CASTROVALVA

Part One

Sue: Bloody hell, he’s still Tom Baker.
Me: We’ve never had a recap like this before.
Sue: Yes we have. We get them all the time.
Me: Not before the opening titles we don’t.
Sue: Oh yeah, I forgot about them.

Give me strength.

The Watcher merges with the Doctor.

CastrovalvaNyssa: So he was the Doctor all the time.
Sue: It doesn’t make any sense to me. It’s a very disappointing regeneration. And it’s not nice seeing the Doctor with white gunk plastered all over his face like that.

The titles kick in.

Sue: Peter Davison! Isn’t he lovely?

The story title appears.

Sue: Castrovalva? I’m guessing that it’s either a planet or a Spanish restaurant.

The story picks up where Logopolis left off. The newly regenerated Doctor and his companions are attempting to escape from the Pharos Project, but they are apprehended by some security guards when the Doctor collapses. The guards drag Adric, Tegan and Nyssa away to be interrogated.

Sue: Yeah, that’s right, just leave the injured person to die alone in a field.

An ambulance arrives. Adric tries to explain to the authorities that he is an intelligent alien life form.

Sue: Adric always has his hands in his pockets, doesn’t he? It must be his age.

Tegan and Nyssa steal the ambulance – with the Doctor inside it.

Sue: It’s turned into Charlie’s Angels. You go, girls!

Unfortunately, the incidental music leaves Sue cold.

Sue: I’d love to have been a fly on the wall in Dudley’s house when this went out. He must have been mortified. I know I am.

A stone column materialises in mid-air.

Sue: It’s the Master. I don’t need to ask.

CastrovalvaInside his TARDIS, the Doctor is busy unravelling his scarf.

Sue: That’s sacrilege! They’ll never be able to sell it on eBay now.

Tegan is frustrated, too.

Tegan: Rabbits!
Sue: What has Tegan got against rabbits?
Me: It’s a Doctor Who swear word. Farscape had ‘Frell’, Battlestar Galactica had ‘Frak’, Doctor Who had ‘Rabbits’.

The Doctor’s regeneration isn’t going very well.

Sue: He’s pretending to be William Hartnell, isn’t he? He should have rabbited up his lines – it would have been more authentic.

Tegan and Nyssa wish the TARDIS data banks had an index file.

Tegan: If. I F! Stands for index file!
Sue: As if!
Me: Is that supposed to be a joke?
Sue: No.
The Doctor: The regeneration is failing.
Sue: What does that mean?
Me: It means we get Colin Baker in ten minutes.

Nyssa tells Tegan not to worry – the TARDIS is on a preprogrammed flight.

Sue: I used to have a muff like Nyssa’s.
Me: Okay, let’s not go down that road again.
Sue: It’s true. I also had a red velvet jacket and red velvet chords. Actually, there was a time when I probably looked like a blonde Nyssa. But without the tiara.
Me: Oh, that makes it alright, then.

CastrovalvaSpeaking of clothes, the Doctor has found himself a new jacket.

Sue: So his new costume is just waiting there for him? He doesn’t get to choose one? That doesn’t seem fair.

The Doctor stares into a mirror.

The Doctor: That’s the trouble with regeneration. You never quite know what you’re going to get.
Sue: I wouldn’t complain if I were you. It’s a massive improvement on Tom. I’d be chuffed to bits if I were you.

The Doctor picks up a recorder.

Sue: NO! PUT THE RECORDER DOWN AND STEP AWAY FROM THE INSTRUMENT!

He plays a little tune (badly) and then he puts it back again.

The Doctor: No.
Sue: Thank rabbit for that.

The Doctor changes into his new costume.

CastrovalvaSue: He needs some white underpants.
Me: What?
Sue: His pants. They’re black. You can see them through his trousers. Look.
Me: Oh yeah. I’d never noticed that before.
Sue: Don’t worry, I’ll keep you right. You just need to stare at Peter Davison’s arse a little bit more.

The search is on for the Zero Room.

Sue: Why have we never heard of a Zero Room before? And why is it so far away from the control room? You’d think it would be next to the loo, or something convenient like that.

When he finally reaches the Zero Room, the Doctor is able to levitate.

Sue: That’s impressive – his jacket isn’t hanging down, either. That must take some extra effort.

The Doctor gives his companions roles to perform during his difficult regeneration.

Sue: So it’s basically Tegan’s job to serve the drinks and keep them all in peanuts. That makes sense.

CastrovalvaMeanwhile, Adric is trapped in…

Sue: A sex dungeon.

The Master is using Adric to generate a simulated projection of himself. Or is it stimulated? I forget.

The Master: Well, my dear young man, it’s your own computational powers that made the block transfer possible.
Sue: Oh no, not that again. I still don’t understand what that’s supposed to do.

Nyssa is reading from the TARDIS data bank. They are heading for Event One. Tegan is more worried that the TARDIS’s air conditioning might be on the blink.

Nyssa: You’d better read this.
Sue: Just tell her! There isn’t enough time to read Wikipedia!

Sue guesses that they are heading for the Big Bang, long before Nyssa does, and Sue is rubbish at science (especially bioelectronics and telebiogensis).

The episode concludes with Nyssa stating the bleeding obvious while the Master laps it up.

Sue: What a strange episode. I didn’t follow most of it – there’s a lot going on – but I’m sure it will settle down eventually.
Me: What about Peter Davison?
Sue: It’s far too early to say. I know I’ll like him – I love him in All Creatures – but I still don’t know how he’s going to play the part. He’s all over the place at the moment, but that’s all part of the plot, I guess. We’ll just have to wait and see.

 

Part Two

CastrovalvaSue: Nyssa must be roasting in that muff.

The Master appears on the TARDIS scanner screen to gloat.

Sue: (Singing) The Ace of Spades! The Ace of Spades!

The Doctor leaves the safety of the Zero Room but he quickly collapses again. A roundrel dispenses some medicine for him, and then a motorised wheelchair appears out of nowhere.

Sue: The TARDIS is looking after him. You go, girl.

The Doctor pulls himself into the wheelchair and quotes Hamlet.

The Doctor: Go softly on!
Sue: Which ****ing Doctor is that meant to be?

CastrovalvaMeanwhile, in the Master’s sex dungeon, Adric is still being tortured. At one point, the Master raises the platform he is standing on so he can taunt his victim more effectively.

Sue: (as the Master) Just wait there while I move this up to crotch level.

Suddenly, I feel Sue tugging urgently at my sleeve.

Sue: Pause it. Quickly. Pause now. No, go back a bit. There. Yes, pause it. Look! Adric has a little stiffy.

I quickly hit the Play button again.

