he Doctor and Peri arrive on the planet of Androzani Minor, and the Doctor immediately begins to investigate tracks leading into a cave system. Inside the cave system both he and Peri become infested by raw Spectrox, although they were unaware at the time.
There is a war going on between gun runners/spectrox smuggling and the military. The leader of the gun runners is Sharaz Jek, an expert in android design and creation. The Doctor and Peri are arrested as gun runners, although Sharaz Jek manages to swap them for androids, who are later executed.
The Doctor finds that Sharaz Jek has been smuggling Spectrox, a life giving elixir, in return for guns. The military have been getting nowhere due to the second in command, who is one of Jek's robots.
The Doctor discovers that he and Peri are close to death from Spectrox Toxaemia. Peri and Major Salateen later escape from Jek, and aid the military. Eventually the military gain ground on Sharaz Jek, and he is finally killed. The Doctor risks his life to retrieve milk from a Queen bat, the only antidote to Spectrox Toxaemia.
The Doctor carries Peri back to the TARDIS. In opening the door some spills out into the desert. There is only enough left for Peri. After dematerialising the TARDIS the Doctor collapses as Peri recovers ...
Regular castPeri Brown: Nicola Bryant;
Guest castSharaz Jek: Christopher Gable; Trau Morgus: John Normington; Major Salateen: Robert Glenister; Stotz: Maurice Roeves; General Chellak: Martin Cochrane; Krelper: Roy Holder; Krau Timmin: Barbara Kinghorn; The President: David Neal (1-3); The New Doctor: Colin Baker; Soldier: Ian Staples (4); The Master: Anthony Ainley (4); Adric: Matthew Waterhouse (4); Nyssa: Sarah Sutton (4); Tegan: Janet Fielding (4); Turlough: Mark Strickson (4); Voice of Kamelion: Gerald Flood (4);
Uncredited cast: Magma Creature: Colin Taylor (1-3); Double for the Doctor: Gareth Milne (4); Androids: Keith Harvey, Andrew Smith, Stephen Smith; Thin Stranger: Keith Harvey; Gun Runners: Les Conrad, Gerry O'Brien, Robert Smythe; Soldiers: Derek Briggs, Darrell Brooks, Russell Brooks, Pat Gorman, Bryan Jacobs, Jerry Judge, Ray Martin, Sean McCabe, Harry Payne, Steve Rockson, Ian Staples, Doug Stark, Bob Tarff, Steve Wickham;
|BBC 1||619||Part One||Thu 8 March 1984||6:40 pm - 7:05 pm||6.9M||66th|
|BBC 1||620||Part Two||Fri 9 March 1984||6:40 pm - 7:05 pm||6.6M||75th|
|BBC 1||621||Part Three||Thu 15 March 1984||6:40 pm - 7:05 pm||7.8M||62nd|
|BBC 1||622||Part Four||Fri 16 March 1984||6:40 pm - 7:05 pm||7.8M||62nd|
Repeats (on the BBC)
Masters Pit, Stokeford Heath, Gallows Hill,Wareham, Dorset;
Television Centre Studio 6;
Bloopers and mistakes
Morgus's remote control quite blatantly belongs to a twentieth-century Earth television set. The company logo has been taped over, but the volume, brightness and contrast controls are clearly visible in one close up.
When the gun-runners are throwing the guns off the catwalk, one of them gets a little stuck and has to be pushed again.
Episode 1: Nicola Bryant's American accent slips again when she says "glass" in a distinctly English manner.
Episode 1: The Doctor and Peri are exploring the cave system when Peri falls through a hole, supposedly down a slope and into a spectrox nest. But after just enough time to say "boing", watch as Nicola Bryant's head makes a quick reappearance.
Episode 3: Maurice Roeves (Stotz) fluffs the line "All right, then where's the two kilos?". He seems to start saying "spectrox" before switching to "two".
Episode 4: When the Doctor is in the cave getting milk from the Queen Bat, the shot has been reversed. (Note the question marks on the Doctor's collar are backwards.)
Episode 4: As the Doctor is escaping from the gun-runners his coat is stained on the front of the right shoulder by a mud burst. But shortly afterwards, when the Doctor is climbing down to find the Queen Bat, his coat is completely clean. Then, when he is actually extracting the Queen's milk, the stains have re-appeared - only to disappear again as he climbs back up the rock face afterwards. In the next scene the mud stains reappear! They remain constant for the rest of the story - but they change again for the beginning of The Twin Dilemma, which follows straight on from this episode.
Notes and trivia
The end titles to Part Four feature Colin Baker, fading from a close up of his face at the end of the episode.
This programme has no other working titles, or they have not been yet been entered.