THE DOCTOR WHO RATINGS GUIDE: BY FANS, FOR FANS

Black Orchid
Dreams of Empire
BBC
The Enemy of the World

Episodes 6 The Doctor and Salamander
Story No# 40
Production Code PP
Season 5
Dates Dec. 23, 1967 -
Jan. 27, 1968

With Patrick Troughton, Frazier Hines, Deborah Watling.
Written by David Whitaker. Script-edited by Peter Bryant.
Directed by Barry Letts. Produced by Innes Lloyd.

Synopsis: The Doctor, Jamie and Victoria are caught in the schemes of Salamander, and ruthless dictator who looks exactly like the Doctor.

Note: Episode 3 is available on The Troughton Years. Audio recordings and telesnap reconstructions of this story are available at Missing Doctor Who Reconstructions & Audios.


Reviews

A Review by Mark Parmerter 6/10/97

The Enemy of the World, written by Doctor Who veteran David Whitaker, is unique for two reasons: first, for its complete lack of monsters, in an otherwise monster-filled Season Five; and secondly, Patrick Troughton's virtuoso performance as both the Second Doctor and the evil dictator Salamander. In fact, The Enemy of the World largely succeeds thanks to an exciting and action-filled script, as well as finely detailed characterisations. More reminiscent of a James Bond adventure than a typical Doctor Who script, this story does ultimately succumb to padding due to its six episode length; however, the pace seldom slows and the plot is intriguing.

The highlight here is Troughton's not-quite-over-the-top portrayal of Salamander, the most ruthless and murderous human villian to emerge in Season Five; unfortunately, the Second Doctor and Salamander confront each other only once, during the climax, due to technical difficulties during recording. Other notable performances include Bill Kerr as the traitorous Giles Kent, and blonde-bombshell Mary Peach as Astrid. The Enemy of the World would have been a much tighter story had it been 4 rather than 6 episodes, yet the depth of characterisation might have suffered as a result. As it is, this story succeeds in showing the great versatility of both Patrick Troughton as an actor, and the format of Doctor Who. Only episode 3 currently exists in the BBC archives, but you can still enjoy Ian Marter's fine novelisation of this story, if you can lay your hands on a copy.


Disused Yeti? by Robert Smith? Update 21/3/01

I'm going to do something rather unusual. I'm going to review a story I've never seen. Obviously it's tough to review something I haven't had the opportunity to judge fully, but I think I know enough about the story to make some pertinent observations. I've seen the surviving episode, the novelisation is one of my favourites and the very lack of information only makes it more appealing. Besides, Season five is a classic season, everyone knows that, so I'm going to review my all time favourite Troughton story.

That's right, I'm talking about Enemy of the World.

Season five is hailed as a classic by fans. In true fan thinking, "classic" means that it retools a workmanlike plot from the previous seasons, adds some spooky lighting and repeats itself six times. The formula comes complete with gruff-but-likeable leader, a variety of classic monsters using stealth for the first half of the story and invariably controlled by a more evolved creature in the latter half. There are human pawns under mind control and the monsters find themselves in classic gothic settings: lurking in caves, underground, or in the (malfunctioning) machinery. We see the base-under-siege formula in action so often in this season that the expression etches itself into fan consciousness for all time, equating itself to "good" just as surely as the comfortable reappearances of the Daleks or UNIT would equal quality in the Hartnell and Pertwee eras respectively.

It's also little surprise that Season 5 can be hailed as such a classic -- after all, most of its stories barely exist. Fury from the Deep comes out of it best, and it's no coincidence that that's the only story with no surviving episodes... but Web of Fear is right behind. With only episode one in existence, there's little opportunity to judge the story as a whole. It's not hard to buy into fandom's version of having respect for the dead.

And yet, sitting quietly at the heart of this formulaic season of creeping horror is a hi-tech, high-action, monsterless story with a very human villain.

Enemy of the World is the oft-overlooked gem of season 5. Which is surprising, considering just how bad Wheel in Space is, but for some reason it's this story that slips under the radar, not the one with interminable scenes of Cybermen floating through space. On the other hand, Wheel is the fourth story in two years where the Cybermen infiltrate a group of isolated humans. It's a lot easier classified than its anomalous sibling.

Viewers at the time might have been forgiven for not noticing just how different Enemy of the World was. The first half of the story gives us lots of hints about something lurking below the surface. The production team is clearly playing with our expectations, suggesting exactly the sort of gothic menace lurking in caves that we've been watching all year. We're desperately waiting for something like a giant insect to be hiding down there and when we finally discover the true nature of the menace... we're completely shocked and more than a little disturbed to learn that it's nothing more than a group of deceived humans. Having thought Salamander was the pawn of the monster, the story turns our expectations around and shows us that Salamander himself is the monster (made even more disturbing given that this monster has the Doctor's face). He's already got the entire world under his control and he's still killing of thousands of innocents and working his handpicked team of experts to death under the pretence that they're the sole survivors of a desolate world. All so his power can be absolute.

I don't know about the audience in 1968, but that scares the hell out of me. Sure, Yetis in the underground might be a scary concept, but I'm not too likely to run into one on the Toronto subway. The idea that our political leaders might be fully prepared to deceive, imprison or even kill us for reasons we can't possibly understand is not only terrifyingly plausible, it's not a million miles away from Patrick McGoohan's ITV series, The Prisoner, which was airing at the same time.

