Romp With The Rani

An alternate Programme Guide by Charles Daniels

The One Hundred and Fifty-First Entry in the Charles Daniels
Unauthorized Programme Guide O'Daffyd the Confused Gay Welshman

Serial 7D - Romp With The Rani -

 The Seventh Doctor is delighting Mel with her favourite comedy act as
he prances about the console room in a silly wig and pretends to be his
former self.

 The Doctor puts his all into the performance and is about to place his
hands on his hips and mockingly scold Mel for laughing at "such a
distinguished time lord in the prime of his life", when a harsh landing
trips the skipping Doctor. His body falls and he smacks his head on
the console knocking himself unconscious.

 Mel laughs insanely, believing this to be a perfectly timed comedy

 The duo have landed on the planet Lakerytan which is currently the
secret base of an evil mastermind known only as -- The Rani...oh yes,
and of course, also known as Josephine Grant.

 Inside of her fortress laboratory, the Rani is collecting the most
talented minds in the galaxy.  The Rani's Tetrap servants report the
arrival of a blue phone box on the planet and she sends them to fetch
the occupants, while she stays in her research throne room and chants
"At last! My evil plan is complete!!!"  Ad nauseum.

 The tetraps drag the Doctor away but Mel uses her glass shattering
screams to scare the creatures off of her.

 Seeking to get as far away from the tetraps as possible, she meets some
random guy named Sarn.  Mel is sure she is to be rescued, but Sarn blames
Mel for making him half-deaf, and so he takes her prisoner.

 In response, Mel screams some more.

 The Rani dresses herself in the garb of a 70s streetwalker, this allows
the Doctor to recognise her immediately. "Oh!  Hello, Jo!  What are you
doing on this planet?  Come to think of it, what am I doing on this
planet?  And even more to the point...which planet is this?"

 The Rani isn't sure if the Doctor has been recreationally taking drugs,
is suffering from a concussion, or amnesia - but decides to play along.

 The Rani explains to the Doctor that they have accompanied the Brigadier
to Geneva.  But then strange blobs from the Nth Universe have taken him
hostage, and now, they are the only hope for the planet Earth and the
peaceful blobs of the planet Bleeb.

 The 7th Doctor nods his head and looks dramatically forwards - "YES!
The strange blobs from the Nth Universe!!  How often our paths have
crossed in times of great darkness!!"

 "Yes Doctor!"  The Rani said, trying to remember how much of a bimbo
she was when she travelled with the Doctor. "They're really nasty.
Even for blobs!  You must have fought them hundreds of times."

 "No.  Never heard of them before I'm afraid!  Still!  If the Brigadier
is in trouble, we can't just stand here chatting!  I'll reverse the
polarity of the neutron flow, and you be a dear and make some tea for
the blobs of Bleeb!"

 The Doctor then stumbles about the laboratory. Finding a random piece
of equipment, he reverses the polarity of it's neutron flow and the
thing actually begins to work again.  The Rani looks on in amazement,
the component being faulty for quite some time for no apparent reason.

 The Doctor is shocked to see his reflection in a mirror, but the Rani
explains that his laboratory equipment exploded in another failed
attempt to fix the TARDIS and escape UNIT once and for all.

 Meanwhile, Sarn is dragging Mel through a vast featureless landscape --
as Mel screams.

 The Rani is irritated when the Doctor orders her to mop his brow while
he's working.  Also she notices that his mental condition is in a bizarre
flux.  The Doctor keeps saying insanely random and annoying nonsense at
any opportunity that presents itself, and even at several which don't.

 Nearby on the planet's surface, Mel attempts an escape, and crawls into
a small cave for cover.  The sound of her wild screams however soon give
away her position, and she is recaptured.

 The Doctor has become distracted by loud screams in the vicinity.  He
looks out a nearby window, and recognises the woman screaming.  He thinks
about it for a moment, remembers that he knows the woman and that her
name is Mel, and then he promptly closes the window and puts in some
ear plugs.

 The Doctor continues to look over the laboratory equipment, but is
troubled.  Mel didn't work for UNIT.  And if they are in UNIT HQ, what
are all these tetraps doing running around?  Something seems...wrong.

