Serial 9Q – Brave New World
An Alternative Program Guide by Ewen Campion-Clarke
Fortieth Entry in the EC Unauthorized Guide O' Inaccurate Titles
D O C T O R W H O
Serial 9Q – Brave New World -
The Dustbin Empire expands, wiping out the combined forces of the Cybermen, the Afronauts and the Quirks as the Dustbins prepare sweep clean every planet in the entire universe and exterminate all unnecessary rubbish-creating life forms in the process. And one of their prime targets is the Nestle Consciousness – a gestalt whose affinity with chocolate and plastic have created more discarded Mars Bars wrappers than all the other races in the cosmos put together!
The Dustbins descend on the home world of the Nestles – Polycrunchyfrogos – and crush the Auton armies in an instant, lead by the lactose-intolerant Emperor Dustbin itself who consumes the source of the Nestles’ power (Nougat Energy) and then uses it to wipe out half of the Consciousness in one go, along with their protein planets.
The surviving Nestles repel the Dustbins back into space temporarily by reversing the polarity of the cocoa flow, allowing the survivors to warp-shunt themselves to safety like bullets in the backsides of bats out of hell.
As the war front of the Temporal Difference draws ever closer to Gallifrey, we focus on the apparently FAR more interesting events around the Eighth Doctor and Lucie, as the TARDIS fetches up on Earth of all places. Quelle surprise.
Parte the First
Having arrived in what appears to be Cardiff in 2004, the Doctor decides that it’s time that Lucie got the hell out of his life, even if it is four years before her time. Lucie is not exactly eager to leave as the city appears to be in ruins, covered in a thick layer of dust and Mermaid Bay has dried up, leaving the desolate, derelict and deserted town surrounded by nothing but sand dunes.
The Doctor reproaches her for focussing on the negatives, and suggests she ignore the fact everything around them is in tatters and appreciate the spectacularly beautiful sunset. "If you spend all your time worrying EVERY post-apocalyptic landscape is infested with a plague of zombies, you’re just going to miss the little things," he notes.
"Oh my god," Lucie gasps, "what if it’s like that ghost town near
Chernobyl? They deserted the whole place after that nuclear accident, and stopped it in time?! Or an epidemic? Bird flu?"
The Doctor laughs in her face and assures her he detected no
radiation or aerial pathogen. "I don’t just push you out the door without checking first," he lies, and when Lucie points out that’s exactly what he did do less than five minutes previously, the Time Lord hastily changes the subject as he spots some locals in rags loitering outside the Cardiff Millennium Centre.
"It’s like the Cardiff that time forgot," Lucie observes. "And it’s full of nutters!"
"Well, YOU should fit right in, shouldn’t you?" the Doctor points out, idly admiring some film posters for "Robin Hood - Prince of Weeds", "New Jack City" and "Look Who’s Oinking III".
Bored, Lucie decides to cheer herself up by shoplifting the local newsagent, and when she finds the shop empty it is only the incredible amounts of filth, decay and lack of electricity that stop her stealing everything not nailed down. Lucie tries to salvage the experience by tricking the Doctor into drinking a warm can of Fanta from the broken fridge just to see the expression on his face.
However, the Time Lord is too smart for her and checks its sell-by date, discovering the can is date-stamped "best before October 1991". In fact, he’s about to hurl the can at Lucie’s unprotected face when he realizes they are being observed by a police constable and immediately pretends to look innocent.
The policeman, the incredibly-aptly-named PC Blunt doesn’t find anything suspicious in the Doctor taking goods from a shop without paying, or even trying to sneak past him into the police box that’s turned up next to the dried-up water fountain. Indeed, Blunt is so brain-dead he assumes that the Doctor is a replacement for a teenage girl called Sally Tinker-Tailor-Soldier-Spy who recently disappeared.
Sensing a possible replacement for his own companion, the Doctor offers to help the police in their investigations. "And, judging by you, PC Blunt, I think you need all the help that you can get. When did this Sally Tailor disappear?"
