fredag den 20. marts 2009

Who Review #41 - the Enemy of the World

Only episode 3 exists of this six-parter.

The Doctor and co. land on a beach. The Doctor goes for a paddle in the sea. A hovercraft stops up and he is observed by three men. They can't believe it is "Him". One of the men calls a woman, saying He is there. She thinks that's impossible; she calls her boss Giles who orders Astrid to stop the three men killing the Doctor. The hovercraft moves towards the travellers and the men begin to open fire. They are pursued through the sand dunes by the men. Astrid lands a helicopter close to the travellers and they rush for it. The men continue to fire at them, hitting the fuel tank.The men get back in the hovercraft and set off in pursuit. Astrid lands outside a house, which they enter. Astrid has been injured by a shot and is tended to by the Doctor. The Doctor learns that the three men want to kill the man they have mistaken him for: a man called Salamander, who is intent on becoming dictator of the world. The three men catch up with them again. They shoot one of their number by mistake; the two men take the helicopter but are killed when it explodes. Astrid takes the Doctor and co. to her boss, Giles Kent. Kent wants the Doctor to impersonate Salamander because they look identical. One man, Denes, must be contacted - all others who have had their suspicions of Salamander have ended up dead. Security Chief Bruce makes his way to Kent's office. The Doctor must impersonate Salamander at once. The Doctor goes to change clothes. Bruce enters and starts questioning Kent and the others. "Salamander" enters the room and asks what Bruce is doing there.

Bruce is amazed. He thought Salamander was in the Central European Zone and, furthermore, they had only talked a few days earlier about the dangers posed by Kent. Salamander (in reality the Doctor) orders Bruce to leave and he will discuss matters with him later. The Doctor agrees to help. Astrid has a plan to get Jamie and Victoria in to Salamander's house, whilst Kent and the Doctor plan to observe a research station. At the research station Benik is questioned by Bruce, who wants to know if Salamander was on the Central European Zone rocket. Bruce is still curious at to why Salamader was in Kent's office, and he wants a report from Benik when he contacts Salamander. The real leader is at his palace talking to Denes; he warns Denes that volcanoes are set to erupt in his zone. Jamie and Victoria wait upon Astrid in a garden, in Hungary; she gives papers to him. Then she contacts Kent. A man called Fedorin waits for Salamander, where he is served drinks by Fariah, Salamander's food taster. Jamie knocks out a guard, moves Salamander and others away, throws a telephone away - it explodes when Astrid detonates it. Jamie pretends to have saved Salamander; he offers Jamie a job as a security guard. Victoria is pretending to be Jamie's girlfriend and is given a job in the kitchen. Fariah and a guard come to collect Jamie and Victoria. Astrid goes to a jetty and meets Denes; Denes is convinced that Salamander is a danger. Fedorin is blackmailed by Salamander, who has a dossier of evidence of corruption. Salamander wants to replace Denes, who he wants to murder, with Fedorin. The two observe a volcanic eruption. Denes and Bruce enter; the former blames Salamander for the eruption, saying he caused it. He in turn orders Bruce to arrest Denes.

Salamander hands Fedorin some poison. Bruce is surprised to see Jamie and then says he wants to question him. Victoria has started working in the kitchen; she is ordered to peel spuds. Fariah tells her she must leave as soon as possible and not get mixed up in Salamander's world. Jamie discusses what they have seen so far. Kent tells the Doctor of his suspicion: Salamander is controlling natural disasters in order to grab power. Benik and guards burst into the cabin Kent has, close to the research station, and smash up the place in a bit of strong-arm tactics. When they leave,the Doctor climbs out of the chest where he was hiding and tells Kent he still requires facts. Astrid is in the palace and passes guads, saying she has a message for Salamander. She meets up with Jamie and Victoria in the kitchen to discuss how to rescue Denes. The companions ask Fariah if she likes working for Salamander; she is angry and replies people must do what they have to. Fedorin contemplates putting poison in the food that is taken to Denes. The Guard Captain recognises Astrid and reports to Salamander that he saw her with Jamie and Victoria in the garden. Salamander orders Astrid followed and he will deal with the companions. There are six minutes until the escape plan is due to start, so Victoria stays with Denes, who starts to eat his food. Fedorin hasn't poisoned Denes, because he couldn't; Salamander gives him a drink, which is poisoned. The escape starts, but Denes is shot and Victoria and Jamie are captured. Bruce tells Salamander that he has seen him in with Kent in Australia; they realise that there is somebody who looks like Salamander.

