Image of the Ken Doll

An alternate Programme Guide by Charles Daniels

Ninety-Sixth Entry in the Charles Daniels Unauthorized Programme Guide
O' Barbie

Serial 4X - Image of the Ken Doll -

 Doctor Kendahlman and his assistants, Thea Ransome and Maximilian
Steal, through their experiments with molded plastics, are in danger
of creating a multi-million dollar corporation.  This corporation
is owned by the mysterious Mr. Nestle whom is actually a 12 million
year old abstract consciousness who wishes to use their lovable
Ken Doll designs as physical vessels to create an army of tiny
plastic humanoid conquerors.  Thea is unaware that her explicit
sexual relations with Mr. Nestle have made her a medium, and
that through her the demonic Ken Dolls can be brought to life.
The entity which is behind all of this is a mysterious overlord
which takes the form of a Barbie doll during it's devious action
on earth.   The strange Barbie creature feeds on the hopes and
dreams of little girls worldwide.
 Drawn by the goodtime scanner, invented by the Doctor to seek
out neat parties through time and space as well as events which
might destroy the universe and thus make the prospect of a party
a lot less likely, or at least in very bad taste, the TARDIS
materializes in England.  The Doctor quickly deduces that England,
not being renown for having parties on a galactic scale, must be
the centre of yet another attempt to end creation entirely.
The Doctor is absolutely right and discovers one of the most important
secrets in the entire universe of space and time.
 Just before the beginning of time all of the truly great powers of
the cosmos had a meeting to decide what part of this new universe
would be their's to control.  The first few truly powerful beings
got the pick of the litter - the Time Lords securing the rights to
Gallifrey and most importantly, and obviously, TIME itself.
Cthulhu and the Gods That Should Not Be took up quite a few dark
dimensions with dibs on everything from nightmares to cyberspace.
The meetings went rather smoothly, yet even at this far distant
point before the beginning of everything, the creatures who would
one day evolve into the Snotarans and Ru-tans couldn't quite agree
on who should own exactly which parts of the universe - Not to
mention Faction Paradox which not only walked out on the organized
proceedings but then also made it it's mission to undo the entire
 As the universe is in fact finite there is only so much territory
to go around.  So after the Time Lords, Dark Gods, Sexual Toymaker,
The Great Narrator, and the Nibble Pibblies took their enormous
bites of the apple, the lesser evils of the universe had to squabble
over the left overs.  Certain races like the Dustbins got a fairly
hefty serving of the rest - but then it came down to those evils
which required stupid things - like planets with fully operational
plastic industries, people who have mysterious beliefs dictating
on which day one should eat pancakes, and such - to be effective.
Some of these were given only one planet as their own, but the
most sad of the sad, the last of the last, had to fight over England.
It was hard enough to admit defeat to a bunch of silly humanoids
who, as their own literature suggests, "are so amazingly primitive
that they still think digital watches are a neat idea", but one
had to deal with the fact that occasionally someone worth a damn
like the Dustbins, or the Cybermen, or even the Time Lords would
be active in England for their own bizarre purposes.
 As it boils down these aliens were not only disgraced to have
been given England of all the universe, but to have to share england
with other minor evils, including the English themselves.
So as there was a universe full of parties, and none of the notable
ones occurring in England, several of the evils based there decided
it was all for not.  They were acting to destroy the entire
universe and get on with concerns elsewhere.
 After learning all this background material The Doctor warns Mr.
Nestle that destroying the entire universe could have some unforeseen
consequences.  Using mystical powers the Doctor asserts his will
over the evil consciousness which wants to destroy the universe
and invites it to a really groovy party.
  As soon as the Doctor has the forces of evil arranged in the
TARDIS he takes them to The Supernova Ecstasy, a cheap yet fashionable
illegal opium den on Saturn's moon of Titan in the 32nd century.
The Doctor explains that he often comes here when he contemplates
using his vast time lord powers to destroy all intelligent life
in the cosmos to "take the edge off".
 Apparently this little side trip does them all well and the
not very important forces of evil gleefully return to their day
job of killing English people for fun and profit.

Book(s)/Other Related - Doctor Who - Pimpin' Evil  (Canada Only)
                        Doctor Mysterio Los Dolls El Stressimo!
                        How To Be Evil On A Budget - A Book For Students

Fluffs - Tom Baker seemed barmy for most of this story

Fashion Victims - Why does evil HAVE TO wear leisure suits?

