Wednesday, December 2, 2009

8th Doctor - The Twilight Kingdom (i)

Serial 8Q - The Twice-A-Night Kingdom
An Alternate Program Guide by Ewen Campion-Clarke
Ninteenth Entry in EC Unauthorized Guide O' Post-Gauda Prime


Serial 8Q - The Twice-A-Night Kingdom

Part One - Necropolis Ow!

After the abysmal efforts of the previous two challenges, the Kro'ka decides to send his team - the Doctor, Charley, C'Rizz and Fraxin - blind to the forest-planet of Gauda Prime.

With no idea of what the hell they're supposed to do, the team just sort of stand there for a while before Fraxin hits on the idea that they have been sent to live in the rough for a week.

So saying, he runs off into the forest and finds a deserted wooden hut which he claims as his own. The bounty hunters inside, however, don't take kindly to this intrusion, and gun him down.

The remaining trio head for the ruins of an underground silo filled with skeletal remains. The Doctor suspects that, as they are mere episodes from the end of the season, the TARDIS should be close by.

Charley points out that the last time they saw the time machine it had dissolved into dust and so, even if they DO find it, it won't exactly prove useful.

The Doctor tells Charley to keep her whining, cry-baby opinions to herself in future.

As they begin to loot the corpses in the base they encounter Arlen and Brecht, two officers of the Terran Federation Space Academy, who immediately assume the trio are rebels and prepare to execute them.

When pressed however, they can't really think of a reason WHY they have to kill the rebels.

Brecht thinks that the TFSA never actually got round to relating that particular reason, and Arlen realizes that they have handy brainwashing equipment lying around in order to save ammunition.

During this little tet-a-tet, Charley has run off, leaving her companions to certain death.

The Doctor frantically asserts that he is THE fascist dictator of his universe and if he's going to side with anyone in this particular struggle, it's gonna be the Federation.

Arlen reveals that they are searching for Star Major And All Round Fantastic King Of Thieves, Vila Restal, who took over the rebel alliance after everyone else forgot to duck.

The Doctor decides that they should join forces and explore the nearby mine workings on the off-chance there is a secret army camp hidden underground.

C'Rizz wonders why the resistance would continue to operate on a planet held by the enemy, and Arlen explains that resisters are, by definition, complete morons and so sees no logical flaw in the argument.

The new group head for the mine workings, but by the time they reach there, they have used up all their ammunition on C'Rizz. To their dismay, his armored hide protects him from most weapons, which is why the depressed, poetry-spouting wanker has survived this long.

Underground, Sub-Commander Kyben detects movement on the surface and reports this to Commander Hailee, who tells him if he's so damn interested he can investigate it himself.

He does so and finds Charley getting a splinter from a thorn bush. Kyben tells her she will be paralyzed for life unless she shoves her hand into boiling water.

She does so, proving her gullibility and latent death wish - she's the perfect resistance member and just the sort of human shield Kyben likes to have on this armpit of a planet.

Meanwhile, Hailee reports the incident to Vila, and, in light of the recent military incursions, suggest that they move the camp elsewhere. Vila assures her that there's no need to do so, they are close to achieving their objective and he's only just got the feng shui just right.

As he speaks, Vila suddenly convulses, sensing that someone vaguely interesting has just entered the caves. Either that, or the curry they had for breakfast is repeating on him.

Kyben returns with Charley, who instantly takes a fancy to Maxil, the medical officer who "isn't QUITE a Doctor". The new medical officer has not yet arrived and Maxil can't quite recall what happened to the last one bar the fact he had an arse like a nutcracker.

As Arlen and the Doctor proceed through the dark and scary caves, the Federation Officer quickly becomes irritated with the Time Lord's constant owl impressions.

Suddenly, Kyben and his men surround her and the Doctor, who offers C'Rizz and Brecht in return for their miserable lives.

Brecht, meanwhile, is trying to set C'Rizz on fire in a mindless bloodlust fever, and the Eutermisan frantically tries to point out that he has another companion, Charlotte Pollard.

Brecht does not see the relevance of this until a crack team of rebels lead by Charley takes them all hostage and drags them into the caves in time for the morning conjuring trick from Star Major Vila.

Aware that morale is dropping, he has arranged a demonstration of stand-up comedy and magic tricks. Despite Vila's insistence he is above the hecklers of the crowd the moment he gets called "Baldo" he orders Brecht to shoot Arlen - and Brecht does so, releasing some of the tension C'Rizz has caused.

The Doctor realizes that Vila has some mental hold over Brecht, or maybe Brecht just really likes to shoot superior officers, but as he tries to convince the sergeant that he should turn his attention to C'Rizz, Vila orders Brecht to reload his pistol and shoot lizard boy as well. Unfortunately, he's out of ammo...

Part Two - Missionary? Just This Once...

