Doctor Who Notes 18

Season eighteen of Doctor Who was the last to feature Tom Baker in the lead role, and the first to be produced by John Nathan-Turner, who would continue to run the show until its cancellation. The season featured many other changes to the cast as well, as Romana and K-9 were written out and three new companions were introduced in rapid succession. The Master also finally returned as a continuing villain, with a new actor settling into the role. The season is also notable for a set of stories that have come to be known as “the E-Space Trilogy,” set in an alternate universe. More interesting facts about Time Lord history also come to light.

From “The Leisure Hive”

The Doctor bypasses the randomizer on the TARDIS navigational control to visit Brighton Beach, though he gets the century and the season wrong, as Romana informs him. K-9 is damaged when salt water gets into his systems, and Romana convinces the Doctor to take them instead to the Leisure Hive on Argolis, where they encounter a late-23rd century Earth scientist performing fraudulent tachyonics experiments. The Doctor cannibalizes the randomizer when things go wrong and leaves it on Argolis, dismissing the threat posed by the Black Guardian.

From “Meglos”

While repairing K-9, the Doctor and Romana find themselves suddenly caught in a “chronic historesis,” or time-loop, which has been created by an alien wishing to impersonate the Doctor. The alien, a Zolpha-Thuran named Meglos, wants to steal the Dodecahedron, a vastly powerful energy source on the planet Tigella, which the Doctor had visited 50 years before. Escaping from the trap, the Doctor, Romana, and K-9 continue on to Tigella, where the Doctor is arrested for Meglos’ betrayal and Romana is captured by pirates. Sorting things out, the Doctor and Romana go to Zolpha-Thura to prevent Meglos and the pirates from turning the Dodecahedron into the ultimate weapon. Due to the Doctor’s sabotage, the weapon is destroyed, along with the planet. While the Doctor is saying goodbye to the Tigellans, Romana emerges from the TARDIS and announces they’ve been summoned back to Gallifrey.

From “Full Circle”

The Doctor: Do you mind if I come in?
Romana: The Time Lords want me back.
The Doctor: Yes. Well, you only came to help with the Key to Time.
Romana: Doctor, I don’t want to spend the rest of my life on Gallifrey. After all this -- !
The Doctor: Well, you can’t fight the Time Lords, Romana.
Romana: You did… once.
The Doctor: Hmm. And lost.
Romana: Well, there’s nothing more to discuss then. We have to go.
The Doctor: I’m afraid so.

En route to Gallifrey, the TARDIS encounters a spatial anomaly, and when they materialize at the proper coordinates, they are on the wrong planet. While inspecting the controls, they hear a pounding on the door. Romana opens the door and they discover a young boy, wounded and delirious. However, he displays a rapid healing ability. Romana states that the TARDIS weighs five million kilos in the local gravity, which appears similar to Earth’s. The Doctor learns that the planet is called Alzarius, and the inhabitants are planning to travel to their home planet Teradon aboard their Starliner, though their incessant unnecessary maintenance prevents them from actually taking off, a necessary ruse since no one knows how to actually pilot the vessel. The Alzarians are terrorized by reptilian marshmen that turn out to be links in their own evolutionary chain. It is only the Starliner itself that is from Teradon, and earlier marshmen evolved rapidly to inhabit it. The Doctor programs the ship to return to Teradon with the Alzarians on board. The Doctor and Romana deduce that the spatial anomaly was a charged vacuum emboitment, or CVE, which shunted the TARDIS into the smaller universe of an exo-space/time continuum which the Doctor calls E-Space. The rarity of such an event leads them to believe they are trapped.

The Alzarian boy is named Adric, and he proudly wears his badge for mathematical excellence. He told his brother Varsh earlier that his destiny was to leave Alzarius, but not on the Starliner. He fulfills this upon meeting the Doctor. When Varsh is killed fighting the marshmen, Adric decides to stow away on board the TARDIS and remain with the Doctor and Romana. He travels out of E-Space to explore the Doctor’s universe, where he is eventually killed when the Cybermen trap him aboard a space freighter that crashes into the Earth.

From “State of Decay”

Still trapped in E-Space, the Doctor, Romana, K-9, and Adric materialize on the next inhabitable planet they find. Incredibly, they discover equipment from a crashed Earth spaceship, the Hydrax, which had also passed through a CVE a millennium earlier. Unbeknownst to them, Adric gets captured by the ship’s three crewmembers, who have survived by becoming vampires. While held prisoner, the Doctor tells Romana of a legend related to him by a hermit in the mountains of southern Gallifrey concerning a great war between the Time Lords and a race of giant vampires, each of which reportedly could suck the life out of an entire planet. The Time Lords eventually destroyed all but the king of the vampires, who disappeared without a trace. It was this war that caused the Time Lords to forsake violence forever. The Doctor says the legend was supposedly set in the misty dawn of history when even Rassilon was young. Romana says that she once worked in the Bureau of Ancient Records where she read about something called the Record of Rassilon, which told how to destroy the vampire creatures. With K-9’s help, the Doctor finds the information buried in the TARDIS storage rooms -- a collection of punch cards on a tea cart. The cards reveal that the legend is true, and also Rassilon’s instructions for defeating the monsters. The Vampire King disappeared into E-Space and has been gathering strength while the three crewmembers served his need for blood. The Doctor destroys it using the Hydrax to pierce its heart. The three human vampires then wither to dust. The Doctor tells Adric he’s taking him home.

From “Warrior’s Gate”

The TARDIS collides with a time rift and goes out of control. They are boarded by an interphasic Lion Man who lands the TARDIS at the zero point between the two universes. It is a void in which a space freighter has also been trapped for months. The Doctor follows the Lion Man to a stone arch that leads into an ancient room. Romana meets the crew of the ship and discovers they use the lion men, or Tharils, to allow them to travel through time, as the Tharils are time-sensitives who can “ride the time winds.” Believing Romana has similar powers, the captain forces her to aid them. The Doctor learns that the Tharils were once rulers of a vast empire until they were all but wiped out by their slaves, and then became themselves hunted by slavers. K-9 announces that the void is collapsing due to the extreme mass of the freighter, which is made of dwarf star alloy in order to hold the time-sensitives. Thanks to the Doctor, the slaver ship is destroyed and the Tharils escape, but Romana and K-9 remain with them in E-Space to help free the rest of the Tharil race from bondage. Romana leaves all her things aboard the TARDIS (where they are eventually lost when the Doctor must jettison her room.) Meanwhile, the TARDIS crosses back into its home universe, taking Adric along with it. The Doctor has little choice but to accept him as a traveling companion.

Romana: The TARDIS -- gone.
K-9: TARDIS preserved in concept, Mistress. This unit contains all necessary schedules for duplication of the TARDIS, Mistress.
Romana: Exactly, K-9. Biroc will help us use the gateway to travel anywhere in E-Space, and we can give him time technology.
Biroc: You shall be our Time Lord, and we will travel far. Our people are enslaved on many planets.
Romana: And you and I, K-9, are going to help Biroc free them. That’s something we’ve got to do, don’t you think?
K-9: Affirmative, Mistress.

From “The Keeper of Traken”

Traveling back in normal space, the TARDIS is intercepted by the enigmatic Keeper of Traken, a powerful being who’s reaching the end of his life. The Empire of Traken is the most harmonious empire in the history of the universe, a place the Doctor describes as “so full of goodness that evil just shriveled up and died.” The Keeper has sensed a great evil and asks the Doctor to come to Traken to help with the transition of power. However, upon arriving, the Doctor falls under suspicion by the ruling council. He finds a friend in the scientifically-minded Consul Tremas. His young wife Kassia has fallen under the influence of a malevolent statue called the Melkur. They also meet Tremas’ daughter Nyssa, who strikes up a friendship with Adric. The Melkur is really the Doctor’s old enemy, the Master, still in the warmed-over cadaver of his used-up Gallifreyan body. The statue is his disguised TARDIS. The Master assumes the power of the Keeper of Traken, but the Doctor manages to defeat him. The Master escapes, though, and is able to take over the body of Tremas, whose appearance alters to resemble the Master’s old self.

