OVERALL EPISODE NUMBER: 253
STORY NUMBER: 050
TRANSMITTED: Saturday 21 June 1969
WRITER: Malcolm Hulke & Terrance Dicks
DIRECTOR: David Maloney
SCRIPT EDITOR: Terrance Dicks
PRODUCER: Derrick Sherwin
RATINGS: 5 million viewers
FORMAT: DVD: Doctor Who: The War Games
"You have returned to us, Doctor. Your travels are over!"
Reaching the Tardis they attempt to evade the Time Lords by dematerialising and breaking through the Time Lord's forcefield. The Doctor says he ran away from them initially because he was bored, but they object to him getting involved. The Tardis is dragged towards the sea on a planet they materialise on. Finding the time Lord's over whelming it's defences as water starts to leak in the Tardis struggles to move on. Materialising in space the ship is covered in a web generated by the Time Lords and a voice commands them to return to the Time Lord's home planet. Multiple jumps fail to take them to safety as the Time Lords take control of the Tardis bringing it home. The Doctor surrenders to his people and is taken as a witness to the trial of the War Lord before three Time Lords. Guards arrive in a SIDRAT to rescue the War Lord, taking the Doctor and his friends hostage, but after they enter the Tardis the Doctor engineers their escape allowing the Time Lords to take the aliens captive. They and their planet are dematerialised by the Time Lords, as if they never existed. The Doctor is then placed on trial accused of interference in the affairs of other planets. The Doctor admits the charge and is proud of his actions demonstrating the evils he fought against summoning images of some his foes as evidence: The Quarks, the Yeti, the Ice Warriors, the Cybermen and most evil of all the Daleks. The Time Lords retire to consider their decision. The Doctor is reunited with Jamie & Zoe and they attempt an escape but are apprehended in the Tardis bay. The Doctor bids farewell to his friends as they are returned to their own time: Zoe to the Wheel where she is reunited with Tanya Lernov and Jamie to the Highlands where he fights a Redcoat. Their memories are wiped to remove the memory of their travels, recalling only their first adventure with the Doctor. The Time Lords accept the Doctor's plea that there is evil in the universe that must be fought. Noting his interest in the planet Earth he exiled there in the 20th Century with his knowledge of time travel taken from him. His appearance will change, but rejecting the options the Time Lords give him they choose for him and he is dematerialised from the court room appearing on their monitor screen as they start to change his appearance and exile him.........
Where on Earth do you start with this episode? As a story The War Games effectively finishes with Episode 9, this episode is the aftermath which the Doctor endeavours to run from!
JAMIE: Well, what was happening? Why was it so difficult to move?That's not exactly but even so the Time Lords still know where they are.
DOCTOR: It was the Time Lords.
ZOE: But they're your own people, aren't they, Doctor?
DOCTOR: Yes, that's right.
JAMIE: Why did you run away from them in the first place?
DOCTOR: What? Well, I was bored.
ZOE: What do you mean, you were bored?
DOCTOR: Well, the Time Lords are an immensely civilised race. We can control our own environment, we can live forever, barring accidents, and we have the secret of space time travel.
JAMIE: Well what's so wrong in all that?
DOCTOR: Well we hardly ever use our great powers. We consent simply to observe and to gather knowledge.
ZOE: And that wasn't enough for you?
DOCTOR: No, of course not. With a whole galaxy to explore? Millions of planets, eons of time, countless civilisations to meet?
JAMIE: Well, why do they object to you doing all that?
DOCTOR: Well, It is a fact, Jamie, that I do tend to get involved with things.
JAMIE: Aye, you can say that again. Whenever there's any trouble, he's in it right up to his neck.
ZOE: But you've helped people, Doctor.
DOCTOR: Yes, yes, but that's no excuse in their eyes.
JAMIE: Well, then what are you going to do?
DOCTOR: We're going to run away. I've set the controls to take us to a planet on the outermost fringes of the galaxy.
JAMIE: Oh, in that case, we'll probably land up right in their laps.
