Doctor Who Story 003 – The Edge of Destruction

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Plot Synopsis: Doctor Who was originally commissioned for a 13 episode run. The Four episode story “An Unearthly Child” and the seven episode story “The Daleks” left the production crew with a two episode void. They decided for budget purposes to set the entire story within the confines of the TARDIS. An accident completely knocks The Doctor and his companions to the ground (except Ian who seems to land perfectly in a chair). They all wake up confused and Susan complains of pain, ready to scream “GRANDFATHER!” They find the doors ajar, and Susan freaks out and assumes something got in.

I don’t know if it’s supposed to be a big revelation, but Barbara wakes up first and the camera seems to linger on her leather pants a bit too long. In case you’re wondering, Barbara is wearing leather pants… though in England they call them leather trousers. Speaking of Barbara, about thirty seconds after she confronts The Doctor on his nastiness she screams like a little girl because a clock is disfigured, throws her watch across the TARDIS and runs crying. The inconsistencies in Barbara’s character are interesting. She’s a strong and intelligent woman, and often is reduced to screaming for the sake of… well, she’s a woman.

Much of the episode involves people waking up and collapsing. It seems to happen over and over again, as Barbara, Ian, and The Doctor try to figure out what’s going on. In some of the worst acting, I have ever seen, Susan tells her fellow companions that she’s “going to try the controls.” As soon as she touches the console he scream “Ow! No!” and falls to the floor like a master’s class in bad acting.

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Ian takes a fainted Susan back into one of the TARDIS bedrooms where he finds a murphy bed with a beach lounger inside it. He eventually finds a hilariously robotically voiced Susan waiting for him with a knife. As usual, she screams and collapses on the bed.

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We know The Doctor will eventually replace said bed with a bunk bed for married couple Amy and Rory to enjoy.

Later Barbara goes to bed, and we learn that Doctor Who predicted the most important piece of human technology… The Snuggie!

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The question is what is causing the TARDIS to misbehave, and what’s causing The Doctor and his companions to act so strangely. The conclusion is terrible. We discover that a switch’s spring broke and was being held down, so the TARDIS went to the beginning of the solar system’s life. The TARDIS was trying to leave clues for her Doctor, but it was Barbara who figured it. We’re left wondering why they were acting so strange. Why their necks hurt in the same spot. It just leaves too many questions hanging. Not the best episode of Doctor Who.

Story 004, “Marco Polo,” is missing in its entirety. Rumours are floating around that the episodes have been found. Until them, we skip this serial. 

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