The Enemy of the World part 3
7 February 2015 at 14:30 #37870Craig @craigEmperor
Jamie works as security for Salamander while Victoria works in the kitchen. Denes awaits his trial. As Salamander plots to kill him, Astrid attempts a rescue.
Earthquakes and volcanoes continue to cause problems on Earth. Can Salamander be causing them?
And remember, we’re watching this as it was first shown, one episode at a time, so NO SPOILERS for future episodes.8 February 2015 at 16:28 #37898Juniperfish @juniperfish
Excellent rubber/ leather guards uniforms and Troughton is suitably scary as the nefarious Salamander.
I enjoy the spy-thriller element a lot and would be very happy to see Capaldi dabble in local politics a bit more.8 February 2015 at 23:09 #37906Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip
I do like Victoria – she is completely useless, but in such a very sweet way. And she is willing to try to help … but unfortunately her education as a Victorian lady seems to have concentrated on, I dunno, possibly a little light embroidery? Playing the piano? Beginning and advanced swooning?
Despite this lack of preparation for real life she does, on the whole, tackle the entire ‘now involved in International Spying’ thing with determination. And an awareness that she’s completely out of her depth. However, out of her depth or not, she’ll give it a go; with screaming. 😉
Possibly in response to Victoria, Jamie projects an air of competent authority throughout; he knows how to be a guard, even if he’s one whose uniform consists of some fetching leatherwear.
Astrid, meanwhile, seems to have studied at the Austin Powers School of Spy Training. And Salamander’s security really is crap – oh, you’re an entirely new messenger with a mysterious message looking remarkably like a previously reported intruder? So, would you like to come out for a drink?
I am definitely getting the impression that the Doctor doesn’t trust Giles Kent any further than he can throw him. It’s the way he keeps insisting on finding proof of Salamander’s guilt. Meanwhile, Salamander himself is busy providing examples of his villainy. Blackmail, poisoning, planning the invasion of Derby, Lincoln, Worksop … no, that last was the Sheriff of Nottingham. 😉
It’s a lovely pair of performances by Troughton, especially because you can see how completely different his Doctor is to Salamander. He’s emphasising the gentler qualities of the Doctor’s character, making him even more of a contrast to the hard-edged Salamander.
@juniperfish – I think the equivalent to this week’s episode would be Time Heist.9 February 2015 at 03:45 #37908janetteB @janetteb
Finally caught up with ep 2 and 3 today, albeit in a rather distracted frame of mind. Troughton really shows his quality as an actor in this series. He was completely convincing in both roles, our lovable Doctor bemoaning the smashing of the pretty china and the devious psychopathic Salamander, happily ordering the disposal of those inconvenient bodies that keep cluttering up the place. His ruthlessness is quite chilling.
I agree with @bluesqueakpip and others re’ Victoria. She is the archetypal “plucky” heroine of Victorian fiction. Indeed she could have stepped straight out of the pages of an early Dickens. In BG Who they often took assistants “out of their depth” which made for tension and character development, or at least the potential for character development.
The action in this episode is driven by Jamie, Victoria and Astrid. Indeed the Doctor does almost nothing at all other than to employ that remarkable Dr Who hide skill at the end. “They might as well call it the Jamie and Victoria story.” (Sorry. Couldn’t resist.)
I thought for a moment that Benik was going to be on the rebel side but apparently not. (Milton Johns is usually the villain in Who episodes so I should have known better.) I am wondering if Donald Bruce will turn against Salamander as he seems to question him a lot but maybe that is only because he later played Ruben. Lots of familiar faces in this story. Fariah is clearly going to be a character to watch. I hope she doesn’t become a red shirt because I like her and would like to see her win her freedom back.
I was so caught up in the story that when it ended I wanted to watch the rest but I was good. No more until next Monday. 🙂
Janette9 February 2015 at 08:54 #37910Juniperfish @juniperfish
@everyone What are your favourite Troughton Who stories, those of you who have seen more of them? @scaryb I know you’ve probably got some, Yeti and all 🙂22 February 2015 at 09:18 #38192
Agree with @bluesqueakpip, Troughton really showing his quality, Salamander is a scary dude. Again impressed with Doctor Who dealing with meaty issues, presenting well rounded minor characters like Griff the chef and particularly Fariah. Victoria is wet, but sweet, and Astrid and Fariah offset her silliness just fine.
The thing that strike me constantly about the classic stories is the room for story telling the multiple episode format gives. The single episodes these days are really slick, beautifully and economically written, but I have a sense that sometimes a little more set up would reduce my slight giddiness at the speed with which one is required to hurdle sharks, and lead to me missing slightly less. Perhaps a few more multiple episodes … Just realised what I said there could be considered slightly spoilery, so have edited.
To episode 4. Do keep up, Lefty!22 February 2015 at 10:13 #38194
@juniperfish, I seem to recall a touch of eyebrow related local politics in Deep Breath 😉 I agree and I think the approach of the story being driven away from the big issue towards the nitty gritty of interpersonal politics and human motivation like this does means you are absolved from having to fix say, climate change, in an episode so can write an episode which doesn’t feel forced to cop out and have a poor resolution. Maybe?23 February 2015 at 03:28 #38236ScaryB @scaryb
@barbaralefty BG Who was often notable for character driven stories, this particular one probably more than most. As you say it comes partly from having multiple episodes in which to tell the story and set up side characters. The down (and up) side of the format is that because it was shown over several weeks, with no oportunity to replay the stories had to go a bit more slowly. This one is very much a “monster lite” story, and as such, was quite unusual. I do seem to remember politics being touched on a few times, and fairly overtly, quite often with the Doctor on the side of the oppressed underdogs (quite a theme of the post war 60s). The 3rd episodes (of 4 parters) did have bit of a reputation of being “filler” though.
@juniperfish So glad you like Troughton, he really is quite brilliant as the Doctor, and was well into his stride by this time. He and Jamie are a great pairing. Sadly most of the missing episodes are Troughton ones, including his debut in Power of the Daleks (which also had political intrigue if I remember right). The Doctor, Jamie and Zoe is my favourite combination ever, even beating Rory and Amy with Smithy (which was possibly inspired by it). @htpbdet‘s blogs are great on the subject, and describe the Paternal Magician much more eloquently than I can. Seeing him as Salamander (and even more as the Doctor playing at Salamander) makes you realise what a carefully constructed, tho seemingly effortless, characterisation his Doctor is, from the little sideways glances to the body language and nuances in the voice).
Love the breaking crockery. well there’s no way you can stay on when all the crockery’s broken, can you?!
Victoria’s very sweet, but really not a lot of use! (give me Zoe any day 🙂 ) But she’s plucky and she does try so hard to please. Note: if she was a Dickens heroine as suggested above, she’d definitely be doomed to an untimely death, probably fading delicately away from consumption! Astrid and Fariah do provide a nice balance re female characters though.23 February 2015 at 18:20 #38243
@scaryb, yes I must remember these BG episodes have been hand picked by experts for awesome! @juniperfish, I love the little Troughton I have seen, he might even be my favourite (other than 4 and 12), for his incredibly deft touch, but I especially liked Seeds of Death and he was delightfully quixotic in the Three Doctors.
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