Doctor Who Reactions: "The Android Invasion" (SPOILERS)

Part One:

1)What is/are "ginger pop"/"ginger beer", anyhow? Is it like ginger ale?


2)The twitchy guy is quite creepy.


3)"Trespassers are prosecuted in England, not killed."  It's Scotland where they're shot on sight.


4)Very Invasion of the Body-Snatchers, this.


5)"I'm sure you shouldn't be drinking so soon after breaking your neck."


6)"Is that finger loaded?"


7)Cliffhanger #1: Something is watching Sarah!


Part Two

8)Ian Marter and John Levene make their last appearances in the show in this.


9)Apparently Baker got sick from drinking the pond water.


10)"Commence the analysis of the brain."


11)Apparently Nation had one good idea for an alien race in him, and the Kraals weren;t it.




13)"Science, Chedaki! Science will make the Kraals invincible!"


14)Cliffhanger #2: The Sarahdroid loses face!


Part Three

15)"Resistance is inadvisable!"


16)If the androids have their memories, why didn't the Sarahdroid know she didn't like ginger pop?


17)"Nothing will go wrong!"


18)"I feel disorientated." "This is the disorientation center." "That makes sense."


19)Cliffhanger #3: The g-force is crushing Sarah!


Part Four

20)Baker manages to seem even weirder when he's playing the Doctordroid.


21)"Now, if you do see me again today, I want you to report it to me immediately."


22)I gather Courtney wasn't available, which is why we're subjected to the somewhat one-dimensional Colonel Faraday.


23)I find it hard to believe that Crayford never discovered that his eye was intact.


24)"The enterprising Earth girl!"



An Ok story, so long as you don't think too hard about the Kraal scheme.  Kind of a subdued ending to the UNIT era, but with some good Baker/Sladen moments.

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THE ANDROID INVASION has long been one of my favorite WHO stories.  I once ran it for a friend who had never seen the show, as my pick for a good story to introduce them to things.  Sarah is particularly beautiful in this one, and manages to rescue The Doctor at least twice, plus takes out an android on her own (though it was a close call she didn't touch that water). I was annoyed at the way The Doctor programmed the TARDIS to go off on its own without them... could he really have been that sure they'd have an alternate way to get back to Earth? To me, the big difference between Patrick Troughton and Tom Baker's Doctors is, Troughton PRETENDS to be incompetent. Baker is a little too CONVINCING of it, for my tastes. (It's like watching COLUMBO in the late 70's, when the facade had been going on so long, you tended to forget it was a facade.) Oddly enough, Baker's Doctor seemed to regain his (obvious) competence level a bit once Leela arrived; I figure he had to, otherwise, what would she think?

It may seem a bit dense on my part, but I recall watching this story and THE INVASION OF TIME quite a few times before I realized Milton Johns was in BOTH of them. (He's such a total bastard in the other story!)

My impression is that the UNIT era didn't really "end"... it just sort of naturally faded away. Baker's Doctor was a return to the format of Troughton's Doctor, and he only interacted with Lethbridge-Stewart twice. Not counting the screwy scheduling of "ZYGONS", there were (more or less) 2 UNIT stories in each of Baker's 1st 2 years.  (I prefer to think of "ZYGONS" as his 1st season finale, NOT his 2nd season opener; it was planned as such, in any case.) I'm sure Nicholas Courtney was supposed to be in both THE ANDROID INVASION and THE SEEDS OF DOOM, but somehow Philip Hinchcliffe let things get away from him.

Tom Baker is one of my favorite Doctors, but, conversely, so few of his stories appeal to me. I rather liked this one, though.

I have had ginger beer before. It’s non-alcoholic and tasted to me more like Mountain Dew than what we would think of as ginger ale in America. Still, I’m sure ginger ale, ginger beer and ginger pop are all basically the same thing and may well vary from region to region and country to country, like, well… beer or ale.

I wonder if maybe the Judoon wasn’t a re-worked version of the Kraal…?

Over the years, there's a couple other Doctors I've come to like much more than Tom Baker.  BUT, on re-watching my entire WHO collection the other year, I was reminded that, as far as storytelling and story structure and pacing and things like that go, Tom Baker's 7 years on the show may be the all-time high point.  Before him, stories tended to move too slow.  After him, TOO FAST.

Also, too much of JNT's time on the show, storytelling got vague, and there got to be too many instances where you either had to watch a story over and over, or read interviews about it, in order to REALLY understand what the hell you just watched. The ONLY time I can remember that happened with Tom Baker was "THE DEADLY ASSASSIN" (where, on my 3rd viewing, I suddenly understood exactly what "The Eye Of Harmony" was all about and why Gallifrey almost got destroyed in part 4), and "LOGOPOLIS" (between the 2, this one really was BADLY written, which is ironic, considering what a good job Christopher Bidmead did as story editor for the rest of that season).

What's funny is, there are fans who will argue about Sylvester McCoy's run of the show. What I mean is, some think the writing was BRILLIANT on every level, but his acting wasn't up to snuff. I feel the exact same way.  He's my FAVORITE Doctor, but half his stories are just BADLY-done, very sloppily told, awful structure, vague storyteling, with little or no explanations for what the HELL is going on and why. (And, yes, it's the very stories some fans feel were the most brilliant ever done that I have the BIGGEST problems with.)

"I feel the exact same way"

OY.  I meant, "I feel the exact OPPOSITE way."

Just watched this one again tonight. And posted some thoughts at a blog. which were almost exactly what I said here 3 months ago.  Hmm... Let me see if I can just add my NEW thoughts...

"There is something about Terry Nation you failed to mention. Just about everything he's ever written (OUTSIDE of that God-forsaken BLAKE'S 7) is BETTER than his Dalek stories. I love "THE KEYS OF MARINUS"; I love his work on THE AVENGERS and THE SAINT; and I love "THE ANDROID INVASION". Why the HELL did he insist on writing so many damned Daleks stories?

So much to love: the scenery, the interplay between The Doctor and Sarah (so beautiful, so charming and funny, so resourceful and brave-- she rescues the Doctor TWICE in this one!). And then there's Guy Crayford, a volatile piece of work if there ever was one. FUNNY thing... I never noticed this until tonight, but he resembles Peter Davison, including some of the mannerisms. He's like the 5th Doctor's EVIL twin brother!

Stygron-- what a wonderfully-designed creature, including the wardrobe, and what an expressive VOICE! I rank him easily up there with Broton among monster leaders. The production design in general reminds me a bit of PLANET OF THE APES, except with rhinos, and of course, the plot is INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS. Sort of.

To me, the most maddening thing has always been... the TARDIS. How could the Doctor be so stupid as to have it set to take off on automatic? He MUST have known it wasn't Earth from the beginning (so he LIED to Sarah!) but how could he be sure he's EVER get home when it all started?

Meanwhile... if I read the word "postmodernism" one more time, I think I shall scream. It reminds me of the book I once read on classic horror movies where the author kept repeating the phrase "Grand Guignol" a hundred or so times... without ever once explaining what the F*** it meant."

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