TIME LORD: There is no escape, Doctor. Return the Tardis immediately to our home planet.The Doctor leads them on a merry little chase through a variety of locations and that involves some stock footage from previous episodes. The sea landing is from episode 1 of Fury from the Deep and was for many years the only known surviving footage from that story.
DOCTOR: Why can't you leave me alone? I haven't done any harm.
TIME LORD: You have broken our laws. You must face your trial.
TIME LORD: You will do better to return of your own accord.
The Tardis in space is from Web of Fear 1.
The chase means we do get to spend a sizeable amount of time inside the Tardis for the first time since the missing The Invasion episode 1:
Unfortunately during that we get a very clear shot showing us not only the photo blow up Tardis wall but also making it clear that it's on it's side!
But run as far as he can, The Doctor eventually end up back home.
TIME LORD: You have returned to us, Doctor. Your travels are over.The main thrust of the episode is two of the lead protagonists playing the price for their actions.
DOCTOR: It's my own planet. They have brought us here.
JAMIE: Can't we get away again?
DOCTOR: No, not this time. Come along.
TIME LORD: A force field has been placed around you, and around your planet, so that your warlike people will remain prisoners forever. You have been found guilty of all charges, and you and your murderous associates will be dematerialised. It will be as though you had never existed.The War Lord and his race are dematerialised and effectively removed from history for the mass kidnap and murder of humans over many centuries.
WAR LORD: No, no, no, no!
The Doctor meanwhile has to pay the price too, not for leaving the Time Lords and stealing a Tardis, but for getting involved.
TIME LORD: You have heard the charge against you, that you have repeatedly broken our most important law of non-interference in the affairs of other planets. What have you to say? Do you admit these actions?His companions however will not share the Doctor's fate:
DOCTOR: I not only admit them, I am proud of them. While you have been content merely to observe the evil in the galaxy, I have been fighting against it.
TIME LORD: It is not we who is on trial here, Doctor, it is you.
DOCTOR: No, no, of course, you're above criticism, aren't you.
TIME LORD: Do you admit that these actions were justified?
DOCTOR: Yes, of course, I do. Give me a thought channel and I'll show you some of the evils I've been fighting against.
DOCTOR: The Quarks, deadly robot servants of the cruel Dominators, they tried to enslave a peace loving race. Then there were the Yeti, more robot killers, instruments of an alien intelligence trying to take over the planet Earth.
TIME LORD: All this is entirely irrelevant.
DOCTOR: You asked me to justify my actions, I am doing so. Let me show you the Ice Warriors, cruel Martian invaders, they tried to conquer the Earth too. So did the Cybermen, half creature, half machine. But worst of all were the Daleks, a pitiless race of conquerors exterminating all who came up against them. All these evils I have fought while you have done nothing but observe. True, I am guilty of interference, just as you are guilty of failing to use your great powers to help those in need!
TIME LORD: Is that all you have to say?
DOCTOR: Well, isn't it enough?
TIME LORD: Your defence has been heard and will be carefully considered, but you have raised difficult issues. We require time to think about them. You will be recalled when we have made our decision.
TIME LORD: Follow me.
ZOE: Where are we going?
TIME LORD: We're going to send you home. Back you your own world and your own time.
TIME LORD: It is time to say goodbye to your friends.So it proves. First Zoe finds herself back on The wheel In Space, just after the Cybermen's attempted invasion has been repelled and meets one of her crewmates.
ZOE: There must be something we can do?
DOCTOR: No Zoe, not this time. Well, goodbye, Jamie.
JAMIE: But Doctor surely we could
DOCTOR: Goodbye, Jamie.
JAMIE: I won't forget you, you know.
DOCTOR: I won't forget you. Don't go blundering into too much trouble, will you?
JAMIE: Oh, you're a fine one to talk.
DOCTOR: Goodbye, Zoe.
ZOE: Goodbye, Doctor. Will we ever meet again?