"When was that?"
"So, it’s Monday now..."
"Nope. It’s Sunday again."
"Ah. Definitely need some help then."
Lucie continues looting the shop, only to be cause by the owner – Jason Tinker-Tailor-Soldier-Spy – who was expecting Lucie to be his long-lost daughter who abandoned him in a teenage stop after he voiced the opinion that Bryan Adams and his wretched song "Everything I Do" should be nailed to a Frisbee and flung into the heart of the sun.
Lucie dryly notes that Jason’s opinion is surprisingly moderate.
Having spent all day walking around Cardiff, the Doctor and PC Blunt come full circle and arrive back at the TARDIS as dusk falls. The Doctor’s patience is getting thin, as the thicko copper is almost as irritating as Lucie. "Why the hell isn’t there a road leading out, anyway?" the Doctor complains. "And when did the rest of Wales turn into an endless sandy plain? And... what’s that noise?"
Trundling over the sands towards them is an armored personnel carrier with a flashing neon bumper bar saying "TOUCHWOOD". Desperately, the Doctor and PC Blunt flee inside the TARDIS to escape detection from the APC’s thermal imager.
PC Blunt is mildly surprised to discover that the inside of a police box looks like it is made of dirty pale orange coral, with a green crystalline console inside a rusted metal roulette table connected to the ceiling by a mint-green glass column. But, since he hasn’t got a clue what a REAL police box looks like, just goes with it – much to the relief of the Doctor who was looking for his "YES, I KNOW IT’S BIGGER ON THE INSIDE" T-shirt.
Having skipped that tedious bit of routine, the Doctor activates the console scanner and he and Blunt watch the screen as the tank comes to a halt outside the TARDIS and begins to scan the area for anything giving off heat – which oddly enough turns out to be Lucie, who rushes forward waving at the tank while Jason runs for his life.
Lucie doesn’t even ask what’s up with him before she is knocked out by a poisoned dart wielded by the sour-faced Russian woman leaning out of the tank. This is Vitas, who immediately drag Lucie’s body into the tank and makes contact with Touchwood HQ to speak with her superior Captain McCarthy and Russian Liaison Officer Karimov that she’s captured the only life sign in Cardiff. Karimov suspects that Lucie may simply be a civilian but that just excites McCarthy even more!
The APC trundles off into the sands once more, and the Doctor and PC Blunt cautiously creep out of hiding. "I’m tempted to just leave right now," he confides in the constable, "but on the other hand, I do so love screwing up Touchwood. So, do I simply follow the tyre tracks and find out what happened or set sail to Indigo 3?"
PC Blunt doesn’t feel qualified to make such a decision, so the Doctor ask Jason the very same question, simultaneously wondering why Touchwood didn’t detect the locals’ heat signatures. Putting this down to typical Touchwood inefficiency, he sets off after the tank and Jason follows on the off-chance Sally is also involved.
As Lucie recovers slowly from the tranquilizer drug she has a strange half-waking dream about being surrounded by white rabbits and the sound of Laurence Fishbone telling her that none of this real and she is in fact inside the Matrix.
When she comes round she finds herself stripped naked on a bed in what looks like a hospital ward. She’s being watched over by Karimov, who believes she must be American judging by the spelling of her tattoos. Lucie wonders why she’s naked and Karimov explains that all prisoners are stripped as standard Touchwood Institute policy – partially to traumatize and humiliate the captives, but mainly to please the voyeuristic Touchwood personnel.
Lucie however is more concerned about the date, and is deeply relieved when she finds out that it’s 24th October 2004: "That means Bryan Adams isn’t number one in the charts any more!"
The Doctor and Jason follow the tracks across the sand, but Jason becomes increasingly nervous about the tide coming back in and says he wants to go back. The Doctor smacks him around the head repeatedly until he finally gets that there is no tide thanks to the modern miracle of Global Warming.
