shelter is some way bellow ground - maybe it comes off a level that the travel capsule can stop at closer to the surface?


In fact you can see the travel capsule in the back of this shot (There was already a poor quality telesnap that we didn't realise had the travel capsule in), and Swann make a point of asking what's directly above them, so the level closer to the surface theory is a good one.

And speaking of poor quality telesnaps, here's the piece of paper Swann found that's confounded Who fans for years by being blurred and out of focus. Fortunately it does come into focus while he's holding it:


The date on the paper, said to be "last year's date" is Friday August 16th 2017, which clearly dates the story to 2018, the same as the year on the plate in Astrid's helicopter in episode 1. Publicity at the time put the story "50 years in the future" and Lance Parkin's History of the Universe dates the story to 2017, 50 years after the first episode was broadcast. Close, it's 50 years after *most* of the story was broadcast: the first two episodes are in 1967 but the remaining four are in 1968!

There's only one small problem with the date on the paper: 16th August 2017 is a Wednesday!

Another thought: if it's approaching the 5th anniversary of them descending to the shelter in 2018 then they'll be hiding down there now in 2013!

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