The Doctor has one small, filmed insert in the surviving episode (where, incidentally, he makes one of the most telling comments on the state of the sixties stories: "People spend all their time making nice things and then other people come along and break them"). And yet, this story is Troughton's acting tour de force. He gets a long-promised dual role (he agreed to play the Doctor if he could dress up and play more than one role in the series) and by all accounts he makes the final confrontation a chilling end to the story.

The Salamander makeup is incredible. The first time I saw that infamous photo (the one that's mysteriously on the cover of The Murder Game) I reeled in shock when the caption said who the actor was. And the voice, something Troughton finds hard to disguise in other roles, is well done without being overblown.

The story shoehorns Doctor Who into a Bondian action tale with surprising aplomb. The companions are given a great deal to do, Salamander has appropriately enormous plans involving the destruction of the world, and the locations range from Australia to Hungary. It's a story that's thinking big and showing us that Doctor Who is far more versatile than we thought. And all from the series' original script editor.

Enemy of the World needs acting rather than money to succeed and episode three shows that it's in just the right place for this. True, the budget is so low that Denes is guarded in a corridor... but this is a beautiful scene played absolutely straight by a very professional supporting cast. Add in Troughton's acting triumph in Salamander and you have a story that plays to its strengths. And with the budget obviously feeling stretched, the lack of monster probably saves it from looking ridiculous.

I've seen a grand total of one sixth of the story, and reputedly the weakest installment at that. But I was completely blown away by the surviving episode on The Troughton Years. Everything I know about this story hints at a wider and more powerful piece of television. It's a bold experiment in a season full of supposed classics, but I'd venture a guess that the strong performances and (relatively) high production values that make most of its Season Five siblings fan favourites would similarly bring Enemy of the World into classic status. If only we could see the rest of it.


A Review by Stuart Gutteridge 21/9/01

Often overlooked because it features no monsters, a first for Season 5, The Enemy Of The World is compared to James Bond, something which isn`t really fair to say as it doesn`t feature any major stunts or action sequences as such. The helicopter chase on the beach is not too dissimilar to Planet Of The Spiders and the idea of the TARDIS in flight with its doors open was explored in Planet Of Giants.

If anything The Enemy Of The World is more like Mission Impossible complete with The Doctor pretending to be Salamander and backstabbing aplenty. Indeed the idea seems to be to showcase Patrick Troughton`s acting skills, as he certainly steals the show, with both Victoria and Jamie somewhat out of character. That said David Whitaker`s scripts provide sparkling dialogue and great supporting characters, notably Griffin the Chef who isn`t used nearly enough. The only real gripe I have is that at six episodes it is somewhat overlong.


Doubly dramatic by Tim Roll-Pickering 17/12/01

Based on the Change of Identity reconstruction.

This is one of the most unusual stories in the series so far, fitting into virtually no existing sub-genre. It does show much promise and has been unfairly criticised on the basis of its solitary surviving third episode.

The story opens dramatically with the chase on the beach and it is here that the story appears to have been heavily influenced by the James Bond films. Afterwards it turns into a political mystery set in the future with the additional twist that Salamander is virtually identical to the Doctor! Unlike the previous The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve, both Doctor and double appear throughout each episode and the plot manages to pull this off successfully, even when the Doctor impersonates Salamander and then to cap it all off Salamander impersonates the Doctor! Although the Doctor has little to do in the earlier part of the story, merely observing and seeking to reach his own conclusions about Salamander, this is by no means a weakness as it gives some good material to Jamie and Victoria as they head off to Central Europe to both gather evidence and aid the anti-Salamander faction there. David Whitaker's script is as ever full of strong characterisation, making all the characters stand out from major ones such as Donald Bruce and Fariah to minor parts like the chef Griffin or Denes.

As with many stories of this period, The Enemy of the World benefits from the successful interaction between the various different factors of production with the result that the story's strong script is dramatically brought to life. This is a highly downbeat tale in which it becomes hard to tell who is 'good' and who is 'bad' and even some of the 'goodies' such as Denes and Fariah are gunned down. The international dimension to the story also works well (the main other area where the Bond influence is clear).

The guest acting is a strong mix from Milton Jones' sadistic Benik to Colin Douglas' solid Donald Bruce. In playing Salamander, Patrick Troughton proves just how versatile a performer he was, making the Mexican a highly convincing villain and making a clear distinction between the two characters without going over the top. Bill Kerr gives perhaps the strongest performance, making Giles Kent a true politician seeking not the common good but his own empowerment. The scheming and counter-scheming is highly complex but never impossible to follow, making the story all the more rewarding and one of the most overlooked of all the Patrick Troughton stories. 9/10

This reconstruction is similar to other Change of Identity productions in that it combines a running script with the telesnaps and a few publicity photographs. The lack of telesnaps for Episode 4 proves no problem whatsoever with the careful reuse of telesnaps from other episodes covering up this gap. This is a fine reconstruction and good example of the Change of Identity style. 9/10


A Review by Paul Williams 31/3/03

The Enemy of the World suceeds by virtue of being different. In a season full of monsters attacking isolated humans in claustrophobic bases this story tells of a threat to the whole world from one man and he is much more convicing than the Yeti and Ice Warriors. It is one of the few stories that can be viewed, or heard, in one sitting without any sense of boredom and benefits from having natural, rather than contrived cliffhangers.