DOCTOR: Again? Now, Zoe, you and I know, time is relative, isn't it?
(Jamie and Zoe are led to a SIDRAT. They wave and go inside. It dematerialises.)
DOCTOR: They'll forget me, won't they?
TIME LORD: Not entirely. They will be returned to a time just before they went away with you. They will remember their first adventure with you, but nothing more. But come along. Your fate has been decided.
TANYA: Oh, Zoe. Zoe, are you all right?
ZOE: Oh, yes.
TANYA: Are the Doctor and Jamie gone?
ZOE: Yes, I've just seen them off.
TANYA: Well, we'd better get back to work, you know. There's a lot to be done if we're going to get the Wheel back to normal. Are you sure you're all right?
ZOE: Oh, yes. I thought I'd forgotten something important, but it's nothing.
TANYA: Right, come along then.
ZOE: All right, I'm coming.
Then Jamie finds himself on the moors after the battle of Culloden where he left with the Doctor, and his then companions Ben & Polly, in the second Second Doctor story, The Highlanders. He immediately finds himself attacked by a Redcoat and responds as if he's never been away:
JAMIE: Try to murder a McCrimmon, would you? Well, I'll show you! Creag an Tuire!Illusions of both haunt the Second Doctor during The Five Doctors while a seemingly older Jamie is seen with the Second Doctor during The Two Doctors.
That just leaves the Doctor's fate:
DOCTOR: Now then, what about me?There's something of an ambiguity to their stance here especially when the Doctor's punishment for getting involved is to be sent off *TO* get involved in a particular planet's affairs. And isn't getting involved just what the Time Lords do in this story, albeit to right another race's wrong?
TIME LORD: We have accepted your plea that there is evil in the universe that must be fought, and that you still have a part to play in that battle.
DOCTOR: What? You mean that you're going to let me go free?
TIME LORD: Not entirely. We have noted your particular interest in the planet Earth. The frequency of your visits must have given you special knowledge of that world and it's problems.
DOCTOR: Yes, I suppose that's true. Earth seems more vulnerable than others, yes.
TIME LORD: For that reason you will be sent back to that planet.
DOCTOR: Oh, good.
TIME LORD: In exile.
DOCTOR: In exile?
TIME LORD: You will be sent to Earth in the twentieth century, and will remain there for as long as we deem proper, and for that period the secret of the Tardis will be taken from you.
DOCTOR: But you, you can't condemn me to exile on one primitive planet in one century in time! Besides, I'm known on the Earth. It might be very awkward for me.
TIME LORD: Your appearance has changed before, it will change again. That is part of the sentence.
DOCTOR: You can't just change what I look like without consulting me!
TIME LORD: You will have an opportunity to choose your appearance.
DOCTOR: Oh, well, that's not so bad. But I warn you, I'm very particular.
TIME LORD: Here is your first choice.
DOCTOR: Oh he's too old! Well he's too fat, isn't he. No, he's too thin. That one's too young. Oh now, that won't do at all. It's ridiculous.
TIME LORD: You're wasting time, Doctor.
DOCTOR: It's not my fault, is it? Is this the best you can do? I've never seen such an incredible bunch.
TIME LORD: Since you refuse to take the decision, the decision will be taken for you.
DOCTOR: No, no, no, I never said that. But I maintain I have the right to decide what I look like! It could be very important on the Earth. People on Earth attach a very great deal of importance
DOCTOR: Ah, what's happening?
DOCTOR: What's hap, what's happened?
TIME LORD: The time has come for you to change your appearance, Doctor, and begin your exile.
DOCTOR: Is this some sort of joke? No, I refuse to be treated in. What are you doing?
DOCTOR: No! Stop, you're making me giddy! No, you can't do this to me! No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no!
We get to see three Time Lords during the course of this episode and all three of the actor concerned have connections to the Time Lords in their acting future.