Sue: How embarrassing.
Me: It wasn’t that small, was it?

The Doctor comes up with a plan to jettison a quarter of his TARDIS. His companions are worried about losing the console room in the process.

Sue: Just use the other one, then. You’ve got two! Half of them should hide in the mahogany one, just in case.

Tegan prepares to play Russian roulette with the TARDIS’s architecture.

Sue: I hope they don’t get rid of the room that stores all the spare K9s.

CastrovalvaThe Master discusses his nefarious plan with Adric.

Sue: This makes no sense whatsoever. Where are they? How can there be two Adrics running around? How can he do all this stuff?
Me: Block transfer computation.
Sue: Rabbit off. Whoever wrote this script was tripping on something.

The Master is the proud owner of a trap behind a trap.

Sue: It’s nice to see him planning ahead for a change. I like that.

The Zero Room has been jettisoned, so the TARDIS crew search for an alternative. The TARDIS data bank provides the perfect solution:

Nyssa: Castrovalva. Where’s that?
Sue: It’s the new tapas bar next to the marina. If we hurry up, we might make it in time for happy hour.

CastrovalvaThe Doctor becomes hopeless again.

Sue: Why does the Doctor always have bad regenerations? You never see the Master or Romana fannying on like this.
Me: I think it happens if you don’t plan your regeneration and you just fall into it. Literally, in his case. Remember how David Tennant slept through the first half of his first story? This is nothing compared to that. Even Pertwee spent his first episode flat on his back.

The TARDIS hovers over a planet.

Sue: A pink planet. I’m not going to saying anything but JNT, right?

Nyssa constructs a Zero Cabinet out of the remains of the Zero Room.

Sue: I’m impressed. The sliding panel is a very nice touch. Nyssa has really gone up in my estimations. She has all the makings of a good carpenter.

The TARDIS arrives on the planet at a cockeyed angle (which amuses Sue a great deal), and then the crew set out to find Castrovalva.

CastrovalvaSue: Eh? I thought the planet was called Castrovalva. I’m confused now.

Nyssa and Tegan balance the Zero Cabinet on a wheelchair.

Sue: This is what it looks like in IKEA every Sunday afternoon.

Nyssa falls into a river.

Sue: Was that an outtake and they decided to leave it in? And why are they so keen to help the Doctor anyway? They hardly know him. They are putting a lot of trust into a man who turns up in their lives just before members of their immediate family are killed. They are very trusting, considering.

They finally reach the place they’ve been searching for:

Tegan: Castrovalva!
Sue: Are you sure? It might be the Italian next door.

They explore the rock face for an entrance.

Sue: It’s a lovely location. The birds are getting on my tits though.
Me: Oh, I don’t know. They’re doing their best.
Sue: I meant the birdsong, you idiot. It’s too loud.

Suddenly, some locals appear in the undergrowth.

Sue: Who the hell?

CastrovalvaTegan and Nyssa return to the Zero Cabinet but the ground is covered in red liquid.

Sue: Oh no! Not more lipstick spillage!

Not only that – the Doctor has vanished.

Sue: The plot thickens. Come on, let’s stick the next one on.

 

Part Three

Sue: Why does every episode of 1980s Doctor Who have to sound like a level from Zelda? Why?

When Nyssa and Tegan discover the empty Zero Cabinet this time, Sue tuts.

Sue: It looks like someone has fly-tipped a fridge into a hedge. I hate it when people do that.

The Doctor climbs the rock face that leads to Castrovalva, but when he looks down, he has a panic attack.

Sue: Is the Doctor afraid of heights because he just fell to his death from a great height? That would make sense, I guess. It also means Tom Baker must have been frightened of spiders.

Tegan and Nyssa follow the Doctor.

Sue: Could Tegan be more inappropriately dressed for mountaineering? I bet she can’t wait to be let loose on the TARDIS wardrobe.
Me: Unless they jettisoned it, of course.
Sue: Well, they should land on Planet of the Shops and stock up on some more, then. How long has Adric been wearing his outfit, now? It’s a bit silly, isn’t it?

A local hunting party surround the Doctor.

Sue: They look like paintballing Ewoks.

The Doctor is taken to Castrovalva to meet Shardovan.

CastrovalvaSue: Shada van? Did he just say Shada van?
Me: Shar-do-van.
Sue: I have this image of Ian Levine driving around in an ice cream van, but instead of selling ice cream, he’s trying to get people to watch his version of Shada.
Me: Thank God you are hopeless at block transfer computation.

The Doctor waits patiently on a stone bench as Shardovan inspects him.

Shardovan: I trust you’ve brought us something more edible than this lifeless unfortunate?
Sue: Are they cannibals?
Me: No, he’s just having a little joke with him.
Sue: That’s a shame. Cannibals were very big in the 1980s.

The Castrovalvans are preparing for a feast.

Sue: That looks like a real pig on that spit. I hope they aren’t hungry – that’s easily a two-day job.

Castrovalvan fashion doesn’t really do it for Sue.

CastrovalvaSue: Why is he wearing a wastepaper bin with gaffa tape wrapped around it? How long did it take for the designer to come up with that?

The Doctor is invited to dinner.

Sue: Ah, so they are the nice guys after all. That’s good. For a minute there, I thought we were supposed to be frightened of them. Phew.

The Doctor bites into a stick of celery.

Sue: I ****ing hate celery.
Me: Then you have something in common with Peter Davison. He hates celery, too.
Sue: Really? He’s such a good actor, I never would have guessed that.

The Doctor is introduced to the Portreeve.

Sue: Bloody hell, his wastepaper bin is very elaborate. He must be the top dog with a wastepaper bin like that.

Luckily, she is too wrapped up in the Portreeve’s wastepaper bin to pay any attention to the face of the man who’s wearing it.

Sue: I love the floors. Very Tuscan. The sets are great, actually. They’ve done a very nice job.

Meanwhile, Adric is still tied up.

Sue: So Adric is making this up? Is that basically it?
Me: Yes. It’s block transfer computation.
Sue: Complete bollocks is what it is. It might as well be magic.

The Master chortles to himself as his plan continues to mature like a good cheese.

Sue: The guy who plays the new Master.
Me: Anthony Ainley.
Sue: He’s not very good, is he?

The guy who plays the Portreeve, on the other hand.

CastrovalvaMe: What about him? Is he any better?
Sue: He’s alright, I suppose. I wish he’d speak up a bit, though. Actually, he’s very familiar. Yeah, he’s definitely famous.

The Doctor forgets about Adric.

Sue: How could you possibly forget about Adric? He’s the best companion you’ve got right now.

The Doctor gets lost in Castrovalva’s impossible architecture.

Sue: It’s like Escher.

