“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 am the Doctor… whether you like it or not.”
Yes, this is Colin Baker’s debut debacle as the Doctor, The Twin Dilemma.
A tale of a Hurndall understudy in a dress, two bratty bowl-cut brain-boxes, pestilent parrot people and a hairy slug with an inter-species libido.
And, at its centre, we have our ‘hero’ who tries to bluster, cower, whine and strangle his way into our hearts, and his poor sidekick, who has probably never felt quite so sidelined – or quite so kicked.
Blood bubbles, slugs slime, sartorial atrocities are committed with impunity and a thieving magpie is fed to the starving masses (tastes like chicken, apparently).
Loathe it or hate it, it’s perennially at the bottom of the sort of polls its lead actor despises.
But do Jim and Martin think it lives down to its reputation?
Listen in to find out.
“What are you concealing from me, boy?”
Not enough, some might say, for this is Castrovalva – where Master Waterhouse introduces the innocent and unsuspecting viewer to “Little Matthew”.
But that’s not the only harrowing element of the Fifth Doctor’s first outing. The Time Lord himself is made incompetent (and incontinent?) by his regeneration but still gets to go on a self-propelling wheelchair and pulls off decent impressions of his former selves – and Basil Fawlty (the War Hotelier).
Tegan gets hot and bothered, Nyssa gets moist and, of course, Adric has a semi on, before they all meet
Chardonnay Shardovan and his sheep-in-wolf’s-clothing chums.
There’s a fly in the ointment, of course, and this one has a risible, raisable platform, a double-decker perspex top hat and a penchant for looking at boys on the dark web.
But does the new Doctor bowl Jim and Martin over? Or is he out first ball?
Find out here.
“Rondel – intergalactic region devoid of all stellar activity”
So how come it feels like we’ve gone on location to Rondel, rather than Amsterdam? There’s certainly a lack of activity in Arc of Infinity – and a less than stellar cast, if it comes to that.
But at least we have a trigger-happy Nyssa, a new look (but, alas, same personality) Tegan and a Doctor who seems to be staining his whites with more than grass. And they’re up against a naughty, helium-powered Time Lord, a swarfega-spewing ‘mystery’ renegade and something which appears to have crawled out of Colonel Sanders’ bin.
Couple that with a pair of berks who give backpackers (and indeed bipeds) a bad name and a strangely familiar guard captain, who is the bottom of everybody’s favourites list, and you have an uneven start to an anniversary season.
So do Jim and Martin see this story a delicious Edam or a Dutch oven? Listen here to find out.
“Professor… what’s going on?!”
Good question, Ace.
The last ever classic Who story to be recorded, Ghost Light, is something of a period-piece puzzle – with a few pieces missing.
But it does include dinner-suited monsters, gun-toting maids, an insane explorer, a simian sermoniser and a Neanderthal butler (doesn’t every home have one?). This madhouse is presided over by a dusty but upwardly mobile photophobe, with high treason on his ever-evolving mind.
But he doesn’t bargain on the devious Doctor and the arsonous Ace, ably abetted by a racist rozzer and an uncontrolled control experiment.
Enter the angelic, anally retentive Light and the Earth is in imminent danger of being purged in a fit of OCD pique.
But can Jim and Martin shed any light on proceedings? Listen in and decide for yourself.
“Haven’t I seen you somewhere before?”
Dunno. Have you watched The Golden Voyage of Sinbad?
Hurrah! It’s double helpings of Tom Baker in 1980’s Meglos, one bristlier and greener around the gills than the other.
It’s a saga of succulents, savants and power supplies wherein Romana is fondled by a bunch of flowers, K9 is assaulted by a bunch of light opera extras and the Doctor is plagued by a bunch of pricks.
Debate rages between the Wigs and the lunatic fringe and the poor man’s John Le Mesurier is caught dithering in the middle.
Will Meglos succeed? Is Brotadac’s anagram apposite? Will anyone remember any of this in the morning?
Listen in as Jim and Martin discuss … sorry… what were we talking about again…?
“It’s not exactly dull travelling with the Doctor.”
Not normally, Tegan. Not normally…
But this is the season 19 closer, Time-Flight, in which the Doctor seems to be under heavy sedation, OmNyssia knows all the answers, Tegan remains an air hostess (not that she ever hints at this) and Adric is still dead (mercifully).
The Master is at large too, coercing a plane-full of extras into caressing an inner sanctum, wherein lies a battery crammed full of blokes and an orang-utan’s family jewels. He also finds time to co-ordinate a platoon of turd men, all while nursing a projectile cold.
But which passenger is Victor Foxtrot? Why is Concorde’s progress monitored from a broom cupboard? And why on (prehistoric) Earth is the Master cosplaying as the last Widow Twankey in the job centre, even when he’s on his Jack Jones?
Listen in to hear Jim, Martin and special guest Ian Atkins pick through the wreckage.