“Never trust a man with dirty fingernails.”
…Or a face like a Shar Pei’s nether regions.
Especially if he exacerbates London’s rodent problem, takes advantage of young scrubbers and test-drives prototype orgasmatrons.
Yes, this is The Talons of Weng-Chiang – a strange (Robert) Holmesian melodrama where people pop poison pills, ventriloquist dummies are hands-free and Birmingham has cornered the Chinese firearms market.
Leela takes some clothes, the Doctor takes a boat trip, Jago takes fright and Litefoot takes delivery of a surprise hamper, while Chang prestidigitates, Mr Sin recidivates and a mad old crone expectorates.
So do Jim and Martin think this is a superlative specimen of Seventies sci-fi or do they smell a rat?
Find out here.
“I hate conducted tours.”
Dodo single-handedly sows the seeds of the Doctor Who Experience’s eventual demise, way back in 1966.
This month we find ourselves in a land where greedy leaders feather their own nests at the expense of the downtrodden underclass. And it’s much the same in Doctor Who’s The Savages, screened some 52 years ago (badum tish!)
The Doctor is drained, Steven is ordained and Dodo is reined-in on a world where the big city holds no attraction for our clan of outsiders, a bunch of sapped saps with their very own cheeky girl (but mercifully no Lembit Opik).
Who else gets to use the Doctor’s vibrator? Did Jano and his mates manage to video The Daleks’ Master Plan? Who’s producing destructive vapours and shouldn’t their diet be looked at?
And did Jim and Martin find The Savages to be a shot in the arm or an enervating experience?
Tune in to find out.
“Let’s make this baby fly!”
Said the uncool and un-Welsh Welsh rock ‘n’ roller Billy, who refrains (perhaps disappointingly) from drop-kicking the Chimeron child over the Shangri-La camp’s Olympic size swimming pool.
Yes, it’s time to take a look at the distinctly odd Delta and the Bannermen, a tale of a baffling bee-keeper, unnecessary Americans, a shot-down stand-up and life-size plastic soldiers with lockjaw.
When will Ray realise that she’s barking up the wrong tree? When will Billy realise he’s sniffing around the wrong species? Will the Bannermen have a whip round to get Gavrok a barbecue? And can the Flying Pickets achieve further chart success now their leader has been reduced to smoking footwear?
Don’t expect to find the answers here as Jim and Martin struggle to decide whether to mark the story hi-de-high or hi-de-low.
“You have returned to us, Doctor. Your travels are over.”
But thankfully not forever. It was, still, a long way from being all over.
So Jim and Martin stagger to their century milestone with their biggest story yet, The War Games.
It’s an epic tale of trials, tribulations, heavily corrected (and impaired) vision, and a Very. Stupid. Voice.
The Doctor plays with fridge magnets, Jamie plays the fool, Zoe plays Villa like a violin and the War Lord plays with his real live toy soldiers – and gets a Paddington stare for his trouble.
Romans gawp and mince, wigs wander almost as far as the accents, and the scenery is chewed up, gargled and spat out – even when it’s as wobbly as a Quark under enemy fire.
So do Jim and Martin think this is a worthy end for a very worthy Doctor? Or was it ten parts of terrible tedium?
Listen in to find out.
“A delightfully unexpected afternoon.”
Well it won’t take up much of your afternoon and there’s very little that’s unexpected here.
For this is Black Orchid – a ripping yarn of bronchial brothers, lippy bookworms, smutty absentees and a child bride who’s passed around like a gold ball at a Telosian rugby match.
The Doctor plays the clown, Tegan cuts a rug, Nyssa finds her double and Adric eats double his body weight in finger food.
But who is the tweed-trousered killer who’s friends with an Amazonian Indian?
Could he possibly have any connection with Charles “not one of the Worcester Woosters” Cranleigh whose brother disappeared on an Amazonian expedition?
And who is the piratical prat with the badge for mathematical excellence?
Listen to find out…
“I don’t work for anybody. I’m just having fun.”
Not so much fun for the cold turkeys, the cattle-prodded Mandrels and the eviscerated punters on the good ship Empress though.
Yes, this is Nightmare of Eden and ‘nightmare’ could be seen as an apposite epithet by the crew and viewer alike. It’s a heady cocktail of spiked drinks, unfortunate zips and insurance policy wordings.
K9 needs some obedience classes, the Doctor shrieks about his extremities and Romana gets a nasty love bite (but not as nasty as her dress), while Tryst accentuates the silliness, Fisk makes it uniformly worse and Rigg turns on, tunes in and drops out.
So did Jim and Martin find the story as first class as the toilet facilities or were they glad when the nightmare was over?
Find out here.
“I am usually referred to as the Master.”
Or some very slight variation thereof.
Terror of the Autons is a story where a bloomin’ cockernee is masquerading as an Italian, a Time Lord as an astral Mr Benn, Autons as an army of Frank Sidebottoms, and the man himself as BT’s most sackable employee. Yet the Master can’t muster the energy to think up an even vaguely misdirecting pseudonym.
Plenty of imagination elsewhere though with unfriendly neighbourhood Bobbies, dolls that are a bit too clingy, armchairs that give you a hug, a phone you can really get tied up on and gift daffs you really shouldn’t look in the mouth.
Can the grumpy Doctor, scatty Jo, and a Maxi full of UNIT defeat the Master and the Nestene Unconvincingness?
And did Jim and Martin find all this plastic fantastic or as flat as Old Ma Farrel’s CSO kitchen?
Find out here.