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File:Two Doctors 9415.jpg
I'm not interested in the beliefs of primitives, only in what they taste like.
Shockeye

Here we are, the final multi-Doctor adventure of the old series. There wasn't really a reason for this one to happen (22nd anniversary?), but Patrick Troughton had had so much fun on "The Five Doctors" that he was eager to return to the series, and it provided producer John Nathan-Turner a fantastic excuse to work outside Great Britain for the second time in his reign (and the third time in the franchise's history). It was originally slated to be New Orleans, but even the most optimistic people realized that this was completely insane, so it was quickly changed to Seville, Spain.

Our story starts off with the... Second Doctor (?!) and Jamie (?!?) being sent around time and space, on a mission from the Time Lords. This time, they head off to a space station where a Doctor Dastari is making some incredible leaps forward in science that the Time Lords are objecting to in some fashion. Dastari, of course, objects to the Time Lords being their Jerkass selves and gets into an argument with the Second Doctor. Meanwhile, Sontarans invade the space station - and the Doctor orders Jamie to run away as they point their guns at the Doctor...

Cut over to the Sixth Doctor, who is currently having a fishing holiday with Peri. As they wrap it all up, the Doctor suggests heading off to the Eye of Orion... and then collapses in pain and agony. During this, we see a montage of Jamie back on the station seeing the Second Doctor dying miserably. The Sixth Doctor reawakens, having just seen a mental image of his second self being put to death. Realizing this can't be possible as he's still alive in the future, he decides to go figure out what the hell just happened anyway - deciding to consult Dastari on what is going on.

The Doctor and Peri bumble around the space station until they finally stumble onto an incoherent Jamie - who reveals that the Doctor, the Second, was just killed. The Sixth Doctor figures this has to be a lie, as time hasn't wiped him out yet, and fiddles around the station until he figures out that it was all just an illusion that took us about 20 minutes to work past. This means, Sixth figures, that his Second self is being held captive somewhere and puts himself into a trance to try and find him mentally. Waking up some time later, the Doctor comes to the realization that he's being held in Seville, Spain and heads off there, Jamie and Peri in tow.

Indeed, the Second Doctor is being held there... by the combined forces of the Sontarans and Dastari. However, Dastari is more of an unwilling companion, as most of the planning is being done by his lady-friend Chessene and an Androgum called Shockeye... who is a stereotypical alien-Scotsman who likes to eat meat.

As the Sixth Doctor [1] and companions land just outside Seville, they're approached by a vacationing couple: Oscar Botcherby and Anita. Oscar is managing a restaurant in the city, but is currently catching butterflies (and both of these facts are important later). As it turns out, Oscar also happened to see what he thought was a plane crash earlier on a mansion - but just so happened to be the Sontarans' spaceship landing to meet up with Dastari. Sixth is then escorted to said mansion, which he scouts out for a little while - having told everyone else to wait just out of sight [2]. He then surmises that who he suspected on being inside the mansion... were actually inside.

Dastari and the Second Doctor have a nice little talk, where Dastari reveals that his lady-friend Chessene is actually an evolved Androgum. This information pisses off the Doctor to no end, and it only makes him angrier to find out that Dastari now wants to give the Doctor's Time-Lord-DNA to Chessene as well to make her even more awesome... completely ignoring the fact that the base of Chessene is a back-stabbing-alien-bastard with a lust for power and hunger for flesh. Seriously.

Jamie and Sixth go down to the basement of the building and find a mini-TARDIS under construction. The Doctor talks technobabble to Jamie about how they won't be able to complete it, and Jamie just looks at the Doctor like he's got a Sontaran behind him. Which he does. Whoops. Meanwhile, Peri decides to wander into the mansion on her own, posing as a lost American student... which doesn't work either, as Shockeye decides she'll make a lovely lunch.

Jamie and the Sixth Doctor escape the Sontaran without much trouble, but one part of the technobabble that the Sontarans/Dastari need to complete the mini-TARDIS is given to them. They also find the Second Doctor tied up in a wheelchair, finally awake again. However, before they can escape with the Sixth's younger self, Shockeye comes back into the mansion, his new meal Peri over his shoulder.

The subplot with the mini-TARDIS and the Sontarans is eventually resolved in a Xanatos Gambit that doesn't entirely make sense to anyone but the Sixth Doctor, who just grins the way he does. It doesn't hurt that Chessene also decides to try and kill off the Sontarans before they can take the mini-TARDIS for themselves, intending to give it to her own Androgum people. Jamie, meanwhile, is being 'tenderized' by Shockeye for the next meal, Peri having escaped only to be recaptured by the Sontarans and used as part of the mini-TARDIS subplot.

