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Infernally Brilliant

By:Tom Lingwood, Broseley, Shropshire
Date:Tuesday 30 April 2002
Rating:   10

This 7-part story is not only one of Jon Pertwee’s best tales but one of Doctor Who’s all time greats. Professor Stahlman is trying to penetrate the Earth’s crust and release a new source of gas called Stahlman’s Gas. The drilling pipe is leaking green slime, which, on contact with human skin, turns them into ape-like creatures called Primords. By accident, the Doctor is transported to a parallel Earth where it is ruled under strict dictatorship and the drilling project is more advanced. Thwarted by his friends’ evil counterparts, the Doctor fails to prevent the planet’s destruction but can he return to his own universe and prevent the same happening there?

When I first saw this story (episode 7 on The Pertwee Years), episode 6’s reprise scared me slightly. This story is one of the serious (and scary) Pertwee serials and should go in everyone’s top ten.

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