Say Something Nice – Doctor Who: The Azteks

In an effort to find something quick that can be written as part of Daily Doctor Who, we are kicking off Say Something Nice, where I look back at each of the Doctor Who stories and pull out one cool thing about it.

(Daily Doctor Who #41)

Read the previous entry here. Today, we continue with the series’ sixth story…

The Azteks

Featuring the same core cast as all the episodes so far–William Hartnell as the Doctor, William Russell as Ian Chesterton, Jacqueline Hill as Barbara Wright, and Carole Ann Ford as Susan Foreman. Written by John Lucarotti (who also wrote Marco Polo) and directed by John Crockett.

Individual episodes are called The Temple of Evil, The Warriors of Death, The Bride of Sacrifice, and The Day of Darkness.

Say Something Nice…

(Named for Missy–aka the Master–and her catchphrase from her first full appearance in Dark Water)

The Azteks is one of my favorite First Doctor stories. It features the BBC’s typically good historical costumes and sets, and tells a compelling story. It plays well into both Barbara’s ideals and values, as well as her backstory as a history teacher=-and Jacqueline Hill is excellent. It deals with some interesting concepts about both the ability and advisability of changing history, even if it’s not fully consistent with everything that happens on the show later on. And though Barbara is the focus, all the regulars get material to work with–including the Doctor getting accidentally engaged!

But because we’re equal-opportunity fans here, we’re not going to only be sycophantically complimentary.

You craven-hearted spineless poltroon!

(Another cry from the Master, but not exactly a catch-phrase, this time from The Deadly Assassin)

I loved the fight scenes between Ian and Ixta (including when Ian beats Ixta with his thumb)…in the novelization of the story. But in the episode, it all looks incredibly hokey and badly staged.

Catch you next time!

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