Although raised as an aristocrat on the prime world of the Traken Union, the young Nyssa requites herself well during the Melkur’s attack, showing bravery and ingenuity. The Master kills her step-mother in his bid for power. But after the new Keeper is installed and the Doctor and Adric have left, her father, Consul Tremas, mysteriously disappears. Nyssa contacts the Doctor and asks for his help, then meets a being called the Watcher, who takes her to the planet Logopolis, where she is reunited with the Doctor and Adric. It is here that she learns her father’s fate, his body commandeered by the Master, and watches as the entropy field he accidentally unleashes destroys Traken, leaving Nyssa alone and homeless. She remains with the Doctor for some time, seeing him through his regeneration. She eventually decides to remain on the death ship
Terminus to help the victims of Lazar’s disease. Her subsequent fate is unknown.

From “Logopolis”

Adric interrupts the Doctor pacing around in the TARDIS cloister room. He tells Adric about the cloister bell, the onboard warning system. Ruminating about entropy, the Doctor expresses dissatisfaction about the state of the ship’s systems. Wanting to avoid telling the Time Lords about Romana staying in E-Space, he decides to make a return trip to Earth to retrieve a real police box to measure it, in order to take the measurements to Logopolis for the block transfer computation process. On their way back to the console room, the cloister bell rings ominously.

Adric: So the chameleon circuit’s stuck?
The Doctor: Exactly.
Adric: In Tutter’s yard?
The Doctor: Totter’s Yard. Anyway, it doesn’t matter. It was ages ago. She was in on Gallifrey for repair when I borrowed her.
Adric: But I thought she was yours!
The Doctor: Well, on a sort of finders-keepers basis, yes. I should have waited until they’d done the chameleon conversion, but there were other pressing reasons at the time.

The TARDIS materializes around a police box, but while measuring it, the sensors detect a gravity bubble. Stepping outside to investigate, the Doctor sees a young woman changing the tire on her car, and in the distance, a ghostly white figure watching him. He appears disturbed by the specter, seeming to understand what it means. Within the police box seems to be another TARDIS and another in infinite regression. It is a trap laid by the Master, whose time capsule was inside the police box when the Doctor’s TARDIS materialized around it, causing a dimensional instability. The Doctor’s ship is grounded until he uses the architectural configuration system to jettison Romana’s room, thus giving them a boost. Once underway, the Doctor receives a transmission.

The Doctor: The message was very faint. It was from Traken.
Adric: Traken? How’s Nyssa?
The Doctor: Nyssa’s all right.
Adric: Tremas?
The Doctor: Vanished. The Master must have had a second TARDIS hidden away somewhere.
Adric: The Master’s escaped from Traken? But why take Nyssa’s father?
The Doctor: To renew himself. He was very near the end of his twelfth regeneration.
Adric: He’s taken over Tremas?
The Doctor: Yes.
Adric: Can a Time Lord do that?
The Doctor: Well, not just a Time Lord by himself, but with some of the powers of the keepership still lingering -- and I was so sure, I was so sure -- he must have known I was going to fix the chameleon circuit!
Adric: He read your mind?
The Doctor: He’s a Time Lord! In many ways, we have the same mind!

In a desperate attempt to purge the TARDIS, the Doctor decides to materialize underwater. However, he lands instead on a barge, from which he sees the ghostly figure again on a bridge. He goes and confers with the strange figure and then sets off immediately for Logopolis, saying he’s dipped into the future and sees imminent catastrophe. When they land, the young woman emerges from the corridors, rather distraught. She introduces herself as Tegan Jovanka. The Master then infiltrates Logopolis in order to take control of their reality-altering mathematics. Nyssa appears, claiming to have been brought by “a friend of the Doctor’s,” really the ghostly figure called the Watcher, who continues to hang around in the background. The Doctor and the Master meet and Nyssa learns that the Master has possessed her father’s body. They all learn that Logopolis is the keystone that holds the universe together, and the Master’s tampering has caused the universe to begin to unravel. To prevent entropy from collapsing the universe long ago, the Logopolitans created the charged vacuum emboitments to open the system and release some of the entropy. The Doctor and the Master collaborate to undo the damage. To escape the collapse of Logopolis, they travel aboard the Master’s TARDIS to the Pharos Project on Earth to use its radio telescope to manipulate a nearby CVE, thereby restabilizing the system. Meanwhile, aboard the Doctor’s TARDIS, the Watcher has taken them outside space and time, where Adric and Nyssa can observe the spreading effect of the entropy field. To her horror, Nyssa sees Traken extinguished. They return into the space-time continuum, materializing at the base of the Pharos Project radio telescope. The Master double-crosses the Doctor, intending to set himself up as the ruler of the universe. They scuffle atop the radio telescope, and foiling the Master’s scheme causes the Doctor to plummet from the tower. His body shattered, the Doctor tells Adric, Nyssa, and Tegan that the end has come. The Watcher merges into the Doctor’s body, inducing a regeneration.

On February 28, 1981, Tegan Jovanka was on her way to her first day as an air hostess when she stumbled into the TARDIS while trying to phone a policeman for assistance with her Aunt Vanessa’s car. She soon gets lost in the winding corridors. While she’s inside, the Master kills Aunt Vanessa with his tissue-compression eliminator. The TARDIS travels to Logopolis before the Doctor is even aware she’s on board. For a time, Tegan wishes only to get back to Heathrow Airport to start her job, but she is prevented by various circumstances. She comes to enjoy the adventures, even though her mind becomes invaded by the psionic creature called the Mara, and decides to remain with the Doctor. However, she is left behind at Heathrow at one point. She loses her job after all, and seeming depressed, cuts her hair short and goes to visit her cousin in Amsterdam, where she crosses paths with the Doctor again. They travel together for a few years, until she becomes disgusted by the carnage left by the Daleks and parts ways with the Doctor tearfully. It seems likely Tegan would have a hard time settling back into a normal life, although the alien cultures she encountered might aid her in achieving her dream of becoming a fashion designer.

Next Season


Doctor Who Notes 17

The seventeenth season of Doctor Who was cut short by a labor strike, and the final serial was never completed. However, the scenes that were done reveal some interesting details about Time Lord history, and I have included it here for that reason. The season also introduced a new actress in the role of Romana and featured another battle with the Daleks.

From “Destiny of the Daleks”

The Doctor is working on K-9 when Romana comes in looking like Princess Astra of Atrios and announces that she is regenerating. The Doctor objects, saying she can’t go around wearing someone else’s form. Romana changes her appearance a few times to make a point, but finally settles on her first choice. She then apes the Doctor’s attire by donning a pink frock coat and exceedingly long white scarf. Apparently, there is a brief state of flux when a Gallifreyan regenerates, allowing them to choose their appearance. However, since the Doctor is usually injured or unconscious when he regenerates, his appearance must be determined either randomly or by his subconscious mind. There is no reason given as to why she felt it necessary to regenerate. Romana seems unusually wimpy and terrorized when captured by the Daleks, which may be due to post-regenerative mental imbalance.

The randomizer attached to the TARDIS navigation control takes the Doctor and Romana to Skaro, where they become embroiled in the war between the Daleks and an android race called the Movellans. The Daleks have returned to their home planet and tunneled into the ruins of the ancient Kaled city in search of their dormant creator, Davros, whom they hope will give them an advantage over their enemy. After many centuries of suspended animation, Davros revives when discovered by the Doctor and Romana. However, both taskforces are destroyed and Davros is cryogenically frozen to be taken to stand trial for his crimes.

From “City of Death”

The Doctor and Romana converse at a Parisian café.

The Doctor: I think there’s something the matter with time. Didn’t you feel it?
Romana: Just a twinge. I didn’t like it.
The Doctor: Yes. Must be because I’ve crossed the time field so often. No one there seemed to notice anything. You and I exist in a special relationship to time, you know. Perpetual outsiders…
Romana: Don’t be so portentous.
The Doctor: What do you make of that, then?
Romana: Well, at least on Gallifrey we can capture a good likeness. Computers can draw.
The Doctor: What? Computer pictures? You sit in Paris and talk of computer pictures? Listen, I’ll take you somewhere and show you some real paintings painted by real people!
Romana: What about the time slip?
The Doctor: Never mind about the time slip. We’re on holiday.

While in the Louvre, Romana tells Dugan that she’s 125 years old. They are trying to stop the Mona Lisa from being stolen by the last member of the Jaggaroth race, marooned on Earth four hundred million years ago, shards of his being scattered throughout time when his spaceship exploded. He claims to have guided every major advancement since the dawn of history in order to build a time machine to go back and prevent his race from becoming extinct. However, the explosion of his warp drive was the catalyst that brought about life on Earth, and the Doctor and Romana must prevent him from changing history.

