Sunday, May 13, 2012

Doctor Who-The Seeds Of Death
                  There is something about Patrick Troughton's era as the time lord from Gallifrey that has a somewhat different air about it than any other later incarnation of the Doctor. He's certainly bares about zero comparison to his predecessor William Hartnell. Not only that but the nature of the serials changed as well. The manner in which the doctor,Jamie and Zoey interact with each other is lot closer to being familial than the curious and distant nature of some of the earlier companions. Also there was a mildly faster pace to the serials during this era. Of course it just cannot be forgotten that Patrick Troughton's tenure as the doctor was largely erased from history. There are continuity gaps in even the best surviving stories from this era as a result. And in a sense,even though this entire six part serial remains intact,it's felt here as well. But it's a highly entertaining and often enlightening story from 1969.


                   When the TARDIS arrives in the 21'st century it finds itself confronted with a society whose sole interest in interstellar travel is confined to a teleportation between Earth and it's moon via a device known as T-Mat. They find themselves in a private museum run by the designer of advanced rocketry systems who soon finds himself again needed as T-Mat no longer functions. Turns out a Martian race known as ice warriors (as seen previously in one of Troughton's "missing" serials),who are intimidating T Mat technicians into helping them with their mission: to invade the Earth by using oxygen depleting seed pods to destroy the population. After a journey in an ion powered rocket to handle the situation on the moon,it's a race against time as almost everyone who deals with the ice warriors are intimidated by them. In the end...well it appears the solution is far less intimidating then the ice warriors approach to their invasion.


                  Although this was likely conceived as an alien invasion story,it does make a point that's very important in our real 21'st century as it was in this imagined one. The humans operating the T-Mat have lost interest in interstellar travel,due primarily to the wonder and economic feasibility of teleportation. And it's only that economic factor that motivates the T-Mat team,along with the doctors prodding,that encourages them to take the advice of the mildly cynical museum curator to embrace his advanced rocket designs. Basically it's a backhanded tale of the neglect of advancement in the space program. The story also points to some of the doctors controversial morality too. While they are literally cold,hostile and very uncaring aliens the ice warriors are,in the stories conclusion,condemned to die en mass "just as the human race would've",as the doctor himself pointed out. Awkward for a member of a civilized species to embrace the eye for an eye philosophy in a  negotiation . In the end though it's a story of all parties having to make difficult choices for survival.
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