Bernard Horsfall had already appeared earlier this season as Lemuel Gulliver in the Mind Robber which was also directed by David Maloney. He returns in Planet of the Daleks as the Thal Taron and as the Time Lord Chancellor Goth in The Deadly Assassin, again both directed by David Maloney, There's a lot of fan speculation that Horsfall's character here may in fact be Chancellor Goth from the Deadly Assassin! He'd already been in Out of This World, playing Dr. Arthur Bailey in Divided We Fall, and would feature in the third season of it's successor Out of the Unknown, playing John Stewart in 1+1=1.5. Sadly both episodes are missing. There's three appearances in The Avengers on his CV in The Cybernauts, The Fear Merchants and They Keep Killing Steed. Unseen until recently is his Doomwatch appearance in Sex and Violence, which was unbroadcast! It's available to watch on The Doomwatch DVD set. He's in the George Lazenby James Bond film On Her Majesty's Secret Service as Campbell. In later years he has appeared in Agatha Christie's Poirot as Harrington Pace in The Mystery of Hunter's Lodge.
Likewise Clyde Pollitt, one of the other Time Lords, returns to our screens as the Time Lord Chancellor in The Three Doctors. Are they the same character too? Clyde Pollitt is the brother of Derek Pollitt who was the Welsh Driver Evans in the Web of Fear.
The third Time Lord is Trevor Martin's only Doctor Who role on screen but he plays the Doctor himself in the Seven Keys to Doomsday stage play in 1974. Written by Terrance Dicks the show features Wendy Padbury as Jenny, one of the two companions. When the show was adapted as an Audio CD by Big Finish productions the role of Jenny was played by Charlie Hayes, Wendy Padbury's daughter whose father is the actor Melvyn Hayes. The original show features Simon Jones, the future Arthur Dent in both the radio & television versions of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, as the Master of Karn. Trevor Martin appears in two Inspector Morse episodes, Ghost in the Machine as a Porter and The Sins of the Fathers as Alan Sowden. On the big screen he voices The Beast in Krull.
This episode features a number of cameo appearances, mainly as the monsters used as evidence by the Doctor.
The Quark is Freddie Wilson who was one of the Quark operators in the Dominators. He's in the Doomwatch episode The Logicians as an Elsdene Schoolboy.
John Levene had been in the series as a Cyberman in the Moonbase, a Yeti in Web of Fear and Benton in The Invasion. He returns as Benton in Ambassadors of Death, Inferno, Terror of the Autons, Mind of Evil, Claws of Axos, Daemons, Day of the Daleks, Time Monster, Three Doctors, The Green Death, Invasion of the Dinosaurs, Planet of the Spiders, Robot, Terror of the Zygons and Android Invasion! Outside of Doctor Who he was in UFO as an Interceptor Pilot in Close Up.
Tony Harwood was a Cyberman in Tomb of the Cybermen, a Yeti in the Abominable Snowman, Rintan in the Ice Warriors and an Ice Warrior in Seeds of Death. He'll be back as Flynn in The Ambassadors of Death.
The Cyberman is Roy Pearce, who hasn't appeared as a Cyberman before but has a string of uncredited extra roles including a guard in The Massacre - Bell of Doom, a soldier/engineer in The Tenth Planet, a Chameleon in the Faceless Ones, an extra in The Silurians, a villager in the Daemons, a guard in The Mutants, an Exillon in Death to the Daleks, a courtier & cult brother in Masque of Mandragora and a guard in Image of the Fendahl. He's in Doomwatch as a Man in Invasion and Flood. He was in Blake's 7 as an Armed Crewman in Space Fall, a Federation Trooper in Time Squad and a Scientist in Project Avalon.