 Oh yes!  He only asked Jo to make the blobs from Bleeb some tea, and
not him, and he is feeling rather thirsty.

 While the Doctor eats some jammie dodgers and enjoys a fresh cuppa,
he is left total unaware that Mel's screaming is becoming more and
more intense.  Local rebels have decided to use her as a human battering
ram to gain access to the Rani's secret lab.

 When the rebels finally breach the doors, they are all brutally killed
by the servants of the Rani - except for Mel who is so injured she has
actually ceased screaming and is therefore mistaken for dead and left

 After the coast is clear, the Doctor approaches Mel and revives her.
He explains that he is a prisoner of the Rani and that she plans to use
his mind in an evil experiment, but he's not exactly sure why.

 The Rani overhears all of this and confronts the Doctor.  She explains
that while she has gathered the greatest minds in the cosmos, Einstein,
Newton, Hawking, etc, there is still one vital thing she is missing -

"OF COURSE!!  A time lord mind!  Einstein and Hawking have the basic
theory for time travel, but you need someone with practical experience.
A master of the time-space dimension!  To combine the theoretical and
practical into one mastermind!  Ingenious!"

"Actually, not Doctor.  I have all the temporal theory I need.  But
I missed out one key ingredient.  Musical theory.  Then I remembered
that you played the spoons.  Maybe not the universe's greatest virtuoso,
but it will have to do!"

"So just want my mind because I can play the spoons!?!
That's disgusting!  That's barbaric!  I thought you hated me for ME!
Well that's it!  I'm stopping your evil plan right now."

 The Doctor is then quickly captured by guards, and Mel screams.

 Once the Doctor is hooked up to the machine, the Rani realizes the one
fatal flaw in her plan -- the Doctor is a loonbag.  The Doctor begins
to nag and joke around with the geniuses, and they simply refuse to
work for her evil ends any longer if they have to put up with this guy.

 Luckily, the Rani is distracted by Mel's screams, and the Doctor escapes
from his brain storage container.

 The brain is deeply grateful, and in relief it offers the Rani the
answer to a complex formula she had been trying to crack.  The Doctor
realises that the brain has gotten the wrong answer, it forgot to
carry the 2, and so he automatically corrects it's mistake -- in front
of the Rani -- thus dooming all sentient life as we know it.

 The Doctor tries to make up for this by vaguely arguing to the Rani
that she hasn't thought of the galactic repercussions of her actions.
When the Rani shows him some detailed plans and flowcharts, he is
forced to retract that statement, and even wishes her good luck.

 Mel is deeply offended by this and demands that the Doctor try again
to stop the Rani.

 The Doctor explains to Mel that there are larger forces at work here
and that history can not altered.  He argues that the Rani's plot to
take over the universe with the superbrain hasn't even happened yet -
so it's not really his place to try to stop it.

 Mel insists it has happened, in fact is happening, and countless
people will needlessly die.

 The Doctor eats a pork pie.

Book(s)/Other Related -
Really, Really Clever Plans In Science Fiction, Vol. 18
Sin Girl 5: Attack the Bottled Brains
Radiophonic Workshop - Doctor Who, The Screeching Bimbo Years

Goofs -
Mel is scared of the Tetraps.  This is completely unbelievable.

Links and References -
The Doctor seems to briefly believe he is still in his 3rd incarnation.
He believes that his current companion is Jo Grant, that he is still
earthbound and working for UNIT, and in fact he is so deluded that
he takes the whole notion of The Blobs From Bleeb, completely seriously.

Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor's regeneration between the 6th and 7th form.
Also, where did the Doctor get that awful wig?

Groovy DVD Extras -
3 more minutes of Sylvester McCoy's hilarious Colin Baker impersonations.
Including various faces of shock and disbelief as seen in Mistrial of
a Time Lord.

Dialogue Disasters -


Rani: I have all the greatest minds in history at my disposal!
      Albert Einstein, Sir Isaac Newton, Stephen Hawking,
      Jeremy Clarkson...


Rani: His mind came free in a box of Cheerios.


Dialogue Triumphs -


  Rani: You've always been jealous of my evil, Doctor.