The Doctor and his companions go round and round in circles.

Sue: It is Escher. Hang on a minute.

She points to her left, where a framed print of M.C. Escher’s Relativity hangs on our living room wall.

CastrovalvaSue: Hang on… I thought you bought that print because you liked the artwork.
Me: I do!
Sue: No you don’t! It was just an excuse to sneak a Doctor Who reference onto the living room wall without me knowing about it, wasn’t it? Be honest.

Too late – the episode is racing to towards its hyperventilating conclusion.

The Doctor: Recursive occlusion. Someone’s manipulating Castrovalva. We’re caught in a space-time trap!
Sue: So Castrovalva doesn’t exist, and neither do all the people who live in it. This is getting interesting, now.

 

Part Four

CastrovalvaSue: The special effects are a bit crap but the idea is sound. It reminds me of Inception. They should do this again on a decent budget for the 50th anniversary story. The TARDIS should land on Castrovalva and we could meet all the ex-Doctors. You can do anything with block transfer whatsit, and it would be a nice nod to the fans.
Me: So you accept the concept of block transfer computation, now?
Sue: Now I know it’s basically Inception, and they are in Adric’s head – sort of – it makes more sense to me. I just find it hard to believe that Adric could imagine all these details. Why does he imagine some of them as beekeepers? What’s that all about? And why doesn’t he just use his powers to confuse the Master instead?
Me: The Master is torturing him.
Sue: Are you sure? It looks to me like he could be enjoying himself.

She can’t let the Inception thing go.

Sue: Do you think Christopher Nolan watched Castrovalva?
Me: It’s possible, I guess.
Sue: Just stick some Hans Zimmer on this and you’d be away.

CastrovalvaThe Doctor uses a mirror to shield himself from the recursive occlusion.

Sue: Why is the Doctor hugging a mirror? It’s a bit vain, isn’t it?

The Doctor realises that the inhabitants of Castrovalva are unaware of their predicament and for them, life is always like this.

Sue: They don’t realise they are figments of a teenage boy’s imagination. This is getting a bit deep, actually.

Sue goes very quiet at this point, as she tries to keep up with the story’s frantic final act.

Sue: Hey, it’s him! It’s the ****ing Master!

Yes, the Portreeve was the Master all the time.

Sue: Why is his trap so complicated? Why didn’t he just kill the Doctor when he was having a nice lie-down earlier on? Why does he always have to make life so complicated for himself?

Shardovan takes a leap of faith.

Sue: It’s Adam Ant.

…and the Master’s plans are brought to a grinding halt. The renegade Time Lord escapes in his TARDIS.

Sue: He’s very clever when it comes to making a quick getaway, but he’s completely useless when it comes to just about everything else.

The projection folds in on itself. The Castrovalvans are doomed.

CastrovalvaSue: I feel sorry for them, even though they don’t exist.

Their screams would suggest otherwise.

Sue: It’s horrible.

Adric finds the way out.

Sue: Adric must be the most powerful boy in the universe if he can do all that. He’s incredible. The fans are just jealous.

The Master gets his just deserts when his creations turn against him.

Sue: He’ll be fine. He’s real. He won’t disappear. He’ll be back. Hopefully with a better actor.

The Doctor’s gang march back to the TARDIS.

CastrovalvaSue: Adric looks ill. Then again, imagining a whole society must have taken it out of him, the poor thing.
Me: He’s hungover. In real life, I mean.
Sue: Out on the tiles with JNT again? At least his expression suits the emotions his character would be feeling.
Me: It’s some of his best acting.
Sue: Jealous.

 

The Score

Sue: I loved that. Actually, I loved the second two episodes; I wasn’t that keen on the first two. I was really impressed with the concept. Once I realised it was basically Inception, and Adric was imagining everything, I could go with it. It was quite profound in places. And it helps that I have some eye candy to look at.

8/10

Sue: I also like the way the story drew on the threads of the last one. In fact, this story almost redeems the last one. Almost.

 

Coming Soon

 

And Finally…

 

107

Comments

  1. AST  September 11, 2012

    So…you’re NOT doing Shada? Arf!

    • DPC  September 11, 2012

      It’ll be covered. Rumor has it that some of it was used in an upcoming story… 😀

      • AST  September 11, 2012

        I was teasing. ignore me.

  2. Lewis  September 11, 2012

    “I have this image of Ian Levine driving around in an ice cream van, but instead of selling ice cream, he’s trying to get people to watch his version of Shada.”

    SO many great quotes but this takes the biscuit, with the ‘wastepaper bin’ coming in a very close second. The blog looks great, and everything feels refreshed now. I love Tom, but thank fuck we’re on to Davison at last!

    “Complete bollocks is what it is. It might as well be magic” – Sue has worked out the secret of Chris Bidmead and Season 18. “Science” my arse, Bidmead! It’s just the word you’re using instead of wizardry.

    Roll on the rest of the 80s!

    • Thomas  September 12, 2012

      It’s science, just very very fantastical science, tinged with magic. Really a combination of the two (Sandifer’s essays on what Bidmead does with the program are really fascinating, at least to me).

      • Lewis  September 12, 2012

        ‘Fantastical science’ isn’t science, then. Just magic. Or ‘we’ll call this science anyway, but it’s just Plot Helping Material’.

        • Leo  September 12, 2012

          I’d describe it as philosophical fantasy inspired by scientific concepts.

        • Thomas  September 13, 2012

          Meh, even so, is there anything wrong that anyways?

          Though I don’t really see it as ‘plot helping material’ when the plot itself extends out of the concepts.

  3. Gavin Noble  September 11, 2012

    Welcome back.

    Like the review, like the new look site with the new cartoon and can’t wait to see your cartoon selves dressed as Colin Baker and Peri!

    • Charles Norton  September 11, 2012

      Depends on who’s dressing up as Peri.

  4. Roderick T. Long  September 11, 2012

    I demand that you both watch Shada and not watch Shada! Also, unlimited rice pudding!

  5. Gavin Noble  September 11, 2012

    I reckon we’ll get Shada at some point after the end of McCoy – that’s when we all saw it on VHS in that gap between 1989 and 1996.

    • Dan  September 11, 2012

      I didn’t.

  6. Antti Björklund  September 11, 2012

    Sue: It’s like Escher.

    The Doctor and his companions go round and round in circles.

    Sue: It is Escher. Hang on a minute…

    She points to her left, where a framed print of M.C. Escher’s Relativity hangs on our living room wall.

    Sue: Hang on… I thought you bought that print because you liked the artwork.

    Me: I do!

    Sue: No you don’t! It was just an excuse to sneak a Doctor Who reference onto the living room wall without me knowing about it, wasn’t it? Be honest.