David Whittaker suceeds in fleshing out even the minor characters such as the thugs in episode one, the chef in episode three and Colin who almost makes believable the absurd reason for 30 people spending five years in an underground bunker. This surrounding is reminiscent of a Bond film and the villain too could have fought 007 on the big screen, especially in the early scenes where snippets of humour and a casual approach to death disguise his lack of confidence. However this would not work as a Bond movie because there isn't a Bond. James might have relished the unnecessary violence and the chance to assassinate his enemy but the Doctor is opposed to both. Essentially this is a black and white tale of good defeating evil even if you're not sure until episode six who is on which side. It matters not that the Doctor's involvement is not essential, it is Astrid who rescues the underground people and thus brings about Salamander's downfall. One could also argue that Bruce would have been convinced of his own accord over time.

The only letdown is the rushed conclusion but this picture of a desperate man trying to escape is perhaps more believable than the forced showdown between hero and villain so often seen.


A Review by Paul Rees 1/8/03

Enemy of the World is not one of the best remembered of Troughton's stories, but I certainly feel that it is a lot better than its reputation would suggest.

Troughton here is on top form - both as the Doctor and as his evil double, Salamander. His Mexican accent when playing the part of Salamander is wonderful, and he succeeds in bringing to life the dictator's duplicity and immorality. The scenes towards the end are particularly effective, with the audience at times being unsure as to whether they are watching Salamander or the Doctor.

Victoria and Jamie are also on form here, although at times Jamie does appear to be a little out of character; in particular, his apparent rescuing of Salamander in order to win his trust is a little unbelievable. Overall, however, the acting is of a top-notch standard with the sadistic Benik being particularly chilling. Kent is also well portrayed, and is a sympathetic character right up to the point at which his true motivation is revealed; that particular twist came as a shock to me, as did Bruce's eventual metamorphosis from Salamander's lackey to courageous battler against tyranny. The pessimistic chef ("I'm going for a walk... it'll probably rain!") makes for an entertaining piece of light relief.

Going by the surviving episode, the production values are fairly high. Stock footage of volcanic eruptions are certainly used, but to generally good effect. Where this story does fall down is in its uneven pacing: it certainly lags at times, and probably would have been better as a four-parter rather than as a six-parter. That said, the plot actually hangs together pretty well, with Salamander's descent into his underground cavern and the introduction of Swan and company serving to pep things up a little halfway through.

There are a couple of things which don't seem quite right, however: for example, it is scarcely conceivable that Salamander would walk around unarmed, but that is clearly implied by his use of a metal bar to attack Swan in episode five. Similarly, once having attacked Swan, surely he would have taken care to ensure that he finished him off completely? Such carelessness is inconceivable in such a merciless dictator such as Salamander. Oh, and the police siren we hear just prior to the raid on Kent's trailer in episode three is just plain silly. Still, at least it gave the Doctor time to hide. . .

Overall, this story is certainly above average, and the ending is pretty satisfactory with no loose ends left untied. 7/10


Doctor Bond: The Original by Joe Ford 24/2/04

What is the beef with this story? In amongst all the treasures in season five is a story that is so unique and set apart from the rest it deserves points simply for the audacity of its placement! No it doesn't have any monsters in it but I personally don't see that as a criticism, indeed given the show's underwhelming budget this can only be a good thing!

I am not a huge fan of the James Bond genre. As Mike Morris points out quite adeptly in a recent review they have far more to recommend them than I might suggest. And David Whitaker manages to take all the good stuff (the epic feel with numerous locations, the grandiose villain, the wonderful conceit of a secret underground lair...) and jettisons my biggest problem (the sickening macho posturing, the needless sex and violence) and whip up a dramatic, filling story that sustains its six episodes with ease. How a story as good as this can be universally ignored and B-movie trash like Tomb of the Cybermen is praised to the high heavens is beyond me.

There is a detailed and twist-mad plot that never stops surprising and entertaining. Listening to the story over a week it is impossible to link episode one and six as they are so different in tone. Starting on the coastline of Australia and finishing in a nuclear shelter in Europe, the story takes you on a gripping ride through the lives of some fascinating characters.

I cannot proceed much further into the review without mentioning what a wonderful creation Salamander is, played with undisguised glee by the ever-impressive Patrick Troughton. I honest don't think that Troughton gave a better performance than he did as Salamander, there were times when his Doctor was cheekier for sure but his star turn as the villain as the piece, the Mexican with delusions of grandeur is nothing short of masterful. The story rides on his convincing as an evil dictator and is such a success because of it. Like a slap in the face we suddenly see how much of his 'Doctor' acting is layered with characterisation and why he was chosen for the part in the first place.

No Bond story is complete without its baddie and adding in the glorious cliche of looking like the hero The Enemy of the World manages to do something quite special with its protagonist/antagonist dynamic. It allows Whitaker to have all sorts of fun with the Doctor impersonating Salamander and vice verse, and various characters scratching their heads in confusion as the villain/hero act seriously out of character. Come episode six it is impossible to tell them apart, Whitaker including the audience in his chaos of identity!

And what a complete and total bastard he is too! Get this; he is systematically taking over the world by 'predicting' a series of natural disasters and discrediting the leaders of each zone when they fail to take notice of his ludicrous claims. Failing to mention that he himself is the cause behind the earthquakes, having lured a number of extremely gullible people underground and convinced them that there is in fact a nuclear war in progress on the surface and having them cause the earthquakes to wipe out the enemy! Not content with this he sets about poisoning people, manipulating others, shooting people in the back and smashing crow bars over their heads... it is wonderful to see how the charismatic leader twist everyone around his finger, it is easy to see how they are so easily duped when he is so clearly the 'benefactor' of the Earth. Plus Salamander gets all the best lines ("You try, you fail, so what huh? The moon doesn't fall out of the sky!").

