Archaeologists are planning to dig up on a barrow in a little village called Devil's End. Oh no, that doesn't sound ominous at all. The Doctor heads off to investigate with Jo Grant ant the rest of the UNIT Family in tow, where he discovers that Mr Magister, the local vicar, is using what seems to be black magic to raise the Devil. In reality, Magister is actually the master in disguise! Bum-Bum-Bumm!
The 'Devil' is really an advanced alien named Azal that happens to look like the horned one who claims to have set the Earth in motion as a wacky experiment.
The Doctor and co find the village cut off behind a heat barrier. Azal appears and states that he will pass on his power to whoever he deems worthy. The Master is hoping to be the one to gain the power. However, Azal is swayed by the Doctor's defence of earth and offers him the power instead. Of course, the Doctor refuses. Azal doesn't take this well and decides to kill him. Jo offers herself in the Doctor's place and Azal, not understanding self-sacrifice, goes boom.
Meanwhile, UNIT finds a way through the heat barrier, and the Brigadier has one of the best lines in Doctor Who fandom as he orders five rounds rapid (whatever that means) at the animated gargoyle Bok, and arrives just in time to take the Master away.
It's easy to understand why everybody had so much fun making this story, it shows. Roger Delgado as the Master is on suitably evil form as always. Everybody in the UNIT Family has something to do. The Brig orders five rounds rapid, Mike Yates gets involved in a chase scene, and Benton has a few punch ups. This story was one of the ones that I was most looking forward to watching on DVD, and it was well worth the wait. One of the best Third Doctor stories. Brilliant.
The Face of Evil
The Doctor arrives on an alien planet where the local people, the Sevateem, identify him as 'the Evil One' and worship a god called Xoanon. A young female warrior, the lovely Leela, shows the Doctor the image of the Evil One, his own face carved into the side of a mountain.
The Doctor discovers that Xoanon is actually a ship's computer that he tried to fix on a previous visit, but ended up giving it split personalities and riving it mad. The Seveteem are actually the descendants of the ship's survey team and the Tesh, a rival tribe, are descended from the ship's technicians.
Obviously, the Doctor saves the days and fixes Xoanon. As he prepares to leave on further adventures, Leela pushes on board and announces that she is joining him.
Surreal cliffhanger to Part 3 aside, this was another great story. Louise Jameson as Leela proves why she is one of my favourite companions. The Doctor's attitude to her habit of stabbing her enemies seems a tad hypocritical. Later he callously throws a Horda (sort of an insectoid piranha-y creature) on the back of on of the Seveteem men. Then there's all the times he's committed genocide. Remember Terror of the Vervoids? What about using the hand of Omega to destroy Skaro in Remembrance of the Daleks? Then there's killing all the Racnoss babies in The Runaway Bride. There's probably more, but I don't want to bog this review down with all this guff. All in all, another great story. Highly recommended if you like you companions wearing skimpy leather and brandishing knives.
Next time: Nightmare of Eden!