From “The Creature From the Pit”

While cleaning out one of the storerooms, Romana finds an emergency transceiver, which the Doctor had disconnected to avoid being summoned by the Time Lords, presumably when he first left Gallifrey. When Romana plugs it back in, the TARDIS materializes on the planet Chloris, drawn there by a distress signal transmitted by an imprisoned Tythonian ambassador. To prevent a neutron star from colliding with Chloris’ sun, the Doctor uses a gravity tractor beam generated by the TARDIS. The Doctor then helps negotiate a trading agreement between the Chlorisians and the Tythonians.

From “Nightmare of Eden”

The TARDIS materializes aboard a passenger space liner in the year 2116. Emerging from hyperspace, the ship has collided with a small survey craft, and the Doctor passes himself off as an insurance adjuster. The Doctor discovers the ship is carrying quantities of vraxoin, a very dangerous drug. Also aboard is a scientist with his machine that converts animals into electromagnetic signals stored inside it. The interphasic collision allows some of the animals to escape. The scientist and the survey craft pilot are the drug smugglers, and the Doctor sees that they are arrested.

From “Horns of Nimon”

While the Doctor is tinkering with the ship’s systems, the TARDIS is caught in a gravity well in space and nearly collides with a spaceship also trapped there. During their escape, the Doctor and Romana become separated, she being taken aboard the spaceship to the planet Skonnos. The Doctor follows in the TARDIS and, upon arriving in the Skonnon capital, learns that Romana has been sent into a labyrinth as a sacrifice to a creature called the Nimon. In truth, the Nimon is preparing the way for an invasion force of his own kind to overrun the planet, but the Doctor destroys their transporter device.

From “Shada”

Visiting Cambridge University, the Doctor bumps into a porter named Wilkin, who mentions the Doctor received an honorary degree there in the year 1960, and that he had also visited the school in 1964 and 1955. The Doctor says he was also there in 1958 in a different body, to Wilkin’s befuddlement. The Doctor and Romana have come in response to a signal from Professor Chronotis, a retired Time Lord who has been teaching at Cambridge University for the last 300 years. He had brought a book with him from Gallifrey for study which he hopes the Doctor will now return for him. However, the book has gone missing.

The Doctor: “On some nights, New York is as hot as Bangkok.” I’ve read that.
Romana: Saul Bellow.
The Doctor: “Once upon a time…” Read that. Ah! “And in the great days of Rassilon, five great principles were laid down. Can you remember what they were, my children?”
Romana: It’s just a Gallifreyan nursery book.
The Doctor: I know, I know.
Romana: I had it when I was a time tot.
The Doctor: Yes, it’s very good.
Professor Chronotis: Oh, that’s just a memento, not the right book at all. Where is it? Is this the one? No. Oh, dear. I know it’s here somewhere.
The Doctor: Professor, how many books did you bring back, for heaven’s sake?
Professor Chronotis: Just the odd two or seven. But there was only one that was in any way…
The Doctor: Dangerous?
Romana: What does it look like? What’s it called?
Professor Chronotis: The Worshipful and Ancient Law of Gallifrey.
The Doctor: The Worshipful and Ancient Law of Gallifrey?
Professor Chronotis: Yes. Red book, about five by seven.
The Doctor: Professor, how did you get that book out of the Panopticon Archives?
Professor Chronotis: Well, what I did, you see, was I just took it.
The Doctor: Took it?
Professor Chronotis: Yes. There’s no one interested in ancient history on Gallifrey any longer, and I thought that certain things would be safer with me.
The Doctor: And were they?
Professor Chronotis: Yes, in principle.
The Doctor: Excuse me, delicate matter, Professor, slightly. That book dates back to the days of Rassilon!
Professor Chronotis: Does it? Yes, indeed --
The Doctor: It’s one of the Artefacts!
Professor Chronotis: Is it indeed?
The Doctor: Professor, you know that perfectly well. Rassilon had powers and secrets that even we don’t fully understand! You’ve no idea what might have been hidden in that book!
Professor Chronotis: Well, there’s no chance of anyone else understanding it then, is there?
The Doctor: I only hope you’re right. But we’d better find it. Romana?
Romana: Yes?
The Doctor: Little red book!
Romana: Five by seven!
Professor Chronotis: Could be green…

The Doctor and Romana search for the book in vain.

The Doctor: There’s no sign of The Worshipful and Ancient Law of Gallifrey.
Romana: Do you really think it’s important?
The Doctor: Of course, it’s one of the Artefacts!
Romana: Other than its historical value?
The Doctor: Yes! Each of the Artefacts was imbued with stupendous power. I mean, most of them have been lost by now, but the powers remain. And the rituals.
Romana: I just mouthed the words like everyone else.
The Doctor: What words?
Romana: At the Time Academy induction ceremony. You know, “I swear to protect the Ancient Law of Gallifrey with all my might and main and will to the end of my days with justice and with honour temper my actions and my thoughts.”
The Doctor: Yes, pompous lot. All words and no actions.
Romana: Well, that’s not true. What about Salyavin?
The Doctor: Salyavin? Oh, yes. He was a boyhood hero of mine.
Romana: Really, Doctor? A great criminal, your hero?
The Doctor: Well, a criminal, yes. But he had such style! Such flair! Such --
Romana: Panache?
The Doctor: Yes. A bit like me in that respect.
Romana: Did you ever meet him?
The Doctor: I certainly did not!
Romana: All right.
The Doctor: He was in prison before I was born!
Romana: Where?
The Doctor: Do you know, I can’t remember!

The Doctor finally finds the book in a graduate student’s laboratory, but loses it to an alien named Skagra. In the book is the key to finding the ancient Time Lord prison planet Shada, where Skagra hopes to find Salyavin, who had a unique ability to project his mind into other minds. However, Salyavin had escaped long ago and hid himself under the guise of Professor Chronotis. Wanting his escape to be undetected, Salyavin had used his powers to erase all memory of Shada from the Time Lords’ minds and stole the book as well. Once Skagra is defeated, the Doctor decides to let Salyavin live out the rest of his life in Cambridge, as he has long since reached his final regeneration.

Next Season


Doctor Who Notes 16

The stories in the sixteenth season of Doctor Who were all part of an overarching storyline in which the Doctor and his new assistant Romana searched throughout time and space for segments of a powerful artifact called the Key to Time. The story added to the cosmology of the series by introducing the Guardians, quasi-mystical beings whose power is superior to the Time Lords. Also, the presence of Romana, a “Time Lady” from the Doctor’s home planet, allowed some interesting details of the Doctor’s biography to be revealed.

From “The Ribos Operation”

The Doctor has just decided to take a long holiday when the TARDIS is seized by the White Guardian, who tells the Doctor he requires his assistance in tracking down the six segments of the legendary Key to Time so that they can be reassembled in order to use its power to restore the balance of the forces of the universe. The White Guardian warns the Doctor of the threat posed by the Black Guardian, who wants the Key to Time for his own evil purposes. The White Guardian also provides the Doctor with an assistant, a young Gallifreyan woman whom the Doctor nicknames Romana.

Romana: My name is Romanadvoratrelundar.
The Doctor: I’m so sorry about that. Is there anything we can do?
Romana: The President of the Supreme Council sent me. I was told to give you this.
The Doctor: What’s this?
Romana: According to my instructions, it’s the core to the Key to Time. Very exciting, isn’t it?
The Doctor: Yes, I suppose it must be, for someone as young and inexperienced as you are.
Romana: I may be inexperienced, but I did graduate from the Academy with a triple-first.
The Doctor: I suppose you think we should be impressed by that, too?
Romana: Well, it’s better than scraping through with 51% at the second attempt.
The Doctor: That information is confidential! That president-- I should have thrown him to the Sontarans when I had the chance!

When the core is linked to the main console, the TARDIS materializes on the planet Ribos, where they find the first segment disguised among the local crown jewels. Romana mentions that she is nearly 140 years old. She says the Doctor is 759, but he admits to only 756.

