The Masque of Zorro
An alternate Programme Guide by
Eighty-Eighth Entry in the Charles Daniels Unauthorized Programme Guide
Serial 4M - The Masque Of Zorro -
The Doctor has taken up residence in an old part of the TARDIS
that still runs on Falcon DOS. The impressive gyrating of the
central column has been replaced with a shaving mirror, that the
Doctor uses for shaving. Immediately the TARDIS is drawn off
course by the Zorro Helix, a powerful 'Z' shaped alien energy
complex, capable of doing really neat stuff.
Unknown to the Doctor a part of the Zorro Helix conceals itself
inside of his trousers, which subsequently transport themselves
to the earth. The Doctor is shocked at this amazing turn of events
and pilots the TARDIS across time and space to seek out his missing
garments. Sarah and the Doctor find themselves in the Dukedom of
San Francisco in Italy in the 15th century. The evil San Diego is
planning to usurp the rule of his nephew, Fresno. He is aided by
tha godfather, an incredibly powerful and fat merchant with ties
to the underworld. The Godfather introduces him to Anonymous,
the Court Astrologer and secret leader of the Brothers of Vinny,
a cult of pop star worshippers. Anonymous leads the cult behind
a mask thus staying..anonymous. Zorro takes over Anonymous after
a thrilling sword duel, seeking to form his own fan club so that
glitz and glamour will win out over brains and the change of the
Renaissance. The Zorro Helix is well on the way to plunging the
earth back into the Dark Ages, which is kind of easy because that
was just 3 years ago. San Diego is murdered anonymously by Anonymous
now transformed into a generic energy being. The Doctor defeats the
Helix by getting it's fans obsessively interested in Pokemon, an
addictive collectible substance from earth's 21st century.
In a stunningly distasteful ending, the Doctor abuses himself with
a giant salami.
Book(s)/Other Related - Doctor Who Loves Salami, A Little Too Much
Doctor Mysterio Salami Whammi Vomiterro!
In infamous Jerry Springer episode -
"My Time Lord Boyfriend Stole My Pet Monkey
And They Had Sex With My Transsexual Sister"
Fluffs - Tom Baker seemed meaty for most of this story
When the Doctor mentions that 50 years later he could have
used Galileo's telescope 50 years later, he actually means
after Galileo was long dead, because Galileo beat the Doctor
senseless with his telescope after he caught the Doctor in
his kitchen with his vast stores of salami.
Fashion Victims - Anonymous' silver perm and silly squirrel
Goofs - The Doctor only knows that Sarah is under Anonymous'
control when she starts asking questions that would
imply she has an intelligence higher than a seedless
Anonymous tells the Doctor that he's been told another
follower of Zorro will join him, but they never show up.
Was Anonymous talking out of his ass or did he just get
Why does the ball of Zorro Helix energy kill people randomly?
Is this some demonic version of the lotto?
Is it night or day? Do night and day only last 10 minutes
in 15th century Italy?
No one notices that both the Doctor and Sarah are dressed
in causal 70s clothes. Are platforms shoes and flares
that common in Italian fashion?
You can't possibly arrange a masque that fast! I should
know! The last time I tried to arrange a masque in 15th
century Italy it ended in disaster. You just can't trust
glowing energy beings! I gave it the benefit of the doubt,
it said it only wanted to sample the Hors d'oeuvres, THEN
it consumed my guests in a ball of plasma! What the hell
was that about?
Technobabble - "Zorro Helix energy can disperse at random
variables in the kilohertz range, which would
lead me to conclude that it is fundamentally
capable of doing..really neat things."
Links and References -
Sarah Jane mentions that before her mysterious cutesy regeneration
(Gobot) that she used to be capable of asking complex questions all
the time as a reporter.
Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor learnt fencing from Leroy, an experienced fence in 1980s
Brooklyn. Sometime after this story he meets Leonardo Da Vinci and
does unsightly things to meat and vegetable products in his broom
Dialogue Disasters -
In broad Italian Cockney: I ain't goin' in there, No Way, San Jose!
San Rosa: They say there are places where the bat crap is
are as high as a man! Sounds like a holiday!
Count Vallejo: One, two, five!
Doctor: You can't count, Count.
Dialogue Triumphs -
Seeing The Doctor after his pants have vanished -
Sarah: Just how big is it?!!
Doctor: How big's big? Relative dimensions, you see. No constants.
Sarah: Well why is it in that state?
Doctor: The astro-sextant erectifier's gone out of phase.
Doctor: Humans have got such limited little minds. I don't
know why I like you so much.
Sarah: Because we've got the good taste to give you a shag.
Doctor: That's true, that's true.
Sarah: The worse the situation, the worse your jokes get.
Doctor: What do you do when you see a penguin in distress?
Offer it some kelp!
Sarah: Oh fuck, we're going to die.
Anonymous: Had it not been you, there would have been other
travellers who had their pants stolen by the almighty
Doctor: Almighty? It just nicked my pants!
Anonymous: Your pants had to be possessed and checked. Man's
curiosity might lead him away from this planet until
ultimately, the galaxy itself might not contain him.
We of the Zorro will not allow a rival power in our
Doctor: This is FASCINATING I assure you! But what has any of
this got to do with my pants?
