October 29, 2014

Doctor Who: The Chase

In the previous episode, the Doctor conveniently picked up a space-time visualizer from the museum on Xeros. It works like a tv and allows one to see anything that has happened in time and space. Barbara goes to turn it off and stumbles upon a scene with the Daleks. She discovers that they developed their own time machine in order to hunt the crew of the TARDIS and exterminate them.

the Daleks in their time machine

The space-time visualizer only shows things that have happened in the past, so the Daleks are already on their way. Oh no! (What is the past to the crew of the TARDIS? They can travel in time. Let's forget that bit.) The Doctor and Barbara go looking for Ian and Vicki, who have gone out exploring the sand planet on which they landed. To make a long story short, the inhabitants of the planet capture our heros and are going to turn them over to the Daleks. But then, blobby squid things attack, and they get away.

The TARDIS happens to have an instrument that shows that another ship is traveling along the same time track. The Doctor says they have to keep moving until they are ready to stand and fight the Daleks. He surmises they have a twelve minute lead on them, but that lead will diminish every time they land. And so, several times they land, check out the area, and take off again. The Daleks do the same. This leads to events such as the Mary Celeste being abandoned because the Daleks terrorize the crew.

One of the places they land is inhabited by Dracula, Frankenstein's monster, ghosts, bats, and all manner of scary things. The Doctor thinks they have landed in a realm created by the collective human mind. They take off before they learn that it's a house of horrors in a carnival. They also take off before making sure that everyone is aboard. Vicki is left behind! She ends up hitching a ride with the Daleks. The Daleks run into a little trouble in the house of horrors, but they quickly continue the chase. Now we find out that the Daleks have created a Doctor robot.

robot Doctor

Here's the thing about the robot- as you can see in the screenshot above, it's obvious that the robot isn't William Hartnell, the actor who plays the First Doctor. When the robot talks, it's William Hartnell talking. When they cut to close shots, it's William Hartnell. Why not use William Hartnell the whole time?? When the Doctor fights the robot Doctor, it's mostly William Hartnell vs. William Hartnell, so that the audience doesn't know who is the robot. Anyway, the robot Doctor is supposed to infiltrate and kill, but the Doctor defeats him. Next, the group gets captured by the Mechonoids.

Yep, this is a Mechonoid.

Now they meet Steven, another prisoner. He's an astronaut from Earth. He isn't in this much, so you'd think he isn't important. Nope. We'll find out in the next episode that he stowed away on the TARDIS and is a new companion. They all escape, and the Daleks fight the Mechonoids. There is utter chaos, and the plants start attacking the Daleks, too.


All of the Daleks are destroyed, leaving an empty time machine...

Barbara and Ian want to use the Dalek time machine to go home. The Doctor freaks out, saying it's too dangerous. He won't show them how to use it. Really, I think he just doesn't want them to leave. Vicki convinces him to let them go.

And they make it home, albeit two years off. They blow up the Dalek time machine and think about how they're going to explain their absence to the Coal Hill School, where they teach. Vicki and the Doctor use the space-time visualizer to see that Ian and Barbara are home safe.

Our last view of Ian and Barbara is the two of them on a bus together, laughing. I'm sorry to see them go.


Doctor: First
Companions: Ian, Barbara, Vicki
Episode: #16, "The Chase," six parts- 'The Executioners,' 'The Death of Time,' 'Flight Through Eternity,' 'Journey into Terror,' 'The Death of Doctor Who,' 'The Planet of Decision'
Adversary: the Daleks
Classic Lines: the Doctor, to Ian: "We're trying to beat the Daleks, not start a jumble sale!"
Tuck This Away to Impress Your Friends: The Mary Celeste was found adrift with no crew because they jumped overboard to escape the Daleks.
Next Up: "The Time Meddler"

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