The story bravely drives on without the Doctor, Troughton's energetic portrayal of both characters meaning one had to be left behind more, indeed the Doctor only appears in one scene of the surviving episode. However this lapse allows us to see just how resourceful and engaging companions Jamie and Victoria are. I would like to take this opportunity to mention just how completely gorgeous Jamie looks in the guard's uniform, dashing around firing at things and causing all sorts of trouble he looks extremely HOT. There is one line in the story that I think sums up Jamie perfectly, when the ultra camp yet still quite scary Benik threatens Victoria he suddenly snaps, "Hurt her and I'll kill you." It pretty much rounds his character up, his unwavering devotion and loyalty to his friends proving why he was such a highlight in the companion hierarchy. He is in all respects the 'macho man' of the piece but he is played with such good humour and humility by Frazer Hines the role he is shoehorned into seems perfectly natural.

But what of Victoria? Who said she was a useless screamer, well me actually but I obviously had not been paying attention to this story. In the heart of her short term in the TARDIS she appears to be having a whale of a time in this story, throwing herself into action. I love the scenes in the kitchen (who doesn't?) with Griff the chef, her enthusiasm rubbing the cynical chef up the wrong way ("That's great, just great... yeah I've got a job for you all right PEEL THOSE SPUDS YEAH NOW!" Hehehe!). In a story that is all about real people Victoria fits in perfectly and her involvement infiltrating Salamander's headquarters and trying to release Denes is a thankful change of routine for the character.

It is so refreshing to see an abundance of foreign actors involved. In particular Carmen Munroe is especially good as Fariah, Salamander's food taster. It is through her tortured eyes that we see just how evil her boss really is, in many ways a tragic character as she is destined to die as soon as she turns to the Doctor for help. With Fariah the story is brought down to a very human level, he treats her like a slave and she later admits he has hold over him over some indiscretion, as the Doctor brilliantly observes "Nobody's perfect" when he discovers she is being blackmailed.

The secondary cast are given appropriate screen time and wind up being the most defined of the year. Giles Kent is another piece of work, even more manipulative than Salamander, in an extraordinary twist it is revealed that the man who claims he wants Salamander dead throughout the story is in fact in league with him... and wants to take over as world dictator. If David Whitaker had not taken the time to build a slow but convincing picture of Kent's outcast and abuse, his utter hatred of a man who ruined his career then this twist would not be as powerful as it is. It is superb case of sleight of hand and is pulled off with great aplomb.

Astrid Ferrier is our 'Bond girl' of the piece and Mary Peach pulls off the role with conviction. She flirts her way past the guards, lies very convincingly, has a mean backhand and flies a helicopter with an adept touch! Astrid is caught in the middle of Salamander and Kent's rivalry and her disgust towards her 'boss' when she learns the truth is riveting drama. She dominates the soundtrack and I feel would have made an excellent companion.

I love how the story diverts off seemingly at random halfway through, just when you think you know where the plot is going Salamander visits his underground shelter and it opens out on an even more grand scale. Similarly I would love to see the opening episode of the story, a budgeted version of a James Bond pre-credits sequence with a shootout on the beach, rescue in a helicopter and then stalked through Astrid's house. It's all very exciting and expensive looking and quite a coup considering the low budget feel of the surviving episode.

It is so nice to have a story about people instead of monsters, it means the plot and characters haven't dated much at all and the story still holds up well today. A contemporary story with no monsters is practically unheard of but Whitaker pulls it off with considerable style thanks to his eye for glorious dialogue, power driven plot and appealing characterisation. A mostly handsome production doesn't harm matters either.

Doctor Who with a little touch of James Bond... who would have thought it could be so cool?


A Review by Brett Walther 9/3/04

The Enemy of the World is a magnificent exercise in world building. For six episodes, you're immersed in a completely believable near-future Earth that's divided into continental zones, assisted by technology that doesn't strain credulity by any means. Politicians range from well-loved and respected figures (Alexander Denes) to would-be dictators (Salamander) whose propaganda machines conceal their nefarious activities, presenting them instead as the saviours of humanity.

This being my first venture into the world of Doctor Who on audio, I was concerned that without the visual element, I'd get bored quickly. I very quickly found that these concerns were totally unfounded, as the pace never lets up throughout the six episodes. The Enemy of the World is perhaps the most natural audio-only story of the Troughton years. David Whitaker's dialogue is top-notch, aided by Frazer Hines' narration, which is superb, yet is kept to a minimum, as the script isn't too dissimilar from an audio play to begin with.

Although I would dearly love to see the five missing episodes returned to the BBC archives (and the surviving Part Three is nowhere near as bad as some would make it out to be, by the way), I was quite content to dream up David Whitaker's vivid vision of Earth in the not-so-distant future in my own head.

It's a nice twist to begin the story with the Doctor hell-bent on having a seaside vacation. Troughton is at his most loveable and childlike as he splashes about in the surf, giddily waving to his companions on the shore to join him, despite their obvious disapproval. Even after the time travelers become embroiled in an assassination attempt, the Doctor is refreshingly reluctant to become involved in Giles Kent's scheming. He needs proof that Salamander is indeed the maniac that Kent makes him out to be, and it's only through Kent's ruse of tipping off Salamander's security forces to the Doctor's whereabouts that the Doctor adopts the identity of the ruthless dictator.

