Mawdryn - Not So Much With the Undead, Mostly Just Dead
This evening my wife and I wont out to see a couple shows at the Orlando Fringe Winter Mini-Fest (if you are in Central Florida and have the chance, definitely go see Ominous George), and before the first show we happened to bump into the director of the show I did in December of 2016. I think the last time I had seen him in person was maybe in the early spring of 2017? Anyway, he walked right by me without even a glance but saw my wife and said hello to her and gave her a great big hug. She jokingly commented something along the lines of, "what, somebody loses sixty pounds and you don't even recognize them anymore?" which was when he turned and looked at me again. Then his eyes bugged out when he finally recognized me. He sincerely did not even know who I was until he studied my face. I have to say, it's a pretty nice feeling to be at the "people don't even recognize me anymore" stage of weight loss.
In other news, I finished my current Doctor Who story on the treadmill this morning. So let's talk about that.
Mawdryn Undead - Parts 3 & 4
(TARDIS Data Core recap)
The gist of the back half of the story is that Mawdryn is one of eight scientists who stole some regeneration technology from Gallifrey and tried to turn themselves into Time Lords. Unfortunately for them, they mucked it up. They can regenerate, sure, but that's the problem - they do nothing but regenerate over and over again for all of eternity in bodies so weak they can barely move. What they want is to finally die, but to do that will require the energy of a real Time Lord giving up his own regeneration.
There is a whole plot line about two Brigadiers wandering around, and if they were to ever come into contact then the Blinovich Limitation Effect would kick in. Or, as Tegan puts it: ZAP! So much energy is spent keeping the two apart, which of course means that ultimately they are not.
There is also the whole continuing plot line of the Black Guardian alternately threatening and cajoling Turlough to kill the Doctor, but Turlough's heart just isn't in it.
Initially the Doctor tries to sail off in the TARDIS with Tegan and Nyssa, but first they age terribly before he "reverses the polarity of the neutron flow" at which point they regress to children, both as a result of having come into contact with Mawdryn. The Doctor reveals that for him to set Mawdryn and his associates free, he would have to give up all of his remaining regenerations (eight undead guys, eight regenerations). He wouldn't die, but he would no longer be a Time Lord. Still, he decides to go through with it in order to rescue Tegan and Nyssa. Which is when the two Brigadiers blunder together, touch, and then... ZAP. All eight of the undead become just.... dead. The Brigadiers are both knocked on their respective arses. While they are unconscious, the Doctor separates them and then takes each back to the correct time. As a side effect, the younger of the two suffers from amnesia and forgets the entire experience and everything about the Doctor, thus wrapping up the timelines.
Thankfully, the music in the back half didn't have any of the annoying "playful" themes, which was a real mercy.
It was fun to have the Brigadier back for a story. We'll be seeing him again before too log in the twentieth anniversary special, so that's something to look forward to as well.
I liked this story just fine. Nothing exceptional, but aside from the early music cues nothing awful either. The Fifth Doctor era really is remarkably consistent, the closest to a clunker has been Four to Doomsday (a lot of people would toss in Time-Flight but I honestly thought that one was okay and gets a lot of undue criticism). It's hard to believe, but I am already halfway through Peter Davison's time as the Doctor. Where does the time go?
Companion(s): Tegan, Nyssa, Turlough
Episode(s): Mawdryn Undead - Parts 3 & 4
Steps Walked: 7,436 today, 2,070,235 total
Distance Walked: 4.00 miles today, 1,058.23 miles total
Weight: 245.50 lbs (five day moving average), net change -61.80 lbs