Wednesday, 1 June 2011

The Invisible Enemy (Part Three)

Originally Broadcast 15th October 1977
 Written by: Bob Baker and Dave Martin

In a nutshell: The Doctor and Leela have been cloned, entering the main Doctor’s body, they have to find and destroy the nucleus that’s taking over the Doctor’s mind.

Review: What? A cloned version of Leela and the Doctor have been shrunk down and placed inside a diseased Doctor’s body? That’s right, it’s a lengthy recap due to part three of ‘The Invisible Enemy’ running short! I’m instantly remembering masses of CSO, this episode must’ve been almost as bad as ‘Underworld’ (1978) to film, it’s a shame there’s no studio footage of Tom Baker shouting at people here as well, but I digress.

Frederick Jaeger is being amazing again. I’ve suddenly realised I’d like my own futuristic badly designed green coat to go with my real-life, working K-9 Mark IV. Sadly I have neither at the moment. But never mind, we’re travelling along the Doctor’s neural pathway, which is brilliantly well designed. There are a few dodgy CSO backgrounds going on but some good props and well-written dialogue between the Doctor and Leela as she kicks parts of his insides.

Back to the real Leela now as K-9 shoots out a bit of a badly designed wall to protect them from an angry, infected Lowe.
The cameras jumping between plot strands this episode and we’re back inside the Doctor’s mind, where Baker is gone into full Doctor-mode, having a go at Leela and acting like his usual alien self with lines such as “I know this brain like the back of my hand”. The sets remind me of 1975’s ‘Planet Of Evil’ but with less successful atmosphere.

Lowe’s standing in the dodgy gap-in-the-wall looking funny with his green make-up but oh no! K-9’s been infected! Contact has been made!  I wonder if the make-up department will give him some fluffy green hair for his laser-nose? Things have taken a serious turn now as K-9’s rendered Leela unconscious, giving the infectee’s the chance to reach the Doctor’s body.

The Doctor's immune system at work!

“Five minutes to go”, Professor Marius informs us, looking at his retro 1970s clock face. Sadly Marius is now chanting about making contact. Leela and K-9 are back to normal consciousness now, however, I’m not sure what good they’ll be as Leela’s previous attempts at holding them off did sod all.

The CSO inside the Doctor is getting worse now, must’ve been nearing ten pm in the studio when that was shot. An infected Marius has inserted an infected (and tiny) Lowe into the Doctor’s body now, giving us some cheap shots of him running through all the sets in which the Doctor and Leela have spent the past fifteen minutes walking through.

The Doctor has now found the nucleus, which has a fantastically designed claw but the rest looking quite shoddy, with just being a black drape chucked over the main bulk of it.

There’s a great scene between the Doctor and the Nucleus as we learn why the Doctor was the candidate chosen for taking over. A close-up of Baker’s reaction is a brilliant choice by director Goodwin, raising the threat level for the audience by a mile.

The Doctor has escaped through the tear duct, but I think he’s left his wig behind…or something! But wait! It’s not the Doctor, it’s the nucleus now outside the body and grown to full size! Doesn’t that look badly designed?

Tomorrow: The Invisible Enemy, Conclusion!

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