The Enemy of the World presents what is perhaps the strongest cast of the Troughton years. Bill Kerr as Giles Kent is completely convincing as a man desperate to restore his good name, ruthlessly coercing the Doctor into helping his aims. The best roles, though, are those belonging to Carmen Munroe and Mary Peach, as Fariah and Astrid, respectively. Fariah is uber-cool as the woman forced into a life of servitude by a man she despises, and I love how she gets her kicks by letting the spineless Fedorin unwittingly test Salamander's wine, informing him afterwards that it may have been poisoned.

Fariah's brutal murder in Part Four raises the stakes of the game beyond most other Doctor Who stories. Thanks to Munroe's brilliant performance, Fariah really came to life as a three-dimensional character, and to depict her death in such a painful and cruel manner drives home the villainy of Salamander and his cronies with the force of a gunshot. The death of Swan later on in the story echoes the utter injustice of life under Salamander's regime. No one is safe -- not even the good guys...

In addition to these shocking deaths, Enemy abounds with memorable scenes. It's impossible to deny getting goosebumps when Swan discovers a scrap of newspaper stuck to one of Salamander's food crates and realizes life on the surface isn't exactly as how Salamander had described. Although the audience already knows Salamander's deception, this adds a palpable sense of urgency to the understandable "cabin fever" being experienced by Colin and the others in the bunker.

It's been said that Victoria and Jamie are shoe-horned into the futuristic spies in this story, and I can't disagree more. They're hardly confident in their attempts to infiltrate Salamander's world, and constantly need guidance and reassurance throughout their masquerade via Astrid. In fact, their characterizations are nicely in keeping with their historical roots, as in the first episode alone, Jamie needs explanation as to what helicopters and hovercrafts are. And how sweet is it that Jamie introduces Victoria to Salamander as his girlfriend!

The pace never lets up through the six episodes -- rarely has Doctor Who captivated my attention so fully that each 23-minute segment seemed to end moments after it began. Add to that the mind-blowing twists in the last ten minutes that left me reeling -- I certainly hadn't suspected Salamander had a secret partner in crime, nor is it immediately apparent that the man who meets up with Jamie and Victoria at the TARDIS is not the Time Lord they expect...

Sheer brilliance, and the first of hopefully many Doctor Who audios for this boy...

9/10


A Review by Brian May 8/7/04

The Enemy of the World is one of the incomplete stories that I would most like to see recovered. Why? Because it's so different. It's well known as the monster-less story from season 5, the ultimate "monster season". It's been described as the proverbial sore thumb, when it really should be hailed as a breath of fresh air. The monster stories provided some of the most enjoyable Who yarns, that's to be sure, but this is a nice break. It's Doctor Who doing James Bond, a mix that had never been done before (you could argue Mission to the Unknown but, as it features no regulars, it's not what you would call entirely representative). There's political machinations and machiavellian skulduggery, a would-be dictator plotting to take over the world, companions becoming spies, continent hopping (well, only two, but the dual settings of Australia and Hungary give it a large scale, global feel). There's also a couple of beautiful, sexy and dangerous women.

David Whitaker was always an excellent writer, whether penning short filler stories (The Edge of Destruction, The Rescue), historicals (The Crusade) or epics (The Evil of the Daleks). This is no exception; it's densely plotted and filled with terrifically realised characters. The dialogue is first rate throughout, with some excellent exchanges, including that between Fariah, the food taster, and Fedorin, when the former tricks the latter into drinking an untested beverage. Her line, "That's why it's very nice to have help for a change" is beautifully droll. There's also Astrid's reaction to the Doctor: "To me you're the most wonderful and marvellous man that's ever dropped out of the skies!" The Doctor has some gems as well: his child-like "I'm the nicest possible person!"; his glum "That's comforting anyway" when informed his death would be for a worthwhile cause; and almost every line from Griffin, the chef from Woolloomooloo, is fantastic.

It's also very well structured. Of course, for a six-part tale, it's overlong, but it doesn't really begin to drag until part five. It's a real pity episodes one and two are no longer with us. The first instalment is a terrific piece of exposition, with a good amount of action that, from the telesnaps and soundtrack, looks very impressive and high budget. The chase sequences are quite gripping (although the stock incidental music is a bit cheesy); Littlehampton substituting for Australia seems passable, while the final section of the episode, although quieter, sets up the plot well.

Episode two continues in the same vein. The scenes in the park and below the disused jetty, although shot in standard London locations, have a great cloak and dagger feel. Salamander is introduced as a right bastard. Episode three, the only surviving one, is the least typical. It's the slowest and most talky. It has no action scenes at all - with the exception of the attempt to rescue Denes at the end, which is badly edited and therefore very confusing. This episode also has the infamous guarding the prisoner in the corridor scene, but it's a bit unfair to judge the story solely on this; elsewhere in the episode we see the impressive sets and interiors of the Presidential Palace. The aforementioned Griffin, the chef, is a wonderful character; he features in this episode only, making it the perhaps the best reason it has survived.

Episode four has (apparently) another great action scene - the storming of Kent's office and the subsequent escape (and the death of Fariah, which is quite tragic). It's also when the plot shifts, taking the story in a new direction. Salamander's underground shelter, and the "survivors" he is keeping prisoner, become focus of the story, with particular attention turning to Swann, Colin and Mary. However, as no telesnaps exist of this episode, we'll never see the slow, unfolding scene when Salamander travels through a variety of capsules and elevators from the records room down to the underground chamber - on television it would have been intriguing as the viewer follows him to this new location. What we have left on the soundtrack is quite dull; as nothing else is happening, we get to listen to a variety of hums and whirs for several minutes. However, the stock music used when Salamander arrives in the shelter is appropriately eerie.

