An alternate Programme Guide by
The One Hundred and Thirtieth Entry in the Charles Daniels
Unauthorized Programme Guide O' Trogdor
Serial 6G - Terminal -
The Black Guardian points out some blue switches on the TARDIS console
to Turlough. These blue switches were inbuilt into every type 40
capsule as handy shortcuts to total system sabotage. In the old days
a hostile invader would have to have quite a firm grip on temporal
mechanics just to successfully open the panel on the base of the
console. And that same alien invader would probably need an 18
month certificate in TARDIS Information Technology just to guess at
which circuit boards were important to TARDIS operation, and which
were merely ATARI 2600 circuit boards so the Doctor could play
Pac-Man on console. It was these above facts that caused the
Time Lords to develop a unique educational theory -
"The more secure a system is. The less secure all other systems are."
And while at first this sounds like something that might be found
on a fortune cookie in Silicon Valley, after careful consideration
it starts to make some approximation of sense. The TARDIS
capsules were made invulnerable to sabotage through their
infinity complexity and, as mentioned above, it would take several
degrees and thousands of years of education just to operate the
door. The end result of this was the Time Lord's more powerful
enemies - The Dustbins, The Cybermen, the Snotarans, the
Cambridge Footlights, etc. - were actually going out and getting
advanced educations in everything from Hyperbotany to Dynamic
Reactions of UltraSpacial Physics. And just to keep up the brain
divide entire races were manufactured/cloned/grown with obscure
subjects such as Quantum Psychology BUILT IN!
The bottomline was that the rest of the universe was getting
increasingly smarter and more clever in an attempt to kill these
self-righteous time lord bastards once and for all.
Therefore, in an act that exemplifies Time Lord mastery over
TransTemporal Anthropological Engineering - the infamous 'blue
switches' clearly labelled "SABOTAGE" were added and retrofitted
into every TARDIS.
And it is these switches that Turlough pressed threatening to
destroy himself, the TARDIS crew, and possibly the temporal vortex
After operating the blue switches Turlough was shocked at it's
extremely surprising and annoying effect - NOTHING. To which
the Doctor explains -
"Oh! Those were sabotaged. Ages ago. Never bothered to repair them."
It is just these sorts of set backs that one must live with whilst
living in a transcendental blue box NOT induced by drug use.
The TARDIS lands safely on a spaceship. This spaceship is an old
Galleon Starliner which should have been carrying 15,000 million tonnes
of platinum - but which has in fact 15,000 million tonnes of leper -
some still attached.
The Doctor meets Hardy and Oliver, two space leper pirates that have
recently boarded the liner in search of treasure and new arms.
Meanwhile Tegan is encouraged by Turlough to explore the ship's
infrastructure - (aka endless air ducts) - in the search for "clues".
Turlough watches as Tegan slinks into the air ducts and slyly
walks away into a nondescript corridor nearby.
Oliver tells the Doctor that everyone on board is a victim of Lazar's
disease - a highly contagious disease that effects almost all humanoids.
The Doctor explains that his race have completely eliminated all
disease and that, on the whole, he is indifferent to the well being
of his travelling companions - so he joins them in a Absinthe drinking
Not surprisingly, Nyssa becomes infected by the disease after a
dodgy evening with a local. She is taken for treatment but is
shocked when her physician is a large dog named Garm. Nyssa discovers
that the lepers raided an earth medical ship and mistook the dogs
and cats onboard for the command staff and have locked away the human
crew mistaking them for the pets. Nyssa quickly comes to understand
that this is why the plague has yet to be cured. Nyssa immediately
sets about trying to find the kennels on the spaceship, and therefore
hopefully the cure to Lazar's disease. On the way to the kennels
Nyssa assesses her desperate situation and left with no other logical
alternative - she begins to systematically remove her clothing.
Meanwhile, the Doctor and Hardy discover that the ship does not
belong to the space lepers at all. The space lepers raided and
captured the ship which was once capable of time travel. This
ship is also of grand universal importance. When the raid began
the pilot of starliner, a Tralfamadorian, jettisoned an unstable engine
into a void, the resultant colossal explosion caused the Big Bang that
created the universe. The ship's other engine is about to explode,
which will mean the end of the universe. The Doctor takes a moment
to criticise the Tralfamadorians' use of experimental fuels and
explains that they are one of the most annoying time-aware civilizations
in the galaxy.
Luckily the Doctor finds an expert on Tralfamadorian technology
aboard the starliner, Garm - a special genetically engineered race
of Saint Bernards, engineered to be experts in temporal manipulation.
