The Powder of Droll
An alternate Programme Guide by
One Hundred and Fourth Entry in the Charles Daniels Unauthorized
Programme Guide O' Paul Is Dead
Serial 5E - The Powder Of Droll -
The TARDIS appears completely nude in long swamp reeds in the
middle of a quagmire. This imagery is decidely pornographic and causes
K-9's central processing unit to become so excited that he is unable to
leave the TARDIS. The Doctor and Romana, disgusted by the efforts of
K-9 to mechanically hump the TARDIS in classic dog style, leave the
TARDIS in order to search for the next segment of the Key to Chicken.
In a sad attempt to look cool and impress his female companion,
the Doctor stops, sits, stands, and drops his hat and leg to do a
gravity check - sure enough the Doctor quickly deduces that the planet
they are on has gravity. This deduction totally fails to offer any
seduction for Romana. The Doctor then puts his finger in his mouth
and begins to make quacking sounds, this is an ancient party trick
performed by Rassilon himself to pick up women -- sadly it does not
show any signs of success here. As the Doctor places his hand into
his armpit to make comic farting noises, Romana makes the somewhat
blantant observation, "Doctor, sometimes I don't think you're quite
right in the head."
As Romana attempts to find signs of the herbs and spices hidden
away in this distant outpost, the Doctor uses a reed as flute in a sad
attempt to play "If You Think I'm Sexy". So horrid is his rendition
that Romana happily allows two Swampies to grab her from behind. The
Doctor starts calling for Romana but a random passerby shoots him dead
for being such an annoying bastard.
From here, the story just gets strange and falls apart.
The Doctor gets up, to find himself in Time Lord Heaven --
which he calmly assures the audience is just down the road from doggie
and human heaven. The Doctor is puzzled by the idea that he could have
possibly been qualified for entry into Time Lord heaven, figuring this
is all some silly mistake he insists that he is simply conducting a
survey to see what the dead think of the afterlife. When he tries to
conduct his first mock survey he talks to an ancient and long dead Time
Lord known only as The Mangler. The Mangler insists that the Doctor
has indeed arrived in Time Lord heaven entirely by accident and then
proceeds to insist that the Doctor report immediately to Time Lord
Hell, located directly next to the Starbuck's Coffee. The Doctor is at
first hesitant to report to hell, and is made even more hesitant when
The Mangler describes Time Lord Hell as an eternal burning in the firey
vortex of pure hate. After describing the conditions endured by the
damned of the Time Lords, the Mangler is not amused when the Doctor
asks if there will be strawberry jam for tea.
Romana is tied by Swampies to a rock. This is not a very
effective way to keep her captive, but the Swampies just seem to have
a thing for tying young attractive women to rocks. In order to keep
some pretense of an honest capture they sit near her and attempt to
question her. Romana dodges all of their questions telling them that
she and the Doctor were there to catch butterflies. The Swampies
threaten to choke her if she doesn't answer truthfully -- but in all
honesty they were hoping to do that anyway.
Meanwhile the Doctor is enjoying a Mocha Frappaccino in
Starbuck's while having an interesting conversation with Colonel
Sanders. Colonel Sanders explains that the Doctor's death could mean
the end to chicken everywhere in the entire universe. The Doctor seems
content to sit back and watch the whole universe fall apart, he
jokingly admits that since his death he hasn't felt as lively as he
Back in the living, Romana has discovered that the Swampies
worship a strange and rather boring god named Droll. Apparently the
entire religion is based on finding young women, tying them up, and
generally being naughty. It does not come as a surprise that in
recent years the religion has enjoyed various human converts. One
such human, Rohm Dutt, celebrates the spirit of an ancient earth
festival - Christmas. Overwhelmed with the spirit of Christmas Rohm
Dutt gives his Swampie friends the gift that keeps on giving -
machine guns. In a moment of Freudian excitement 100 tons of
compressed protein is shot into orbit. The natives chant 'Droll' over
and over and over and over and over and over and over again as drums
play and the rocket shoots in the distance. A pit is opened to
sacrifice Romana in. Rohm Dutt calls Droll from the bottomless deep.
The ritual goes on and on AND ON. MY GOD HOW MANY TIMES CAN THESE
BASTARDS SHOUT 'DROLL! DROLL!'?
