Monday, 18 May 2015

Colony in Space

Ah, the glory days of Jon Pertwee - in this case, the first time Jo Grant steps inside the Tardis, and onto the surface of an alien world - or a china clay quarry in Cornwall.
This story of the evil Interplanetary Mining Company against poor colonists actually seems quite up to date, though I doubt that today's fracking companies would try to scare people off by using projections of giant lizards!
It was nice to see several women among the colonists, too, who even had speaking parts, though one of them died horribly early on, and another just vanished as the men started shooting at each other. Only Gail Tilsley from Coronation Street remained to man the radio.
Meanwhile, the "Primitives" didn't seem to have any women at all, and nobody among the colonists or the miners seemed to consider that they might just possibly have the prior claim to their own planet.
And then the Master comes along, disguised as the Adjudicator between the miners and the colonists - though what he really wants is to get his hands on a Doomsday Weapon hidden in the Primitives' city. And he wants to share ruling the universe with the Doctor.
My favourite lines of the story are between the Master and the Doctor:
"My credentials are immaculate."
"Forged, of course."
"Of course - but immaculate."
In the documentary accompanying the story, they said that they considered casting a woman as the member of the mining ship crew who is frightening and murdering colonists - but the Powers that Be at the BBC vetoed the idea, saying that they thought it was "kinky" to have a woman doing that sort of thing.

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