Doctor: Jealous, of you?  HA!  I destroy more planets before 9am than
        most evil masterminds do all day.


Doctor: So, RANI.  Why are you here on Lakerytan?  Surely, now that
        the Bastard is playing at being the furher of Gallifrey, you
        should be there, sharing the glory.  The official occasions, the
        grand galas, the delightful state executions!

  Rani: We're just, separated for awhile.  While we both think things

Doctor: Oh, but surely he could come up with SOME post for you?
        Minister of Public Torture?  Secretary of Offense and Conquest?
        Game Warden of Fisheries and Parks?

  Rani: Oh don't think I didn't ask Doctor.
        (Depressed, near tears)
        It's just....he's left me for someone younger, and more...evil.
        I just know it.  And this whole, silly, brain thing, it was
        just my sad, pathetic attempt at revenge against him.  That's all.
        Oh god....
        What must you think of me?

Doctor: That you're a cold, calculating, evil bitch?

  Rani: Ohh....thank you Doctor.  That means a lot.  It really does.
        (Sniffles)  Now get into the brain machine before I blow your
        head off.
        Please?  For me?


The Doctor annoys the Rani, and everyone, with his insane ramblings
whilst wandering around the secret laboratory -

"Every dog has his wooden nickel!"

"Sticks and stones may break your bones but worms can never hurt you!"

"A fool and his plague are soon avoided."

"A bad workman is good for the gander."

"The proof of the pudding is in Sulgrave."

"What you don't know, will be on the test."

"What's good for the goose is fair play."

"Those who clutch as straws shouldn't throw bricks."

"Turn about is what goes around!"

"Don't count your cricket balls before they hatch."

"There's none so deaf as people who live in glass houses."

"Where there's a will, there's a man."

"Absinthe makes the heart grow fonder."

"An elephant never blames his tools!"

"If you love something, let it go.  If it comes back, it's lost."


Viewer Quotes -

"I think it's fabulous when a new Doctor is introduced in a story like
this one.  It's so bland, and uninvolving.  A confused mess really.
And so you know, it's only going to get better from here."
                          - Roger "Cheery Optimist" Richards (1987)

"Horrid, unbelievable, charmless, trash.  One of the better Sylvester
McCoy stories - If there were ever any good ones, but there weren't.
The whole series should have been cancelled when Pertwee died."
                      - Raxxon, a calm moment, (1998)

"All that running around the secret lab.  It's like -- Doctor Who
meets Scooby Doo, at a rave, with drugs."  - Tim Bonafide (1999)

Sylvester McCoy Speaks!
"The character of the Doctor is very interesting.  He loves the earth,
and he loves the people of earth as well.  He is very passionate about
human beings, and the soil they live on.  He'd probably be a very good
gardener the Doctor, don't you think?

 I think the Doctor's weakness though, is that he's always stumbling
into situations that he doesn't really have the social savvy to deal with.
For instance, if the Doctor went to a madcap orgy in Somerset, the first
thing he'd notice were the curtains were a bit stained.  He wouldn't
notice the fetish bondage attire of the participants at all, because
of the sort of people he usually travels with - he probably thinks all
humans dress that way.  He's not always observant of the little details
about people.  And I think eventually someone at this orgy would think
he's putting on this weird little act.  Trying to be above all the lust
and energy around him.  When, in fact, he was just clueless!  So, he'd
just start eating a cracker and try to talk to this misguided person
about his travels with Nelson, when the person was much more interested
in the possibilities of illicit uses of his question mark umbrella.

 So, he is distant, alien.  Not uncaring.  Not cruel.  Just gormless.
In a really, intelligent, friendly way.

 And so I tried to bring these elements into my performance.  I got off
on a strange foot as the Doctor, because in my first scene as the
regular Doctor, I was wearing this strange wig that made me look like
Harpo Marx.  I was meant to be taking the piss out of Colin Baker, and
it all came very naturally, but I was worried people would see that
first scene and think 'Oh no!  The poor man's hair hasn't regenerated!
He's stuck like that for life!'