This sequence is the last appearance in Doctor Who for Robert Jewell as the Dalek, which I note is our old friend with the broken neck ring, Dalek 2, who's upper half is also making it's last appearance. Jewel first appears in The Survivors, the second episode of The Daleks and the sixth episode overall of Doctor Who, Dalek Invasion of Earth, The Chase, Mission to the Unknown, The Dalek Masterplan, Power of the Dalek & Evil of the Daleks as a Dalek and was also a Zarbi in The Web Planet, a clown (supposedly Bing Crosby) in Dalek Masterplan - The Feast of Steven, & a Macra in the Macra Terror. He also operates a Dalek during their appearance in the missing Out Of The Unknown episode Get Off My Cloud and their big screen appearances during Dr. Who and the Daleks & Daleks - Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D.. He's also the Robot Operator in the much derided British sci fi film The Terrornauts. The Dalek in The War Games was Jewel's last TV role before emigrating to Australia.
There's on brief, non Monster, cameo in this episode too: Clare Jenkins returns to play Tanya Lernov in the scene where Zoe is returned to the Wheel in Space making her the third human character to appear in more than one Doctor Who story. Prior to Wheel in Space Jenkins played Nanina in The Savages.
The Redcoat on Culloden Moor is Dennis Balcombe, who was German Soldier in episode 3 and a German / Roman Soldiers / Alien Guard in episode 4. He returns in The Mind of Evil as a UNIT Soldier. He's also the driver in Timeslip The Day of the Clone: Part 1. Gary Dean was in The Ice Warriors as a Technician and returns as a UNIT Soldier in the Silurians. He's also in Doomwatch as a Man in Project Sahara and Fawlty Towers as a Hotel Guest in Communication Problems. It might have been quite fun if they'd cast Tony McEwan, who played the Redcoat in episode 2, as this Redcoat as well.
There's a couple of Timelord Technicians in this episode, both of which we saw earlier in the series. Derek Calder was an Alien Technician / British Soldier in episode 7. He was previously Scientist Pete Baker in The Moonbase.
David Billa was in episode 1 as a German Soldier and episode 4 as German / Roman Soldiers / Alien Technician. He'd previously been an Extra in The Savages and would return as a Technician in Doctor Who and the Silurians, a Prison Guard in Frontier in Space, a Thal Soldier in Genesis of the Daleks and a Vogan in Revenge of the Cybermen. He appears in Doomwatch as a Man in Flood and Moonbase 3 as a Technician in Departure and Arrival and Behemoth.
And so the Second Doctor/Patrick Troughton era comes to a close. Lined up side by side with the First Doctor/William Hartnell era I know which one I'd choose: it'd be Troughton every time. There's more stories I really like here and the show feels more solid than it did in the earlier days. It's so sad so little of it remains, and especially so little of his first two seasons. A few years ago best surviving story was a difficult choice and a three way fight between Tomb of the Cybermen, The Invasion & The War Games with no clear winner. However the return of the superb web of Fear has rendered that argument moot. Web is now my best Troughton story unseating Abominable Snowman from the previous top spot followed by Power of the Daleks. Three six parters that all use their length well. Worst story: The Space Pirates, then The Highlanders followed by The Wheel in Space & The Dominators. And the Dominators was far better this time than I remember it being before: in terms of improvement on my memory it's the closest to the Gunfighters/Keys of Marinus "Damascus Road" moments I had with the Hartnell's stories. Ice Warriors was an odd experience for me in that I liked the bits I hadn't before and vice versa!
Troughton, finding the schedule punishing, had decided to go a while back. Hines had been talked into leaving some months earlier by his agent but was persuaded by Troughton to stay till he left. With both of her colleagues leaving Padbury decided it was time to go to making this the only complete clean break in terms of both Doctor and companions in the series history. Troughton and Hines both went onto further acting success while Padbury's future career was in theatrical agency. Troughton returns to the show for 1973's the Three Doctors, while all three are in 1983's The Five Doctors and Troughton & Hines both return for 1985's the Two Doctors. During these stories the Second Doctor seems to demonstrate a knowledge of the events of this episode which has led to the rise of Season 6b theory. The jist of it is we don't actually see the Doctor change in this episode. Seized by a shadowy Time Lord organisation he is sent on missions for them and eventually is reunited with both Jamie & Victoria. The theory was created to fit the facts on display and was given credence when used in several of the Virgin & BBC novels. Patrick Troughton died on March 28, 1987, three days after his 67th Birthday while attending a Doctor Who convention. He suffered a heart attack and was found in his hotel room still wearing his Doctor Who costume.
