Say Something Nice – Doctor Who: The Highlanders

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

(Daily Doctor Who #256)

Read the previous entry here. Today, we continue with the fourth story of the show’s fourth season…

The Highlanders

The cast of the story starts off with the same group as last time: Patrick Troughton as the Doctor, Anneke Wills as Polly and Michael Craze as Ben Jackson. Frazer Hines joins the show as new companion Jamie McCrimmon.

The serial is written by Elwyn Jones and Gerry Davis, and directed by Hugh David.

All four episodes of this story is missing from the BBC archives, and so far it hasn’t been re-created in animation. .

Say Something Nice…

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

The Highlanders introduces Jamie McCrimmon, one of the show’s most popular and enduring companions. Like many of these early stories, The Highlanders is completely missing from the archives, but reading over it’s plot it looks like a good story for both Ben and Polly, featuring lots of stuff of Polly and guest star Kirsty having deal with tricky situations, and a sequence where Ben survives being chucked overboard a ship into freezing water by successfully swimming to shore. Also, it seems that the Doctor has a fun scene where he uses a flag to distract an enemy and then disarms him.

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)

The story seems to be almost entirely about the Doctor and his companions just trying to escape, rather then do anything more interesting. The first cliffhanger has Polly falling into a pit and being menaced by someone but it just turns out to be her friend that she just parted with a moment earlier. The story also involves the Doctor disguising himself as a number of different personas, which I feel like would probably have been a bit cringe-inducing.

Catch you next time!

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