"I’m sure the sea was here yesterday!" Jason protests.
"Yes, but yesterday was 1st September 1991, just as it is today. Any idea how that can be possible? Nope, didn’t think so. I suppose you don’t know why you and the other people have survived in Cardiff with no food, no drink, no electricity, no petrol and everything abandoned under years of dust, then? Oh, well, how about if there used to be a ferry in the good old days?"
"Why, yes, there was! How ever did you know?"
"Well, my first clue was that there ferry lying on the sand right in front of us and been in plain sight for at least the last half hour," the Doctor says, pointing to the very same ghost ship which has the words SALLY WOZ ERE 91 scratched into the hull.
Climbing inside, the Doctor finds some navigation charts written in Cyrillic – and a map that shows "Cardiff" to be on an island in the middle of Aral sea before the waters receded. This information can only mean one thing:
"We’re in Uzbekistan, the independent Republic in central Asia whose capital is Tashkent and where the languages are Uzbek and Russian!" the Doctor declares in this story’s token educational moment.
Karimov brings Captain McCarthy to meet Lucie and he pulls out a gun, aims it at Lucie and gives her thirty seconds to convince him not to blow her head from her shoulders after finding her in a restricted area under martial law and owned by the Touchwood Institute.
"That restricted area being the ruined seaside replica of Cardiff miles away from the sea where I was minding my own business until you weirdoes shot me with tranquilizer dart?"
"Well. Yeah," McCarthy says, losing a bit of steam at her bluntness. "All of which begs the question - what are you doing here? Engineer?
Mercenary? Or a stripper?"
"Since you don’t take kindly to tourists, I’ll take the stripper option," Lucie says. "Anyone fancy a lapdance?"
"Zis is Touchwood, Lucie Miller," Karimov sighs. "EVERYONE like lapdance here. Bigger collection of perverts you not find anywhere else in Soviet Union, yes?"
The Doctor and Jason arrive at the oil derricks and barely have enough time to compare then to the ones on "Dallas" when a five foot four auburn-haired girl in an old bomber jacket runs past them, sets fire to an oil well and the runs off again. The resultant explosion knocks them off their feet, and more annoyingly distracts the soldiers at the Touchwood HQ just before McCarthy can have Lucie shot.
As the flames die down, the singed Doctor and Jason get to their feet, when suddenly Vitas jumps out of hiding and holds them at gunpoint as another tank arrives with Captain McCarthy. Just when things can’t seem to get any worse, Jason suddenly cries out in pain and says he can hear a deep sinister voice inside his head. "CONTACT HAS BEEN RESTORED! WELCOME BACK! COME CLOSER TO YOUR PLACE OF ORIGIN, BACK TO WHERE THE MOTHER CONSCIOUSNESS RESIDES!"
"I hate Sundays," the Doctor mutters bitterly.
Locked in the infirmary, pregnant Lucie’s bladder starts to play up and with no bedpan or even a bucket to use, she begs the guards to her use the toilet facilities. Eventually the guards agree simply to shut her up, and to make them suffer she refuses to come out of the bathroom and indeed starts taking a long shower using all the hot water.
It takes the sound of machine gunfire and strange alien-sounding weapons to finally tempt her to peer out the door, and finds another teenage girl standing over the bodies of the guards as she steals grenades as part of her eco-terrorism campaign.
"You must be Sally Tinker-Tailor-Soldier-Spy, right?" muses Lucie.
Just when it appears as the naked and damp Lucie and Sally may start to get involved in a lesbian spank inferno (© Steve Moffat), the girl says she will kill anyone who tries to stop her with the gun hidden behind her wrist.
Naked, wet, defenceless and about to be shot dead by a plastic zombie replica of a teenage girl from 1991, Lucie Miller racks her Northern brain for a worthy epitaph.
Unfortunately, "Talk about having something up your sleeve!" is the best she can manage.
