The Lark With The Rani

An alternate Programme Guide by Charles Daniels

The One Hundred and Forty-Third Entry in the Charles Daniels
Unauthorized Programme Guide O' Continuity

Serial 6X - The Lark With The Rani -

 The TARDIS is the scene of loud, nasty argument.  The Doctor, who
has promised Peri that they can travel anywhere in the vastness of
the universe has piloted the TARDIS to 19th Century England.  Peri
is now convinced that the Doctor is merely some crazed English
eccentric who is obsessively devoted to historical recreation games
with a community of eccentrics -- some of who dress as giant slug
creatures for deviant purposes.

  The Doctor denies these claims and explains he merely chose the
19th century as an interesting historical diversion.  The Doctor
further claims that Peri is an ungrateful bitch as there are countless
people who would rip out their own eyes to go back to 19th century
England.  Peri, bright red, and angered to the point of speechlessness
runs out of the console room, violently slamming the door.

 The Doctor gives a knowing glance to Sil and mutters - "Primates!"

 The TARDIS has arrived in the small mining village, Killingwich.
Three locals - Jack Ward, Rudge, and Green - go to a bath house owned
by a strange elderly pervert in tasteless clothes, but as they start
to strip down the room fills with gas and knocks them out. The old
weirdo enters the room in a gas mask and carries them through a secret
panel into a separate room.  Sometime later the three men awaken,
feel strange pains, the desire to be incredibly violent, and a
secret sense of shame.  The three miners dash from the bath house and
attack the old man and his young grandchild in the street outside
before rushing off...

  Meanwhile the Doctor has calmed Peri down and asked for her help
in solving a rather tricky problem.  As this is the 19th century
on earth, they can not risk being seen with an obvious alien.
So the Doctor explains to Peri that he has taken the liberty of
dressing up Sil like a baby and placing him in a carriage.
The Doctor tells Peri that if anyone asks, she must claim that
Sil is their incredibly ugly offspring.

 "If anyone asks -- just say he's a bastard and I'm your first
cousin.  That should make them drop the matter entirely."

  The Doctor and Peri wheel Sil into the village where they plan to
meet George Stephenson, one of the architects of the Industrial
Revolution.  As they pass the bath house, the Doctor's time detector
beeps briefly, and the old man hears the sound. Worried, the old
man runs screaming wildly out of the village.

 Oddly, the Doctor and companions seem to pay no mind to this
behaviour and instead travel deeper into the heart of village.

 As soon as they leave the scene, The Bastard appears and breaks into
the bath house.  Inside of the bath house he sees a very familiar
young women draining fluid from the miner's brains.  The Bastard
informs the young lady that the old man and his grandchild seem to
fled at the first sign of the Doctor's appearance.

 The young woman in the bath house is in fact a renegade Time Lady,
the Rani and the Bastard obviously has a long history with her.
The two are working together on a vast project to rob the humans
in the village of vital brain fluids -- because, well...ummm..
because these two renegade time lords are EVIL!!

 The Rani insists that they will eventually find some useful
purpose for the brain fluid, but the Bastard is happy to chuckle
evilly in the corner and playfully twirl his moustache.
The Bastard points out that the Doctor is bound to discover and put
an end to their work, and so she agrees to help him destroy the

 Meanwhile the Doctor is eager to get to the bottom of the mystery
of the bath house - What happens there?  Is it legal?  And does one
have to pay?

 After puzzling over the matter, the Doctor decides to boldly discover
bath house culture for himself.  Wanting to appear rugged he steals
a miner's outfit, spreads coal dust over his face and heads off to

 The Doctor enters the bath house with a group of miners coming
off-shift, but he is overwhelmed by the gas fumes before he can find
and block their source.   When he finally recovers he is strapped
to a chair and unable to move.  At first the Doctor makes no attempt
to struggle or discern his whereabouts -- perhaps this is just the
sort of thing that is suppose to happen.  The Doctor realises that
he has a lot to learn about the practical sides of all this.

 The Doctor is reduced to utter shock and the spell is finally
broken however, when he first sees the Rani.  He recognises her

"WHAT THE..?  I know you!  JO!  JO GRANT!"

"The Rani now, Doctor."

"  WHY??"

"Well you didn't think the Bastard and I would live in
Llanfairfachbiscuit for the rest of our lives did you?
After the marriage he took me the Gallifrey and had me
"uplifted" into a time lord.  With a complete regenerative

"OF COURSE!!  I did say - 'He might even be able to turn you into
a super villainess.' - I do so hate being right!
So, seen the Brigadier recently?"

