An intelligent space-borne virus infects the crew of a refuelling
station on Titan. Travelling in the TARDIS nearby, the Doctor
is also infected - by the nucleus that governs the swarm.
A battle for self-control is soon being waged within the Doctor's
BBC has well and truly scraped the bottom of the barrel of
Tom Baker stories with its VHS releases this year. Oh well,
at least this particular tale isn't as bad as Underworld.
fact, there's a good central premise to this four-parter,
which features a sentient disease and a journey at microscopic
level - clearly inspired by Fantastic Voyage - into
the Doctor's brain. Top marks to writers Bob Baker and Dave
Martin for recognising that the miniaturised Doctor and Leela
(Louise Jameson) would have been too small to break the surface
tension of the liquid in which they are conveyed. Minus several
points, however, for not realising that the tiny travellers
should be incapable of breathing full-size oxygen molecules.
In addition - as a young viewer pointed out when he wrote
in to Radio Times - the clones produced by Professor
Marius (Frederick Jaeger) should have materialised naked.
I guess we must assume that the Kilbraken cloning technique
also involves taking a scan of the subject's attire.
The technical shortcomings of The Invisible Enemy are
unfortunately all too visible. When K9 (John Leeson) - making
his debut in this story - blasts a big chunk out of a wall,
the fracture line is blatantly apparent before the shot has
been fired. And due to the fact that the K9 prop cannot raise
its head above a certain height, one unfortunate guard gets
lasered in the crotch! Sloppy editing during the final episode
means that we don't see how the Doctor loses his container
of precious anti-virus and, towards the end of the adventure,
what could have been a fairly spectacular explosion is ruined.
From a design point of view, I'm far from convinced that the
use of "futuristic" phonetic spellings, such as "Isolayshun
Ward" and "Shutle Airlok" was a terribly good idea.
Still, there's plenty of fun to be had watching these episodes.
The giant prawn isn't as bad as some people have suggested!
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