 But it was very relaxing to start work on Doctor Who.  I just had to
remember not to bump into monsters, and not to break props.  The tetraps
were very friendly chaps.  I used to sit around and have a nice smoke
with them between takes."

Rumors & Facts -

  The Sylvester McCoy era gets off to a rather bad start as the viewer
is given no indication whatsoever of the reason for the regeneration or
why the 7th Doctor should have such an ugly wig in his possession.

 The circumstances that created the difficulties in filming a proper
regeneration sequence were quite frankly, bizarre.


 "Well, it was a hectic time.  Not only was I trying my hardest to make
sure Sylvester McCoy was relaxing into the role of the new Doctor, but...
of course, I still hadn't brought myself to telling Colin about getting
axed.  And so, I was paying for these new adventures to be written
and filmed, and it was very scary.  Sort of like juggling two lovers.
In one studio, we had the official new Doctor, with the best props and
guest actors we could afford.  So that was like, you know, your wife and
kids, the safe stable relationship. All out in the open and above board.

 At nights though...well, we were filming Colin's stories in what
basically amounted to a large tent erected in a car park at the BBC's
Elstree Studios.  We didn't have all the proper rights to do that, and
that relationship was sort of like -- the intense, burning, sexual thrill
that you knew was doomed.  You knew that the BBC had no idea what was
going on, and you knew that it was wrong, but you felt free to do things
that the BBC would never let you do.  It was liberating.

 And we couldn't ask Colin to come in and film a regeneration scene
with Sylvester because while we were filming "Romp with the Rani" for
television, we were also shooting "Doctor Who Versus The Krikketmen"
by Douglas Adams with Colin Baker.

 It was insane.  Just an example of a mis-spent youth I suppose."

 It was then that the interview took a slightly ugly turn...

"So, tell me a little bit about Doctor Who Versus the Krikketmen.
What became of that?"

 "Well, the show was fine, I thought a pretty solid adventure.  If
it hadn't been filmed in a tent in a car park, I reckon I could have
sold it to the BBC, along with the other serials we did, as a special
series.  I held onto the tapes and scripts for years.  But, a few
years ago, I had some money problems, so I sold them all on eBay to
this guy named Scarfboy69.  He was the typical sort of Doctor Who fanboy,
paid good money.  I think we squeezed a good 8000 out of him for the
whole package, and that was definitely greater than the budget to
the whole serial!"

  "Ummm.....actually I paid 10,000."

  "Oh...ahh...yes, well, I was thinking of a totally different serial
there.  YEAH!  We sold a lot.  I was thinking of Pyramids of Time."

  "Okay, yeah, I only paid 1500 for that one."

  "Right.  Well.  Scarfboy69.  I've got some props from The Hand of Doom
in my garage.  Well, I say props, they're actually just flashlights.

  "Ummm...did Colin Baker actually use the prop?"

  " a Voord."


 Meanwhile, back in the world of Romp With the Rani....

  Pip and Jane Baker had originally envisioned Lakerytan as a world of
forests, but it was feared that this would look too obviously like rural
England, and so it was decided the planet should instead look like the
inside of a disused quarry - to avoid confusion.

  The Doctor Who team had begun to believe that the audience was picking
up on the "disused quarry" motif as something essentially Doctor Who.
And the audience apparently were confused and refused to believe that
scenes were actually from Doctor Who unless they saw the trademark quarry
landscapes in the background.  Even if the clips showed men with 17 foot
long scarves battling Cybermen, apparently the audience assumed they were
watching a wild life documentary gone horribly wrong.

  A totally new, completely computer generated, title sequence was
introduced along with the 7th Doctor, complete with a new more modern
styled logo.  JST was initially displeased with the face in the opening
sequence, and remained so until he was reminded that it was Sylvester
McCoy's face and therefore completely appropriate for the sequence.

 After spending several months designing the new title sequence, the
project was thrown for a loop when JST asked "Why isn't the Doctor
winking at the audience?"

  JST admitted he had never asked for this, or suggested this in the
dozens of meetings they'd had reviewing all the variations of the
sequence.  But now that the idea had occurred to him he was happy to
scrap the whole sequence and start over again from scratch...if they
could have the Doctor winking.