"I'm sorry, this isn't a social call Doctor.  I've made a pledge
to my husband, The Bastard, to assist in your final destruction."

"Ah!  Well, this is a rather disappointing reunion."

 The Doctor soon deduces that the Rani is extracting the chemical
which enables the human brain to sleep - well he doesn't DEDUCE
this so much as have it explained to him complete with slides
and flowcharts.  The Doctor is unable to convince her that she
should leave the Bastard, renounce her time lord powers, and settle
down in Dorset.

 Peri and Sil follow the Doctor to the bath house. Peri stupidly
rushes into the scene in an attempt to rescue the Doctor -- even
though she's unarmed, and has no plan, and has both her hands
engaged in pushing around a baby carriage.

 The Rani and the Bastard easily capture her, but there is some
luck as The Bastard does not immediately recognise Sil's true
identity -

"So this is what happens when a Time Lord and a Human BREED,
is it??  Disgusting!  Thank god I never tried with Jo.  It's
like some horrid cross between a snail and Munchkin."

 The Bastard reveals that he has arranged for the TARDIS to be
thrown down a mine shaft, but the Doctor claims not to believe him
and insists that the Rani has somehow altered the scanner to depict
what's happening in the operator's mind. The Bastard, furious, orders
Peri to place the Doctor in the baby carriage and wheel the Doctor
outside so he can see for himself.  Outside, while the Bastard is
distracted by the sight of the TARDIS being thrown down the pit, Sil,
sitting in the Doctor's lap, reaches over and grabs the TCE out of
the Bastard's hand and orders Peri to wheel them to safety.

 When the Bastard returns, defeated, to the bath house - a loud,
door slamming, knock down drag out domestic fight occurs. The Rani
is furious that the Bastard has been so stupid as to let the Doctor,
the human woman, and their unspeakably unattractive baby, escape
in a carriage.  The Bastard tries to explain the situation but
the Rani continues - it's not only the recent escape that bothers
her, but the fact that he has a whole room cluttered with dolls
made from his victims, he hasn't been sticking to his low sugar
diet, and it's not so much that he doesn't DO the dishes -- but that
it would never even cross his mind to clean them.

 The Bastard explains that he's a very busy tyrant and will
eventually get to the dishes and sort out the doll collection once
he has conquered a planet big enough to hold them all.

 Luckily, this argument gives the Doctor and company ample time
to regroup and form a plan.  The Doctor's first suggestion is that
they investigate another bath house in the nearby village of
Murderworth.  Peri and Sil over rule him and suggest that they
focus on the problem at hand.  The trio start to make their way
back to the Headquarters of the Bastard and the Rani, but on the way
they are attacked by Ward and another afflicted miner. The Doctor is
killed but escapes...later explaining that he's "really good at
escaping", and just leaving it at that.

 Back at the bath house, The Rani and the Bastard are apparently
recovering from an intense evening of make-up sex.  Smoking a
cigar the Bastard idylly speaks of the power they will have
together once they crush all resistance in the universe -- and
THEN...they can retire to a small planet, surrounded by a white
picket fence, with 3 dogs, and 2.4 billion servants.

 The two lovers are so distracted that they don't notice their three
enemies bumbling into their abode.  The Doctor quickly locates and
enters the Rani's TARDIS.  Once inside the Doctor is struck with
a sense of dread and self-doubt.  The Rani has obviously built this
TARDIS from the ground up.  A feat the Doctor used to claim to his
more gullible companions in the very early days of his travel --
until they backed him in a corner and he sadly had to admit to not
even understanding how the black and white television worked.
The fact that his ditzy old companion, Jo Grant, has been elevated
so high as to be his intellectual SUPERIOR, deeply annoys him and
drives home his loss to the Bastard even more so.   The Doctor
kicks the console absent-mindedly and then walks out.

 The Doctor informs Sil and Peri that they must leave immediately.
When Peri objects he tries a variety of excuses - "You can't change
history!!  NOT ONE LINE!"  but this only illicits howls of laughter.
Desperately he switches to "I can not interfere, there is a higher
destiny at play here."  Which doesn't seem likely either.
Eventually the Doctor confesses his true reasoning -

 After kicking the console a small schematic fell out of the machine.
Apparently the Rani has developed and deployed a series of landmines
which can turn people into trees.  After careful observation of
the design, the Doctor realised that he couldn't understand how it
worked - just that it was creepy and scary.  As a universal hero
he has overcome many obstacles - but having to defeat the Bastard
and the Rani, their intellects combined to transform him into
a tree, he'd rather skip this one out.

