Sunday, January 19, 2014

Doctor Who-Image Of The Fendahl

                          During a scan by a group of scientists Adam Colby,Max Stael,Thea Ransom and Doctor Fendelman  are doing on an ancient humanoid skull found on an archaeological dig in Kenya the TARDIS is shaken by an intense sonic time scanner. Ransom meanwhile has been taken over by an energy emitting from the skull. When the doctor finds out it originates on Earth he and Leela journey their to prevent that energy from creating a continuum explosion that would destroy the planet. Arriving in the village of Fetchborough where the scientists have been staying,the doctor and Leela first encounter a local named Ted Moss-who directs them into the town. Adam has discovered a corpse meanwhile that Fendelman wants kept away from the authorities. The doctor and Leela meanwhile set upon the home of Martha Tyler,a local mystic with apparent psychic abilities and her son Jack. By this time Mitchell,a member of local law enforcement who arrived to help protect the town,is killed the same way as the body that Adam had discovered was: drained to the point of becoming an empty husk. While searching the area during the night,the doctor himself encounters what he believes the source of the energy that is causing the potential implosion.

                     The doctor enters Fendelman's lab,where the scientists are in conflict over the fact that Fendelman wishes to keep their discovery a secret from the superstitious townspeople such as Moss and Mrs. Tyler,
and finds Thea Ransom unconscious and surrounded covered in two creatures he reveals to Adam as being Fendahleen,embryonic servant creatures to the Fendahl,a life form out of Gallifreyan mythology who literally fed on the energy force of all life around it to sustain itself. The doctor surmises,correctly as Fendelman soon explains that the creature-whom the time lords supposedly destroyed on the Fifth Planet to avoid it spreading had psychically projected itself onto developing humanity. Unbeknownst to him,thinking he'd been making a great evolutionary discovery about humanity,had inadvertently created the sonic time scanner which had now taken over the mind of Thea Ransom-who was being used as a conduit for the re-emerging Fendahl. After narrowly escaping one of the Fendahleen,Martha Tyler goes into psychic shock that the doctor helps her to emerge from,having himself narrowing escaped the influence of the Fendahl on his mind.

                       Meanwhile Adam,Fendalman and Thea Ransom have been kidnapped by Stael,who as it turns out is actually a member of the local black magic coven along with Moss. He places Thea on a large pentagram-actually having been created by humanity since it and originated as part of the skeletal makeup of the original excavated skull.It is at this point,even to his surprise she transforms into a golden humanoid who is actually the incomplete Fendahl core-who kills Fendelman  and Moss to sustain itself-after which Stael promptly commits suicide due to his failure of judgement. The doctor and Leela,after escaping a telepathic Fendahleen that nearly costs Leela,Jack and Martha Tyler their ability to walk are able to rescue Adam from the Fendahl core Thea has transformed into. Upon learning in their encounter with the Fendahleen that simple salt has an adverse affect on them,the doctor asks Mrs. Tyler to gather as much salt as she can so he and Leela can use it to weaken the core-while Adam prepares to destroy the building and its sonic time scanner to prevent the Fendahl's further escape in lieu of he and the Tylers making a fast getaway to her home. Following this the doctor and Leela return to the TARDIS to take the original skull containing the Fendahl to the core of a supernova-whose energy the doctor is sure that even the Fendahl cannot withstand.

                   Doctor Who has always championed the idea of knowledge and truth over fear and terror in its very essence. This is one of those stories that deals with this concept front and center. The attitudes of Fendalman and his fellow scientists towards the seemingly superstitious townspeople of Fetchborough reflects this vividly. And as it turns out,characters such as Martha Tyler turn out to have the upper hand because they understand the form of what's happening but are dealing more with incomplete scientific knowledge than ignorance. The very idea of the grim reaper-like Fendahl effecting everything from family names,cultural traits to the pentagram itself is a story line that has since become the foot of just about all conspiracy theory-based science fiction/fantasy television stories about humanity having originated from an extra terrestrial source. In this serial that subject matter is treated with a vital blend of intelligence and sensitivity. It's the seemingly superstitious locals of Fetchborough who
end up being the heroes of this story along with the doctor and Leela-taking action to help stop the Fendahl's parasitic influence as opposed to attempting to criminally hide the truth as the rather unethical Fendelman team are doing.
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