Thursday, May 23, 2013
Season 26, like the previous three seasons, featured 14 episodes spread across four stories. However, if one were to, after the fact, allocate these episodes to each story, the distribution might end up a bit different. Ghost Light, which follows Battlefield, might have been better stretched out into four episodes, and The Curse of Fenric, the penultimate story of the season, could have also benefited from an additional installment.
Conversely, Battlefield began life as a three-part story, but writer Ben Aaronovitch was asked to extend the plot over four episodes. It seems evident that most of the new material added to the story was slotted into Part Two. There's a scene where Mordred laughs maniacally, and interminably, during a ceremony to transfer his mother, Morgaine, to another dimension. The Brigadier spends pretty much the entire episode in a helicopter on his way to the scene of the crime. Everything just seems to be in a holding pattern, waiting until Part Three to finally have some of the principles meet up.
There are some good sequences though. It's fun to see Nicholas Courtney and Jean Marsh have a scene together - a pseudo family reunion of the Kingdom/Vyon family from The Daleks' Master Plan. It's also a nice character touch to have Morgaine be respectful of the graves of veterans, as well as the Brigadier's status as a "warrior". A lesser villain would have merely killed the Brigadier without a second's thought. That Morgaine focuses her energy only on attacking other soldiers (eventually - as I said, things move slowly in this story) makes her a believable character, even if she's a medieval witch from an alternate dimension.
Posted by Steven at 11:14 AM