Episodes five and six are where the padding begins to take over. The story is beginning to wear a bit thin; the final instalment feels very tired, while the climax is just an assortment of showdowns and escapes. Likewise, it's all a bit muddled; it's not clear if Astrid manages to free the underground dwellers from the impending explosion. However, the confrontation between the Doctor and Salamander in the TARDIS is great, and it's a true pity we're denied this.

Patrick Troughton is, as usual, excellent, being particularly on top form as Salamander. The Mexican accent isn't terrific, but he makes a great villain; all his "Have a drink", "You will stay?", "Sit down, forget it", "Drink your drink, huh?" lines carry an unease, because you're aware he's cooking something up while being so charmingly disarming. All the cast are good, especially Colin Douglas as Bruce and Bill Kerr as Kent (these two characters are excellently written mirrors of each other - Bruce is apparently on the villain's side while Kent is an ally, which is totally subverted at the end). The other standouts include Milton Johns as Benik (whose camp manner gives a creepy edge to the sadistic deputy), George Pravda as Denes, Mary Peach as Astrid, Reg Lye as Griffin, and Christopher Burgess (none of his performance as Swann has survived, unfortunately). Jamie and Victoria seem a bit out of character, what with all their undercover adventures, but they're still well portrayed. In fact, there are no bad performances.

However, one negative factor is the dreadful Australian accents of the three men at the beginning - Anton, Rod and Curly, while Kent's alternates between Australian and South African. But that's my only gripe. With only episode three - the most static - to go by, we can't really tell how Barry Letts's direction is overall. (However he's usually good, so there's no reason to fear this is any different.)

But really, what else could you want from The Enemy of the World? Doctor Who takes on the spy thriller in a stylish way, with great writing, characters and acting. An intriguing, well structured plot with a great balance of action and clever dialogue. It's slightly overlong, but there are very few stories this length that aren't. It's a pity it's judged by its sole existing episode, which is in fact the least representative one. Let's hope the other five turn up! 8.5/10


A Review by Finn Clark 18/5/06

Call me crazy if you like, but The Enemy of the World is the story for which I most want to see recovered episodes. The Web of Fear, Marco Polo... pshaw. They're good, yes, but we know what we're missing. We can hear the audios. We can make reconstructions. The Enemy of the World, on the other hand, has Troughton as Salamander. You have no idea how excited I was about this.

You see, I sometimes find Troughton sinister even when he's not trying to be. Everyone knows that he's adorable, but even when he was playing the Doctor I've occasionally shivered at an expression flitting across that craggy face. The idea of seeing him play a villain was simply delicious. I've just visited the Internet Movie Database to check his filmography and I've discovered that he played a bodysnatcher in Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell (1974) and Christopher Lee's daytime protector Klove in Scars of Dracula (1970). They will get bought. From The Enemy of the World I expected greatness and I wasn't disappointed. He's playing the Godfather! Seriously. Apart from the silly South American accent, he's doing a note-perfect Corleone four years before Francis Ford Coppola could get in on the act. You could put this performance alongside Robert de Niro and Joe Pesci in a Martin Scorcese film and no one would blink an eyelid... okay, you'd flap your ears a few times, but I'm coming to that.

The accents. Oh my sainted aunt, the accents. The Enemy of the World is bad-accent hell and if Doctor Who ever got worse than this, then I don't want to know. I swear it took me a good couple of minutes to realise that the cook Griffin was meant to be Australian. It's no coincidence that most of the good performances come from actors who aren't trying to do a voice. Troughton gets away with it, but he's the exception. Even a decent actor labouring with an accent can become wooden and unconvincing, so it shouldn't be surprising that the results here are, um, mixed. The actor's performance for me ruined a lovely character in Griffin, for instance.

However in fairness I should mention Fariah, who manages to be a strong and convincing black character only three stories after Tomb of the Cybermen. I'm sure it helps that the character wasn't written as such. The actress is good, too. Her name's Carmen Munroe and apparently these days she's a grand theatrical dame who's played Mother Courage to great acclaim. (Thanks for the information to Jim Smith.)

In other respects it's quite an interesting story. Obviously done on the cheap of course, but it's a monsterless thriller in Season Five that's somehow attracted the ridiculous tag of being like James Bond. Salamander would make a great Bond villain, but that's as far as it goes. The Enemy of the World isn't a string of action set-pieces, but a surprisingly mature tale of intrigue and double-dealing in the corridors of power. It's written by David Whitaker, remember? Basically it's a historical. The century is its only point of difference from any of Hartnell's period pieces, except that it has guns and helicopters instead of swords and horses.

Let me run through a list of ingredients. A rich and interesting cast, driven by more complex motivations than you'd get in (cough, hack) a Bond movie? Check. No monsters? Check. Power struggles between different factions? Check. Note that in all other sixties stories, the 21st century was a time of Star Trek-like global government and international harmony... but here David Whitaker's recreating the court of Richard the Lionheart or the Borgia popes, so suddenly for one story everything gets murky and sinister. The Doctor's companions suddenly having to infiltrate the enemy's camp in assumed roles? Gotcha.