Lady Romanadvoratrelundar was apparently unaware of the involvement of the Guardians when seemingly chosen by the Lord President of the High Council of the Time Lords to assist the Doctor in reassembling the Key to Time. While possessing a great deal of book-learning, she is woefully inexperienced to the ways of the world. She tells the Doctor she was “willing to be impressed” until meeting him, implying the Doctor has something of a reputation among his people. She seems eager to prove herself, probably feeling greatly honored to leave Gallifrey for such an important mission, mentioning she might write her thesis on the Doctor’s psychological maladjustments. Her attitude changes as she experiences life outside the shelter of Time Lord society, though, and after going through her first regeneration, she loses interest in returning to Gallifrey at all, choosing instead to live in E-Space and follow the Doctor’s example of getting involved, using information stored in K-9’s memory banks to build a TARDIS of her very own.

From “The Pirate Planet”

Romana is reading the flight manual as the Doctor prepares to take them to the second segment of the Key to Time. She mentions that vintage vessels like the Type 40 were an optional course at the Academy that she didn’t bother with.

Romana: Doctor, what about the synchronic feedback checking circuit?
The Doctor: What about it?
Romana: Aren’t you going to set it?
The Doctor: No, no, no, I never bother about that. Complete waste of time.
Romana: According to the manual, it’s essential.
The Doctor: Listen, have you any idea how long I’ve been operating this TARDIS?
Romana: Five hundred and twenty-three years.
The Doctor: Right -- ! Is it really that long? My, how time flies.
Romana: Hasn’t it. And the multi-loop stabiliser?
The Doctor: What?
Romana: The multi-loop stabiliser. It says here, “On any capsule, it will be impossible to effect a smooth materialisation without first activating the multi-loop stabiliser.”
The Doctor: Absolute rubbish!

The TARDIS tries to materialize on the barren planet Calufrax, but instead lands on Zanak, which has itself materialized around Calufrax in order to plunder its mineralogical resources. The Doctor, Romana, and K-9 defeat the pirates only to learn that the entire planet of Calufrax is the second segment of the Key to Time.

If the Doctor is, in fact, 759 years old and has been operating the TARDIS for 523 years, then he must have been 236 years old when he and Susan first left Gallifrey. The two of them apparently led a fugitive life for an undetermined amount of time until the Doctor was able to hide the Hand of Omega on Earth. The Time Lords seemed to lose interest in him for a while after that.

From “The Stones of Blood”

The Doctor decides to tell Romana the whole story behind their mission after the White Guardian warns them again to beware of the Black Guardian. The Doctor believes the White Guardian assumed the form of the Lord President in order to contact Romana, so the Time Lords may not even know about their mission. The locator directs the TARDIS to Earth, where they find an ancient stone circle and get mixed up with druidic cultists and the alien fugitive from justice whom they worship. This alien had stolen a powerful object from her home planet and used it to set herself up as a goddess on ancient Earth, an object which proves to be the third segment of the Key to Time.

From “The Androids of Tara”

When the TARDIS materializes on the planet Tara, the Doctor decides he’s going to take a day off while Romana finds the fourth segment of the Key to Time. Romana says she has checked their records and found a suitable Taran outfit in the wardrobe room, which she seems to have organized. She soon finds the fourth segment, only to get mixed up in the political machinations of a local nobleman who wishes to use Romana’s remarkable resemblance to Princess Strella in his bid to seize the throne. The Doctor falls in with the rightful heir, who plans to use an android double to outwit his enemies.

From “The Power of Kroll”

The TARDIS materializes on the third moon of Delta Magna, a swampy world where tensions run high between the native population and a chemical refinery run by Earth colonists. The natives worship a giant squid called Kroll, which was a normal squid until swallowing the fifth segment of the Key to Time. While being stretched to death on a primitive rack, the Doctor vocalizes a high-pitched tone that shatters a window, allowing rain to fall on his bonds, rendering them elastic.

From “The Armageddon Factor”

As the TARDIS materializes on the planet Atrios, the Doctor, Romana, and K-9 worry that the Black Guardian may finally show his hand. The planet is engaged in nuclear war with the neighboring planet Zeos. The Doctor is taken prisoner by a mysterious figure calling himself the Shadow, who demands the Doctor surrender the five segments of the Key to Time locked inside the TARDIS.

The Shadow: I have waited so long, even another thousand years would be nothing for me. But you -- I have watched you in your jackdaw meanderings. I know you, and I know there is a want of patience in your nature.

The Shadow has created an automated war computer on Zeos to make sure the war continues. In order to stop the computer from blowing up both planets in a final gambit, the Doctor manufactures a temporary sixth segment and uses the Key to Time to create a three-second time loop. However, as the artificial segment degrades, the time loop stretches. The Doctor tracks down the Shadow, who reveals that he serves the Black Guardian. The Shadow imprisons the Doctor, where he meets a fellow prisoner, Drax, who is himself a “fallen” Time Lord and an old school chum of the Doctor’s, who’s been living as a sort of intergalactic handyman. Drax at first calls the Doctor by his academy nickname of “Theta Sigma.” Five years previously, Drax unwittingly helped the Shadow build the Zeon war computer before being taken prisoner.

The Doctor: Drax, I don’t want to pry, but where did you acquire this peculiar vocabulary?
Drax: Brixton, wudn’t it?
The Doctor: Brixton?
Drax: Brixton. London. Earth.
The Doctor: I’ve been to Earth.
Drax: Well, me transport broke down -- hyperbolics, as usual -- and I was investigatin’ certain possibilities with regard to replacements… I got done, didn’t I? Ten years I got. Well, I had to learn the lingo, didn’t I, to survive. Why, is there something funny about the way I talk?
The Doctor: No, no, it’s very colourful. Very demotic.
Drax: Well, thanks, Theet.
The Doctor: Doctor.

The Doctor, Romana, K-9, and Drax escape from the Shadow with all six segments, the sixth of which was Princess Astra of Atrios herself. A missile attack destroys the Shadow and his spaceship, his punishment for failing the Black Guardian being death. Drax sees opportunity rebuilding war damage on both planets and departs, leaving the Doctor and Romana to deal with the completed Key to Time. Disguised as the White Guardian, the Black Guardian tries to convince the Doctor to surrender the Key to Time, but the Doctor sees through the deception when the Guardian shows little concern for the fate of Princess Astra. The Doctor breaks the core rod and the six segments once again scatter throughout space and time. The Black Guardian vows to destroy the Doctor, necessitating that the TARDIS guidance system be fitted with a randomizer, which prevents even the Doctor from knowing where they’re headed next.

Next Season


Doctor Who Notes 15

In season fifteen of Doctor Who, the Doctor acquired a little robot dog, called K-9, that proved to be very popular with viewers. Concurrently, the show moved away from the “gothic horror” format to more light-hearted science-fiction, seeing also a return of the original design of the TARDIS console room. Over the course of the season, much is revealed about Time Lord history, culminating in a return to Gallifrey for the finale and another look at their society and politics. This story also provides the first extensive tour through various areas of the TARDIS beyond the console room.

From “Horror of Fang Rock”

Attempting to take Leela to Brighton Beach near the turn of the 20th century, the Doctor finds they have materialized instead on remote Fang Rock, where he sees a lighthouse without a light despite being shrouded in heavy fog. Investigating, they discover the lighthouse is under siege by a Rutan scout who crashed there while surveying Earth for its strategic use in their never-ending war against the Sontarans. Although they kill the alien and drive off the Rutan fleet, only the Doctor and Leela leave Fang Rock alive.

From “The Invisible Enemy”

The Doctor decides they should move back into the main console room.

Leela: We’ve never been in here before!
The Doctor: You’ve never been in here before.
Leela: What is it?
The Doctor: Number two control room. Been closed for redecoration. I don’t like the colour.
Leela: White isn’t a colour!
The Doctor: That’s the trouble with computers -- always thinking in black and white. No aquamarines, no blues, no imagination.
Leela: Have we stopped?
The Doctor: No, we haven’t stopped.
Leela: Have we materialized?
The Doctor: Yes.
Leela: Where?
The Doctor: Solar system, between Jupiter and Saturn. About 5000 AD. 5000 AD -- we’re still in the time of your ancestors.
Leela: Ancestors?
The Doctor: Yes, that was the year of the Great Breakout.
Leela: The great what?
The Doctor: When your forefathers went leapfrogging across the solar system on their way to the stars. The asteroid belt’s probably teeming with them now, new frontiersmen, pioneers, waiting to spread across the galaxy like a tidal wave… or a disease.
Leela: Why a disease? I thought you liked humanity.
The Doctor: Oh, I do, I do. Some of my best friends are humans. When they get together in great numbers, other life forms sometimes suffer.

The TARDIS picks up a distress call from a base on Titan. En route to the moon, the TARDIS passes through a space-borne organism that implants its nucleus within the Doctor, which then takes control of his body. Fighting for control, the Doctor moves the TARDIS to a hospital built inside an asteroid, where he meets a Professor Marius and his robot dog, K-9. With the Doctor’s help, Professor Marius creates temporary replications of the Doctor and Leela, who are then reduced to microscopic size and injected inside the Doctor’s brain to seek out the nucleus of the space virus.

The Doctor: Mine’s much more complex. Left and right sides, working in unison via these specialised neural ganglia, thus combining data storage and retrieval with logical inputs and the intuitive leap. And here -- are you listening to me?
Leela: Yes, Doctor.
The Doctor: That is a reflex link, whereby I can tune myself into the Time Lord intelligentsia, a thousand super-brains in one.
Leela: Why don’t you do it now?
The Doctor: What? Oh, well, I lost that particular faculty when they kicked me out -- oh, look!

Using the same process, the nucleus is enlarged to macroscopic size by the mind-controlled scientists. The TARDIS returns to Titan so the Doctor, Leela, and K-9 can stop it from breeding itself an army of conquest. Once the swarm is destroyed, Professor Marius gives K-9 to the Doctor as a parting gift.

K-9 was originally created at the Bi-Al Foundation located in the solar system’s asteroid belt at the end of the fiftieth century. After being given to the Doctor, K-9 served him well until he decided to remain on Gallifrey with Leela. However, the Doctor had built a second K-9 for himself, probably a vast improvement over the original, though the Doctor never stopped tinkering with his systems. When this K-9 was damaged at the dimensional gateway, he was forced to remain in E-Space with Romana, where they built a TARDIS of their own and traveled the other universe together. At some point, the Doctor built a third K-9, which he delivered to his old friend Sarah Jane Smith on Earth. After helping her defeat an evil cult in 1981, this K-9 was seen warning Sarah Jane of danger before she was kidnapped by Borusa via the time-scoop.

From “Image of the Fendahl”

When the TARDIS detects the operation of a sonic time scanner on Earth in 1977, the Doctor and Leela investigate. Coming to a remote manor house within a haunted woods, the Doctor discovers a woman momentarily beset by two large slug-like creatures.

Colby: What was it?
The Doctor: They looked like embryo fendahleen to me.
Colby: Embryo what?
The Doctor: Embryo fendahleen, a creature from my own mythology. It’s supposed to have perished when the fifth planet broke up. At least, so they say.
Colby: A creature from mythology? Do you know what you’re talking about?
The Doctor: Well, you saw it. If it survived twelve million years, its energy reserves must be enormous!
Colby: Twelve million? Why did you say twelve million?
The Doctor: What? Well, about twelve million. That’s when the fifth planet broke up.

* * *

The Doctor: Well, telepathy and precognition are normal in anyone whose childhood was spent near a time fissure like the one in the wood.
Jack: He’s as bad as she is. What’s a time fissure?
The Doctor: A weakness in the fabric of space and time. Every haunted place has one, doesn’t it? That’s why they’re haunted, it’s a time distortion.

The Doctor discovers that the fifth planet, the Fendahl’s place of origin, has been placed within a time loop, a feat possible only for the Time Lords. The Fendahl is a creature that consumes the life force, and appears in the mythologies of both Earth and Gallifrey as a gestalt creature with twelve aspects around a focal point.

The Doctor: In other words, the Fendahl. Then the Time Lords decided to destroy the entire planet and hid the fact from posterity. They’re not supposed to do that sort of thing, you know.

The focal point of the Fendahl’s power is an ancient human skull, which the Doctor steals away as the creature tries to reform. He decides to drop the skull into a supernova, thereby destroying it.

From “The Sun Makers”

When the main console’s central column jams, the TARDIS materializes atop and Earth colony on Pluto in the far distant future, where the Doctor, Leela, and K-9 get mixed up in toppling the oppressive government. The Doctor once again proves himself an accomplished hypnotist and safecracker. The colony is run as a ruthless business by a Usurian conglomerate. After fomenting a successful revolution, the Doctor encourages the workers to resettle the Earth.

From “Underworld”

To escape from a coalescing nebula on the edge of the universe, the TARDIS materializes aboard an ancient Minyon patrol ship. The sound the TARDIS makes is identified by the ship’s bridge crew as a relative dimension stabilizer in materialization phase. The Doctor is intrigued to discover the ship is of Minyon origin, since that world was destroyed a hundred thousand years ago on the other side of the universe.

The Doctor: It’s what happened on Minyos that led to our policy of non-intervention.
Leela: Oh?
The Doctor: Yes. Well, the Minyons thought of us as gods, you see, which was all very flattering and we were new at space-time exploration, so we thought we could help. Gave them medical and scientific aid, better communications, better weapons…
Leela: What happened?
The Doctor: Kicked us out at gunpoint. Then they went to war with each other, learned how to split the atom, discovered the toothbrush, and finally split the planet.
Leela: So this ship must have got away before the planet was destroyed.
The Doctor: Yes.
Leela: But that was a hundred thousand years ago! Nobody lives for a hundred thousand years… do they?

The crew has been artificially regenerating for a hundred millennia while they search for another ship, the P-7E, which contained the genetic material necessary to populate a new world after the destruction of Minyos. They finally find the ship at the core of a new planet formed within the nebula. Over the millennia, the P-7E’s onboard computer has developed megalomania and has enslaved the descendants of the original crew. The Doctor once again practices his own explosive brand of social engineering. Rescuing the slaves, the ship continues on to settle Minyos II.

From “The Invasion of Time”

After landing on a Vardan spacecraft, the Doctor conspires with the aliens to invade Gallifrey. When the approach of the TARDIS to its home planet is detected, Castellan Kelner decides to put the planetary defenses on amber alert. As soon as the TARDIS materializes in the Panopticon, the Doctor and Leela are immediately arrested by Commander Andred, head of the Chancellery Guard. The Doctor’s behavior is unusually erratic. He bursts into the office of Chancellor Borusa and makes an announcement.

The Doctor: I am here to claim my legal right! I claim the inheritance of Rassilon! I claim the titles, honour, duty, and obedience of all colleges! I claim the Presidency of the Council of Time Lords!

The Doctor and Borusa then confer privately within the chancellor’s office.

The Doctor: Borusa, before you go, another lesson.
Borusa: On what particular subject?
The Doctor: The Constitution.
Borusa: You had that at your fingertips the last time we met.
The Doctor: Yes, and if I hadn’t, you would have killed me.
Borusa: Not I. The then chancellor.
The Doctor: Oh, yes. Did you just assume his office?
Borusa: The Council ratified my appointment.
The Doctor: Without a president, the Council can ratify nothing!
Borusa: There was no president! And the president-elect was… elsewhere.
The Doctor: Yes, but my point is -- BORUSA! You haven’t been given leave to depart yet!
Borusa: And until you have been confirmed and inducted as president, I do not need your leave to do anything.
The Doctor: The ceremony must take place at once.
Borusa: As soon as poss --
The Doctor: AT ONCE!

The Doctor moves into the President’s quarters, but demands that lead panels be installed on the walls, floor, ceiling, and doors. Then he and Borusa go over the details of the induction ceremony.

Borusa: The Matrix is the sum total. Everything. All the information that has ever been stored, all the information that can be stored. The imprints of personalities of hundreds of Time Lords and their presidents -- their elected presidents -- that will become available to you. It will become a part of you as you become a part of it.
The Doctor: Yes, that’s what I thought.
Borusa: But you know this already. Once before you have entered into the Amplified Panatropic Computer.
The Doctor: Yes. I didn’t much care for it, either.
Borusa: The APC net is only a small part of the Matrix.

The induction ceremony proceeds with much pomp and circumstance as the Doctor is presented with the Sash of Rassilon and the Rod of Rassilon, and is charged with seeking the Great Key of Rassilon. However, as soon as he is linked to the Matrix via a coronet, the Doctor collapses into a catatonic state. The Surgeon General sees that the Doctor is removed to the chancellery. Immediately upon regaining consciousness, the Doctor orders that Leela be expelled from the Citadel, but she escapes from the guards.