Romana is still tied down - but in an unusual twist, instead
of being tied to a stake, the Swampies have tied steaks onto her body.
Covered in raw meat and trying to convince herself this Droll business
is just nonsense, the grass doors close to protect the Swampies from
Droll and blocking Romana from them. As the chanting rises to a
crescendo 'DROLL!!!' "DROLL!!!!!", a cheaply animated monster comes up
at Romana, its claws snapping for her screaming face...
From here, the story just gets silly.
Arriving in Time Lord Heaven Romana finds the Doctor in an
alleyway twitching from the nine-thousand shots of espresso he has
recently consumed at Starbuck's. Romana knows the only cure for an
overdose of coffee is to get the Doctor liquored up. This scene shows
an ironic opposite of Time Lord physiology.
Upon drunkening up, the Doctor smashes through the bushy fence,
grabs a rake, and begins to stalk the clouds of Time Lord heaven
looking for a fight. Chasing after the Doctor the two Time Lords come
to a mine-like shaft that goes into a dimension of pure evil. Romana
hates mine-like shafts into Dimensions of Pure Evil and the Doctor
admits that he's always found them kind of cool. After weighing his
options he decides to go down this one.
When the Doctor arrives at the bottom of the shaft he finds a
book bound in human skin entitled "The Necronomicon For Dummies". It
is an illustrated history of things that should not be--atrociously
written but with pictures of a giant squid like thing with suckers.
The Doctor has an eerie feeling that he recognises something about
the illustrations, but he can't quite put his finger on it. The
history or legend tells that Droll awakened and killed everyone in the
temple, finding the people indolent and fat, swallowed the symbol of
its power, and even ate the high priest - In short Droll was having a
very bad day. The book details that after killing most the inhabitants
Droll apologised and explained that he was simply trying to live up the
the standard of his older brother Cthulhu. After this brief apology,
Droll consumed the world to flames for a thousand years, then it
returned to sleep. Romana says, "Oh, I like a book with a
That was Droll's evening appearance and he is due for a
midnight show. The Doctor and Romana joke that Droll is not one of
those monsters that is always about the place, just pops up every
couple of centuries -- showing that these sort of dorky conversations
are a universal constant amoungst people who have spent far too much
After several thousand cringly bad jokes the Doctor and Romana
start to develop a series of theories about Droll and what is really
going on with the chicken ingredients. Romana offers great insights
into the psychic energies which are most likely powering Droll but the
Doctor keeps admiring the architecture of the burning towers that seem
to be abundant in the evil universe around them. Eventually after
careful study of the book Romana discovers that the monster Droll is
about one mile across, 140 feet high, and has 30 tentacles on one side
alone. The monster also has silly eyes and the caption underneath the
illustrations of Droll all read "Droll -- Terry Gilliam".
The terrible truth then strikes them! Droll is nothing more
than some silly Gilliamation! Upon this realisation the two Time
Lords are stucked through a psychedelic vortex into the lair of Terry
Gilliam himself. Terry Gilliam gloats evilly that as of this moment
he has total control the Doctor and Romana and that now they will
serve his will in a land of cartoons. In response to this gloating
the Doctor stabs Gilliam with the locator and he turns into cinnamon.
The Doctor then turns the locator on a cartoon Droll located on the
floor of the drawing room and it transforms into parsley.
Book(s)/Other Related - Doctor Who: Death Comes To Thyme
Doctor Mysterio Squiderro Sploogee!
Lonely Planet's Guide To The Afterlife
Fluffs - Tom Baker seemed calamari for most of this story
As usual Tom Baker's replies seem to exist in a
different dimension from Romana's questions
"I'm a very loyal customer of Starfucks." Insists Tom Baker.
Fashion Victims - I'm amazed the Jolly Green Giant didn't sue the
everyone's ass off for this one.
Goofs - "Constellation" is once again used to mean "adult magazine"
Did Sam Raimi get a different edition of the Necronomicon or
something?? How many copies of this thing are floating around
Technobabble - "The power of calamari has been harnessed here at an
Links and References - The Doctor briefly mentions that the events
with Droll remind him of the events he faced on the planet Dildo.
When asked how the current situation related to his experiences on
Dildo, the Doctor replies to a stunned Romana "Dildo??? Oh I'd
forgotten about that place!"
Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor implies that he once met a famous opera singer and squid
named Sticky Legs Johnson.