The most interesting thing about this comparison is that people haven't twigged. It's a completely normal historical (and a good one), but being a 21st century Troughton story everyone expects monsters and ray guns. Even today, somehow that ludicrous James Bond label has stuck because people can't see past the trappings. It's interesting to note that unlike other SF stories which either have a definite date or don't worry about such things at all, David Whitaker intended The Enemy of the World to be set fifty years in the future. In 1968 it was set in 2018. When the Target novelisation came out in 1980 its date moved to 2030. Like Alan Moore's V For Vendetta, this story uses its near-future setting as an analogue for a historical one, close enough to our own time to feel familiar, but remote enough for us to accept jackbooted thugs in what's clearly becoming a fascist dystopia.

There were ten historicals in the show's first three seasons. Then Gerry Davis and Innes Lloyd arrived and after a couple of examples early in Season Four, the genre disappeared completely from Doctor Who... except for this one, smuggled into Season Five.

It's not easy to define the historical genre in Doctor Who. The distinction between a historical and a pseudo-historical is an odd one, but I think it's real and the crucial difference is no monsters. A pseudo-historical (e.g. The Visitation) uses its historical era as a backdrop for a straightforward tale of Doctor versus aliens, whereas a true historical finds all the drama it needs in the era and its characters. Thus we can say things like "The Caves of Androzani is a historical in SF clothes" and get an interesting insight into the story.

The Enemy of the World has the usual problems associated with being a six-parter, but it's terrific. Apart from anything else it's an excuse to watch Troughton in two roles, which will give you a fresh appreciation of his performance as the Doctor. Sorely underrated, if only because for forty years it seems that people have had a hard time recognising it for what it is.


A Review by Jason A Miller 16/9/10

Earlier reviewers on the Ratings Guide have debated whether or not The Enemy of the World is intended to be a James Bond clone. The novelization of the story seems to answer that question, with one character's telephone extension said to be "007". In the actual episode, the extension is given as "001", but given that many novelizations are based on original scripts (versus what finally made it to air), it's an open question as to whether the explicit Bond reference was either a David Whitaker wink-and-nod that got bounced by the script editor, or Ian Marter taking his side of the debate.

The Enemy of the World still feels like no other Doctor Who adventure before or since. The story is a political thriller set in a non-demoninational future, pegged by the novelization's back-cover blurb writer as taking place in 2030 (or, 50 years after the book was written). This future world is nearly entirely under the auspices of the World Zone Organization (WZO), which appears to be a thinly veiled extension of the United Nations; the Loose Cannon reconstruction of Episode 1 shows a picture of the UN headquarters at Manhattan's Turtle Bay as a stand-in for the WZO building. The meat of the six episodes are placed in Australia and Hungary, two rarely used Who locales. Hungary is such a rare Who locale that it's been featured in fewer episodes than the Macra. Meanwhile, the TARDIS crew travels around by helicopter, RV and orbital rocket; again, rarely used means of transit.

Director Barry Letts evidently worked hard at casting to augment the international feel of the story. Two actual Australian actors grace the cast: Bill Kerr plays an Australian politico and comes across as authentic, as does Reg Lye in a funny bit part as a disgruntled chef. A third Australian actor also "graces" the cast: David Nettheim portrays a hapless Soviet-accented apparatchik in the Hungary sequences. Czech-born George Pravda plays a slightly more believable Central European power broker. Also, most interestingly, Carmen Munroe plays one of the show's first fully formed black characters; Munroe was quite young at the time and in the intervening years has given herself a pretty impressive resume.

Speaking of accents, the chief villain in this story is of course played by Patrick Troughton himself, with a Mexican accent strongly inspired, it seems, by Alfonso Bedoya. Salamander, a larger-than-life Bond-type villain, is a genius scientist who uses his powers to flummox the WZO into handing him larger and larger influence. His end goals are never stated, but it doesn't really matter. He exhibits villainy both large and small: he not only causes natural disasters (thus allowing him to then "rescue" the victims, making Salamander one of the first purveyors of "hurt/comfort" fan-fic) but also blackmails Nettheim's apparatchik by tying him to an imaginary series of petty swindles and, when that doesn't work, poisons the poor guy with Alaskan wine. How suitably chilly.

The story comes in three layers: a lengthy action-adventure chase in Episode 1 in which Kerr's character recruits the Doctor to impersonate Salamander; the Hungary diversion in Episodes 2 and 3, which establishes the petty side of Salamander's villainy; and then the big reveals in the final three episodes as we learn not only how Salamander manipulates the environment, but why the Doctor is now being asked to serve as Salamander's executioner.

So not only is the plot more politically minded and globetrotting than your standard Season 5 base-under-siege Troughton runaround (and of course crammed into a studio way too small for such aspirations), but as a result the cliffhangers are more, shall we say, subtle, than is normal. The big shock to end Episode 1 is the Doctor breaking out his Mexican accent, which today would only done for laughs at the end of a David Tennant pre-credits teaser ("Allons-y, Monsieur Salamander!"). The TARDIS crew doesn't even feature in three of the other four cliffhangers. In fact, the only time that the lives of the Doctor, Jamie and Victoria are directly threatened in the entire story comes in the last five seconds of the final episode; a set-up that leads into the next story, The Web of Fear (where it's resolved in about 17 more seconds).