    Neil you sneaky rabbit…

    Best quote for me is still:

    Sue: NO! PUT THE RECORDER DOWN AND STEP AWAY FROM THE INSTRUMENT!

  7. John Callaghan  September 11, 2012

    Another fun write-up! Ah, I’ve got golden memories of this period of Who.

    Castrovalva is ingenious stuff and unusually for Doctor Who, it gets there first! The end of Labyrinth could conceivably be inspired by this.

    As has come up in the comments before (although that doesn’t stop some people! 🙂 ) I also like the fact that the Doctor isn’t very good at being a Time Lord and has a difficult time regenerating properly. It makes him more of an underdog and shows there’s hope for the rest of us under-achievers.

  8. Poori Hyflesku  September 11, 2012

    “I have this image of Ian Levine driving around in an ice cream van, but instead of selling ice cream, he’s trying to get people to watch his version of Shada.”

    That’s like something out of a dream.

  9. Rob Shearman  September 11, 2012

    Castrovalva was my first proper Doctor Who story, you know. Even though, at age eleven, that’s a bit on the old side. I was terrified of Tom Baker, and that time tunnel in his opening credits. I remember watching Castrovalva quite deliberately after a friend at school lent me his Making of Doctor Who book, just so I could get in a bit of research beforehand (really – The Five Faces season of repeats had made fan historians of them all). I absolutely adored Castrovalva at the time, it felt like a gateway to something so fresh and exciting, and I think by the end of part four I was as in love with the show as I have ever been. I know there are better stories, but there are none whose memory makes me quite so nostalgic. I’m so pleased Sue liked it too.

    • Poori Hyflesku  September 11, 2012

      Oh, that just reminded me – I was terrified of the time tunnel in Tom’s titles/credits too! It looked to me like it was made of brass and went on forever, it made me feel very claustrophobic and unhappy.

      • Scottieboy  September 11, 2012

        Tom Baker terrified me as a child. He was all mad and starey. I could only watch Doctor Who once Peter Davison came along.

        I am very glad that screen cap is too small for us to see Adric’s stiffy.

      • Frankymole  September 13, 2012

        My mum told me that the Tom Baker time tunnel sequence was amde by shoving a camera on a tube down somebody’s throat, so it always makes me a bit queasy. At least she didn’t tell me it was a colonoscopy.

        • Andrew Bowman  September 13, 2012

          That could have explained the amount of sh… no, sorry, too obvious a comment to make, and woefully inaccurate as well. As you were 🙂

        • Professor Thascales  September 14, 2012

          It looks a bit like that, doesn’t it? No, it was made by something called the Slit-Scan process, and what you’re seeing is a piece of specially-made plastic (backlit in an unusual way), with the image manipulated and distorted.

    • Robert Dick  September 12, 2012

      Rob Shearman: I know there are better stories, but there are none whose memory makes me quite so nostalgic

      No story more reminds me of my childhood than Castrovalva. I was so excited that I was getting to see *change* – a new Doctor.
      I remember drawing, on my work folder at school, The Doctor in the Zero Cabinet and a Police Box in space, doors closed but with the Doctor and Adric looking out through the windows.
      And we in Scotland got episode 1 at about 1530ish and with it being a bank holiday I was concerned that next week when we were back at school I was going to have to really run home in order to see it live.
      And it was the first story where we had a VCR at home. I had one tape so I would record each episode and then in the week between eps 2 and 3 watch both episodes over and over and then do the same with the whole story before the next one started and I had to record it over the previous story.

      The Season 19 crew are my TARDIS crew – as a default it’s who I think is in the TARDIS. I’ve been so lucky to get to share a stage with each of them at conventions and my ultimate dream panel would be to interview (or more likely moderate) the four of them together.

      I *adore* Castrovalva.

  10. P.Sanders  September 11, 2012

    Huzzah! What a great Sue Who Review to return home from honeymoon to. So glad Sue got into Castrovalva – as the story unfolds it becomes one of the most lyrical classic-Who scripts with some beautiful dialogue and mind-bending concepts. Loving the new cartoon too! Now we are in the era I grew up with – can’t wait to see what she makes of it.

    • Wholahoop  September 12, 2012

      I like the new cartoon as well but have to ask if the celeryection was a tribute to Adric?

  11. Mike  September 11, 2012

    One insane rant coming up.

    Excellent review, as always. I’m loving the new colour scheme, and I’ll be interested to read Sue take on Doctor Five. I’ve just started getting into his stories myself, so we’ll be discovering some of them at the same time.

  12. Poori Hyflesku  September 11, 2012

    I’m really glad Sue likes this one – it’s a favourite of mine, but I’m never sure if that’s just nostalgic memories of watching the original transmission and being freaked out by all the great concepts in it. It’s very Phantom Tollbooth.

    It just occurred to me the other day that Peter Davison is the junior cast member until Mawdryn Undead (in terms of show longevity) – that’s a weird thought.

    • Poori Hyflesku  September 11, 2012

      PS – I loved the Bawwy Said song, it made me grin like a loon.

      • John Callaghan  September 11, 2012

        Thank you! I’ve had it stuck in my head for days now…

        • Dave Sanders  September 12, 2012

          It’s disturbing how you can’t quite tell how much of Sue’s voice has been Autotuned and which bits haven’t.

          • John Callaghan  September 12, 2012

            SPOILER FOR ‘BARRY SAID’. DON’T READ IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW HOW MUCH WAS AUTO-TUNED:

            All of the speech has been auto-tuned except Sue’s “Barry… Barry said” and the Uncle Terry bit at the very beginning and about the garibaldi. That’s why so much of it was from her radio interview – the voice was clear enough for me to have a pop at it.

            Who knows? Maybe it’ll catch on and the next commentary video (my vote’s for Time Flight) will be entirely auto-tuned. In fact, why hasn’t someone done an auto-tuned Doctor Who tribute yet? (Chorus: # No / No / Not the miiiind proooobe #)

          • Andrew Bowman  September 12, 2012

            I think you’ve just answered your own question there!

          • Dave Sanders  September 12, 2012

            Fwed said to me you see, ‘wight, one on each end and steady as we go’ you see, but we twied to shift it and couldn’t even lift it you see…

      • Nick Mays  September 12, 2012

        OMG! A classic!!!

        And yes, that’s going to be buzzing awound my head for days too!

        Loved the Four To Doomsday trailer too! ;o)

    • Rob Shearman  September 11, 2012

      Well, I suppose, since Janet Fielding joins the show a whole three episodes before he does, Davison never really becomes the oldest serving member of the cast until his penultimate story! …Which is bonkers, innit? (Not as bonkers as Colin Baker’s tenure, though! But then, nothing is ever as bonkers as Colin’s tenure.)

