Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Vicki Saves the Day!

The Space Museum

First Doctor  - 15th Serial

4 Episodes, Companions:Ian, Barbara, Vicki

Summary: Some unusual facets of materialization exhibit themselves - a dizzy spell, an unexpected change of clothes, and a mysteriously un-breaking broken glass. The TARDIS materializes on a strange, silent world where the Doctor and companions cannot interact with any of the inhabitants. Before long, they discover that they are represented here already, exhibits in a space museum (hence the title, I'm 99% sure!).  Drawn into the struggle between armed rebellion against the curators, the companions could win their freedom, or be trapped in an exhibit forever! (cue dramatic music! Well, kind of dramatic.  They tried, and the music in this one's pretty good, for the most part, which I think  is the first time yet the music has been a part of my reviews!)

The Doctor: He's too dismissive of the odd phenomena at the outset - he should be curious.  Likewise, he continues to be causally dismissive, a trait we're coming to be familiar with in the First Doctor.  He's moderately curious, but only after the others convince them there's something interesting after all.  The Doctor continues to reiterate his policy of not wanting to change the future, even if it's his personal future.  He spends a lot of energy trying to out think the guards, but in the end, meets his match.  He also mutters like Yoda at one point, when talking to Ian.  I don't recall him being quite that cackly, Hmm! Hmm? Hmm!?  Not one of his greatest Serials, but he's still got some wit and charm.

Companions: Barbara again picks up on some of the important clues, and Vicki likewise, although unlike Barbara, Vicki is dismissed and ignored, despite being more intelligent here than any other time before, to the best of my limited ability to recall. In the end, Vicki will even solve the problems of most of the party, matching or besting the Doctor, given that he doesn't outwit the guards and she outwits their security system.  To be fair, the Doctor tries to dismiss Barbara as imagining the ominous aspects, but accepts her observation that their sound doesn't echo as valid.  Ian shows his usual strength and character, and we even see him take one of the guards hostage! This is a really good Vicki Serial, even if a mediocre Doctor one.

Continuity: First, The traditional materialization sound is back.  I say traditional - it's been present only twice before.  Nevertheless, this Serial used the classic sound we will all become familiar with.  The manifesto about changing the future becomes a major talking point, and eventually the group decide that changing their own personal futures for the best is fine.  The Doctor also acquires a Time-Space Visualizer, and we learn that the Daleks have their own time machine now.  Yes, apart from just being an empty shell int he museum  at the end, we see the Daleks have been using their own Time-Space Visualizer to watch the group, and while they could only observe the last few minutes due to the group still being out of phase until the last few minutes, they are now in hot pursuit of their 'greatest enemy'!

Rating: Enjoy it.  It might benefit from being only 3 episodes instead of four, but it's pretty fun.  There's a lot of meat here about taking charge - the companions really only get out of the pickle when they stop letting events happen to them, take charge (and hostages!) and stop worrying about changing time and simply try.  Even the 'revolution' finally wins when they decide to actually fight back (imagine that!).  Carpe Diem, companions, for your situation cannot improve until you try!