From a technical point of view this is the last episode of Doctor Who to be made in Black & White. BBC1 switched to colour transmission on Saturday 15 November 1969. Sadly, for reasons that will become apparent when we reach the Silurians, Ambassadors of Death, Mind of Evil & Invasion of the Dinosaurs, it won't be the last episode that we'll watch in Black & White. It's obviously, due to the departure of the lead actor, the last appearance for the opening credits featuring Troughton's face and also the last regular appearance of a scrolling set of end titles. From now on, with a notable one off exception, the end credits will be displayed as a series of static slides.
Following this story, one half of the team that wrote it, Terrance Dicks, returns solely to his role as Script Editor, a post which which he occupies for the entirety of the next Doctor's reign. His co-writer, and mentor, Malcolm Hulke becomes the backbone of the writing team during this period being the only man to contribute a story to every season. He's next back in two stories time and is generally credited as having performed the final rewrites on the following story too. Director David Maloney takes nearly 4 year break from series now, having helmed 19 episodes this season. During this time he directs the BBC version of The Last of the Mohicans, starring the War Lord Philip Madoc before returning for Planet of the Daleks. Derrick Sherwin now finds himself producer of Doctor Who and takes charge of the next serial as well after which it was intended Peter Bryant would return to the post. However both then found themselves working on the drama Paul Temple while script editor Terrance Dicks was paired with a new producer.
Doctor Who would now embark on it's longest break since transmission of the series started. As we've said the BBC started broadcasting BBC1 in colour from Saturday 15 November 1969 and transmission of the new series was held back till then so the series could begin in colour. The third Doctor, Jon Pertwee, has already been cast by the point this episode aired (May 21st 1969) and was announced to the public on 17th June a few days before this episode aired. The BBC now had a gap in their Saturday night schedules and to fill it they used a new American Science Fiction series they had bought: Three weeks after this episode aired Star Trek made it's UK debut on the 12th July 1969 for an initial run of 25 episodes. According to the list printed in The Encyclopaedia of TV Science Fiction by Roger Fulton I reckon that would make Arena as the first episode of Star Trek to be shown in colour in the UK. Eight days after Star Trek's debut, real space travel was very much in the news as man landed on the moon on July 20th 1969, an event anticipated by several Doctor Who stories and reflected in the forthcoming Ambassadors of Death.
The War Games was the last Doctor Who story novelised by Malcolm Hulke. It was released in October 1979 several months after his death on 6th July 1979. A lifelong atheist with communist sympathies, Hulke left instructions that his funeral should have no religious songs or reading. Terrance Dicks recalls turning up and finding himself sitting there with a bunch of his friends unsure of what to do. After a few minutes his friend and fellow writer Eric Paice got up, slapped the coffin, said "Cheerio Mac" and wandered out with the other guests following! I can recall buying this book in a shop in Kingston and avidly reading it while my brothers and I were measured for new shoes in the Russell & Bromley on the High Street. The book has recently reappeared as an audiobook read by David Troughton, Patrick's son who appeared as Private Moor in episode 7.
The War Games was released on BBC VHS Video on Monday 5th February 1990 as a pair of single boxed video cassettes, alongside An Unearthly Child. I first saw them for sale 2 days before at the Central Hall Westminster Comic Mart where more than one dealer had them available. To this day I believe that the covers for these two videos are the best in the entire VHS range. The War Games was re-released as part of the Time Lord boxset, a WHSmiths exclusive, in September 2002 featuring improved picture quality but still using the BBC's damaged prints. Following this release the original negatives were found to exist at the BFI leading to the vastly improved picture quality found on the Doctor Who: The War Games DVD released on July 6th 2009. The War Games episodes were also issued in The Regenerations Boxset.