At the trailer, Kent and the Doctor wonder what is happening to Astrid. She is in Kent's office and contacts Kent. Benik intercetps the message and issues an arrest order. Fariah enters; she has come to give Kent information. She wants Salamander dead. The Doctor and Kent return to the office; Fariah tells the Doctor that Victoria and Jamie are with Salamander at the research station. Furthermore, she has Fedorin's file which contains the proof to get Salamander. Kent wants the Doctor to assassinate Salamander, but he refuses to do that. He will expose Salamander though. The guards begin to surround Kent's office, with orders to shoot on sight. They make their escape. Fariah is shot though and Benik takes Fedorin's file. Bruce and Benik are ordered to search for the Doctor; then Salamander orders that he not be disturbed. He types something on a computer and then enters a concealed chamber. He dresses in protective clothing and then passes down a tube that leads into the Earth. Kent wants to see Salamander but is told he cannot enter. The leader orders a group of people in a main room. He tells them that he has returned and they wonder if he has found them more food sources. One man, Colin, goes to Salamander and asks about the radioactive contamination on the Earth's surface and if they can return. The people applaud Salamander, who pretends to have brought food for them from a destroyed world. The people here have been underground for five years. They are engineering natural disasters because Salamander pretends this is a way to attack their warlike enemy. Colin wants to go to the surface. Astrid, Kent and the Doctor (who is made up now to look like Salamander) are talking when Bruce and guards enter the room.

Bruce has found them. He wants to know why Astrid and Kent want the Doctor to impersonate Salamander. They learn the sad news of Fariah. Bruce wants to investigate Salamander in his own way. Astrid overpowers a guard and grabs a gun. Victoria and Jamie are brought in to Benik for questioning. The Doctor doesn't want violence and hands the gun to Bruce, in order to create trust. They go to the research station, whilst Astrid and Kent are held captive. In the nuclear shelter, Colin continues to desire going to the surface to look. He is tired of the subterranean existence. One of the men, Swann, finds a piece of newspaper stuck to a food box. It has a headline and a date. He, perplexed, goes to see Salamander. and realises he has lied to Swann and the others. Salamander lies that the war is over and that the survivors are terribly mutated and the natural disasters are an act of mercy. Swann is horrified; he insists at being taken to the surface. Benik goesto question Jamie and Victoria; he threatens to shoot Victoria in the leg if Jamie doesn't answer. Salamander enters and sends Benik away; he says he knows everything. Jamie and Victoria say all sorts of things about what he has done, whilst Bruce listens. When they learn of Fariah's death, Victoria starts hitting the Doctor. At first, they don't believe it is him but then he starts to whistle "Twinkle, twinkle little star" and complains that he left his recorder in the TARDIS. Kent wants to get into the research station and present Bruce with hard evidence; he and Astrid plan an escape. Kent pretends to be shot; Astrid runs and the guard runs after him. She hears a faint cry and goes down a concealed tunnel. She finds Swann, who Salamander has hit on the head with a crowbar.

Benik enters the interrogation room. The Doctor reverts back to his impersonation. the Doctor is unsure if he has been made. He holds papers Benik brought; they are requisition orders for food, made out for more people than work at the research station. Swann falls dead after getting Astrid's promise to defeat Salamander; she goes to the underground shelter. The people run in terror; but then they begin to listen to Astrid. They realise they have been duped. Kent enters the station and goes towards the record room, where Salamander is seated. He enters and talks with him. Benik and Bruce see the confrontation on a screen and order the records room door cut open. The shelterers start to ascend. Kent tells Salamander that he knows him too well and mentions the hidden room and the tunnels. The Doctor goes back to his normal voice and Astrid enters the records room. Kent and Salamander were in it together, only Kent wanted to kill him and take power himself. Salamander has seen all that has happened on a monitor. Bruce orders Benik and the station staff detained. The Doctor warns that Kent is going to blow up the station. Salamander shoots Kent in the shoulder and runs after him, shooting him once more. Kent lunges for a control lever and sets off an explosion. Astrid and Bruce set off to rescue the people from the shelter. Back at the TARDIS, Jamie and Victoria let Salamander into it. The Doctor returns and they confront each other; they start fighting. The TARDIS dematerialises with its doors open. Salamander is sucked out into the time vortex and the ship careers around.

This is Doctor Who meets James Bond/the Avengers and an enoyable David Whitaker script. Patrick Troughton was terrific in his double role as our hero and the scheming Salamander (complete with hispanic accent). His use of natural disasters is grandiose and worthy of all the implausible plans dreamt up by SPECTRE.

There are other great performances. Mary Peach could easily be Emma Peel in the Avengers, with her karate kicks; Colin Douglas is an intelligent and fair Bruce; Reg Lye is amusing as the Chef (as usual Whitaker has some lovely dialogue); and Milton Johns makes his first of many appearances in the show, playing here the nasty sadist Benik.

In a sense, this story begins to see new blood coming to the show. Whitaker had been one of the people instrumental in making the show what it was. The director for Enemy of the World was Barry Letts, who would shape much of the Jon Pertwee era.

Classic Victoria
Her tartan mini-skirt and matching beret. Debbie Watling related years later of the little pranks Troughton and Frazer Hines would get up to as they had fun on set. Her mini was unbuckled without her noticing, so it fell off when she stood up.

Curiously, Enemy has been called the weakest story of the fifth season by some reviewers. Also with all the monsters, its complete lack of monsters has resulted in it being said to stick out like a sore thumb. I don't think those descriptions are that warranted. It is another in a succession of excellent stories.

Ingen kommentarer: