Before I get to Doctor Who I need to crow a little: I did a fair bit of acting throughout high school and college, but I hung it up around the time my son was diagnosed as being autistic. That was more than twenty years ago. Last December I dipped my toes back in, and was cast in a professional drama at the Orlando Repertory Theatre, although it was a very small show. I vowed that in 2017 I would do at least one show, and just yesterday I received an offer (which I accepted) to appear in the Garden Theatre's production of Annie this winter. I had auditioned all the way back in early May, and was so grateful that by that point I had been doing this Time Treadmill project for three months already. If I hadn't already lost a bunch of weight and built up some stamina, the movement audition would have killed me. So I have you to thank, my dear imaginary readers, for cheering me on through this process hand helping me to not only get in better shape but to live my dream. This is no small community theatre production, but a serious professional show at a well-respected theatre in the region. As of yesterday afternoon, I am an actual paid, working, professional actor, and that is pretty cool.
And on top of that, I still get to watch Doctor Who every single day. How sweet is that. And speaking of Who, today's viewing of The Silurians unexpectedly swerved from being an Invasion story to being a Plague Outbreak story.
Let's talk about that.
Doctor Who and the Silurians - Episodes 5 & 6
(TARDIS Data Core recap)
As mentioned above, what really caught me off guard in today's viewing was the rapid thematic shift. The Doctor is saved from torture by the young and warlike Silurian, rescued by the older and wiser Silurian leader. This ultimately leads to the Doctor being freed in order to go back to the humans and try to negotiate a peaceful coexistence between mankind and lizardkind. Unfortunately, the young hotheaded Silurian then decides to infect another captive human with a highly-contagious plague and then release him back to the base to spread the disease.
This ploy works exactly as planned, and is made much worse by the fact that a visiting government official returns to London before showing signs of the illness and thus starts a mass pandemic. He travels by way of British Rail, and thus infects a significant number of people traveling throughout the U.K. and beyond. At its widest, the contagion even spreads across the channel to Paris, and risks becoming a global extinction event.
Against this backdrop the Doctor rushes to try to find a cure, leading to several scenes of the Doctor and Liz in the laboratory trying hundreds upon hundreds of tests to find a working antidote. It quite reminded me of the science montage sequences that became standard in C.S.I. and all of its spinoffs
The carnage, though, is gruesome and staggering. The main villains might be somewhat silly looking in their cheap rubber suits, but it is truly horrifying to watch all of the different scenes of people collapsing in the streets with grotesque lesions all over their faces and bodies. In fact, I would have to say that episode six is far and away the most shocking episode of Doctor Who that I have watched so far in this project.
So anyway, the sixth episode ends almost exactly the same way the fourth one did: with the Doctor writhing in pain under the torturous beam of a Silurian warrior. In this case, he has only just found the cure for the plague and is transcribing the formula to be sent to labs around the world, when he is attacked.
Tomorrow is the last episode of the story, and it promises to be a real corker. I can hardly wait.
Companion(s): Liz Shaw, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart
Episode(s): Doctor Who and the Silurians - Episodes 5 & 6
Steps Walked: 6,894 today, 894,141 total
Distance Walked: 3.57 miles today, 434.79 miles total
Weight: 268.70 lbs (five day moving average), net change -38.60 lbs