The Doctor suggests Brecht use his empty rifle as a club when Maxil bursts out of the crowd.

Maxil and the Doctor are old enemies from the Academy on Gallifrey - and the Doctor has been copying Maxil ever since they first met in his desperate desire to be cool. First, it was exam questions, then fashion tips, slang, until he started to model his regenerative form on Maxil, and Maxil is sick of seeing someone identical to his former self molest the galaxy and its occupants.

He'd hoped to hide in this reality, but the Doctor's just gone and followed him again! Doesn't he HAVE an original thought in that stolen head??

The Doctor insists he was just popping back to collect Nick Briggs when he got stuck, but Maxil doesn't believe a word of it and tells Vila that the Doctor is a Federation spy, saboteur and theatre reviewer.

Vila however, has no inclination to have the Doctor executed - these two Time Lords bitching at each other is amazingly entertaining and already morale among the troops has improved ten fold.

Maxil takes this calmly, rationally, and breaks the Doctor's nose before throwing him into a cell with Charley.

The Doctor starts playing a harmonica and singing a sad ballad, which infuriates Maxil as that's EXACTLY the thing HE'D do in such circumstances. He decides to get his own back by deactivating the force field without telling anyone.

Suddenly, the Doctor stops playing and explains to Charley that the resonating frequencies in his harmonica have fused the force barrier and it is safe for Charley to exit.

To his immense disappointment, Charley is not fried into a blob of mint sauce and so, for want something better to do, leave the cell. Charley is quite enjoying this underground rat's maze of hell and torture and doesn't really want to leave.

The Doctor remarks his luck is changing for the better.

He finds, however, the rebel's attitude disturbing - they don't seem like the hardened revolutionaries one would normally find on this hellhole, in fact, they rather resemble sex-crazed loonies dressing up as rebels for their own kinky enjoyment.

Charley thinks this is an even better reason to stay on Gauda Prime.

Meanwhile, Hailee questions C'rizz and threatens to administer a truth drug to get answers out of him, even though he's quite openly agreeing to answer all of her questions anyway.

Hailee realizes this and Maxil calls her a "silly bitch" before she gives him the back of her hand. She then ties C'Rizz to a bed and begins a very distinctive and immoral "initiation ceremony" on the startled lizard.

Kyben shows Brecht to his quarters, explaining that they live as a commune. Kyben then sits Brecht on his bed and does his own disorienting procedure all new recruits suffer.

Vila suggests they decrease the army's food rations for a time, as this make... er, OTHER hungers grow even more powerful. Kyben takes the opportunity to question Vila about Hailee's erratic leadership - every month she gets in a bad mood and he has no idea why. Vila promises to explain that when Kyben grows up, and suddenly fondles him.

When a disheveled, red-faced Kyben stumbles back into the main cavern, he has even less idea what's happening than before...

Corporal Farin reports that the Doctor and Charley have escaped and, while he is dutifully flogged and punished (at his own suggestion, oddly enough), Hailee sends Kyben and Brecht out to find them and prevent them from getting away.

She uses a lot of dirty words saying this, which excites the troopers even more.

C'Rizz tries to convince Hailee that the Doctor and Charley pose a threat and should be strung up by their eyeballs over molten lava. Hailee tells C'rizz about her sister, who tried something similar once and was turned frigid for life.

Hailee was forced to watch this painful incident again and again over webcam and mail it to seven friends.

This is why she will not permit the Doctor and Charley to leave the camp without doing a bit of Riverdance.

The Doctor and Charley hear the sounds of pursuit, and follow an underground stream to a dead end. Certain that the water must be going somewhere, the Doctor dives in, even though Charley points out that the "water" is the colour of shit.

She still doesn't believe they should be fleeing from these people, but she reluctantly follows the Doctor in when he tells her she's really kept her looks after her pregnancy.

When Kyben and Bryn arrive, there's no sign of either the Doctor or Charley, but when Maxil realizes they've found the outlet to the latrines, he realizes the Doctor is copying him AGAIN!

He did the whole "escape through the sewer" during the Ice Cream Vender invasion of 2896. He orders the others to dive into the pool after them or so help him he'll shove their heads up their backsides and they'll spend the rest of eternity crawling around on all fours looking for the light switch.

The Doctor and Charley surface in a much larger pool and swim to an island of rock in its centre -- but when they surface and get a clear look, they see dozens of... well, I'm getting a bit queasy. Let's just say they're not particularly pleasant to look at and that the rebel camp needs flush sanitation more than anything else.

Indeed, the human waste is so toxic that Brecht doesn't survive the final edit and rots away, leaving Kyben - high off the revolting fumes, demanding that the Doctor and Charley do a striptease for him.

The Doctor shouts, "AGH! BABOONS!" and dives straight back into the liquid crap...

