Subtlety. Not exactly in Brian Blessed’s wheelhouse you might say. Still the man has a certain presence. And the Mention of King Yrcanos to a long-time Doctor Who fan instantly identifies this weeks cap addition Mindwarp. The second leg of the ‘Trial’ season had the good fortune to see the return of both Philip Martin and his creation Sil which formed the highlight of Colin Baker’s first season in Vengeance on Varos.
Still presenting the prosecution, the Doctor was genuinely on the defensive in this story, but his apparent duplicity, which could only be revealed in the Trial itself, would’ve and should’ve confused the casual viewer trying everyone’s patience in the process.
Of course the story is also notable for two other things, the death (?) of Peri (doing her best Persis Khambatta impression), a truly shocking moment whose impact would be completely undermined at the of the season, and also one of those rare ‘magic moments’ which occur in Doctor Who from time to time when the Doctor is pulled out of the story and into the Trial at a very critical moment. Both of these happened in the last 3 minutes of the story and certainly contribute to the feeling that this was the crown jewel of the season.
This week’s cap addition, Mindwarp, is (almost) pure addition for the Tour. Betcha can’t even imagine what next week’s will be…