Starring Colin Baker as The Doctor
with Nicola Bryant as Peri Brown
featuring Anthony Ainley as The Master

138 Attack of the Cybermen

An attempt to 'do' "Resurrection of the Daleks" for the Cybermen falls flat. While the continuity makes it a big mess, the problem is the lack of any cohesive plot really nobbles the thing. The story also features several front-runners for worst performance in the show's history. A total disaster.


139 Vengeance on Varos

A would-be satire that's not half as clever as it thinks. There are some good ideas on show, and some well-executed moments, but there's too much gleeful sadism. Nearly all of the characters are pretty despicable sorts, and flat to boot, while Peri's development has already ground to a halt. Good performance from Colin Baker, though.


140 Mark of the Rani

A fun, straightforward script that blends historical elements with the excellent new arrival of the Rani. The rivalry between the three Time Lords is entertainingly ridiculous, while the plot unfolds at a gentle pace. Good performances help make up for some insane dialogue and a few genuinely bizarre scenes. Maybe the highpoint of Colin Baker's tenure.


141 The Two Doctors

Fine performances from Baker, Bryant, Troughton and Hines are wasted in a badly overlong, poorly structured script. Like "Vengeance on Varos", it's too self-consciously grim and nasty to be all that enjoyable, notably with the horrible, needless murder of the lovely Oscar. Peter Moffat's direction is terrible, and both Jacqueline Pearce and the Sontarans are completely wasted (not to mention the Spanish location footage being pointless).


142 Timelash

In context of a season that's taken to sadism and shouting in an attempt at maturity, the high camp of "Timelash" is welcome relief. It's rubbish, but at the same time it's got a car crash feel to it - you can't help watching to see just how far over the top Paul Darrow's going to go, or quite how dodgy the design is going to get.


143 Revelation of the Daleks

Eric Saward's homage to Robert Holmes is one of the more bizarre Who stories. The Doctor and Peri don't dovetail into the plot until after the halfway, and the Daleks themselves barely feature. Meanwhile, Saward spends much of the screentime carefully setting up an excellent cast of characters (excellently played, too), only to wipe them all out in the second half. By the end stuff is just avalanching, but it looks great thanks to Harper's flashy direction, and is hugely entertaining despite its' flaws.