Part Three - The Twice-A-Night Kingdom

Ah, well, Kyben and Charley follow and by the time they've finished catching the Doctor, we're fifteen minutes into the episode and minus half an hour in plot.

Maxil berates the Doctor for nicking all his ideas and passing them off for his own, before realizing that he's just missed the conversation where the Doctor accused Charley of exactly the same thing.

Charley, meanwhile, likes the newest incarnation of Maxil and is unwilling to wait for the Doctor to nick it. Thus, she sides with Maxil and denounces the Doctor as a traitor, plagiarist and all-round arsehole.

The Doctor is not shocked by her betrayal and reasonably tells her to go off somewhere and die in a ditch like the hideous slut she is.

The sudden changing of allegiances confuses Kyben so much he walks into a wall and hurts his remaining eye. Pissed off beyond belief, he storms off to find a Lithuanian prostitute.

Vila, meanwhile, has video-taped the whole thing and begins to broadcast it to the troops, who enjoy the wacky antics of the alien intruders.

The Doctor questions Hailee about her willingness to let him walk freely about the camp, and she admits that she's too tired from the constant sex sessions to care any more.

Intrigued, the Doctor decides to analyse the fungus which the rebels have been using for food rations to check for any amazing aphrodisiacs.

Maxil is peeved to find the Doctor meddling in his laboratory. Why can't he get his own laboratory, the cheapskate copycat??!

The Doctor soon convinces him to admit that he too has doubts about what's happening here - and he suspects that, if there IS an aphrodisiac, it won't work for Time Lords. Maxil hasn't even got to first base in all his months in the caves.

C'rizz wonders why Charley has betrayed the Doctor, and so is she - she should really pay more attention to the script, seriously.

Is it that the Doctor has become harsher and more judgmental in this Universe? Has she finally twigged to the fact he hates her guts but loves all the stuff outside them? Or is there some other reason she's turned on him?

Since the first two possibilities would take more than an episode to resolve, C'rizz plumps for the latter and goes off to get wasted from Maxil's Patrexian Bong Emporium.

Charley struggles to understand why she's so upset with the Doctor. She's then realizes that she doesn't really have a reason and she doesn't particularly care even if she DID have a reason.

Kyben waylays Hailee as she returns to her quarters; he's convinced that Vila has given her more than the vague boasts she's passed on, and demands to know what kinky secrets she's keeping from him.

However, Hailee no longer remembers what Vila told her, or indeed how many times she's shagged him today. When Kyben presses her for an answer, she collapses, finally overwhelmed by exhaustion.

Vila arrives and offers to take Hailee back to his quarters, claiming that he knows an ancient regenerative position called "The Two Great Danes".

Hailee is too weak to understand what's happening to her, but doesn't complain when Vila takes her to his private island and lays her in a bed of soil. Soon she is beyond caring...

The Doctor finishes analysing the fungus, he finds that it does not possess any mood-altering or mind-altering properties; however, it's a suspiciously effective toilet cleaner.

When C'Rizz arrives to find the Doctor musing aloud on the nature of the enemy, he loses his temper again and storms out, convinced that the Doctor is looking for evil where there is none.

The Doctor doesn't notice and, when questioned, denies he knows anyone called C'Rizz or any six-foot lizards.

Maxil is now convinced that the Doctor is being affected by whatever's at work within the caves, not realizing the Doctor forsakes C'Rizz every chance he gets.

Maxil decides to confront Vila in person on his isolated underground island and try to break whatever hold he has over the rest of his army.

Moments after he leaves, the Doctor has an identical idea.

Vila informs Kyben that Hailee has pushed herself too far and given herself a hernia, which can only be cured with copious amounts of whipped cream.

In her absence, Vila promotes Kyben to Masterbater of the First Order, gaining the instant respect of the camp. Well, they've been calling him an uptight tosser for months before hand.

When Maxil and the Doctor arrive and request boats, Kyben refuses to help them, and Maxil thus knocks him out and steals one.

The Doctor frantically wakes Kyben up, then knocks him out again and steals a different boat.

As Maxil and the Doctor race to Vila's island, they trade insults before entering a small structure on the island. The Doctor and Maxil proceed into the next room, where the truth is revealed; the chamber is pulsing with blue light and grey smoke - and standing in the shadows is Vila and the unmistakably sexy shape of a She Devil...

Part Four - Breakdance

The Doctor finally realizes the truth: the cave system is carved of a unique material that can absorb entropy from one life form and download it to the other - Vila will remain forever young, undying, as another suffers in his place.

However, he's totally stumped as to how the She Devil fits into things and, frankly, has had a gut-full of encountering old enemies everywhere he turns in a new fricken universe.

Vila explains the whole She Devil thing is just a coincidence as every victim turns into one of those after absorbing his corruption. It is, in fact, Hailee beneath the taunt red skin and leather undergarments...

