22 February, 2011

Dr. Who (The Early Years) - Part 21 "The Invasion"

The Invasive Cybermen
As discussed in an earlier article, some of the Doctor Who episodes were destroyed to make room in the BBC archives. Some of the stories survived intact while others are forever lost or have missing episodes. The Invasion is one where the majority survives, but a few parts missing. The good news is all of the missing episodes have off-air audio recordings available.

Because "The Invasion" was such a sought after story to be complete, two missing episodes were commissioned to have animated versions made. Several reasons are possible why this is a sought after episode. One reason is it's the first appearance of UNIT and Corporal Benton. When we first meet Benton, he's following the Doctor, and has yet to identify himself as a member of UNIT.

The Doctor has arrived just in time to help the Brigadier with a reoccurring menace, the Cybermen. During Patrick Troughton's tenure as the Doctor, the Cybermen were the focal menace instead of the Daleks. Strangely though, the Cybermen are working for Tobias Vaughn. Or are they? Like many humans, Tobias has the misconception he can control the Cybermen.

As the Doctor, Jamie and the rest of UNIT do more "hand-on" investigation into Tobias and the Cybermen, Zoe befriends Isobel Watkins. Her uncle has gone missing while working for Tobias. Tobias is using Watkins to build devices capable of controlling the Cybermen. Fortunately, Watkins is rescued by the Doctor but Tobias still confidently believes he can control the Cybermen.

Ultimately, the Cybermen reveal they have been using Tobias and have no plans to honour any contract with him; promises to humans are of no validity. The Doctor convinces Tobias to fight with him against the Cybermen and Tobias reluctantly agrees, and dies in the process. With the aid of UNIT, the Cybermen are defeated once more.

WHO: UNIT (United Nations Intelligence Taskforce)

PLANET OF ORIGIN: Earth, early 70's

REASON FOR JOINING: They don't, UNIT is an Earth based organization.

With major changes planned for Doctor Who, the producers introduce UNIT. More on these changes in the coming weeks.

This article is dedicated to the memory of Nicholas Courtney 1929-2011

NEXT: Shall We Play A Game?

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