Parte the Second
At the last moment, Sally realizes that Lucie knows her name – and for someone as obviously moronic as Lucie to know such a thing and Lucie reveals she met Sally’s gormless father.
Delighted at the thought of her dad being nearby, Sally skips away, leaving Lucie alone and finally have a chance to put some bloody clothes on at last.
At that moment, the Doctor is gobsmacked when Jason announces from now on he will listen to the voices in his head, and his entire hand drops away to reveal an Auton gun. "Get the fuck out!" gasps the Doctor in disbelief. "I seriously did NOT see this one coming!"
Jason announces Sally was right, tries to shoot the Doctor, misses, lets out an embarrassing whimpering noise and then runs way crying. McCarthy orders Vitas to blow the mutha away, but remembers too late that the fugitive Welshman is actually bulletproof.
Thus, they can only helplessly watch as Jason catches up with Sally and tells his daughter that HE TOO hears the evil voice in his head, telling them to kill all humans and they embrace in a moment so tender it HAS to be underscored by the voice of the Nestle Consciousness telling the Autons that the humans are not their friends but are actually planning to destroy the very essence of their race and they must be stopped drilling for oil all costs!
As the residents of "Cardiff" gather together at the edge of the bay, PC Blunt’s lack of intelligence means he’s the first one to agree to follow the summons of the deep voice in their heads and head off to the oil well. "Like the voice says, we must be united once again against their greatest enemy - the humans!"
"Um, aren’t WE humans?" the perceptive locals point out.
PC Blunt has no answer for her, so he changes the topic and they all head off the island and across the lake bed cause they’re all Welsh and have a sheep-like herd mentality at the best of times.
Lucie finally arrives and meets up with the Doctor, McCarthy, Vitas and Karimov and so the time has come for a hardcore infodump as everyone tries to work out what the hell is going on! Since he’s the main character, the Doctor goes first:
"You see, everyone, these so-called Welshmen with no body heat, digestive system and in-built wrist guns AREN’T human! They’re bulletproof puppets animated by alien energy, but after living in a fake Cardiff pretending to be Welsh and making do as best as they can, they’ve become independent of the Nestle Consciousness! They’ve developed free will when suddenly the Consciousness starts shouting and they fall under the spell again! It’s like reality TV in miniature!"
"But who put them there in the first place?" wonders Lucie.
"That’d be us," McCarthy explains. "We’re the Touchwood Institute. Over the last few decades, there’ve been several showers of Nestle meteorites hitting the Earth in Essex, Singapore, Rhode Island... We discovered some and began experimenting on Auton technology."
"WHY?!" demands Karimov.
"It passes the time. The Uzbek authorities never noticed the sleeper version of Cardiff, even after a decade, so we decided to dump them there, see if we could turn them into spies. Then there was that big business restructure with Numbskull, and, well, it got filed under Old Business and we forgot all about them until the lake finally dried up. The electricity and supplies got switched off in 1991 and they’ve been there ever since. OK, so we’re irresponsible nymphomaniacs meddling with things we don’t understand," McCarthy shrugs, lighting a cigar suggestively. "So sue us."
Karimov notes there was a records room in an old bunker under the cliffs, but he cleared it out when he had it converted into his personal office and all the precious contents that might explain everything were dumped just over the hill.
The Doctor and Lucie run over said hill and find a huge rubbish tip, which the Doctor considers a fascinating microcosm of human development and then kicks Lucie into it and shouts, "Get looking, Earth Girl! No time to lose!"
Lucie complains that she’s far too delicate to search through rat-infested garbage for something that may not be there, but quickly sets to work once the Doctor double-dares her to do so.
Finally, Lucie discovers the glowing, noisily-pulsating crème egg shoved inside an old Russian tea bag. The Doctor knows that this is the unlikely source of the evil Nestle voice – until Karimov threw it out in the trash, it was inside the bunker and shielded, but now it can broadcast its illegal tunes of hate to the Welsh Autons!