Vila explains how he learnt of such material on the planet Xenon, which was being used as a base by Dorien Grey. It turns out EVERY planet in this universe has a pocket of the material close to the surface, and so before the Gauda Prime massacre, Vila used a couple of innocent passing-by squirrels to become a gestalt, a group creature, which allowed him to survive.

Since the shootout, he has started his own rebel colony. This allows him to indulge every taste and sensation he wishes, with the added side effect of making his troops so dazed and confused they don't notice when their numbers vanish to become a fresh gestalt to absorb more corruption.

Maxil is horrified, even more so when Vila reveals that it never did anything to him - people GENUINELY don't find him attractive, even though the Doctor is attractive, wearing the same bodies.

Devastated, Maxil runs off blubbering as Vila decides to commence the evening shagathon and use up Hailee's reservoir.

The Doctor meets up with Charley and C'Rizz and has them line explosives at stress points throughout the cavern.

C'Rizz finds the idea of immortality and satiable appetite appealing. So appealing he begins to throttle Charley, laughing like a madman.

Maxil, passing by, points out that C'Rizz is just depriving himself of a possible gestalt victim, and the Eutermisan quickly releases Charley and pretends it never happened.

Charley says C'Rizz is full of shit and goes off to get laid.

The Doctor is disgusted at Vila's union with the gestalt. True, he is immortal and can indulge in any vice he wishes - but what's the point? The gestalt immediately cleanses him, removes any trace of the fun life he leads. How does he even know he's lived it since he has no proof bar the memories? And what happens when the memories fade? Vila sacrificed his life the day he merged with the gestalt, he just hasn't died yet - and even death would be better than the pointless existence he now endures.

Vila breaks down in tears, realizing it is all true. Better to die a real man than live forever as a pale shadow of one.

He separates his link with the gestalt and the debauchery and debasement instantly transfer themselves to the little thief (not to mention a rather large bullet hole), who slumps dead, insisting this was the best way.

"Sucker," the Doctor sneers.

Before anyone can stop him, the Doctor leaps into the fray and merges with the gestalt, and Hailee is twisted and transformed once more into a She Devil-lookalike.

The Time Lord begins to strut his funky stuff, amazed at all the new sensations and crimes he can commit in perfect safety. Never again will he drop dead from too much sex, fall into a washing machine, get shot in the head or any other possible deadly scenarios.

The first thing he shall do is shag Charley until she loses all interest in sex, and then he'll eviscerate C'Rizz with a blunt penknife.

Charley asks for a last request: that C'Rizz be dealt with before she is. The Doctor considers that reasonable and prepares to exact his vengeance...

Suddenly there is a cheap negative effect and the Doctor is thrown across the chamber.

Maxil steps out of the shadows, laughing and triumphant. Since the Doctor has been copying Maxil's DNA for the last eight centuries, it was easy for Maxil to burst in on the link between the Doctor and Gestalt and replace him.

Maxil is now the most powerful being in the planet, the solar system, this universe, ALL UNIVERSES!!!!

But he promises not to let his newfound status go to his head and vows to continue Vila's world of royal mounties and perversions. Maxil, showing his immense benevolence, allows the Doctor and his companions to leave.

The Doctor does so with a fixed grin on his face and, the moment he reaches the surface he activates the demotion charges and destroys the cave system and everything it.

"Hah! How's THAT for original thought, you wanker?" the Doctor snarls, spitting on the rubble.

In his trademark burning car, Steve Foxx explodes onto the scene and awards the Doctor "double fist"!!

Their mission was to locate and perceive a true ending for the Blake's 7 saga and finish it off for good - but, as a reward for the full-fisted effort by the Doctor to become immortal and invincible (and not letting anyone ELSE get it), he wins and thus a familiar-looking blue box appears before the shocked Doctor's eyes.

Although Charley and C'Rizz are eager to leave the gameshow and Gauda Prime, the Doctor does not.

"That's not the TARDIS!" shouts the Doctor accusingly. "The windows and panels are the wrong size! It's too squat - it looks a bit pudgy! The corner pillars are far too narrow! And there should be THREE steps between the Police Box sign and the roof..."

Charley tells the Doctor to stop whinging and enters, only to emerge moments later, shocked that it's smaller on the inside than it is on the outside!

Steve Foxx isn't surprised. He only offered them a tatty police box prop, not the TARDIS and was rather confused by the fact they never asked about it until now.

However, he is willing to hand that over in return for a further completion of a Full Fist. C'rizz and Charley accept the challenge, proving they have learnt nothing from the previous twelve episodes.

The Doctor sighs, and Foxx asks (for the benefit of the viewers at home) what the Time Lord's really looking for, and why he really came into this Universe.

The Doctor admits it to himself, perhaps for the first time: he told Charley that he came here to cut himself off from his own Universe, but in truth...

...he's looking for Glen Miller.

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