Archive for the 2nd Doctor Category

Doctor Who 30/12/72 – The Three Doctors

Posted in 2nd Doctor, 3rd Doctor, Doctor Who on December 5, 2010 by watsonprime

“The Three Doctors” is an incredibly important moment in Doctor Who history. While written as a 10th anniversary celebration, it does feature several key moments that are huge additions to Doctor Who folklore. First and foremost, it establishes that while a Doctor may have died, it doesn’t mean we can’t see them again. It also shows us that not only can different incarnations of The Doctor meet, but they also don’t get along with each other. This also marks the last episode in which The 3rd Doctor was stuck on earth, having his ban from travelling removed at the end of the serial.

After a series of attacks on UNIT headquarters, The Doctor is forced to call upon the help of the Time Lords, who enlist the help of his two previous incarnations. As soon as the 2nd and 3rd Doctors meet, they start a delightfully antagonistic relationship, which is kept in check by the appearance of the 1st Doctor. Due to William Hartnell’s illness, which originally caused him to leave the show, he only appears briefly via the TARDIS scanner screen, but he immediately puts the two squabbling Doctors in their place with a few choice putdowns. It’s always interesting to se how different incarnations of The Doctor deal with their other selves, and while it’s great when they get along ie. “Time Crash”, it’s so much more fun when it’s revealed they don’t like each other, and it’s not really a surprise that the elegant, dashing 3rd Doctor is annoyed by the clownish, bumbling 2nd, and that they’re both a disappointment to the stern 1st Doctor, who acts like a father figure to his future selves.

As the various cast members are teleported to an antimatter universe, which looks surprisingly like a quarry, it is revealed that the attacks on UNIT are being orchestrated by someone with immense power and that The Two Doctors must put aside their differences and work together.

One negative point about this serial is that the Time Lords, who were quite intimidating in “The War Games” appear to have regenerated into a bunch of argumentative old men. However, considering the main villain of the story is a crazed Time Lord, by making them less intimidating, it makes the villain more imposing by comparison.

And what a villain! It seems fitting in an anniversary episode that The Doctor should fight a character from his past. While the energy monster thing and the hobbling lumps of bubble wrap are laughable, the real orchestrator behind the curtain is a figure that frightens even the 3rd Doctor.

Overall, it’s a fantastic celebration of Doctor Who, it’s always fun to see actors enjoying their work, and there are times when you can see Jon Pertwee is almost about to start laughing (just before the two Doctors conjure up a door on the Antimatter planet). There are moments of humour, as well as some genuine scares and while the effects are pretty ropey, they don’t detract from the quality of the story telling.

Also, the fight scene between the 3rd Doctor and Omega is amazing

Doctor Who 02/11/68 – The Invasion

Posted in 2nd Doctor, Doctor Who on November 27, 2010 by watsonprime

One good thing about Doctor Who is the fact that due to it’s nature, every episode can be completely different, with new locations, timezones and characters. But sometimes it can be fun to revisit certain characters and see how they interact with a constantly changing Doctor and his companions. The best recurring character by far is, of course, Brigadier Sir Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart played by Nicholas Courtney. The Brig’s first appearance was in 1968’s ‘Web of Fear’ but it was in ‘The Invasion’ later that year that we saw him since his promotion to Brigadier.

The Brigadier is a complete badass, constantly at odds with The Doctor, due to his military nature and willingness to use lethal force. The Brigadier is also the only character to have met The Doctor in all his incarnations (although some of these happened off screen) and despite their differences, they are great friends.

The Invasion is a Second Doctor story involving the Doctor, Jamie and Zoe landing in London for TARDIS repairs only to find a mysterious company, International Electronics, in charge of everything. When The Doctor investigates the advanced technology, along with the help of UNIT, he finds that it is, obviously, alien in origin. Which aliens? Cybermen!

Patrick Troughton is widely considered to be one of the best, if not the best, Doctors and in The Invasion it’s not hard to see why. His interpretation of The Doctor as a man who puts up a front of being a harmless, bumbling fool while quietly evaluating people was a big departure from William Hartnell’s grumpy grandfather. One example in this serial of his ability to be underestimated is when he notes that Tobias Vaughn, the head of International Electronics, doesn’t blink as much as a normal human, the fact that he was able to get close enough to the head of the evil corporation shows just how little his enemies think of him. As the brigadier says “That man has an incredible knack of being one jump ahead of everyone”.

One of the Second Doctors qualities is the fact that he was by far one of the friendliest incarnations of the Gallifreyan, this is especially notable in his relationship with his companion Jamie McCrimmon. They’re total bros. They both look out for each other, and while the Doctor’s other companion Zoe is modelling clothes, Jamie and The Doctor go and investigate the company. That’s not to say Zoe is useless, where Jamie has the brawn, she has the brains, able to cause a sophisticated computer to self destruct from a few choice equations, she’s a invaluable member of the TARDIS crew and far from a damsel in distress. Although she does get a few good screams throughout The Invasion, but that’s just what happens when you’re travelling with The Doctor. Much like all good Doctor Who there are some scary scenes. The Cybermen are a genuinely intimidating foe, and one scene involving a insane Cyberman is particularly harrowing.

The Invasion is a victim of it’s time period in that the material is dragged out over 8 episodes, which means that there is a fair amount of filler, for example we have to watch Vaughn open the giant, sliding door everytime he talks to the Cybermen, which gets pretty repetitive and boring very quickly. But The Invasion is still a great serial, if just for the fact that we see the friendship between The Brigadier and The Doctor start to blossom.