"So why are huge alien intelligences worried about oil fields anyway?"
"Nestles can control anything that’s made of chocolate or plastic, and this is one of the richest sources of oil on the planet. It literally seeped out of the ground. The Nestles need the oil because it can give them a new supply of high grade plastic and very low grade chocolate, and with that they can breed and multiply Autons! Rather generic and unimaginative for a cosmic sentience, now I come to think of it, but, hell, there IS a war on."
McCarthy runs over the hill and shouts that the Autons are on their way here and suspects that even their puny supply of wrist-gun ammo will still be enough to wipe out the entire speaking cast. Lucie suggests they just blow up the Autons in finest British tradition.
The Doctor is horrified – the Autons are innocent, and he automatically objects to following a plan of Lucie’s on principle.
"Look, McCarthy, they’re only dangerous while they’re receiving instructions from the Nestle crème egg energy unit! All we have to do is put it back in the bunker and seal it inside permanently: use your explosives to bring the cliff down over the bunker entrance?"
Everyone agrees this is a brilliant plan and then run off, leaving it in the Doctor’s capable hands while McCarthy and his troops head up to the ridge so they can machine-gun the approaching Autons to death when the Time Lord’s scheme inevitably fails.
No sooner does the Doctor finish setting the charges around the bunker than the Time Lord discovers over his R/T communicator that, to his disgust, Karimov has taken Lucie to a safe location. Worse, before he can get clear of the blast zone, Jason and Sally ambush him and demand to know what the hell he thinks he’s doing.
"This and that," the Doctor shrugs. "Stocktaking? Filing? You’re probably here about that disembodied voice, huh? Noticed it was silenced the moment I slammed the bunker door shut? That’s the thing with disembodied voices. Here one minute. Gone the next. Why don’t we talk about it later, say, 290 metres away?" he asks hopefully
Sally opens her wrist gun and aims it at his head and tells him to open the motherfucking bunker or she’ll blow his brains out with a plastic bullet.
The Doctor considers the options... and runs away.
In the sandy desert, the Auton Welshmen are milling around in
confusion. With no more instructions coming to them from the Nestene
Consciousness, they seem unsure what to do next and, truth be told, have gone right off the idea of destroying the human race, but nevertheless decide to continue their slaughter otherwise it will have been a complete waste of time.
Desperately, the Doctor runs away from the bunker, and the two Autons chase after him in a confused Benny Hill scene as he protests, "Look, you two, I can bring you back to normal if you want! I can make that pirate ratio disembodied intelligence piss off forever!"
This doesn’t impress Sally, who threatens to hurt the Doctor if he does so. Besides, after seventeen years standing around pretending to Welsh, neither she nor Jason know what they are any more, but have a sneaking suspicion that becoming homicidal terrorists might be more interesting than being "normal".
"OK then," the Doctor improvises. "You can decide for yourselves what you want to be. But you don’t need an alien energy ball of chocolate to tell you what to do, do you? I thought not. GOD DAMN IT, I JUST LOVE SELF-DETERMINATION!"
Conceding that the only option is to reveal the truth, the Doctor switches on his R/T so that Lucie and Karimov can overhear their conversation. The Time Lord then starts explaining that Jason, Sally and indeed all the Welsh are in fact animated plastic robots. He does this with truly gratuitous use of the expressions "zap", "pow", "ker-blammo", and "we’re out of range so blow the fucking thing up already!"
Lucie and Karimov finally realize that the Doctor is sending them a coded message to anyone that’s listening that instructs them to set off the explosives, as they’re clear enough away from the bunker to blow up the cliff – but the wiring to the dynamite is faulty!
As the Welshmen draw closer and closer, McCarthy orders Vitas and her team of redshirt to prepare to fire. Lucie idly notices a break in the detonation wire and, curiously holds the two bit together, getting her a massive electric shock while completing the circuit and causing a tremendous explosion in the distance and the Nestle signal is buried.