    • Robert Dick  September 12, 2012

      Same true of Tom until Deadly Assassin – much longer!

  13. John Williams  September 11, 2012

    I’ve always loved Castrovalva, particularly episode four and I’m glad that Sue liked it. Of course, now I will always be distracted by Davison’s dark pants.

  14. Jazza1971  September 11, 2012

    “Sue: His pants. They’re black. You can see them through his trousers. Look.

    Me: Oh yeah. I’d never noticed that before.

    Sue: Don’t worry, I’ll keep you right. You just need to stare at Peter Davison’s arse a little bit more.”

    Superb. I also loved the shock M.C. Escher print revelation.

    And I was only ten at the time but, like Sue, I didn’t realise who the Portreeve was until the “surprise” revelation.

    • Lewis  September 11, 2012

      You’re not alone with the Portreeve – I was 15, and had just watched Keeper and Logopolis without breaks… and I still didn’t see through the disguise!

    • DPC  September 11, 2012

      Ditto.

      At the time, I hadn’t, and after a few rewatches it starts to become more apparent, but the make-up and tonal shift in the voice make the world of difference…

  15. John G  September 11, 2012

    I love the new look, though I reckon you should have perched Tegan’s air hostess hat on Sue’s head for at least the duration of Season 19! I assume once you get to Colin’s era we may need to have sunglasses to look at the home page…

    So we have finally reached the first era of Who that I remember, though my (hazy) memories must be largely drawn from its latter half. In any case, Peter has always been “my” Doctor and, like Sue, I have always enjoyed watching him in other shows like All Creatures. Looking back now I still think he does a great job with the part, creating a more human and fallible Doctor that you can relate to, and in the context of the series I think it was a wise step after seven years of Tom’s larger than life persona.

    I’m very pleased that Sue enjoyed Castrovalva. It’s one of my favourite Davisons, with fantastic design work and an interesting plot, and thankfully the Master isn’t on screen enough to drag it down too much. It’s a shame in some ways that the Doctor doesn’t fully recover until well into the story, because Peter gives one of his best performances in this one. Admittedly sidelining the Doctor in the first half does allow Bidmead time to further establish Tegan and Nyssa as companions, and both of them do pretty well. Sue’s mention of Nyssa’s carpentry abilities made me smile, given how many fans closely associate her with all things wooden!

    By the way, could the S-word be banned now please? I don’t mean “Sue,” obviously…

    • John G  September 11, 2012

      Just to say as well, given how taken Sue is with “rabbits” I’m sure she will have a whale of a time with the alternative swearing offered by the McCoy years…

      • Cracked Polystyrene Man  September 12, 2012

        I’m sure Sue will supply more than enough swearing of her own once we reach the McCoy years.

  16. Kris Overstreet  September 11, 2012

    EIGHT out of ten? I’ve always regarded the combined Logopolis/Castrovalva as the nadir of Who prior to ‘Trial of a Time Lord.’ The only science in either serial would involve calculating the lift produced by all the hand-waving.

    As for Tony Ainley, I’ll take him over Delgado in any scenery-chewing competition. He made a wonderful Master in my book, all the more so because of the contrast with Tremas. The man could definitely act- but NOBODY could do much with the travesty of a Bidmead script.

    • Thomas  September 12, 2012

      What’s so bad about the Bidmead scripts? Yeah, the science is dubious, but it’s not as if the rest of Who is remotely scientifically accurate.

      • Andrew Bowman  September 12, 2012

        But, unless I’m much mistaken, CHB is the only script editor/writer to *insist* his stories all have a scientific bent when they clearly don’t. Obviously, a case of intention falling by the wayside there.

        On Castrovalva itself, I think it’s very good. PD impresses from the off, both Matthew Waterhouse and Sarah Sutton have settled into their roles, and while Tegan has moments of brilliance, Janet Fielding still feels a bit too stage-y to me. And I love Anthony Ainley’s OTT Makes perfect sense when you consider he’s been going slowly mad in cadaverous form for centuries.

  17. encyclops  September 11, 2012

    Hooray! 8/10 for one of my favorite stories. So glad Sue liked it too. I wish they’d do something like this nowadays, maybe played for wonder rather than dread.

    For some reason, as a kid, I had this idea that Shardovan was somehow the Master in disguise. I’m not sure if that was intentional — the black outfit and facial hair throwing us off — or if it was just my young inability to tell actors apart. I definitely didn’t recognize Ainley under the makeup, though to be fair this was the first time we’d seen the Master use quite this approach to disguise (right? as opposed to the ol’ rubber mask trick?).

    So many fantastic quotes this time around. I have to give some love to the idea of the Master as a member of Motörhead.

    Great to have you two back!

    • encyclops  September 11, 2012

      Oh, but I have to stick up for Paddy again. This is probably my favorite Doctor Who incidental music ever.

      • Poori Hyflesku  September 11, 2012

        I love the incidental music of this era too, especially Castrovalva.

    • DPC  September 11, 2012

      I’m happy they’re back as well!

      I wonder if Shardovan was created, with the black outfit, to throw people off the track – the Portreeve is good but there’s just enough to give him away, had he had more time on screen…

  18. John Miller  September 11, 2012

    How did The Master get the time to set up Castrovalva? Did anyone notice that Davison was wearing different shoes to Baker? Or that the TARDIS was in a totally different place on the Pharos premises from where it landed? How could Adric know about regeneration? If The Doctor was 760 in The Leisure Hive, how could he be 813 here(according to the novels)? Who is the older, greyhaired Fourth Doctor who appeared in the 90’s? Where do all those DWM Comics and World Distributor Annual stories fit into the continuity? Must be ”’Season 18b”’.

    • Lewis  September 12, 2012

      About the shoes… Hartnell’s clothes also regenerated when he did. So that’s one answered.

      • Nick Mays  September 13, 2012

        I’ve often thought that if her Doctor (or indeed any Time Lord) has the time to think about such matters before their regeneration, then they can adjust their clothes ‘ structure accordingly if they so wish. The First Doctor knew his regeneration was near, as did the Fourth Doctor (who obviously decided as his feet were changing size, so his boots should become shoes).

        Romana, who underwent a voluntary regeneration had time to adjust the physical structure of her body as well as her clothes four times before settling on a form and outfit she liked.

        All of which is no more a leap of belief than bodily regeneration, after all!

        • Frankymole  September 13, 2012

          The shoes worn by Davison in Castrovalva 1 were the ones June Hudson designed for “The Leisure Hive” – Tom quickly exchanged these for his old buccaneer boots from the previous seasons, though they didn’t really colour-match the rest of the costume. Presumably “in universe” the newly created body has clothes as best as the TARDIS can recall, and sometimes she gets things wrong. Same way she gives him a haircut, trimmed sideburns, or teeth fillings.