Together the Doctor and Garm deactivate the engine in time - which,
in order to showcase it's deviance from Time Lord technology employs
the usage of red buttons as opposed to blue switches.
After preventing the destruction of the universe the Doctor
pets Garm and plays a few happy rounds of fetch, whilst discussing
String theory. Eventually this happy moment is tarnished when
Turlough leaps forward from the shadows and stabs the Doctor in
The Doctor falls to the ground as Nyssa wanders into the scene.
In the heat the moment Turlough stabs Nyssa as well before running
into the TARDIS.
At this exact same moment Tegan emerges from an air duct and
sees her companions helpless on the floor of the starliner.
Tegan drags the Doctor into the TARDIS and then rushes back for
Nyssa. There she encounters Nyssa's ghost who informs Tegan
that she has freed the humans from the kennels and now wishes to
stay behind and search for a cure for death. Tegan thinks this
is stupidly optimistic behaviour, but can't find herself arguing
with the walking, talking ghost of a dead alien princess.
Book(s)/Other Related -
Dr Who & The Time Midgets (Canada Only)
Dr Who & The Undead Alien School Girl Tentacle Monster (Japan Only)
Nyssa The Revenge - An internet story with Turlough NC/MF/FemDom
Peter Davison tries and fails to pronounce "Tralfamadorian" and
eventually just results to "those dead time travelling blokes".
Garm was given dialogue in English and Tralfamadorian. While
this may be possible to pull off with modern computer sfx the
puppet wizardry of 1983 is sadly not up to scratch.
"There is a random sabotage matrix built into post-Enon era
Tralfa-Tralfe--those dead time travelling blokes' cross-neon
temporal interface pods!"
Links and References -
Turlough is given Adric's room and is temporarily overcome by
a strange supernatural sulking depression
Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor explains that he once got into a heated drinking contest
against a Tralfamadorian alcoholic - that lasted from 328 BC until
a week next Tuesday. Apparently, they both lost.
Groovy DVD Extras -
If you click the left arrow on the Episode Selection screen you
will highlight the Doctor Who logo. Press enter and you will
find a complete novel by Terrance Dicks - "Slaughterhouse Five Doctors".
This novel is incredibly interactive - you can print it, bind it,
use software available on the DVD to create your own cover - and if
you are very brave you can even READ it.
Dialogue Disasters -
Black Guardian: You must sabotage the TARDIS!
Turlough: But HOW!?
Black Guardian: Operate the blue switches!
Turlough: Which ones???
Black Guardian: The ones labelled "SABOTAGE"!
Turlough: Oh! Umm...I thought that was reverse psychology.
Hardy & Oliver: WE ARE SPACE LEPERS! Let us sing you our song
that will explain our plight!
Doctor: I rather wish you didn't.
Dialogue Triumphs -
(Upon seeing a room designed based on entirely alien aesthetics)
Doctor: Some people have the strangest ideas about decor.
Track lighting indeed.
Doctor: No one knows the true form of a Tralfamadorian, but
most people believe they look something like an
upside down plunger.
I've never figured out what the evolutionary advantage
is of a plunger. It's just one of those unsolvable mysteries.
Viewer Quotes -
"The idea that the universe was created due to the actions of a
time-travelling spaceship is an ingenious and appealing one, and
after watching this...I hope someone will DO something good
with it one day." - David Sloane (1983)
"This story started out moving very slowly forward. And then
in the later episodes, it started going backwards."
- Sreenivas Arani (1986)
"This script was written by a guy who, as far as I can tell
was desperately scared of Tegan." - John Jones (1988)'
"This story touched me deeply. Here Nyssa is, in this giant
spaceship surrounded by lepers - and what does she do? That's right!
She takes her kit off! You know, I've been to leper colonies.
And the one thing that cheers those lads up, is a half naked woman."
- Father James O'Maley (1983)
"Nyssa getting naked? I'm not against it. Don't get me wrong.
My only complaint is that it wasn't Turlough."
- Conversation overheard at Gallifrey One (1999)
Psychotic Nostalgia -
"Terminal. MAN!! The memories. You know, that was the story
that made me figure out how to work the pause feature on my VCR.
Thank you Sarah Sutton!"
Peter Davison Speaks!
"We stole some sets that were used in Alien. Not sure where they
got them from, or how they broke into the place, but when I saw
them I was so excited. This story also stole some interesting
ideas from other sources, but again we supplied our own plot holes
in massive quantities. For the final scene we had three minutes
of recording time and it hadn't even been WRITTEN yet. It was
just crazy. Nothing ever happened properly.