Dastari, for his part, has converted the Second Doctor into a half-Androgum, to make him a consort for Chessene. Shockeye is miffed at this, as Dastari used his blood to do so, until the Second Doctor decides that he wants to go eat a lot of food and knows where to go. Shockeye, being an Androgum, goes happily along with the Doctor. The two of them have a massive feast at the restaurant run by Oscar, who is then killed by Shockeye when Oscar has the gall to ask for the two of them to pay the bill. The Sixth Doctor, Jamie and Peri (who somehow got freed from their individual subplots for a time and pursued the pair) arrive just in time to see Oscar die and the Second Doctor revert to normal.

The Second Doctor, Peri and Jamie run back to the mansion to destroy the mini-TARDIS once and for all while the Sixth Doctor pursues Shockeye. Stumbling across Oscar's butterfly-catching equipment, Sixth uses the cyanide-soaked cotton balls stored in a jar to kill Shockeye and then delivers a Bond One-Liner. The Sixth Doctor then finally arrives back at the mansion just in time to be captured alongside his previous incarnation and their companions by Chessene and Dastari. Chessene begins to revert back to her Androgum heritage, which disgusts Dastari, who decides to free the Doctors and companions. Chessene then shoots Dastari and flees in the mini-TARDIS, which then explodes and kills her before it really goes anywhere because of the sabotage that the Sixth Doctor did to it not long ago.

The entire plot resolved in a really round-about way, the Sixth Doctor and Second Doctor exchange banter before Second summons up his own TARDIS. Sixth expresses a little jealousy over the remote as the Second and Jamie leave off on more adventures we'll never see. Sixth and Peri leave the mansion, and both decide to vow to become vegetarians thanks to their horrid experiences with the Androgums.

--

As an interesting aside, the Doctor will remain a vegetarian until the Ninth Doctor orders a steak in "Boom Town" (though he almost ate a roast in "The Empty Child" before having the meal taken away from him).

Tropes

  • Author Appeal: Robert Holmes was a vegetarian. This story has a long-running subplot involving a villain who eats meat and portrays Humans as cattle. Very unsubtle from a man who was usually good at that.
  • Bluff the Imposter: The Doctor gives some key exposition to his companion and is overheard by one of the villains, but he later reveals that he knew the villain was listening and sabotaged his exposition accordingly.
  • Bond One-Liner
  • Crazy Consumption: Shockeye, being an Androgum, is always like this, and probably doesn't count. But the second Doctor (upon being turned into an Androgum), and Chessene's breakdown at the end of the story fit the bill more closely.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: There are differing opinions on this, but Peri's mouthed response to the line; "small though it is the human brain is can be quite effective when used properly" looks an awful lot like "you asshole."
  • Heroes Gone Fishing: The Doctor and Peri at the beginning of the adventure. Poor Peri is bored to tears.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Shockeye.
  • Informed Ability: Six explains to Jamie that Shockeye is strong enough to "break both of us in half with one hand", but he still manages to overpower and kill him later on.
  • Kill'Em All: Anita is the only secondary character to survive.
  • Mars Needs Timelords
  • Put Off Their Food
  • Rasputinian Death: Stike
  • Scenery Porn: Written just to be done outside the country. It doesn't even try to hide it, unlike Arc of Infinity from a few years prior.
    • The original plan was to shoot in New Orleans, which the story originally did link into quite strongly. However it was changed to Seville at the last moment, and the writer didn't really have the time to research Seville and rewrite the story to fit the new location.
  • Strapped to An Operating Table: The Second Doctor. Also Jamie, briefly, although it's more of a butcher's block.
  • We Could Have Avoided All This So...WHY did Dastari turn the Second Doctor into an Androgum?
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Both of the Doctors seem somewhat indifferent to Oscar's death. While they aren't exactly called out over it, Peri's more emotional response does suggest this sentiment.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: The (sixth) Doctor believes this, and thus starts taking unnecessary risks and generally moping about, after hearing about the (second) Doctor's purported demise.

Notes

  1. Now wearing a slightly-more-tasteful vest instead of that horrible coat. Really, this is a nice one-off costume change.
  2. ...which they do by laying down on the ground in plain sight. Idiots.
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