          • Nick Mays  September 13, 2012

            Yes, good theory Frankymole… especially as we know from ‘The Doctor’s Wife’ the Tardis is very definitely a female and fusses over him!

            You can imagine it as he’s regenerating, can’t you? “Tch! Tch! Those dreadful boots will have to go! Where’s those nice brogues I got you for your 748th birthday?”

            Of course, this is all overlooking the fact that the Fourth to Fifth Doctor’s regeneration takes place outside of the Tardis… Symbiotic link perhaps?

          • Frankymole  September 13, 2012

            Yes, I’m sure it’s “part of the TARDIS”. Without it, he couldn’t survive…

            There’s definitely a remote mental link, as per the translation “gift”, and the About Time books are quite good on the subject of time travel being linked to mental energy (the Doctor’s brain is full of the “Arton” energy used by TARDISes, apparently, according to The Deadly Assassin…)

            Where was I? Oh yeah – the new bodies have to be chosen somehow, even the likenesses are sometimes copied from elsewhere in time and space, so why not the clothes… Romana did quite well at getting new sets for her “blue dwatf” and “Valkyrie” bodies, and in “Robot” Tom’s quick changes tinto playing cards, pierrots, vikings etc might well be similar – they’re not real clothes, they’re still regenerating!

  19. DPC  September 11, 2012

    Yay!

    I’ve to point these out, though that doesn’t imply I’ve never LOLed or anything before:

    “Sue: Adric always has his hands in his pockets, doesn’t he? It must be his age.”

    LOL!

    “Sue: It’s turned into Charlie’s Angels. You go, girls!”

    W00T!

    “Sue: That’s sacrilege! They’ll never be able to sell it on eBay now.”

    That’s okay. Tom had something like 5 scarves made over the course of his tenure… ebay will still be able to profit… 🙂

    “Me: It means we get Colin Baker in ten minutes.”

    COOL!!! (Seriously)

    “Sue: So his new costume is just waiting there for him? He doesn’t get to choose one? That doesn’t seem fair.”

    True. For settling on the first thing he finds… Not that it’s bad, but it is a little too “here I am, come and grab me, cooie!”

    “Sue: That’s impressive – his jacket isn’t hanging down, either. That must take some extra effort.”

    On the minus side, the question marks are reversed on his collars… mirror, mirror, on the wall…

    “Sue: A sex dungeon.”

    Teehehehehe… 😀

    “Sue: (as the Master) Just wait there while I move this up to crotch level.

    Suddenly, I feel Sue tugging urgently at my sleeve.

    Sue: Pause it. Quickly. Pause now. No, go back a bit. There. Yes, pause it. Look! Adric has a little stiffy.”

    Dang! ROTFLMAO!!!

    “Me: It wasn’t that small, was it?”

    yet in Adric’s favor, small wrists and big hands usually reflect favorably on the concept of the myth about men who have large hands…

    “Sue: A pink planet. I’m not going to saying anything but JNT, right?”

    Planets are always so blue… must be sad or something… 🙂

    “Sue: This is what it looks like in IKEA every Sunday afternoon.”

    Especially considering the ice cream buckets used as hats for the otherwise delightful Castrovalvans…

    “Sue: Oh no! Not more lipstick spillage!”

    GOOD CATCH! I never put together those two scenes… or other such parallels between scenes… not entirely unlike recursion, rather…

    “Sue: They look like paintballing Ewoks.”

    Ewoks don’t have balls… thankfully! 🙂

    “Sue: Complete bollocks is what it is. It might as well be magic.”

    I adore the idea of how math structures the universe – on a level that’s absolutely true. It is somewhat “magical” that the Master has found a way to create things via math, but to us it would be. If I showed a cell phone to somebody living in 1600, they’d call it magic and then burn me at the stake, along with a steak because they’re hungry…

    “Sue: He’s alright, I suppose. I wish he’d speak up a bit, though. Actually, he’s very familiar. Yeah, he’s definitely famous.”

    He is rather better as Tremas, but at least one story in the future has his Master doing more than being a panto pony show…
    “Sue: He’s alright, I suppose. I wish he’d speak up a bit, though. Actually, he’s very familiar. Yeah, he’s definitely famous.”

    🙂

    “Sue: How could you possibly forget about Adric? He’s the best companion you’ve got right now. ”

    Seriously?! He’s okay and has potential, but Barbara and Ian are so much better…

    Sue: Hang on… I thought you bought that print because you liked the artwork.

    Me: I do!

    Sue: No you don’t! It was just an excuse to sneak a Doctor Who reference onto the living room wall without me knowing about it, wasn’t it? Be honest.”

    LOL!!! Oh my…

    “Sue: So Castrovalva doesn’t exist, and neither do all the people who live in it. This is getting interesting, now.”

    Cool.

    “Sue: Why is the Doctor hugging a mirror? It’s a bit vain, isn’t it?”

    LOL!

    “Sue: Why is his trap so complicated? Why didn’t he just kill the Doctor when he was having a nice lie-down earlier on? Why does he always have to make life so complicated for himself?

    Shardovan takes a leap of faith…

    Sue: It’s Adam Ant.”

    The Master loves increasingly convoluted traps…

    Shardovan was cool; it’s a pity that he kills himself…

    Adam Ant rules! ‘Stand and Deliver’, ‘Desperate but not Serious’, ‘Hello I Love You’, ‘Room at the Top’, ‘Can’t Set Rules About Love’, etc, etc…

    “Sue: I feel sorry for them, even though they don’t exist.”

    Ditto.

    “Sue: Adric must be the most powerful boy in the universe if he can do all that. He’s incredible. The fans are just jealous.”

    But it required the Master’s help… of course, with BTC, he could have calculated a larger… wait, what’s going on? 😀

    “Sue: Out on the tiles with JNT again? At least his expression suits the emotions his character would be feeling.”

    I thought that rumor was properly quashed?

    The first two eps are a different pacing and I’ve always enjoyed them, but I do agree the final two episodes are a bit more engaging, philosophical, romantic, and profound… hard sci-fi and new wave fairytale all rolled into one… and ‘Castrovalva’ does do a better jobs with the concepts ‘Logopolis’ created… I’m happily surprised to read Sue’s final score, though – as always – I adored reading her responses and reactions.

    As always, thank you much!!