All this understandably makes for edge-of-your-seat viewing. I love it when Doctor Who tries just a little too hard. This story is not a good match for the series' monster-heavy format at the time; its visual goals couldn't possibly have been accomplished on a 1968 budget; and the whole idea of the Doctor's doppelganger being evil because he has a Mexican accent is, to quote John Turturro's Cuban-American pederast bowler in The Big Lebowski: "Laughable, mang." But I still found myself hoping to rush through this story faster than the one-episode-a-day ration I set for myself; I'd drag myself through work ready to rush home and see more of Salamander's harrassing petty bureaucrats.

The rest of Season 5 was more hit than miss. The surviving audio and censored clips from Fury From the Deep remain scary even today; the leftover episodes of The Ice Warriors and The Abominable Snowmen still convey something of the power that those episodes had over the young fans-turned-authors who eventually lionized them. The Enemy of the World, however, is like Salamander's Alaskan wine: it takes forever to forment, 40-odd years later the bottle looks warped and dusty, and you'd never think to sample it over something from Bordeaux... but, boy, does it still pack a killer punch.


An Enemy Old And New by Matthew Kresal 9/1/14

The last few months have been exciting for fans of Doctor Who both new and old. As exciting as the lead up to Day of the Doctor was, for fans of the old series there is perhaps nothing more exciting than the return of those much-fabled missing stories from the 1960s to the BBC. 2013 has seen not one episode, not one story but effectively two stories from the Patrick Troughton era being returned to the BBC forty-five years since they were last aired in the UK. The two stories are of course the much talked about Yeti story The Web of Fear and its immediate predecessor, an often overlooked story called The Enemy of the World for which we previously had only episode three and the audio from which to judge the story. Now that the entire story is back and out for all (or at least those who have iTunes) to see, what are we to make of it?

To date, this story has been memorable for two reasons. The first is that it was the story that gave Patrick Troughton the chance to play a dual role by also having him play the role of the villain: the would-be dictator of the world, Salamander. Perhaps nothing about the story has been better served by its rediscovery than Troughton's performances. We get to see all sorts of little moments he has as the Doctor, such as running into the sea for a swim or the toothy grin he gives when Astrid calls him wonderful and how it drops when she asks him to do something potentially dangerous.

What really stands about Troughton is his performance as Salamander. On audio, all we ever had to judge was his vocal performance though the surviving episode three hinted at more. With the entire story back, it is far easier to judge and the results are surprising. As with David Tennant in Human Nature/The Family of Blood, playing a dual role can give the actor playing the Doctor a chance to shine and reveal just what else they can do. Troughton clearly milks this for all it's worth as he presents a man with many faces: the charming and likeable public figure, the politician who manipulates and schemes, and lastly a combination of the two who keeps a group of people underground by claiming a nuclear war has taken place. By the time we see Salamander lighting up a cigar towards the end of episode four, there is no doubt in our minds that this man is every bit the villain we were told he was and it's Troughton's performance that really sells that. Between the two, this is one of Troughton's best stories, from a performance perspective at least.

The other thing this story has been known for is a strong James Bond influence. With the visuals of the story returned, we can be in no doubt about it from the many action sequences in the story, some of which have a strong James Bond feel. The extended action sequence on the beach and in Astrid's bungalow in episode one could have come out of a James Bond film of the period and indeed has interesting pre-echoes of On Her Majesty's Secret Service, which wasn't released until more than a year later, while the underground base can't help but bring to mind the SPECTRE volcano base of You Only Live Twice, released earlier in 1967. Weirdly, the plot of the Doctor and companions infilitrating the organization of a Central American leader, sowing seeds of doubt and ultimately being responsible for his downfall echoes a Bond film not made until 22 years later: Timothy Dalton's second and final 007 adventure Licence To Kill. It seems that what we're ultimately presented with then is Doctor Who's attempt to do a somewhat futuristic pseudo-James Bond film as a six part serial on a 1960s TV budget.

Moving on from those points, there's more to this story as well. It's got some good performances from the companions, with Jamie in particular getting plenty of good moments while Victoria is also given some good moments - especially comedic ones - yet is also plagued with moments such as her odd fear about getting into a helicopter in episode one. The supporting cast are strong as well from Mary Peach's feisty heroine Astrid to Bill Kerr's Giles Kent (a character best served upon multiple listens/viewing of the story) to Colin Douglas as Donald Bruce and the first of three strong Doctor Who performances from Milton Johns. Meanwhile, the direction from Barry Letts, who made his first contribution to Doctor Who when he directed this story, can be superb at times, especially when it comes episode one's action sequence on the beach (and a fantastic POV shot from the helicopter looking back as it flies away) or the final scene in the TARDIS. His choice of stock music tracks though lets the story down (no pun intended) as they often come across as too loud and a bit over the top.

Where the story is let down most is by a key selling point in 1967-68: its futuristic setting. It's odd to watch a story set in 2018 (not 2017, as was previously thought), a point just five years away, as depicted by 1960s thinking. The costumes in particular are laughably dated and actually don't serve a couple of the actors well at all, while the idea of people taking rockets from one side of the world to the other in two hours speaks more of 1960s optimism about the course of spaceflight than about our world where the space shuttle has been retired for a couple of years now. Much the same can be said of the underground bunker and its inhabitants kept there by a "nuclear war". All of which makes the story an interesting artifact from a time that seems increasingly removed and yet feels clumsy and dated today.

So, with what's literally a new look, what are we to make of this story? It certainly features Troughton in one of his best performances, the James Bond feel suits the story well, there's a good cast and some good direction despite the issues caused by its setting. Is it the best story of the era? Perhaps not. What it is though is a welcomed return, a chance to see more of an era that has seemed by and large lost to us.