Borusa: What exactly are you playing at… Excellency?
The Doctor: Playing at, Lord Chancellor?
Borusa: You know very well what I mean.
The Doctor: I’d like a little more respect from you, if you don’t mind.
Borusa: I thought that was a quality you didn’t admire.
The Doctor: Ah, but that was before -- ! I would have thought you of all people knew me better than that.
Borusa: Well, you could never deceive me when you were my student at the Academy. You haven’t changed and neither have I. But this is rather more than a student prank, isn’t it?
The Doctor: Believe me, Lord Borusa, I’ve never been more serious in any of my lives. While Leela remains free in the Citadel, we are in danger.
Borusa: Isn’t that a little melodramatic, even for your vivid imagination?
The Doctor: No!

Borusa has the Doctor locked in the office, but he escapes through a back door after deducing that the voice-print code phrase is “There’s nothing more useless than a lock with a voice-print.” The Doctor retreats into the TARDIS to confer with K-9, telling the robot he’s discovered the security control room is directly under the Panopticon area 3-0. Outside, Commander Andred mentions that the old Type 40 time capsules have a complex trimonic locking device. Leela, meanwhile, stumbles into Space Traffic Control, where she meets a rather bored young woman named Rodan.

Rodan: There’s a force-field between you and me. Between me and everyone. Don’t you know this is one of the highest security-rated rooms in the Citadel?
Leela: I did not know.
Rodan: You must be that alien everyone’s looking for.
Leela: I am Leela.
Rodan: I am called Rodan. And please put that thing away, you could hurt yourself.
Leela: The Doctor’s always saying…. Why do you not tell them I am here?
Rodan: Why bother? That’s their affair.
Leela: That’s whose affair?
Rodan: The guards and the Time Lords. All the boring people. Do you know I’ve passed the seventh grade and I’m nothing more than a glorified traffic guard?
Leela: Then you are a guard!
Rodan: Do stop cavorting about like that. It’s really so undignified.

Rodan detects a space armada approaching, but assures Leela that nothing can penetrate the transduction barrier, which the Doctor sends K-9 to disable. The Doctor calls a meeting of the High Council and introduces the Vardan invaders, who are energy-based beings broadcasting themselves to Gallifrey. The Doctor orders the Time Lords to submit. Then the Doctor and Borusa retire to the newly redecorated office of the president, where the lead paneling shields them from the Vardan’s telepathy, allowing the Doctor to finally reveal his true intentions. His erratic behavior was a ploy to shield his mind from the Vardans by filling it with non-sequiturs. Rodan leaves her post to join Leela as they escape into the wilderness outside the Citadel, just as the Doctor intended. They are intercepted by a band of back-to-nature outcasts, where Rodan realizes she’s gotten in over her head. Then, the Doctor and K-9 retreat again to the TARDIS to try to trace the Vardans’ planet of origin. They are joined there by Commander Andred.

The Doctor: K-9, I’m going to have to play along with them again.
Andred: What are you going to do?
The Doctor: I’m going to dismantle the force-field around Gallifrey.
Andred: What?
The Doctor: It’s the only was to convince them that we’re really co-operating.
Andred: But that could blow us all to pieces!
The Doctor: Yes.
Andred: You can’t do that!
The Doctor: I can’t, but Rassilon can.
Andred: Yes -- Rassilon’s dead!
The Doctor: Yes.
Andred: Aeons ago.
The Doctor: That’s right. But his mind lives on in the APC net. I’m part of that net now. Rassilon built the force-field, maybe he can dismantle it.

The Doctor successfully opens a rift in the quantum force field, allowing the Vardans to materialize in their natural humanoid shape. Meanwhile, Leela organizes the tribalists into a raiding party. With the Vardans fully materialized, K-9 is able to lock onto the precise coordinates of their home planet and jam the signal, thereby repulsing the invasion. The celebration is short-lived, however, when they discover the Vardans were merely pawns of the Sontarans, who have landed an army of conquest on Gallifrey. The Doctor convinces Borusa to reveal the location of the Great Key of Rassilon.

The Doctor: Rassilon was a wily old bird. No president without the Great Key can have absolute power, correct? So to protect the Time Lords from dictatorship, he gave the Key into the hands of the chancellor.
Borusa: None of this is in the Matrix.
The Doctor: I know, I’ve been there, you haven’t. There’s no record in the Matrix of any president knowing the whereabouts of the Great Key. So who does? Not the Castellan, he’s just a jumped-up guard. But who guards the guards?
Borusa: The chancellor.
The Doctor: Yes. And I’ll kill you before I let that key fall into the hands of the Sontarans.
Borusa: That will not be necessary. You are the first president since Rassilon to hold the Great Key.

The Doctor, Leela, K-9, Borusa, Andred, and Rodan find sanctuary within the TARDIS where Rodan is able to close the rift in the quantum force-field. However, with the Castellan’s help, the Sontaran shock troops are able to board the TARDIS. The Doctor and the others attempt to lose them in the labyrinthine corridors, storage compartments, indoor gardens, workshops, stairwells, a swimming pool complex, sickbay, holographic art gallery, et cetera. Under hypnosis and following K-9’s instructions, Rodan constructs a de-mat gun powered by the Great Key.

The Doctor: Is that why the Key remained hidden for so long? I could rule the universe with this, Chancellor.
Borusa: Is that what you want? Destroy that gun. Destroy all knowledge of it! It’ll throw us back to the darkest age!

The Doctor takes the de-mat gun and returns to the Panopticon, where he finds the Sontaran commander about to detonate a grenade to destroy the Matrix, Gallifrey, the Time Lords, even the galaxy itself in order to achieve victory. The grenade goes off as the Doctor fires the de-mat gun, which dematerializes the explosion as it unfolds, the Sontaran, and finally the gun itself. The shock causes the Doctor to lose his memory of recent events. Gallifrey safe at last, the Doctor readies to leave, only to find Leela intent on staying, having fallen in love with Andred. K-9 also elects to remain on Gallifrey with Leela. After dematerializing, the Doctor brings into the control room a large cardboard box labeled “K9 M II.”

It is uncertain what sort of life Leela would make for herself on Gallifrey, though she would probably spend a great deal of time outside the Citadel with the tribalists, probably joined by Andred, since he is apparently later replaced by Commander Maxil. Despite his collusion with both the Vardans and the Sontarans, Castellan Kelner is allowed to retain his position, perhaps because, as the Doctor said, every oligarchy gets the castellan it deserves. He is eventually slain in Borusa’s final grab at ultimate power. For her actions above and beyond the call of duty, Rodan was almost certainly promoted out of her duties at Space Traffic Control. Borusa is apparently inducted as Lord President immediately after these events, and will regenerate before meeting the Doctor again. The office of chancellor is then filled by Thalia. What eventually becomes of the original K-9 is unknown.

Next Season


Doctor Who Notes 14

Season fourteen of Doctor Who saw the departure of Sarah Jane Smith and the introduction of new companion Leela, a scantily-clad warrior woman from a savage tribe, as the producers continued to experiment with a “gothic horror” style. In between was the first story to really explore the Doctor’s own society on his home planet of Gallifrey, and which also reintroduced the Master as a desiccated corpse-like monster. A great deal of information on Time Lord history, as well as the Doctor’s own past, was revealed in the process. The season also introduced a radical redesign of the TARDIS control room to mirror the new gothic atmosphere.

From “The Masque of Mandragora”

The Doctor and Sarah Jane are wandering the inner corridors of the TARDIS when Sarah Jane opens the door to the dark-paneled secondary control room.

Sarah Jane: Oh, this looks good!
The Doctor: What? Oh, yes. Yes, it is good. Do you know, this is the second control room. You know, I can run the TARDIS just as easily from here as I could from the old one. Come to think of it, this was the old one.
Sarah Jane: That looks like a shaving mirror.
The Doctor: Yes, it is.

The Doctor powers up the control room in time to discover they are about to be sucked into the Mandragora Helix, an energy vortex in space within which lives a race of non-corporeal sentient beings. The TARDIS materializes briefly at the center of the helix, where the ship is penetrated by some helix energy. They next thing they know, they have rematerialized in late 15th century Italy, where the helix energy leaves the ship and makes contact with a cult that worships the pagan god Demnos. Escaping from the wicked count’s men, the Doctor mentions that he learned swordfighting from a captain in Cleopatra’s bodyguard. They are soon all recaptured and locked in the dungeon.

