The Seeds of Death

Facilities on the moon are also becoming a ‘thing’ in this series. This makes sense, given the era it was made. The idea that all of Earth’s transport, communications or weather is controlled from an isolated point orbiting the planet is a compelling one, full of hope for the future.

The Doctor, Zoe and Jamie fly to the moon in a rocket ship. The Tardis is no good for short trips.

The Doctor, Zoe and Jamie fly to the moon in a rocket ship. The Tardis is no good for short trips.

In this case, it turns into a weakness. It’s the 21st century (wow!) and Earth has not only developed teleportation technology (called T-Mat), but relies on it for all forms of transportation. So when the central control junction on the moon is attacked by martians, mankind is thrown into disarray.

Unlike the transporters from Star Trek, the T-Mat booths instantly teleport whatever is inside them without any theatrics or sparkles. It's cheaper.

Unlike the transporters from Star Trek, the T-Mat booths instantly teleport whatever is inside them without any theatrics or sparkles. It’s cheaper.

Yes, the Ice Warriors (from The Ice Warriors) are back, and they have their eyes set on conquering the Earth, using the moon as a jumping in point for their invasion. These heavily armoured reptilian creatures may be slow, but they are powerful and deadly, and easily take control of the moon base control centre. Using T-Mat, they teleport deadly fungus spores (seeds) down to Earth, which spread across the world and threaten to transform the atmosphere of Earth into a Mars-like one, killing all human life!

The Martian commander, because he has a different helmet. Same hissy voice, though.

The Martian commander, because he has a different helmet. Same hissy voice, though.

I quite liked this story. It has its contrivances, though. I find it highly unlikely that the entire planet would rely so heavily on this one miraculous teleportation technology. When the world’s food starts running short, I just had to wonder “where are your aeroplanes? Where are your boats and trucks?” They have to bring an old rocket out of retirement just to get a team onto the moon to fix the T-Mat system. Additionally, the entire weather control system for the country appears to be located in an unsecure area, with an unlocked door, manned by a single person, with the controls freely accessible to anybody who enters. Madness!

The suds of death. The Doctor is engulfed in deadly spores.

The suds of death. The Doctor is engulfed in deadly spores.

My only other problem with this serial is the villains. Just like their last appearance, they’re one-dimensional single-minded creatures, lacking any complex motives. However, this suits the plot perfectly well, and on the whole, I found this very watchable and didn’t feel like it dragged on unnecessarily. It was also visually interesting, with good use of special effects for its time.

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