 Unfortunately this explanation causes Sil to attempt an escape
in the baby carriage.  Sil explains that he intends to collect
the landmines, travel back to the year 2000, and start a new
reality series - "Loggers: The Revenge", in which 12 lucky Earth
Rights Activists get a tough prize -  A chainsaw, and the right
to cut down ONE TREE - 3 of the trees being loggers but ONE being
a 2,000 year old Sequoia.  "We'll See THEM SWEAT!"  Screams Sil as
his hands work the wheel frantically.

 After Sil has left the scene the Bastard and the Rani find the
Doctor and Peri and threaten to kill them both.  The Doctor, wanting
to appear heroic, vows to stop their evil "tree land mines."
The comment immediately puzzles the devilsome duo.  The Doctor,
annoyed by their claims of ignorance, confronts them - explaining
that he's personally reviewed the schematics himself in the Rani's

 The Doctor is deeply shocked and taken aback when the couple
bursts into tears of laughter.

"OHH DOCTOR!  I remember now." Howled the Rani in an uncontrolled
hysteria fit. "That was from our collection of humourously stupid
plans for world domination!"

"Yes!" Chimed in the Bastard.  "We used to spend nights together,
dreaming up ridiculous plans - Rubber Duck Neutron Bombs, Napalm
Ice Cream, Land Mines That Turn People Into Trees!"

 The Rani's sides ached even as she chided "And YOU thought they
were real!!!  Oh MY!  You really are a moron!"

 The Bastard looked the Doctor directly in the eyes, gave a wicked
smile and declared - "We shall let you live Doctor.  This time.
The universe without you would be no fun at all."

 The Doctor, abjectly embarrassed, watched helplessly as the Bastard
and the Rani walked hand in hand back to their TARDIS.

 The Doctor glanced cautiously at Peri and exclaimed -
 "I KNEW THAT WOULD HAPPEN!  My plan worked!"

  Peri responded only with a sharp look of disgusted disbelief.

Book(s)/Other Related -
Doctor Who & The Time Ents
The Evil Adventures of Jo Grant, Book 1: Enter the Rani
Doctor Who Choose Your Own Adventure Book #3: A Sil-ly Mix Up

Goofs -
The Bastard and the Rani are married -- yet appear happy.

Fashion Victims -
When the Doctor decides to dress up like a miner, he looks
unfortunately like a member of the Village People (perhaps this
was the effect he wished to achieve???)

Links and References -
The old man with the grand daughter is OBVIOUSLY meant to be the
First Doctor.  So why did the presence of the 6th Doctor scare him
off?  And what was he doing with the unconscious bodies of those
men....umm...actually, I don't want to know.

This story is a sequel to the Third Doctor adventure, The Clean
Breath, in which the Bastard and Jo Grant are married. (Serial TTT)
( )

Untelevised Misadventures -
Obviously Sil would have been mighty angry when he at last was
informed that the tree land mines were a total fiction - one imagines
that he would have not handled the disappointment gracefully.

Also, Jo Grant was uplifted into Time Lady status.

Groovy DVD Extras -
The infamous "Oscar Wilde" scene - cut for "graphic depictions"
in England, banned in Ireland, and burnt in the streets of Iowa.

Dialogue Disasters -


Doctor: For a change, I thought we'd visit England.


The Bastard: He wears yellow trousers and a vulgarly coloured coat,
             but -- he travels with bimbos, so it's always fun to
             run into him.  How does he do it?  Hypnosis?


Dialogue Triumphs -


The Bastard: The Doctor - endlessly moralizing, lacking ambition,
             blind to opportunity, and father of the ugliest child
             I've ever witnessed.


Sil: So inside this machine, you can do anything, anything at all?

Peri: Yes, but we just argue, mainly.


A scene with incredibly forced drama -

Doctor: The Bastard has managed to "uplift" my old and dear friend
        Jo Grant.

Peri: Uplift?

Doctor: Yes, it's a genetic process where a lesser evolved species
        is blended and upgraded with the genetics of a more evolved
        species.  In your future they used human genes to create
        sentient warriors from tigers and apes.