Sarah Jane: I really tried to kill you?
The Doctor: You were only doing what you were ordered, what I expected.
Sarah Jane: But how did you know I’d been drugged?
The Doctor: Well, I’ve taken you to some strange places before and you’ve never asked how you understood the local language. It’s a Time Lord’s gift I allow you to share. But tonight when you asked how you understood Italian, I realised your mind had been taken over.

The cult members have been absorbing the Mandragora energy, which they use to besiege the palace, in which is a gathering of all the most learned men of the day along with their royal patrons, including the Doctor’s friend Leonardo da Vinci. The Mandragora intelligence plans to cut short the Renaissance to prevent the human race from ever achieving space travel and infringing on their territory. The Doctor drains off the energy and foils the evil plot, but says the Mandragora will be ready to try again by the end of the 20th century.

From “The Hand of Fear”

The TARDIS accidentally materializes in a British quarry just as they are blasting. The Doctor and Sarah Jane are buried in the rubble, where she discovers a 150 million year old silicon-based hand. At the local hospital, Sarah Jane’s mind is taken over by the consciousness of Eldrad, the hand’s owner, who wants to regenerate his body by absorbing massive amounts of radiation. They travel to a nearby nuclear power plant, where the Doctor frees her from the alien mind-control. To penetrate her amnesia, the Doctor easily hypnotizes Sarah Jane. Eldrad grows a new body based on Sarah Jane’s and demonstrates further telepathic powers by reading the Doctor’s mind.

Eldrad: As a Time Lord, you are pledged to uphold the laws of time and to prevent alien aggression!
The Doctor: Only when such aggression is deemed to threaten the indigenous population, I think that’s how it goes.

Sarah Jane is a bit miffed when the Doctor agrees to take Eldrad back to his home planet of Kastria aboard the TARDIS. Eldrad sets the coordinates, but the ride is too rough for the Doctor’s comfort.

The Doctor: All we want is your co-operation. If you’ve mis-set those co-ordinates, symbolic resonance will occur in the trachoid time crystal, and if that happens, there’s no chance of us landing anywhere, ever!

Upon reaching Kastria, the Doctor and Sarah Jane learn Eldrad’s true nature once he assumes his true form. Learning that his world is long dead, Eldrad decides to conquer the Earth, but the Doctor and Sarah Jane cause him to fall into a bottomless pit.

Returning to the TARDIS, the Doctor receives a telepathic summons back to Gallifrey -- alone. He resets the coordinates for South Croyden, Sarah Jane’s home town. Upon materialization, they say their goodbyes and Sarah Jane disembarks, presumably to resume her career as a journalist. Some years later, Sarah Jane receives a gift from the Doctor, a robot dog called K-9 that helps her defeat a ring of rural devil worshippers. Sarah Jane does make it to Gallifrey eventually, kidnapped by Lord Borusa, where she helps the third Doctor reach the tomb of Rassilon and meets three of the Doctor’s other incarnations. She undoubtedly went on to have a successful career as a journalist and writer, perhaps of “science fiction.”

From “The Deadly Assassin”

En route to Gallifrey, the Doctor is overcome by a premonition of a presidential assassination. When the TARDIS materializes within the communications tower for the capitol on Gallifrey, Castellan Spandrell checks the exitonic computer bank and discovers that the old Type 40 is stolen property and orders the occupant arrested. During the Doctor’s escape, a guard is killed by a staser blast fired by a shadowy figure, for which the Doctor is blamed. Coordinator Engin informs the Castellan that the Doctor’s exile to Earth was remitted by the C.I.A. -- the Celestial Intervention Agency -- arousing the Castellan’s suspicions that the Doctor is a secret agent. The Doctor learns that the Time Lords are convening for the President of the High Council to step down and to announce his successor. It is, therefore, a time of political instability. The guards find a note from the Doctor addressed to the Castellan.

Castellan: And he signed it with the Pyrdonian seal!
Engin: Apparently he is or was at one time a member of that noble chapter.
Castellan: How can you tell?
Engin: Well, the bio-data extracts of Time Lords are colour-coded according to chapter.
Castellan: I didn’t know that.
Engin: No? Well, your duties usually involve you with more plebeian classes, don’t they, Castellan?
Castellan: A Pyrdonian renegade, eh? I have to refer this to Chancellor Goth.

The Doctor sneaks back into the TARDIS, where he patches into a local news broadcast.

Roncible: Around me in the high galleries of the Panopticon, already the Time Lords are gathering, donning seldom-worn robes with their colourful collar insignia: scarlet and orange for the Pyrdonians, the green of the Arcalians, the heliotrope of the Patraxes, and so on…. In a moment, I hope to talk to Cardinal Borusa, the leader of the Pyrdonian chapter, the chapter that has produced more Time Lord presidents than all other chapters together…

Borusa recognizes Roncible “the fatuous,” as the Doctor calls him, as a former student of his at Pyrdon Academy. Roncible congratulates Borusa on his elevation to cardinal. Chancellor Goth orders the TARDIS transducted to a museum within the Capitol, where the Doctor finds some robes to disguise himself.

Entering the Panopticon as the ceremony begins, the Doctor races to the balcony to prevent the assassination, only to apparently take up the gun and murder the President himself. The Doctor is arrested and Chancellor Goth declares a constitutional crisis, as the president died without naming his successor. Goth wants a speedy trial, but the Castellan is unconvinced that the Doctor hasn’t been framed. To buy some time to clear his name, the Doctor invokes Article XVII of the Constitution and offers himself as a candidate for the presidency. The Doctor then demonstrates to the Castellan that he was on the balcony trying to stun the true assassin, a member of the High Council who had drawn a staser in the crowd, but misaligned sights caused the shot to go awry and strike the wall.

During the investigation, they discover a technician’s body, a victim of the tissue-compression eliminator. The Doctor realizes that he is being framed by none other than his old arch-enemy the Master, who is making his final challenge. In his secret lair, the Master reveals to his co-conspirator that it is his burning hatred for the Doctor and the Time Lords that allows him to endure the pain of his ravaged state, propelled by his need to see the Doctor die in shame and dishonor and the Time Lords destroyed before he dies.

In the computer center, Coordinator Engin discovers there is no record in the Time Lord databanks of the Master, as the Doctor suspected. Although the Castellan and Engin are dubious, the Doctor is convinced the Master destroyed all record of his own existence the first chance he got.

The Doctor: You think this stuff is sophisticated? There are worlds out there where this kind of equipment would be considered prehistoric junk!
Castellan: What is the Master like in mathematics?
The Doctor: He’s brilliant, absolutely brilliant! He’s almost up to my standard. What’s that?
Engin: The APC control.
The Doctor: APC?
Engin: Amplified Panatropic Computations.
The Doctor: Brain cells.
Engin: Yes, trillions of electrochemical cells in a continuous matrix. The cells are the repository of departed Time Lords. At the moment of death, an electrical scan is made of the brain pattern and the millions of impulses are immediately transferred to --
The Doctor: I understand the theory. What’s the function?
Engin: To monitor life in the Capitol. We use all this combined knowledge and experience to predict future developments.
The Doctor: Ah. Like the assassination of a president.
Engin: For some reason, that was not foreseen.
The Doctor: Oh, yes, it was foreseen, Engin, it was foreseen by me! How very clever! This time he’s surpassed himself!
Castellan: What are you talking about?
The Doctor: Well, don’t you see what he’s done? We Time Lords are telepathic! That’s simply a brain storage system! He intercepted its forecast that the president was to be assassinated and beamed it into my mind!

Believing he can find the Master within the Matrix, the Doctor is hooked up to the APC control and enters its psychic world of illusions. When the Doctor’s mental self is nearly killed, his body momentarily ceases functioning, causing Engin to remark that his brain must have an unusually high level of archon energy. The Master has taken control of the Matrix, controlling the illusions through the mind of his pawn, Chancellor Goth, who is connected to the net from the Master’s secret lair. Discovering the hideout, the Doctor learns from the dying Goth that he had cut a deal with the Master, who had reached the end of his final regeneration: Goth would be made President of the High Council if he brought the Master back to Gallifrey, but he underestimated the Master’s mind-control powers. They discover the Master’s horrific body, apparently dead, and the Castellan makes a full report to Cardinal Borusa.