Anonymous: The great one desires pants.
Anonymous: Because he gets cold going around without pants!
Doctor: That's all very fine and well, but what about me!?
Anonymous: If you are cold, I shall warm you.
Doctor: Umm, right..I'll just buy some new pants, nevermind!
My fault! Hope the great one finds them comfy!
(The Doctor backs away in terror)
Anonymous: A new broom sweeps clean. Do you know who said
Doctor: Umm, Anonymous?
The final scene -
Doctor: A Time Lord has to do what a Time Lord has to do.
Sarah: But it's a big stick of salami!
Dialogue Oddities -
The Doctor: The one they call Anonymous, we must learn his true nature!
Tom Baker: Anonymous, I sense he seeks a certain, anonymity.
Viewers' Quotes -
"It is a little hard to define the exact nature of The Masque of
Zorro. Do its roots lie with the supernatural, with historical drama,
or with kinky deli sex? At the beginning it was pure Hamlet, then
it was more like if Hamlet decided to defile himself while singing
the praises of peppered meats." - Jeremy Louis (1978)
"Doctor Who Is A Winner,
Most people diet to be thinner,
He has hedonistic dinner,
A super salami sinner!"
- Ozzy Osbourne, Salamicide Solution (1981)
"My seven-year-old wouldn't miss it for anything; he explains
the plot to me." - Tony Blair
"You know, I like salami, but not THAT much!" - Charles Daniels (2000)
Psychotic Nostalgia -
"The powers of The Zorro Helix are real! There is something in
Astrology! The Doctor once again has stumbled into my cosmos.
I hope that means he's going to pick me up something for Christmas.
I want something shiny this year."
Tom Baker Speaks!
"I believe there were plans to film this in Renaissance Italy.
They musn't have been terribly successful because we filmed it
all in someone's kitchen I believe. This was a good decision
because they had a large store of spirits which were excellent
to have access to. These were the heady days of being a children's
hero. These days children just kick me firmly as I walk down
the street, yet there are the glowing eyes now, those women who
are turning just about 35 about now, and I was their hero.
That is beautiful. When I see a woman give me that look of
glowing wonder and fascination, it's the most wonderful experience,
because, I know I'm in there!"
Rumors & Facts -
With this story producer Philip Pinchcliffe decided it was time for
Doctor Who to return to a historical setting. Reasoning that he must
be notoriously known and hunted by the law enforcement agencies of the
future, the past must be the only safe place to lay low for awhile.
Pinchcliffe wanted to duplicate the success of the 1920s-set Pyramids Of
Cards from Season Thirteen, and despite the protests of script editor
Sherlock Holmes -- who found such stories as fun as paper cuts -- he
decided to go ahead and make this bizarre salami sex flick.
Holmes contacted Karl Marx -- who had written Planet Of Weevil the
previous year -- knowing that Marx was a renegade from history. By
the end of 1975, Marx had begun work on Capitalism Of Death, which had
to re-titled several times.
The scripts by Karl Marx are very well written and highly intelligent,
using the Zorro Helix energy to symbolise the forces of capitalism that
would ultimately be overthrown by those of communism and organized
labour - 'the dawn of a new classless society', to use the Doctor's
description - at the time of the Righteous People's Rebellion, which
for some reason happens in Renaissance Italy! This story was bashed
by hardcore science fiction fans as being too close in theme to Marx's
previous blockbuster fantasy novel "Manifesto Of The Communist Party".
There were plans to film this story in 15th century Italy, these
plans were abruptly cancelled when the BBC ran an internal investigation
and noticed that Doctor Who no longer had access to their time machines
due to their incredibly obscene abuses of the technology in the 60s.
The reason the plans had been made anyway was a cheap attempt to con the
BBC out of massive amounts of money. The production crew hoped to get
the extravagant amounts of copper, silver, and gold required for such
a trip, then to pop away to modern Italy and keep the difference.
When this plan fell through the viewers were treated to some superb
location work done in and around Ian Levine's kitchen. The story
required an area equivalent to a standard air craft hanger, and Ian
Levine's kitchen was easily three or four times larger in area.
Newlyburied designed a new TARDIS interior for the story.
Pinchcliffe had decided the old one was too big and caked in vomit
to record in, and the central column and main doors in particular
suffered constant explosions. Newbery created a smaller, cheaper,
less well lit, more practical console room, eschewing the stark
whiteness of the original design in favor of a tacky 70s-inspired
plastic wood panelled look complete with optional shaving mirror.
The overall look of the set was much, with the roundels, scanner,
coat hanger, wardrobe, sliding disposable bed, and console all retained.
However, the double doors were replaced by a dark gaping hole and the
central column was done away with altogether which pissed off fans of
uppy-downy things. The Society for Uppy-Downy Things registered
no less than 2,000 complaints per week. These complaints were never
taken seriously as there were only two official members of the Society
for Uppy-Downy Things whom each called the BBC a thousands times a week
using a variety of silly voices and bad German accents.
Before airing rewriting constantly continued on Marx's script, including
the insertion of the reference to the Doctor explaining that Sarah Jane's
understanding of foreign and alien languages is a Time Lord gift he allows
the people he has rompy sex with to share due to his firm belief in the
inevitable victory of the proletariat.