Doctor Who and The Silurians, Part 6 (and, incidentally, my 300th post!)

Masters finishes infecting London, then graciously dies. (Source: Doctor Who and the Silurians DVD screen capture. Copyright 1970 by The BBC.)

Okay, so UNIT really dropped the ball on this one. They were so eager to confront the possibility of a Silurian invasion that they failed to quarantine the power plant even though evidence of a plague was present. Sure, it makes for great drama as Masters stumbles through London, people dropping in his wake, but it makes UNIT look a bit ineffective. The bureaucratic storm that must have occurred after this story (you know, between stories) must have been massive.

With their leader now dead, the anti-human Silurian takes charge and initiates a series of guerilla attacks against the UNIT soldier. At this point, The Doctor’s goal of peace is probably shot. While a larger war may still be preventable, violence is now inevitable as the new leader will not negotiate. UNIT soldiers are being killed; a plague has been unleashed by The Silurians. Unless something big happens in the next episode, I don’t see that a peaceful solution is going to work here. Possibly the only option would be to supplant the current Silurian ruler, which would only work if the majority of the Silurians were neutral on the humans. It happened once before, with The Sensorites, after all.

Hot science action! (Source: Doctor Who and the Silurians DVD screen capture. Copyright 1970 by The BBC.)

I enjoy that this episode has a science montage. While watching The Doctor and Liz try one drug after another on the infected blood sample, I couldn’t help thinking how this is one area in which the classic series is different from the new series: it shows the scientific process. In the new series, the Doctor talks and rambles his way to a solution. We don’t often see him engage in the scientific method; we only ever see the end results. I suppose this is dictated by the format of the new series, a type of trade-off we get in order to have sexy David Tennant, high quality special effects, and inexplicably complicated plots. All science is now done by the sonic screwdriver, I guess.

Oh, and 300 posts! How about that?

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