"Did I do that?" she asks Karimov, lost. "Is that bad?"
PC Blunt looks upon the detonation on the horizon and deems it the work of teenagers letting off fire works. The Welsh folk realize they’ve been following a complete moron through the oil wells and decide to return to the town before "the tide starts coming in". The Doctor and Lucie roll their eyes but follow them anyway.
McCarthy and Karimov watch the Doctor and the Autons return to the ruined faux Welsh village. "You know, it wouldn’t be fair to let them loose in the real world, they’re asylum seekers and refugees from the old Soviet Union. We should keep them here and train them."
"You mean, make them bulletproof spies and soldiers?"
"Oh you bet your ass that’s what I mean!" the Captain enthuses. "We can make millions out of these losers, send them into the real Cardiff and wipe it all out! Millennium Centre, Mermaid Bay, Powell Estate, Plastic Fantastic! All we need is someone to act as our scientific advisor while we brainwash them..."
"Someone like the Doctor?"
"Yes! Send Vitas out there and collect him!"
In "Cardiff", the Doctor and Lucie awkwardly try to get past Jason and Sally, who want to thank them for all that they’ve done and invite them to join the meeting in the Millennium Centre so these autonomic Autons can decide what the hell they should do now.
The Doctor suggests that they blackmail Touchwood into restoring power to the town and allow them to catch up with a world post-Bryan Adams. "Whatever you decide, stick together and don’t let anyone tell you what to do no matter what – never in month of Sundays!"
The Doctor and Lucie board the TARDIS, which dematerializes right before Vitas arrives. Awkwardly, she contacts McCarthy with the bad news that their would-be scientific advisor has buggered off. Furious, McCarthy throws his R/T to the ground.
"Plan go crap, huh?" muses Karimov before McCarthy shoots him dead.
Suddenly the Captain shimmers and transforms into a dark blue metal robot, resembling a walking trashcan with big cartoony eyes. Extending an aerial, the robot makes contact with its paymasters as it strides over to a freestanding door with a G logo on it.
"NOPE. SORRY. THE DOCTOR TURNED UP AGAIN," it explains as it walks through the door but doesn’t emerge from the other side, having moved across the universe in a cheap editing trick. "IF WE WANT THE NESTLE TO WIPE OUT CARDIFF, WE’RE GOING TO HAVE TO GO WITH PLAN B, AND THAT MEANS WAITING TILL 2005, I’M AFRAID."
The door fades away with a strange electro-mechanical groaning, not quite blocking out the robot’s protests of, "YES, I KNOW THIS IS ANNOYING, STILL WHAT CAN I DO?"
Inside the TARDIS, the Doctor tries to get his time machine to head somewhere that ISN’T identical to Cardiff for a change. Lucie muses on the rather unresolved plot they just experienced and wonders if the faux-Welshmen will be all right.
"Who cares?" shrugs the Doctor. "It’s not as if they’re REAL people, is it? Besides, who’s to say they’ve even live out the year? They’re Autons without a Nestle, they should be alive in the first place."
"That’s a bit callous, isn’t it?"
"Callous? Lucie, I just saved their entire race from certain destruction. If I can’t make the odd disparaging remark about them afterwards, then what’s the point, I ask you?"
"Hey, you didn’t save them alone, remember?" Lucie protests. "You had a little help from me!"
"Yes. VERY little help," the Time Lord grumbles.
"Tangerine and ivory... loving together in harmony..."
"Eh Bah Gum!"
"Oh, what a nifty skull! It’d make a great ashtray!"
"There are places where the universe comes close to perfection. And then there are places I take you, Lucie."
"Nothing is that symmetrical! You don’t have to buy my bras."
"And thank Rassilon for that small mercy."
"I will guide this world through a time of turmoil, even if I have to CAUSE said turmoil in the first place! "
"Your guests are just plain annoying."
"Accept this offering. Restore the balance. Simply BE groovy!"