Borusa: The story is not acceptable. This is a very difficult, very delicate position. We must adjust the truth.
Engin: In what way, Cardinal?
Borusa: In a way that will maintain public confidence in the Time Lords and their leadership. How many people have seen this “Master” since his death?
Castellan: Apart from ourselves, Hilred and the two guards who took the body to the Panopticon Vault.
Borusa: Then we shall rely on their silence. We shall change the appearance of the corpse, Castellan. We all know the posthumous effect of a staser bolt. Within the hour, the body will be charred beyond recognition. Our story is going to be that the Master arrived in Gallifrey to assassinate the president secretly. Before he could escape, Chancellor Goth tracked him down and killed him, unfortunately perishing himself in the exchange of fire. Now that’s much better. I can believe that.
Engin: You’re making Goth a hero?
Borusa: If heroes don’t exist, it is necessary to invent them. Good for public morale.
Engin: And the Doctor’s part in all this?
Borusa: Best forgotten. Of course, Doctor, the charge against you will be dropped.
The Doctor: How kind.
Borusa: Conditional on your leaving Gallifrey tonight.
The Doctor: Somehow, Cardinal, I don’t want to stay.
Borusa: Good. I believe you know something of the Master’s past?
The Doctor: We’ve bumped into each other from time to time.
Borusa: Then before you leave, you can assist Co-ordinator Engin to compile a new biog of him. It doesn’t have to be entirely accurate.
The Doctor: Like Time Lord history.
Borusa: A few facts, Co-ordinator, will lend it verisimilitude. We cannot make the Master into a public enemy if there is no data on him.
Engin: I can have an authentic-seeming extract ready by morning, Cardinal.
Borusa: I’ll leave that to you, then. Later, Castellan, we must take another look at data security. We cannot have Time Lord D.E.’s simply vanishing from the record.
Castellan: I agree, sir.
Borusa: Well, I think that’s all. You’ll attend immediately to the cosmetic treatment?
Castellan: Sorry?
Borusa: The body, Castellan.
The Doctor: “Only in mathematics will we find truth.”
Engin: What?
The Doctor: Borusa used to say that during my time at the Academy. And now he’s setting out to prove it.

While compiling the new data extract on the Master, the Doctor convinces Engin to play a transgram of ancient Gallifreyan history, hoping to learn why the Master was so interested in the presidency. He believes it has something to do with the ceremonial objects the president holds, relics from the old time.

Transgram recording: And Rassilon journeyed into the Black Void with a great fleet. Within the Void, no light would shine, and nothing of that outer nature continue in being except that which existed within the Sash of Rassilon. Now Rassilon found the Eye of Harmony, which balances all things, that they may neither flux nor wither nor change their state in any measure. And he caused the Eye to be brought to the world of Gallifrey wherein he sealed this beneficence with the Great Key. Then the people rejoiced --

The Master revives within the Panopticon Vault, where the Lord President’s body lies in state. He takes the Sash of Rassilon and traps the Doctor inside the vault as he goes to collect the Great Key, which the President carries as a sort of scepter.

Engin: It’s only of symbolic value anyway.
The Doctor: Engin, that sash is a technological masterpiece! It protects its wearer from being sucked into a parallel universe. All he needs now is the Great Key and he can regenerate himself and release a force that will obliterate this entire stellar system!
Engin: You really mean it?
The Doctor: Well, of course I mean it! Don’t you realise what Rassilon did? What the Eye of Harmony is? Remember, “that which balances all things.” It can only be the nucleus of a black hole!
Castellan: But the Eye of Harmony is a myth! It no longer exists!
The Doctor: A myth? Spandrell, all the power of the Time Lords devolves from it! “Neither flux nor wither nor change their state!” Rassilon stabilised all the elements of a black hole and set them in an eternally dynamic equation against the mass of the planet! If the Master interferes, it’ll be the end not only of this world, but a hundred other worlds too!

The Doctor manages to stop the Master just in time, as his tampering with the Eye of Harmony causes earthquakes and destruction, leaving half the city in ruins, untold damage, and countless lives lost, according to Borusa. However, the Doctor speculates that there was a good deal of power coming from the Eye of Harmony while they fought, and wearing the Sash of Rassilon would help the Master convert that energy enough to allow him continued existence. Sure enough, the Master is spotted entering his TARDIS and dematerializing while the transduction barrier is lowered for the Doctor’s departure.

Apparently, it was the Master who contacted the Doctor when the TARDIS was on Kastria and summoned him back to their home planet, as the Doctor’s arrival was a surprise to the Time Lords. It was probably Goth’s presence within the Matrix that generated the premonition of a random event like a presidential assassination in the first place, since he and the Master were already planning the crime. The Time Lords seemed to know little of the Doctor at this point, and even his former classmate Roncible didn’t recognize him, suggesting the Doctor had not yet become famous among his people, which probably followed this adventure, despite Borusa’s attempts at cover-up. There seemed a good deal of tension between Cardinal Borusa and Castellan Spandrell, which may be one reason there was a new Castellan upon the Doctor’s next visit. By that time, Borusa had assumed the office of chancellor, perhaps because, having declared himself a presidential candidate in an election that became uncontested upon Goth’s death, the Doctor was then considered president-elect under Gallifreyan law, despite his absence, thus preventing Borusa from assuming the presidency himself. The catastrophe that followed the Master’s tampering with the Eye of Harmony undoubtedly had a profound and lasting effect on Gallifreyan society, but it is unclear what the “official” story was and how many of the Time Lords even knew the real story. However, it seems the High Council kept a closer watch on the Doctor and the Master’s activities following their disastrous homecoming.

From “The Face of Evil”

The Doctor arrives alone on a world where a primitive tribe recognizes him as “The Evil One.” Rescued from death by a young outcast named Leela, he discovers his own likeness carved into the side of a mountain. The Doctor realizes that he has found a world suffering the consequences of his own actions. On a previous visit, he attempted to help an Earth expeditionary force repair their computer, but did not erase his mind-print from the databanks, which caused the computer to develop a “split personality” and go mad. The computer then arranged for the descendants of the explorers to develop in two distinct societies: the survey team as a primitive tribe in the jungle, the technicians as a psionically gifted cult within the ship itself. The Doctor succeeds in wiping his mind-print from the computer, restoring it to normal operation. However, the two cultures must now learn to live together.

Leela was cast out of the tribe of the Sevateem as a heretic. Her father was killed trying to win her a pardon through a primitive test of skill. However, upon meeting the Doctor in the jungle, she was convinced she had met the devil himself, although she came to see beyond her cultural limitations. When she was poisoned by a deadly janis thorn, the Doctor found an antidote and saved her life, which may be the basis of her loyalty to him, and part of why she decided to go with him when he left her world. Leela tries very hard to learn all she can from the Doctor during their travels, although she struggles to rein in her more deadly instincts. She eventually finds a new home of Gallifrey, of all places, when she discovers the wilderness-loving Shobogans, who had opted out of Time Lord society, and falls in love with Andred, captain of the Chancellery Guard.

From “The Robots of Death”

The Doctor and Leela converse aboard the TARDIS.

The Doctor: To the rational mind, nothing is inexplicable… only unexplained.
Leela: So explain to me how this TARDIS is larger on the inside than the out.
The Doctor: All right, I’ll show you. It’s because the insides and outsides are not in the same dimension. Which box is larger?
Leela: That one.
The Doctor: Now which is larger?
Leela: That one!
The Doctor: But it looks smaller!
Leela: Well, that’s because it’s further away.
The Doctor: Exactly. If you could keep that exactly that distance away and have it here, the large one would fit inside the small one.
Leela: That’s silly.
The Doctor: That’s transdimensional engineering, a key Time Lord discovery.

From “The Talons of Weng-Chiang”

Visiting Victorian London, the Doctor and Leela encounter a mad scientist from the 51st century posing as the ancient Chinese god Weng-Chiang, who is using a Chinese crime syndicate to aid him in locating his time capsule, a failed experiment in harnessing zigma energy, which he used to escape from World War VI. He finally succumbs to total cellular collapse brought on by the zigma beam, and the Doctor renders his time capsule permanently inoperative.

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