Posted in Science fiction, Television

The Mark of the Rani

I’ve recently watched the classic Doctor Who story, The Mark of the Rani, which was partly filmed at the Ironbridge Gorge Museum. It sees The The Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) and Peri Brown (Nicola Bryant) arrive amidst the chaos of a riot in the mining village of Killingworth, in19th-century England, where Miners are being mysteriously transformed into ferocious violent thugs and vandals, attacking men and machinery. They meet local landowner, Lord Ravensworth, and The Doctor’s investigations take him to the local washhouse where he encounters renegade Time Lord The Master (Anthony Ainley) and another Renegade Time Traveller called the Rani (the late, great Kate O’Mara), who is extracting Cerebrospinal fluid from the local Miners to use on her home planet of Miasmia Gloria after her previous failed experiments damaged the health of the inhabitants. However this is making the Miners aggressive and violent (I’m not surprised, I wouldn’t be too happy About it either)

However The Master does not Trust the Rani. Meanwhile the Doctor discovers the Rani’s unethical and evil plan to harvest the cerebrospinal fluid and take it back to Miasmia Gloria but, finds himself in mortal peril when he is caught by the Rani. However a timely intervention by engineer George Stephenson, saves him and he later discovers that Stephenson has planned a meeting of all the greatest scientific and Engineering geniuses of the Industrial Age in Killingworth. Elsewhere Stephenson’s young aide Luke Ward encounters the Master who hypnotises him into helping harvest their minds for his own nefarious purposes. The Doctor meanwhile discovers more about the Rani’s evil plans by hiding in her TARDIS next to a Tyrannosaurus Embryo.

Peri then finds herself in mortal peril as she makes for Redfern Dell to collect plants containing a certain chemical, and discoversthat it has been booby trapped by the Rani, as does Luke, who is not so lucky. Later the Doctor and Peri go to confront the Master and The Rani, sadly though they manage to escape, however the Doctor has sabotaged the controls of the Rani’s TARDIS with some interesting and rather alarming results.

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