    • Jazza1971  September 11, 2012

      “He’s the best companion you’ve got right now. ” Seriously?! He’s okay and has potential, but Barbara and Ian are so much better”

      Too be fair, Sue does say (as quoted by yourself) “He’s the best companion you’ve got RIGHT NOW” – meaning the present bunch, so the fact that Barbara and Ian (and any one else you care to mention prior to Adric) were better is neither here nor there…

      • Jazza1971  September 11, 2012

        “To be fair”, not “Too”, obviously. D’oh!

  20. Poori Hyflesku  September 11, 2012

    Oh gosh, I nearly forgot, I wrote a song years ago called Castrovalva, all about occursive reclusion (wait, occlusive recursion)… shame I don’t have a recording of it, otherwise I’d have posted it.

    It’s an entertaining irony that Escher’s painting Castrovalva is just a straightforward portrait of the Italian town of the same name, and isn’t in any way weird. I must say, it blew my mind a little when I found out that there is such a place as Castrovalva.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castrovalva_%28M._C._Escher%29

  21. Smith  September 11, 2012

    I was ready for the worst, but I’m glad Sue shares my tastes. At least initially.

    The story suffers from the same problem as Logopolis in that its first half is a lot of faffing around with technobabble BS that doesn’t make any sense while the second half is a competantly written idea set on a funny planet with a great sci-fi idea. Castrovalva is by far the more tolerable of the two, though, because an idea that channels Escher in the way that it does is infinitely better than a planet of boring old farts passing Hexadecimal codes to one another.

    Bring on the Davison era!

  22. Broadshoulder2  September 11, 2012

    A vintage laugh out loud review with some very funny bits. I never watch Castrovalva without the commentary as I dont find this adventure very interesting. I find it a slog. Sue may like Davisons looks but he may exasperate her it goes along.

    • Neowhovian  September 11, 2012

      I think it may be premature to predict how Sue will react to anything. Time and again she’s shown a penchant for bucking “conventional wisdom,” and since there seem to be a boatload of folks who like Davison as well as a boatload who dislike him among the commentors, I think none of us is qualified to make accurate guesses about how she’ll like him in any particular story. 🙂

      • Broadshoulder2  September 12, 2012

        Thats what these boards are for making accurate or inaccurate guesses? Didn’t you get with the programme?

        • Neowhovian  September 12, 2012

          Ooh, clearly part of my membership package went missing in the post! Am I required by the bylaws to make a prediction about how Sue will like the next story? Don’t want to make poor comment posts…

          Ummm… ummm… (quick, Neowhovian, think of something clever to say!) SHADA!

          • Andrew Bowman  September 13, 2012

            Sue will like some of the stories better than others. I think she’ll view Black Orchid as rubbish, because it is, and The Five Doctors will be fun if not a particularly high-scorer. The Caves of Androzani could very well be a surprise, but not necessarily. She’ll laugh at the Myrka and be aghast at some of the music. They’re my predictions and I’m sticking to them. Unless, of course, I change my mind 🙂

          • encyclops  September 14, 2012

            I like Black Orchid, and I don’t think The Five Doctors is all that much fun. So I think there’s still plenty of room for doubt.

          • BWT  September 15, 2012

            …and if she thinks the music is dire in this one, wait until she gets a load of THAT music in “Mawdryn Undead” (which is a story I love, BTW).

  23. tom_harries  September 11, 2012

    Some nice jokes (especially the ice cream van). Nice point about the companions trusting the Doctor so much. Castrovalva (the place) is a great idea. I’d agree that the 2nd half is better than the 1st half.

    I love the ending where the Master is held back by the Castrovalvans (very stylishly done). But Sue’s right; it’s a shame it doesn’t mean anything. In the Delgado era, when the Master lost, he just legged it. In the Ainley era, they often tried to make it look like they were killing him off. How likely was it that they’d kill the Master of in a Doctor’s first story?

    • John G  September 11, 2012

      I think the trust issue is readily explained by the Doctor clearly being anti-Master (which would count for a lot with both Tegan and Nyssa), while Tegan knows that if she is to get back home she will need the Doctor’s help. In any case, they have just seen him save the universe too!

      • Andrew Bowman  September 11, 2012

        I think I had some Anti-master at an Italian restaurant once, but I may have misheard 😉

        • John G  September 12, 2012

          Did it contain any celery?

          • Andrew Bowman  September 12, 2012

            It could very well have done. It was a few years ago now, I can’t remember that far back! 🙂

  24. Jez Noir  September 11, 2012

    Great review, and that Terence Dicks song is the funniest thing I’ve heard in absolutely ages, really well done!

    • John Callaghan  September 11, 2012

      Cheers! (Takes a bow. Does back in and can’t get back up.)

    • Wholahoop  September 12, 2012

      I am in 100% complete and utter agreement with that. I had tears of laughter in my eyes listening to Bawwy Said to Me

  25. Glen Allen  September 11, 2012

    I really chortled through most of that. Is it fashionable to chortle?
    Especially the “It was just an excuse to sneak a Doctor Who reference onto the living room wall without me knowing about it, wasn’t it? Be honest.”
    You’re as cunning as a cunning thing Mr. P

    I adore Castrovalva and so to get an 8 you see was the greatest acknowledgement that I can be allowed to enjoy it, you see

    Im actually listening to Davisons reading the unabridged audio book…well not right this minute but when I go to ged.

    Im also happy that others didnt see through The Porteve’s disguise as I didn’t originally.I was terribly excited when his voice changes trying to open the zero cabinet, and he’s revealed

    Oh and I really like the ambulance chase music, so there

    Weirdly I didnt know Sue would pick up on the pockets thing with Adric when I did the trailer for the next ep. Its not the first time thats happened. I think we must be telepathic sisters or summat or nuffing

    • Glen Allen  September 11, 2012

      Ok a few typos. Firstly I dont know who Ged is and Im certainly not going to him

      Greg 🙂

      • Wholahoop  September 12, 2012

        I am Ged and I was a bit worried for a minute there Greg

  26. Wholahoop  September 12, 2012

    My diary on the day of episode 1 of Castrovalva said “Watched Peter Davison in Doctor Who, he is not too bad so far” which considering he was hardly himself probably says more about my reviewing skills than anything else

    I still cannot believe that I didn’t recognise who played the Portreeve so I was glad that Wis appears to have been equally fooled

    I enjoyed Castrovalva at the time but felt that the trap within a trap was a bit elaborate for the Master even if it was possibly playing on the recursive occlusion metaphor slightly more than I as a naive 15 year old would have realised. However the style of the show gave it a feel good factor that deserved 8/10 even if the substance was probably deserving somewhat less.

    You’ve had the site redecorated, I don’t like it

  27. Ozzy Baxter  September 12, 2012

    [[The Doctor: The regeneration is failing.

    Sue: What does that mean?

