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The Sontaran Experiment
Doctor Who, episode 77 (12.3)
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2012 09:32:50
A Sontaran tortures humans to breaking point.
The Doctor, Sarah and Harry arrive on a desolate and apparently deserted Earth to discover that a group of shipwrecked astronauts from a human colony, GalSec, have been lured there by a fake distress call. One of their number, Roth, tells Sarah of an alien conducting gruesome experiments on him and his crewmates. The alien turns out to be a Sontaran, Field-Major Styre, who is compiling a report on human physical and mental capabilities as a prelude to an invasion of Earth.
The Doctor challenges Styre to unarmed combat. The Sontaran agrees but is quickly weakened in Earth's unfamiliar gravity. Harry meanwhile enters Styre's ship and uses the Doctor's sonic screwdriver to remove the vital terullian diode bypass transformer, so that when the alien returns there to revitalise himself he is drained of all his energy and destroyed.
The Doctor sends a message to the Sontaran fleet, warning them that without Styre's report they cannot invade.
By The Television Companion on 23 Oct 2003 21:49:42
'The Sontaran Experiment is an experiment for the show as well as for Field-Major Styre,' reckoned Nick Pegg in DWB No. 93, dated September 1991. 'The first two-parter for over ten years and the first story shot entirely on OB videotape, it comes across in dramatic terms as a series of heavily stylised statements about where the show is headed under the new line-up. Conventions and expectations which had formed the bedrock of the Pertwee years are yanked from beneath the viewer's feet; the...
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