Also, with the addition of Mark Strickson to the cast, I felt
unsure. How should the Doctor handle this new random component
in his life - a young boy sent to kill him.
Faced with this challenge I went back to my roots as an actor
and decided to blandly wander from scene to scene, hoping desperately
for something interesting to happen. I think I got a lot of help
from the scenes with the dog. People love dogs. You don't even
have to act at all in a scene with a dog, because everyone is looking
at the dog and not paying attention to you. That's why I liked to
do television shows with animals. A lot less pressure on the human
I really should write a book about acting you know? You never
hear this very vital stuff that every actor should know."
Sarah Sutton Speaks!
"I was waiting for a script where Nyssa got her vengeance against
the Bastard. JST didn't think this was feasible, as to be perfectly
correct continuity-wise I'd have to fight the sea lion incarnation
of the Bastard, and that just wasn't going to happen for a number of
reasons. I didn't think Nyssa was going to go anywhere without
that story arc being completed. So I asked JST if I could leave
and he started a happy jig around the room and told me I could.
So, any hope of me being involved with the series on a regular
basis evaporated right there.
JST wanted to kill off Nyssa and I thought that was a bit too
much like Adric's ending, and I didn't want to be compared to
Adric in any possible way. So he suggested that I could come back
as a ghost, if I was scantily clad. Apparently someone he knew had
a thing for scantily clad ghosts. So I agreed.
I don't have any deep emotional feelings about that."
Rumors & Facts -
Writer Steve Gallagher had been reading a lot of books by Kurt
Vonnegut and decided that they were good enough to plagiarize into
a Doctor Who story. Gallagher entered into discussions with
Christopher Bidmead and presented them with a script that was
basically several photocopied pages from different Vonnegut
novels with the names of the Doctor and companions written
on top with blue pen. Bidmead and JST commissioned the story
from Gallagher, and then promptly used the scripts they'd
received to prop up an uneven couch in a BBC breakroom.
Several years went by. Eventually, one night, JST had some
use for the uneven couch, which has never been fully explained,
and found the approved script still there. JST apparently left
it on the floor with the intention of coming back for it the next
Several months later a BBC janitor brought the script to JST's
office, explaining that he'd found a script with several unusual
stains on it, and wasn't sure if he should throw it away or if
it might possibly be evidence in a criminal proceeding. JST
immediately took the script from the janitor, and placed it on
top of his desk where he, in time honoured fashion, forgot about
it for awhile.
Finally, on May 12th, 1981, Satan-Turner wrote to Gallagher to
apologise for the delay, explaining that a temp had lost the
script and only after a lengthy investigation on his own personal
time had it been recovered. Script editor Eric Saward was interested
in Gallagher's concept, of taking famous science fiction novels
and writing silly names on top of the dialogue, and so Gallagher
was invited to the BBC offices to see what he could do with
Lord of the Rings and a magic marker.
This highly successful meeting eventually turned to JST and
Saward discussing how to salvage the original script submitted
by Gallagher - most of the hard work being of course identifying
the mysterious stains and cleaning them off the paper.
Meanwhile, the production team was busy planning how to
utilize an evil companion, Turlough. The original idea of
"Let's just trap him in a confining space every story so he
can't actually do any harm" was seen as unsatisfactory, and
so real imagination was being demanded of the staff.
Gallagher was told they could use his story in the Black Guardian
trilogy if he could alter his scripts to have the new companion
Turlough stab the Doctor and kill Nyssa, as the actress was desperate
to leave the series. This required Gallagher to venture into the
uncharted depths of Robert A. Heinlein for some suitable scenes
to "adapt". But after a few days he'd found a few different
passages in which characters were stabbed and in which the
names "Nyssa" and "Doctor" easily fit.
In scripting Terminal, Gallagher "drew heavily" (sometimes with
green pen) from Norse mythology. The Garm was a dog-headed beast who
guarded the gates of Hell, while Oliver and Hardy were named after
the Norse gods of comedy.
After the lengthy problems with scripting, there were lengthy
problems with the filming and general production of the serial.
Most famously when Janet Fielding got jealous of all the attention
Sarah Sutton was getting, and allowed her cleavage to be popped out of
her shirt - and then started dancing in front of the camera, all the
while claiming that this was a "wardrobe accident".
Due to these and many other unexpected developments, filming did
not complete on schedule and a remount was necessary. Sarah Sutton was
disappointed because this meant that her time on Doctor Who was not
Davison was irritated because he felt that JST's attitude had cast a
pall over Sutton's farewell party - but JST insisted that he was
simply on mind altering drugs.