  One of the artists suggested just roughly slapping a BIGGER head over
the existing head in the title sequence and just making that blink.
Apparently, that satisfied JST...even though millions of people were
now under the impression that the Doctor was coming on to them.


 Okay, so I looked through my collection, it's still mostly in boxes
from my move.  I flipped through a treatment for Doctor Who Versus the
Krikketmen, and this one sequence stuck out.  So, I'll just type it
up for you as a example from the missing stories of Colin Baker -

Excerpt from "Doctor Who Versus The Krikketmen" Episode 1:

(Setting: The planet Xylos, on a breezy weekend afternoon.  The streets
are filled with people shopping, laughing, drinking, and evolving into
hyper-intelligent penguins.

 A figure in ridiculous garb emerges from the crowd. He has spotted an
old friend admiring a busty lizard female from the Hyperion Collective,
using her long tongue to lick rat flavoured ice cream.)

Doctor: FORD!!  FORD PREFECT!!  Can it really be you?  And who's this?
        My word!  Have you got a companion?

  Ford: Oh, hello Doctor.  Yes, this is Arthur, I saved him when his
        planet got blown up.  You know how it goes.

Arthur: Honestly Ford, are you likely to know someone strange on every
        planet we happen to pass by?

        (Embarrassment, didn't mean it to come out like it sounded.
        Tries to compensate by being friendly.)

Arthur: So, you're a Doctor?

(The Doctor, showing no signs of offence pulls out a business card
and hands it to Arthur Dent.)

Doctor: I save planets.

Arthur: Really??  That sounds very impressive!  I could have used you
        at the start of all this nonsense.  Ford, you never told me you
        knew anyone in the planet saving business.

  Ford: It's bollocks Arthur.  Don't get excited.

Arthur: (Whispering) You mean he doesn't save planets??  What is he, a
        crackpot?  I should have seen it from the coat I guess.  But,
        after the last few weeks...he looks, almost...normal.

  Ford: No, he does save planets Arthur.  He's just terribly pretentious
        about it.  I mean read the man's business card!

        "The Doctor, I Save Planets In The Nick Of Time, Free of Charge!
         Happy Customers On Every Occasion, Guaranteed.
         Be The Envy Of Other Oppressed Planets, Be Saved By A Time Lord
         First Class."

 Arthur: Oh yes!  That does sound terribly exciting!

 Doctor: It gives me something to do.

 Arthur: I say, Ford and I were about to go for a pint at a very famous
         local pub..what was it called?

   Ford: (Deeply annoyed) The Vogon and Firelighter.

 Arthur: Yes!  Would you like to come along Doctor?  If you're not to
         busy with this saving planets thing.

 Doctor: The Vogon and Firelighter...that's where Grimbus Neeblix
         Thrantool was born, wasn't it?  I am a history buff as well you
         Unfortunately I will not have time to join you for a refreshing
         This planet is doomed.

 Arthur: Doomed?  That's a bit dramatic.  Is it...terribly doomed?

 Doctor: Oh yes!  In fact this whole planet will be completely destroyed
         in four hours.

   Ford: Well that's fine!  Our bus leaves in two-and-half hours.
         That's plenty of time for a few dozen rounds of Fermented

 Doctor: Yes, but that would only give me 90 minutes to save the planet
         whilst intoxicated.
         I've done it before, mind you.  But this is a really, very,
         terribly, seriously doomed planet.  And it would be better if
         I was on absolutely best form.

   Ford: Well, no reason to hold you back!  Rushed for time as you are.
         Nice meeting you again, stay in touch.

 Doctor: I was certain I could count on your support, Ford.

   Ford: Life is one big surprise.  BYE!!

(The Doctor looks deeply disappointed, and sulks away.)

 Arthur: Well that was deeply rude.  I thought he was a charming fellow.

   Ford: Don't be fooled Arthur.  He's dangerous.  Do you know what his
         game is?  He hypnotizes young, impressionable, beautiful women
         into travelling with him.

 Arthur: Really??  Do you know how to do that?

   Ford: No.  (Voiced in grave envy with a tint of hatred)

 Arthur: Oh.

   Ford: Come on Arthur.  I need a drink.