Goofs - The Doctor said he's just killed a hiker and a man
        named Michael.  How does he know their names and

Technobabble - "We're being dragged towards a relative continuum
                displacement zone!"
               "What is it?"
               "A hole in the fabric of space time."
               "What is it?"
               "An opening that leads to another time or place."
               "Oh!  A Magic Doorway!  Why didn't you say so in the
                first place?!"

Links and References -
The Doctor says that the opium den is "sheep shaggin' good" in what
appears to be a reference to Serial SS "The Sheep In Spandex".

Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor claims he first discovered The Supernova Ecstasy
while he was travelling through time and space with two
never before mentioned companions - Kenny, a 6 year old
genius from Japan, and his pet turtle.

Dialogue Disasters -

Doctor: I've got to do something silly in this episode.
        I KNOW!  How about I interrogate these cows!?

Doctor: Yes but you have the power over life and death over all
        of England.  That MUST be interesting!
Nestle: It's dull!  DULL!  DULL!  Oh it's so mind numbingly dull!

Doctor: I thought you killed Englishmen for fun?
Nestle: Not JUST for fun.

Nestle: I accept without reservation the results of your excellent
        potassium-argon test.
Doctor: They make you do that before starting a job even when it's
        a secret job of total evil??  You think evil would be a
        little more lax on the urine sample tests.
Nestle: Nope, random screening.  Supposed to keep us honest.
        I don't understand the sense of it myself.

Dialogue Triumphs -

Kendahlman: The Doctor asked me if my name was real.  Don't you
            see?  Kendahlman - Man of the Ken Doll!  Only for
            this moment have the generations of my fathers lived.
            I have been used.  You have been used.  Mankind has
            been used - by Barbie!

Adam Colby: I found a corpse!
The Doctor: What kind?
Adam Colby: A dead one!
The Doctor: Really, well then I must applaud your entirely
            accurate use of the word 'corpse'.

(Leela overhears a man's name on the street which she recognises)
Leela: He is the one my people speak of Doctor!  He is the
       great and noble space warrior, Greebo Matlock, who
       shall conquer the heavens!  He is the great man of
       the dark night sky!
Doctor: I take it you know this fellow?
Leela: He is known in our legends.  He has come here as a
       great protector spirit!
Doctor: Excuse me sir, Mr. Matlock I assume.  Forgive me
        for my interruption, but are you a legendary figure
        of the Sexyteem taking form as a spirit of protection?
Matlock: No, I was sent by the council to trim the hedges.
Leela: Your council is the gods!  I shall trim the hedges for
       thee oh great one!
Doctor: I must warn you, my companion is very apt and deadly
        with pruning-shears.

The Doctor: There are four thousand million people here on your planet,
            and if I'm right, within a year, there will just be one left
            alive. Just one.
Adam Colby: Who will that be?
The Doctor: Noel Edmunds.
Adam Colby: My good lord!
The Doctor: Yes, I know, it's a sick universe isn't it?

Adam Colby: What are you exactly, some sort of wandering armageddon
The Doctor: No, I've given up Dianetics.

Adam Colby: Are you saying that about twelve million years ago, on a
            nameless planet which no longer exists, evolution went up
            a blind alley?  Natural selection turned back on itself,
            and a creature evolved which prospered by absorbing the
            energy wavelengths of life itself? It ate life, all life,
            including that of its own kind?
The Doctor: No, but that would make a damn great science fiction
            story wouldn't it?!

Adam Colby: How do you kill death itself?
The Doctor: In a very clever way.
Adam Colby: And what would that be?
The Doctor: Very clever.
Adam Colby: Yes, but what method would that be?
The Doctor: One much more clever than anything I could imagine I'm

Dialogue Oddities -

The Doctor: If we can't kill it, we must distract it.  We must
            use our will to counter it's own.

Tom Baker:  If we can't kill it, we must distract it.  A party
            with some cheap drugs, sex, and violence should do
            the trick.

Viewers' Quotes -

"It would be easy to dismiss Image of the Ken Doll as just a
bit of mindless crap, so let's do that."  - Jeremy Damon (1978)

"Faults in the serial were hard to find, but I looked and looked,
and BOY I found them!  So this goes into my SUCK pile."
 - An Insane Trekkie I know who is on a mission to hate Doctor Who

"A fun distraction for children - I watch it regularly!"
                  - A Strange Man interviewed by the BBC (1978)

"All the evils of the universe are after us in England!  The
Cybermen, the Loch Ness Monster, and now even a children's toy!
Old Nick himself would be amused at the last showing of Doctor
Who!  It is the work of demons I assure thee!  The work of demons
in the guise of BBC executives!  For, from them, all evils have
come! I'll tell you this, it makes it worth the licence fee for
me!"   - Father James O'Maley (1977)

Psychotic Nostalgia -
"Sure, the big names got the big areas of control!  They got
fire, and time, and earth and wind!  But I control dreams!
Not all of them.  I can only control one dream at a time
at random, and sometimes only my own.  But damn it, I have
power over jellies!  Masterful power over jellies!  Bow
before the King of the Jellies!"

