Production Code: 6X
1 - 02/02/1985 17:20
2 - 09/02/1985 17:20
The TARDIS arrives in Killingworth in 19th Century England, where the Master is plotting to kill some of the key figures of the industrial revolution. Also present is the Rani, a Time Lord biochemist who was cast out from Gallifrey and is now dictator of the planet Miasimia Goria.
The Rani has altered the metabolism of Miasimia Goria's populace to heighten their awareness, but in the process has inadvertently lowered their ability to sleep. In order to correct this she has been drawing a fluid from the brains of humans at various points in Earth's history, unconcerned that this leaves them aggressive and unable to sleep themselves.
Now she is adding to the unrest caused in England by the Luddites. She has also planted some land mines that turn people into trees.
The Doctor sabotages the Rani's TARDIS and she and the Master are sent spinning into the vortex at the mercy of a rapidly growing tyrannosaurus rex embryo - a specimen collected on one of her earlier visits to Earth.
The Doctor, strapped to a trolley, is placed on top of a mine cart by a group of rowdy miners and pushed down a slope. The cart rattles along its rails, fast approaching the gaping entrance to the mine shaft.
The TARDIS dematerialises, leaving Lord Ravensworth and George Stephenson puzzled as to where the Doctor and Peri have gone. Lord Ravensworth comments: 'You know, I always said he was a strange sort of fellow'.
When the Boat Comes In (trouble at t'pit).
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
A misquote of Hamlet's 'more things in heaven and Earth' speech.
A quote from Thomas T Campbell ('silence deep as death').
The Master : [Speaking of the Doctor] "He wears yellow trousers and a vulgarly coloured coat, but tread carefully - he's treacherous."
The Rani : [Speaking of the Master] "He'd get dizzy if he tried to walk in a straight line!"
The Doctor : [What Peri and the Doctor do in the TARDIS] "Argue, mainly."
The Doctor : "Fortuitous would be a more apposite epithet!"
Peri : "Or, as we humans say, 'Lucky would be a better word.'"
Master : "Finito TARDIS, how's that for style?" [Florid, we think.]
Peri : "You suspect another motive?"
The Doctor : "The tree won't hurt you!"
The Doctor : "Hoist up your skirts, Peri, off we go!"
The Master : [To the Rani] "You don't get much, do you?"
Peri shows some botanical knowledge. The Doctor is 'expressly forbidden' to change the course of history.
The Master's Tissue Compression Eliminator now makes people vanish totally [this was what he was working on prior to Planet of Fire]. The Rani (and the Master) were exiled from Gallifrey, the Rani ruling Miasimia Goria, where she controls a race of aliens. She's extracted brain fluid from people from the Trojan war, the Dark Ages and the American war of Independence.
[Male Time Lords appear to have vulnerable reproductive organs.] The Rani's giant mice ate the Lord President's cat and part of him (see The Deadly Assassin).
Killingworth, near Newcastle upon Tyne, the 1820s, about 30 years too late for Luddites.
No explanation is given for the Master's escape from his apparent death at the end of the previous season's Planet of Fire.
Popular actor Terence Alexander, best known for his role as Charlie Hungerford in the BBC's Bergerac, plays Lord Ravensworth.
John Nathan-Turner cast Kate O'Mara as the Rani because of her starring role in the popular American soap opera Dynasty. (O'Mara had yet to begin work on Dynasty when she was cast as the Rani. She was however well known for her appearances in a number of UK soap operas, including for the BBC The Brothers - opposite Colin Baker - and Triangle.)
The Stattenheim remote control is a great achievement of the Rani's, oddly.
The two trees that hold the Doctor up on the pole!
The Doctor's gurning above the pit while Peri throws small lumps of coal at the Luddites!
Why don't they run out of the Volcano (a Turner painting?!) trap room?
No Luddites ever attacked pit machinery, which didn't threaten their livelihoods.
Lord Ravensworth's amateur botany is the source of the drugs required - is there no local medic?
Three Time Lords turn up in the same place for entirely different reasons.
Kew Gardens was not open in the 1820s.
Edison was not born until 1847 (well after the Luddite riots).
Peri's horrid yellow party frock.
Cast & Crew
The Doctor - Colin Baker
Peri - Nicola Bryant
Drayman - Martyn Whitby
Edwin Green - Hus Levent
George Stephenson - Gawn Grainger
Guard - Richard Steele
Jack Ward - Peter Childs
Lord Ravensworth - Terence Alexander
Luke Ward - Gary Cady
Older Woman - Cordelia Ditton
Sam Rudge - Kevin White
The Master - Anthony Ainley
The Rani - Kate O'Mara
Tim Bass - William Ilkley
Young Woman - Sarah James
Director - Sarah Hellings