Monday, April 20, 2009

G4 - A Race Against Death

First off, The Doctor wears glasses a couple times during this episode. Have I not been paying attention? Is this the first time he's worn glasses during the series? Will it be the last? I only ever expect Peter Davison and David Tennant to be wearing spectacles (and Colin Baker to be a spectacle), but now I'm doubting my own ability to properly observe things. Damn.

Anyway, the shot above is taken from a montage of various shots of test tubes being picked up, put down, held up to light, shots of Ian being restless in bed, Sensorites conversing, etc, all in the name of showing everyone hard at work trying to find a cure for the poison that is affecting the city's water supply. It's quite clear that, even in these early days, finding cures for diseases/poisons makes for imminently dull television (see a similar sequence in Doctor Who and the Silurians for proof of that.)

Anyway, The Doctor does eventually find the cure and arranges for a phial of the antidote to be sent to Ian straight away. But, lo! The City Administrator, now disguised as the Second Elder, intercepts the delivery and smashes the phial. Heavens! What a tragic setback to Ian's recovery! How can Ian possibly survive now? The drama lasts for all of a minute and a half, as Susan (offscreen) goes back to the laboratory and gets a second phial, and, after an uneventful trip back to Ian's resting spot, gives him the drugs.


But the City Administrator is evil, make no doubt of that! Thanks to Carol's throwaway (and horribly racist) line that all Sensorites look alike, this gives the City Administrator the idea to kidnap the Second Elder and steal his sash (an idea, which, in turn, shows off the even more racist leanings of the episode's writer). But the City Administrator has nothing to do with the strange sounding monster who is menacing The Doctor at the base of the aqueduct at episode's end...


Keir said...

I like that the City Administrator is such a jerk.

Anonymous said...

Is this the episode where the Sensorites have never realized that they all look pretty much the same until it is pointed out to them? B/c that's just a really funny idea. "What do you mean, we all look a like, why, I've known Mr. X for years and he's right over...well, are you?...hmmm...maybe we do all look alike. Who knew?"

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