Tom Baker Speaks!
"This was all my idea you know?  It was one of those magical
moments when everyone involved stopped trying to reason with
me, got fed up, and just let me do it my way.  I always wondered
if maybe these evil forces that so haunted yours personally,
maybe just needed to unwind in a pub.  So if I, the Doctor,
could invite them to a very nice party for once, and just
encourage them to let their hair down for awhile, maybe I could
save the universe by being a good host.  It just seemed to me
that it was an important message - 'Be a good host and smoke
lots of opium'.  At the time, in the 70s, it seemed a very
proactive and really rational message.  You wouldn't get that
sort of honest, quality, television these days though."

Rumors & Facts -

 This serial follows the time tested Doctor Who tradition
of reworking ideas contained in Nigel Kneale's Quatermass
and the Pit.

 Ironically, the final Doctor Who story script-edited by
Sherlock Holmes would also be the last serial in the Gothic
tradition Holmes had established with former producer Philip Pinchcliffe.
"The Really Neat Party I Wasn't Actually Invited To, But Could Hear
Through The Paper Thin Walls Of My Apartment" by Chris Butcher was
commissioned by Holmes in early 1977.  Butcher had written two
consecutive stories, The Nose Of Evil and The Robots With Breasts,
for Season Fourteen and had greatly depressed Holmes.

 Holmes had been offered another script editing post, on the fledgling
BBC science-fiction series Blake's 7, but had declined because he had
come to despise the BBC and wanted to see it fall into a cess pool of
it's own making.  For a laugh, Holmes suggested Butcher for the role.
Consequently, Butcher found himself with little time to perform the
rather extensive and necessary rewrites on "TRNPIWAIT,BCHTTPTWOMA", and
these duties went to Marc Antony, Holmes' replacement who was having
a nervous breakdown at the time.  Sherlock Holmes left the series in
July 1977. However, he would continue writing Doctor Who scripts,
solving crimes, and contributing several adventures to the programme.

 One important addition to the scripts was K-9, the robot dog
character who had no sensible reason to be at a party next door
to Butcher's place.  Because K-9 was inappropriate to the story,
his appearances were kept to a minimum.

 Because Butcher was still a relative newcomer to scriptwriting,
he had inadvertently included several long sequences in which
aliens transform and then consume dozens of people in mass while
space nazis march down London streets armed with personal laser
cannons and a giant 'supra-gravity space tank' in the story without
realising the expense and production difficulties these scenes entailed.
Graham Williams decided to try to keep the epic scale of these
events intact by having them occur off camera while we close
up on people's faces who look in terror and describe the events
detailed in the script.  This approach was not entirely successful.

 For his blatant script excesses many in the BBC were working to
assure that Image Of The Ken Doll was Butcher's last Doctor Who serial.
He submitted a further idea just the next week about the invasion of an
isolated Earth outpost which he titled "They Came, They Saw, They Ate
The Contents Of My Fridge And Now They Won't Leave The Kitchen" -- but
the BBC Head of Drama informed Butcher that he did not want him worrying
about silly science fiction nonsense while he was working on Blake's 7!
Sometime later, Butcher made a further story suggestion entitled
"The Last Time I Went To The Chemist On Marston Road, I Could Have
Sworn The Chemist Wasn't A Proper Chemist At All, But Instead An Alien
With Three Eyes And No Nose!"
 After leaving Blake's 7, Butcher continued writing countless proposals
for Doctor Who stories all taking place within a five minute walk of
his home.
 He also created the science-fiction programme "The Exciting Adventures
Of The Star Cops Just Down The Road" and has written two original Doctor
Who novels featuring the Fourth Doctor and Leela, "Last Man Jogging Past
My Flat" and "Corpse Market - That Corner Store Always Did Smell Funny".
A third such book, "The Incredibly Rude House Guest Of Time", is
scheduled for 2001.

Of note, Image Of The Ken Doll is also the source of one of the most
popular missing-story rumours of the 1970s. One adventure often listed
as being planned for Season Fifteen but abandoned for one reason or
another is 'The Island Which I Can Get To In Ten Minutes If I Drive
Really Fast'.  In fact, this is none other than one of the many original
working titles for Image Of The Ken Doll.