Episode 053 – “Desperate Measures”, and My Thoughts on Story 011

So here we are, the end of this rather short, two episode story. It’s been interesting so far! But what do we have in store next?


So Ian is about to go over the edge of a cliff and fall down into an area with some monster thingy. The scene is nicely staged, but a bit silly, and the whole death trap thing makes very little sense.

Babs seems a bit trigger-happy here. You give the woman a gun and the first thing she does is use it to shoot some strange alien thing.

Following that, we get an interesting little character scene where Vicki is understandably freaked-out, and the Doctor has to calm her down. He does an excellent job, with some truly great acting by Hartnell.

There’s also another rather lovely scene where Ian and Barbara explain to Vicki what’s going on and where they come from. There’s also a great moment right after where the Doctor hears them talking and gets a nice, genuine smile.

Bennett was the one dressed as the alien running around doing things. He claims to have detonated something that killed the entire sentient race of the planet. So…everyone on the whole planet was gathered together for a big ceremony? What, was the species limited to about four? Because they clearly had a pretty big work force to build the structures we see. I imagine that an explosion big enough to kill all of them would have also destroyed the spaceship. As it turns out he didn’t kill all of them. At least two remain, but they appear to be both male, so…good luck with that?

After all the dust settles, Vicki becomes the first person the Doctor actually invites to join the TARDIS crew. It’s a nice touch, and a good moment for the Doctor’s character development

And on that note, we’re off on the road to Rome!

Now about the story as a whole. This is a pretty good little story. It’s nice and compact, and features some wonderful character moments. It is dragged down a bit by the alien costume, which just looks silly, but otherwise, quite a decent little tale! And, man, talk about your cliffhanger endings!

Writer David Whitaker
Director Christopher Barry
Script editor Dennis Spooner
Producer Verity Lambert
Mervyn Pinfield(associate producer)
Executive producer(s) None
Incidental music composer Tristram Cary[a]
Production code L
Series Season 2
Length 2 episodes, 25 minutes each
Date started 2 January 1965
Date ended 9 January 1965

Next episode: “The Slave Traders”

Next story: “The Romans”


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