The Sensorites

Oh, hell yeah, proper scary alien looking through the window at the end part one!



Man, that scene would have scared me witless as a kid. I mean, I vaguely recall being scared by Daleks, and they’re just giant pepper pots!

I quite enjoyed these; I prefer the sci-fi stories over the historical ones. Here, what started as monster type aliens, become humanised very quickly once they go down to their planet. Then there’s a few episodes where the treacherous alien tries to gain control and kill the humans in various ways, then this final episode where it all wraps up in the last five minutes!

I really can’t get my head around the pacing of these old serials. Is it because they didn’t know from one episode to the next how many each story they would need to have? Is that why you have episodes where nothing happens at all, and then episodes where the whole plot has to be crammed into the last five minutes? Like in this one, we discover the human survivors, what they were were doing, the Doctor stops their plot, and reveals the identity of the bad alien, and gets his Tardis key back, and then right at the end even gets into a ten-second argument with Ian where he promises to throw him of the ship-THEENDCUTTOCREDITS! Perhaps they were all written this way far in advance, but the pacing is baffling.

This is also the first time that the Doctor and Susan have spoken about where they come from, another planet (as yet unnamed), and that part of the reason they’re still travelling because they can’t easily direct the Tardis back home.

Telepathic communication through the power of... stethoscopes?

Telepathic communication through the power of… stethoscopes?

The Sensorite costumes were terribly bland, but their face masks were effective, cleverly hiding the exposed jaws of the actors by having them covered by big bushy beards. I did find it ridiculous that any Sensorite could pass for a high ranking official just by stealing his sash! But that’s the joys of sci-fi, looking at alien concepts and playing with them. This society has no notion of lying or deception, so it only took one bad egg to throw them into disarray. It could have been explored more, I felt. Again, very rushed ending.

"I am the leader... because of my sash."

“I am the leader… because of my sash.”

Onto the French Revolution next, apparently…


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