"By the pricking of my thumbs, an alligator bites my bums..."
"You’re all being killed off, one by one – and not nearly fast enough if you ask me."
"What’s all this shouting? This is local sanctuary for local people, there’s nothing for you here!"
"So, Doctor, we meet again! Hey, what do you think of my skull? I think it works, you know as a slightly Shakespearean fashion accessory."
"Did I here you mention you need human sacrifice? Perhaps I can help, I’m the Doctor and this is Lucie, who would look just wonderful with her throat slit lying in the middle of a pentagram, don’t you think?"
"Doctor, am I actually starting to fancy you? Coz I don’t want to do that. Not ever."
...The Skull of Sobriety...
Book(s)/Other Related -
Dr Who Discovers Every Day Is Like Sunday For Latex Alien Psychopaths
Doctor Who: Living in the Plastic Age
Every Day Is Like Sunday And/Or Crap
Fluffs – Paul McGann seemed to be rather out of date during this story.
"Open the bunker doors, Hal."
"You see, Sally, you need to get some perspective on the situation - to DISTANCE YOURSELF from it. I know this must SOUND ridiculous to OUTSIDE EARS, but you must try to understand. I realize that this is a BIG BANG, RIGHT NOW, in your life AT THIS VERY MOMENT! A DYNAMITE revelation in fact, an EARTH-SHATTERING CLIFFHANGER to your teenage years! As I used to say to my own granddaughter, 'FOR THE LOVE OF GOD SET OFF THE PIPE BOMBS YOU STUPID, STUPID BITCH!!'"
They used PLASTIC explosives against Autons?! MORONS!
Fashion Victims -
The Auton society is a mere thirteen years behind the times.
"The Consciousness is a difficult semantic issue, but suffice it to say it’s cocoa-level matrixes are binding with polymer chains on a fundamental Willy Wonka level. It’s messed up and no mistake!"
Links and References -
The Doctor has encountered the Auton Lust Replicas and the Nestle Consciousness in Head from Ace, Error of the Autons, Revenge of the Autons (AKA Yellow Fever And How To Die From It), SynthDynasty, Plastic Millennium, Syndication, Arrogant Arrowhead, Business As Unusual, Auton, Autons, Auton3, Auton Resurrection and finally Ruse – to which this is a rather blatant prequel.
Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor reunited with globe trotter Michael Palin for his 1998 world tour of Uzbekistan.
Groovy DVD Extras -
The infamous Auton sequence from the fourth series The Youth of Australia episode "Identity Crisis II – Time Comes To Death".
Dialogue Disasters –
Doctor: Let us see what’s afoot?
Lucie: Well, my afoot is acovered with alots of asand.
Doctor: Oh, ashut aup, aLucie!
Doctor: So, is Sally NORMALLY this destructive?
Jason: Well, she once threatened to run off to Greenham Common...
Doctor: Ah. Say no more.
Jason: I can say no more.
Lucie: Doctor, her hand...
Doctor: ...sort of dropped away from her wrist and there was a gun inside her arm?
Lucie: Wow. Good guess.
Doctor: It’s a knack.
PC Blunt: So, this is what the inside of a police box looks like, is it? It’s a bit Farscape, isn’t it?
Lucie: You sure pick em!
Doctor: I certainly do.
Lucie: ...that was you insulting me, right?
Doctor: See, Lucie, you ARE learning!
Dialogue Triumphs -
Jason: You know about this sort of thing then?
Lucie: What? Being a brainwashed plastic lust replica in denial about her true nature and living in a Soviet-built sleeper copy of Cardiff? Trust me, years of experience.
Lucie: [sighs] No.
Nestle: COME CLOSER. COME CLOSER. WE MUST JOIN FORCES AGAINST THE HUMANS. TO THEM, WE ARE MERELY DELICIOUS SNACKS AND FUEL. JOIN FORCES AND FIGHT TO SAVE THE VERY NOUGATY ESSENCE OF OUR RACE!!