    Me: It means we get Colin Baker in ten minutes.]]

    LMFAO!!!

    Awesome review! 🙂

  28. Erik  September 12, 2012

    Should Shada happen, and I don’t care one way or the other, I think it would be nice to do the “animated” Shada with Paul McGann. The ultimate re-con! Also, it’s nice to have a little taste of McGann that’s not the Movie…

  29. Thomas Bush  September 12, 2012

    “NO! PUT THE RECORDER DOWN AND STEP AWAY FROM THE INSTRUMENT!”

    It just keeps getting better and better! So glad that Davo’s a hit with Sue. I’ve always liked him, even in the WORST stories he was given. JN-T was right to cast him, IMHO. Could you imagine Richard Griffiths in the role? Not likely!

  30. Nick Mays  September 12, 2012

    Well, I have to say, Sue always manages to turn up some little nugget every time… in this case Adric’s little stiffy.

    Yes, done all the Nyssa’s muff jokes before, but I have to say, I’ve never noticed THAT before. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear… and all the S & M bondage connotations as well.

    Great review for Congo…. bring on Fongo! ;o)

  31. chris-too-old-too-watch  September 12, 2012

    FIRST: Don’t watch Shada: you’re watching televised stories in order. What next? Demand you read the Virgin adventures after McCoy?

    Glad you enjoyed Castrovalva (I’d steer clear of the linguine), and sooooo happy that Sue liked the exquisite carpentry. At the time this enthused me for the forthcoming series, because it was different from Tom’s era, which had become a little tired. Unfortunately we didn’t know about the frogs….

    With reference to regenerations. Hartnell’s Doctor was anything but all-knowing. More often than not, we had to follow him through the adventure, discovering along with him the situation and the plot. His regeneration was comparatively straight-forward. Over the years, the Doctor has become an all-powerful god-like being to whom nothing comes as a surprise. More often than not, it’s the assistants who discover things, and the Doctor explaining the situation to them and us. As a consequence his regenerations have become worse and worse, probably as a dramatic way of keeping him human to the viewer.

    Or he was playing truant with Drax that day they covered regenerations in class…….

  32. solar penguin  September 12, 2012

    Never mind Shada. The real question is, will you be doing Slipback!?!

    Meanwhile, it’s interesting how consistent Sue’s scores are. The previous story about someone called the Master running a fictional world from a citadel on top of a high rocky cliff, scored 7/10 and this is only one point higher.

    • Frankymole  September 12, 2012

      The very same cliff, in fact.

  33. BWT  September 12, 2012

    Sue: “…it’s not nice seeing the Doctor with white gunk plastered all over his face like that.”

    He’s just been re-born; maybe it’s vernix…?

  34. Ryan Hall  September 12, 2012

    So how many more objects in your house are sneakly “Who related” then neil ? : D

    Remember being excited as a kid knowing Dr who was on twice a week and a week night with this story , and the only thing i knew of peter davison was that he was in Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy due to my parents telling me that underneath all the make up was my new Doctor who haha.

  35. Paul Mudie  September 12, 2012

    I’m happy to say that I’ve never noticed Adric’s stiffy!

    I loved Tom Baker, but there’s no getting away from the fact that his weariness had started to pervade the whole show in his last copuple of seasons. I’m no Castrovalva fan, but there is a definite sense of freshness about it, and of a weight being lifted.

    • Dan  September 12, 2012

      You don’t think a lot of it was to do with his performance was tied down, and the new produc tion team didn’t want him there, in the last season? Not to say it wasn’t the right time anyway, but he was still great in “City of Death” for example.

      • Paul Mudie  September 12, 2012

        Whatever the reasons, he was fed up a lot of the time and you could tell. His performance had lost a lot of its vitality. He rose to the occasion as best he could, but something was definitely missing, for me at any rate.

  36. Paul Mc Elvaney  September 12, 2012

    It’s great how a new Doctor can make everything seem so fresh. I’m actually surprised Sue enjoyed this one, I just somehow suspected she wouldn’t. Glad she’s already taking a liking to Davison (God, almost typed Davidson there! Been reading too many Doctor Who Magazines it seems…). The ‘Bawwy Said’ song was pure genius!! The new site looks glorious, by the way!

  37. Jonny Morris  September 12, 2012

    I’m pretty sure that part two of Castrovalva holds the distinction of being the episode in which the least happens. Nyssa presses a button on the console, they build a cabinet, they land. It really is quite devoid of incident. Even The Space Pirates has more going on.

    • Robert Dick  September 12, 2012

      It doesn’t matter how little happens as long as it happens entertainly. I was *enthralled* by episode 2 when it aired. Utterly spellbound.

  38. Gavin Noble  September 12, 2012

    Sorry to point it out – but on the new cartoon on the front page it looks like your dick has turned into celery given it’s position on your lap! Given where your hand is as well it’s not the best image to go into one’s mind!!!!

    • Robert Dick  September 12, 2012

      Psst! I think that maybe, just maybe, they might have been aware of that…

    • chris-too-old-too-watch  September 13, 2012

      At least it’s not a cricket bat….

      Hardly Mae West material anyway (“Is that a piece of celery in you pocket or are you just pleased to see me?”)

  39. Frankymole  September 12, 2012

    Maybe Matthew was really pleased to see Ant Ainley.

    Personally I think it’s Matt’s dressing room key in there.

  40. Ritch Famous  September 13, 2012

    Sue’s actually starting to make me like Adric…

  41. Frankymole  September 13, 2012

    “I. F. stands for Index File!”

    Or as one letter-writer unkindly ponted out, it also stands for “Idiotic Females”.

  42. Mag  September 13, 2012

    Rabbits are an invasive species and major pest in Australia. So JNT, Saward, or Bidmead probably thought Aussies swore a lot, so likely invented the children’s television friendly curse-word ‘rabbits’ for Brisbane-native Tegan to use. It is just a little too clever, so comes off odd to UK / American ears and probably for Aussies too.

    • Steve  September 14, 2012

      Tegan is one of the companions who I can actually imagine shouting “F—” a lot, so I guess fake swearing is as close as we’re getting to that.

      • Nick Mays  September 14, 2012

        … this side of the ‘New Adventures’ or early 90s DWM.

        Kruck!

  43. Jennie  September 14, 2012

    Castrovalva’s one of my favourite Peter Davison stories. I love “That’s the problem with regenaration…” moment and when it takes a child to show the Doctor how to count to three. (I also had a bit of a crush on Peter Davison at the time:)

  44. Zack  September 19, 2012

    The Barry Letts thing cracks me up

  45. Auntie Celia  September 23, 2012

    I hope that references to ‘underpants’ are not destined to become a regular feature!