Dialogue Disasters -
Describing the plot -
Swampies: DROLL!! DROLL!!! DROLL!!!!!!!
Dialogue Triumphs -
Col. Sanders: Droll is all wise, all seeing...
The Doctor: Perhaps, but I bet I'm better than him at sleight of hand!
Col. Sanders: Droll has thirty tentacles, that far out numbers your
The Doctor: Yes, but I don't use only my hands.
Dialogue Oddities -
The Doctor: (Looking into the book bound in human flesh) Never in all
my years, in all my lives, have I seen a god as dark as
this. As ruthless, as merciless, we have been delivered
into the clutches of evil itself.
Tom Baker: Ah, he's just a huge fucking squid!
Viewers' Quotes -
"This story is ridiculous. Heaven? Do you think there REALLY is a
heaven? I'll tell you where we go after we die - HELL! Hell,
damnation, and eternal torment, THAT'S ALL THERE IS!"
- Father James O'Maley (1979)
"This story is not well remembered by many fans..I for one can't
think of a single thing to say about it." - Paul Martin (1993)
"Every day we face the technology-nature struggle. We are nature. The
world we live in is technology. Nature is the unpredictable Droll,
technology is the scheduled rocket launches. Nature and technology,
they're two dudes who are never going to sit down at the pub together."
- Ed Dunn's "Reading Too Much Into Doctor Who" (1986)
Psychotic Nostalgia -
"If I stopped to worship every dark and evil god ready to consume all
of humanity in a napalm blaze, I'd never have time to do my own
killing on my own time. I mean sure, it's nice to believe that you
are committing a series of horrific murders that will somehow provide
the energy required to let a dark ancient god upon the world...but
sometimes you just have to think of yourself."
Tom Baker Speaks!
"Beyond Death and Cartoons, Nothing could stop me in my quest to
find those sacred elements that would make the chicken complete.
But for all my adventures, I knew that the challenge before me,
the journey to the last ingredient, would be the most daring of all."
- Tom Baker from the record "The Key To Chicken" (1979)
"Please, turn the video off -- I'm terribly frightened of squid you
see. You can't trust them. They just stare at you. Those cold eyes,
yes. Yes, my nerves are quite disrupted now...I need a drink. That
will help. And after you've poured me one..could you show me something
else terrifying that requires immediate calming. I want to be very
calm. Comatose calm if possible. Tell you what, just hand over the
- Tom Baker exclusive
Rumors & Facts -
Any story that requires a dark god of total evil to be
delivered on a budget of roughly three buttons and a bottle cap is
bound to encounter problems. One can well understand Sherlock Holmes'
unease at being asked to come up with a story featuring the biggest
monster ever seen in Doctor Who. It is not at all surprising that he
was unable to do his best work while chained to a desk in the BBC
offices and denied food and water - indeed, it seems that Holmes was
always at his least inspired when working within constraints with
which he was uncomfortable, such as when the BBC nailed his head to a
studio camera for the duration of his scripting of season eleven's
The Slime Warrior.
Robert Holmes' first draft of the script entitled "Help Me,
I've Been Chain Down To A Desk AT BBC Centre" was rejected due to the
lack of a large enough squid in the story. The title was soon altered
to "Please Help Me, I'm Starving" which was met with equal distain,
and then to "It's All Right, I Think I'm Dead Now Actually". This
latter change came about because of repeated black outs and severe
delusions suffered by Sherlock Holmes.
When Sherlock Holmes was finally able to escape, all of these
drafts were abandoned and the title was changed to The Powder Of Droll.
Meanwhile, the director originally assigned to the story, Michael
Hayes, grew increasingly concerned about the size of his penis,
especially when compared to the huge monster he was comparing himself
Location filming began on September 18th. The next day was the
first time the Swampies appeared in make-up, using a German product
selected by make-up artist Kezia Deweeb for its striking appearance on
camera and its insolubility in water. Unfortunately, Deweeb neglected
to also order the special solvent needed to remove the make-up. Due
to the prolong exposure to the German chemicals many of the Swampie
actors have green-tinged skin to this day.
This story taught fandom that regeneration does not occur if
you are ingested by giant squid or have your head blown clean off for
being an annoying git. However the thing it most effectively taught
fandom was that Holmes really needed cociane to write a masterpiece.