Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Edge of Destruction — Blogging Doctor Who

If “The Daleks” was padded by an episode or two, so is “The Edge of Destruction,” the third Doctor Who story. “The Edge of Destruction” is only two episodes long, so that’s pretty much padding from end to end.[1]

The episode is the show’s first bottle episode, using only the Tardis interiors and the regular cast. And the cast is acting strangely. At the end of the previous serial, as they escaped Skaro, there’s a flash and they all fall to the floor. This happens repeatedly in “The Edge of Destruction.” When they wake, their memories are faulty, they act aggressively toward each other, and generally bicker.

This time, the Doctor isn’t the only one behaving badly, as Ian attempts a little recreational choking, and Susan threatens both Ian and Barbara with scissors. The Doctor is the most unsubtle poisoner ever, telling everyone that he’s giving them “a little nightcap to help us all sleep better,” so it’s no terrible surprise that Ian figures out he’s trying to drug them with a sedative.[2]

The Doctor accuses Ian of sabotaging the ship, but it is Barbara who points out that the Doctor previously did exactly that (yeah, but it’s his ship, so its his prerogative to sabotage it and put everyone in danger). Eventually, they pull it all together and find that the solution is trivial. To save something for anyone who wants to brave this one, I’ll leave that unspoiled. You can be disappointed all on your own.

Eye Candy for Gay Time Lords
Since we’re working with just the regular case, we’ve got William Russell and William Hartnell to choose from, neither who really do it for me.

So, Is This a Must-See?
No. Definitely for the completist. If you’ve got an hour to kill, you might be better off watching something else.

(I know this is short, but it's a two-episode story in which very little happens.)

Next: "The Keys of Marinus."

  1. It’s a first-act problem that gets two whole episodes.  ↩
  2. Why not just say, “Since we’re all being combative, I’ve decided to drug all of you”? Why just hint at it?  ↩

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