Sil: Genetic modification of lesser creatures for WAR!  Fabulous.
     Sounds like a most profitable business.

Doctor: For some.  But not for the victims.  Someone has taken my
        friend, Ms. Grant, and made her a villainous time lady.

Peri: Someone, you mean the Bastard?

Doctor: I doubt he's the only one involved.  In order to uplift
        a creature, you need DNA from a higher evolved life form.
        I've known the Bastard long enough, he wouldn't take the
        risk, donating his own DNA to such a dangerous process.
        No, other Time Lords are involved here.  Someone reckless,
        someone positively INSANE, has allowed for his DNA to be
        used in sick experiments to create a new race of degenerate
        time lords -- AND I'M GOING TO FIND OUT WHO!

Sil: AND PROPOSE A MERGER!  I love your thinking Doctor!

Doctor: NO!  I'm going to put a stop to it.

Sil: And develop a monopoly yourself.  Even wiser!

Doctor: Sil, just eat this Jaffa Cake and shut up.


Viewer Quotes -

"The sunlight seemed to induce a magic from the stone of the buildings
and the all-embracing foliage that cast an air of tranquillity over
everything. The beautifully simple but effective incidental music
combined with the images to create a feeling of bygone times when
life was hard, but simpler, with a calmness which drew strength and
security from the absence of change; and those blokes in the
bath house were really hot."  - John Jones (1986)

"Nothing progressed, nothing was satisfactorily resolved.  This
story is every single relationship I've ever had."
                              - Janet Smalls (1994)

"What I loved about this story was the lives of every person in the
village were in danger, but that didn't stop the characters -
the Doctor, the Bastard and the Rani - from forgetting the horrific
events around them and indulging in their own private feud.  It
was a Time Lord bitchfest!"  - Janice Woods (1998)

"It was around the time of this story that I decided to place
a Doctor Who scarf around the big statue of Jesus in our humble
church.  I don't care what those Bishops say -- Jesus would have
laughed his arse off.  Five years later and Tom Baker is still
not canonized!"  - Father James O'Maley (1990)

Psychotic Nostalgia -
"A time lord once married me and promised to make me a time princess.
Unfortunately after I grew a beard and admitted to being a native
Welsh speaker he left me abandoned on the planet Grimlarn."

Nicola Bryant Speaks!
"Colin was really great to work with...except all those times
he bit my bum.  But after awhile you just get used to it.  I know
that sounds strange.  But that was just Colin."

Colin Baker Speaks!
"I liked working with Sil.  I remember Nabil and I would go to the
the pub after a shoot, and on those nights when I could convince
him to stay in costume we usually got free drinks before we were
thrown out and barred for good."

Nabil Shaban Speaks!
"This was an excellent story.  And when you can look someone in
the eye and say "This was an excellent story" even though you
had to wear nappies from start to finish -- then you know it's real

Rumors & Facts -

 In 1984 John Satan-Turner went on a mission.  A mission to find
a married couple who were both writers, and who would have the
most cliche and annoying names as possible - and so he met Pip
and Jane.

 JST announced to Eric Saward that he would be bringing back the
Bastard.  This news upset Saward who was not a fan of the character.
I can only imagine Saward's reaction when he was informed that JST
hired two people - named Pip and Jane - to compose the tale.

 Pip and Jane were by all accounts a lovely couple who would snuggle
warmly and devise word games and scripts for low-budget movies.
Pip and Jane believed in putting a part of themselves in each
story they wrote together.  To accommodate this desire, JST suggested
that they explore a throw away line uttered by the 3rd Doctor
some 12 years previously - his prediction on the ultimate destiny
of the marriage between the Bastard and his companion Jo Grant.

 Pip and Jane devised a storyline titled Too Stupid By Far, which
featured the humiliation of the Doctor at the hands of a deviously
evil and wickedly witty married couple - The Bastard and The Rani.

 By this time in the series history, JST was openly commenting that
"original ideas" were passe.  It was this philosophy that would
begin the proud Doctor Who tradition of spinning television stories
and entire novels off of random comments made by the Doctor.
The ultimate example of this being the novel which focused on the
Doctor's first comment from The Sexual Toymaker - "I can't even
remember what I had for breakfast this morning!".  437 pages were
devoted to exposing, exploring, and explaining this long standing
enigma - the final answer to the mysterious breakfast that started
it all!

**** SPOILERS ******

It was eggs.