Saturday, March 5, 2016

Tales From The TARDIS: The Brink Of Disaster

We conclude our look of The Edge of Destruction two-parter with The Brink of Disaster.

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Hello and Welcome to the Basement, and welcome to Tales From The TARDIS

Today we wrap up The Edge of Destruction story-arc, with part 2, titled The Brink of Disaster, which ended with Doctor being attacked.

So where we does episode start off? With the revelation that Ian is the one attacking the Doctor. Apparently some external force has overridden the desired effects of the nightcap The Doc gave him and the others, driving Ian to stop the Doctor from operating the TARDIS Controls. Ian does come to his senses and ends up passing out, just before Barbara arrives for the Doctor to straight out accuse them of sabotage. This has some profound impact later on, but we'll get to that.

Barbara tries to reason with the Doctor, but he is an unreasonable man... and Susan soon arrives finding herself caught in the middle, siding with her grandfather but at the same time believing that Barbara and Ian are innocent. To really add onto the insanity, The Doctor threatens to throw the two teachers out of the TARDIS... which I think there is only one instance of the Doctor flat out getting rid of one occurred in the history of the Show,

Anyway, Alarms go off, and its revealed that their are faults located in every system... seriously, The Doctor needs to give the TARDIS a proper over-haul at some point. There's an explosion and now The Doctor realizes that the TARDIS's power source is trying to force its way out, and they are minutes away from total destruction! PANIC! PANIC!

And now I get to sound really thoughtful, when I quote Titus Livius: "Shared Danger is the strongest of bonds, it will keep men united in spite of mutual dislike and suspicion"

That's what we got here going forward, as our heroes forget about all the bickering and start to work together to deal with the real danger. Plus this is where Barbara sets the gold standard for a lead female companion for Doctor Who. Remember it was she who noticed the melting clock in last weeks episode, and for the most part its her going toe to toe with The Doctor when he's accused her and Ian of Sabotage

She figures out that all the strange events that have been happening were created by the TARDIS itself to warn them something is very wrong. As was discovered many years later,

The TARDIS is quite alive. The Doctor traces the problem to a broken-spring in the fast return switch, which when the Doctor flicked it, caused the TARDIS to head back to when a solar system was being created. So fixing the broken switch resolves the danger problem... but not everything is okay as apologies are in order.

The Doctor apologizes to Ian, who being the man he is, accepts straight away. However Barbara needs a lot more convincing, but she eventually back on Team TARDIS. The episode ends with our heroes setting out to explore where they have landed, and it's a place with a lot of snow... with Barbara and Susan discovering a giant footprint.

This episode out of all the ones we've gone over so far, is perhaps the one that establishes a lot of reoccurring themes in Doctor Who, in particular the female companion who points out when the Doctor is out of line, as this won't be the last time that will happen in the franchise. Then there is the TARDIS trying to warn others of dangers, while in more recent years it's been more outright (with holograms and such) but this was where it was first established.

Next week... we begin our look at the serial Marco Polo... but how can that be done if the episodes don't 'exist' in the traditional sense? Well you'll just have to come back and find out. Till then everybody, have a great week!

Additional Footage From Doctor Who The Brink of Disaster BBC, 1964

Additional Music Doctor Who Theme Ron Granier RCA, 1980

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