Production Code: 5T
1 - 31/01/1981 17:10
2 - 07/02/1981 17:10
3 - 14/02/1981 17:10
4 - 21/02/1981 17:10
The Doctor and Adric learn from the wizened Keeper of Traken that a great evil has come to his planet in the form of a Melkur - a calcified statue. The Keeper is nearing the end of his reign and seeks the Doctor's help in preventing the evil from taking control of the bioelectronic Source that is the keystone of the Traken Union's civilisation.
The Melkur, via various deceptions, becomes the next Keeper. It is then, however, revealed to be the Master's TARDIS. Its owner, still blackened and emaciated, hopes to use the Source's power to regenerate himself. The Doctor manages to expel him and install a new Keeper in his place, but in a last minute ploy the Master traps one of the Traken Consuls, Tremas, and merges with his body before fleeing the planet.
Armed guards known as Fosters bring the Doctor and Adric as prisoners before the Keeper and his Consuls. The Doctor asks the Keeper to vouch for him. At that moment however, unseen by all but the Keeper, the Melkur appears in the doorway. The Keeper is affected by the Melkur's presence and is able to tell his Consuls only that they have been invaded by evil. He then vanishes and, as the Melkur moves out of sight, the Consuls and the Fosters close in on the Doctor and Adric.
The Doctor, Adric and Consul Tremas are taken prisoner by the Fosters. Consul Kassia, who has fallen under the Melkur's influence, tells it that her task is done. The Melkur replies that, on the contrary, it is only beginning.
The old Keeper dies and Kassia ascends to his chair to take his place. Consul Katura, despite attempts by the Doctor and Tremas to intervene, activates the controls that will give the new Keeper access to the Source. Suddenly Kassia cries out and her body contorts in pain before vanishing altogether - to be replaced by the Melkur.
The Master takes Tremas's body as his own and then departs in his TARDIS. Tremas's daughter Nyssa comes looking for her father, but in vain.
A Midsummer Night's Dream.
Julius Caesar ('Kassia is as good a name as Tremas').
Le Guinn's The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas.
The Silmarilion (Melkur).
Space:1999 (The Metamorph).
Blake's 7 (Ultraworld).
The Doctor : "If I knew everything that was going to happen, where would the fun be?"
The Doctor : [Speaking of the Traken Union] "They say the atmosphere there was so full of goodness that evil just shrivelled up and died."
The Master : "A new body... at last!"
The Doctor : "This type's not really my forté."
N-space is much larger than E-space. Traken is in Mettula Orionsis, and its Union is the most harmonious the Universe has ever seen. Traken seems to attract evil, although such creatures are calcefied on contact with the planet, and pass harmlessly into the soil. Melkur means 'a fly caught by honey'.
The Keeper is the 'organising principle' of all the minds of the Traken Union, channelled through the bioelectronic Source. Keepers typically live for a thousand years or more before his or her Dissolution, and the period of transition between Keepers is usually difficult.
The Keeper of Traken is one of the few beings capable of penetrating and controlling the TARDIS (see Warriors' Gate). The Doctor consults two old hand-written time logs, presumably detailing some of his journeys, but says that he doesn't keep them any more. When Adric closes the TARDIS doors he says 'No one except the Doctor can get in. Or at least, that's the theory.' [A theory that has rarely worked in practice: see The Daleks.]
The Master's TARDIS is not an 'ordinary Type 40', the Master calling it his 'new ship'. It contains his old ship still disguised as a clock [is his new ship Goth's?]. The Master again mentions that he has passed through all twelve regenerations (see The Deadly Assassin).
Adric says that he is 'quite good with locks', although he doesn't understand keys!
Traken, presumably in 1981 (see Logopolis)
The Doctor isn't sure if he's been to Traken before.
The Master has two TARDISes - one disguised as the Melkur and the other, as in The Deadly Assassin, as a grandfather clock.
The invisible TARDIS (which has been displaced by a current time cone) might be discovered by a binary induction system. We also have a recursive integrator (cf Castrovalva) and gamma-mode encryption.
Look at the Doctor's nose when he's imprisoned in episode three: perhaps he didn't have a hanky.
Kassia's red eyes are clearly 'painted' on her eyelids (cf Planet of Evil).
The Master's teeth are painted onto his lips.
Cast & Crew
The Doctor - Tom Baker
Adric - Matthew Waterhouse
Nyssa - Sarah Sutton
Fosters - Liam Prendergast
Fosters - Philip Bloomfield
Kassia - Sheila Ruskin
Katura - Margot van der Burgh
Luvic - Robin Soans
Melkur - Geoffrey Beevers Geoffrey Beevers played the Master but was credited as the Melkur to conceal this plot twist. The walking Melkur statue was played by Graham Cole (now better known for his starring role in the ITV police series The Bill)
Neman - Roland Oliver
Seron - John Woodnutt
The Keeper - Denis Carey
Tremas - Anthony Ainley
Director - John Black