Jason: Sally, I am your father!
Sally: No you’re not! It’s the voice in the bunker, not you!
Doctor: That could have been a brilliant Star Wars quotation, but you all had to just go and ruin it, didn’t you, you plastic bitches?
Doctor: Ah-hah! Papers! Boxes and boxes of papers! Here, have a look through that lot, Lucie!
Lucie: Doctor. This is all in foreign.
Doctor: Yes, of course it’s in foreign. We’re in Uzbekistan.
Lucie: What use is that? What’s Russian for "spy"?
Doctor: But it won’t say "spy", Lucie. It’ll say something vague like "management training" or "marketing directorship" or "executive solutions."
Lucie: So, to recap, I’m looking for something that doesn’t say what it ought to say...
Lucie: In a language that I can‘t read?
Lucie: I don’t suppose there’s some Time Lord gift of translation going handy at the moment, is there?
Doctor: Well, generally I allow people I have rompy sex with to understand foreign and alien languages because I firmly believe in the inevitable victory of the proletariat... but I’m not going to sleep with a failed necrophiliac like you in a month of Sundays!
Lucie: Why couldn’t I have stayed in Cardiff?
Doctor: I ask myself that question every day.
UnQuotable Quote -
Lucie: The Autonomic Autons? Hang about, I think I’ve got some of their stuff on me iPod!
Viewer Quotes -
"WHAT is the POINT of having Lucie NAKED if NO ONE gives us DETAILED descriptions of WHAT SHE LOOKS LIKE?!?!" – Nigel Verkoff (2008)
"You bastards! You complete and utter bastards! I bet you hate straight people too! Are you trying to be funny?! How DARE you rip off my magnum opus Hostile Takeover! After all the trouble I went to trying not to rip off Gay Russell and instead ripped off the surviving episodes of The Feckless Ones and came up with the particularly brilliant concept of Autons not even aware they WERE Autons in a modernization that moral defective sexual deviant RTD, THIS happens! I finally get it out of my system AND YOU BASTARDS RIP ME OFF! One the bright side, this just PROVES I’m better than anyone at all working at BBC Wales..."
– Ron Mallet (2008)
"Who’s rancid brain farted this mess? I could take him on any day!"
- Dave Restal feeling particularly suicidal (2008)
"On studied reflection, the new version of the theme tune is awful! Brave New World reminded me of Baker Street, but just not as good – they should have brought back the Ice Cream Vendors and called it Return to Frozen Mars Bars! Hah, try telling me THAT wouldn’t work!"
– Maurice Morris (2008)
"Holy shit, this is good! Just... wow. Auton audio story, so I automatically filed it under 'shithouse' immediately but it’s right up there with Paul McGann’s best!" - Hashish Addict (2008)
"Broadcasting to a tiny audience on a minority channel, listening to these stories in contrast to the television series feels rather like attending a fringe meeting at a party conference when the leader of the party is giving his speech in the main hall. We HAVE been spoilt of late, haven’t we? And indulgence leads to sin!" – Mrs. Bulimia (2010)
"I wanted this story to change the very nature of the franchise and ensure the show will never be the same again. I wanted last week’s story to do the same. Come to think of it, I’ve been wanting stories to do that ever since 1997. I don’t half get disappointed, me."
– Tat Wood (2009)
"I’ve always liked the Autons and the Nestle Consciousness, but they’ve always struck me as a bit of a one trick pony: they’ve appeared in three television stories, a trio of straight-to-video productions from BBV, a couple of comic strips and one or two novels, and they’ve always had the same modus operandi. So attempting to do something novel with them here is welcome, and gratifyingly the experiment pays off. Pity Lucie had to be in it though. I was kind of hoping SHE’D turn out be an artificial replicant. But no. Bugger." – Andrew Beeblebrox (2009)
Psychotic Nostalgia -
"Ah, the PVC people of Tokyo! Long have I waited for this rematch! The replicas can be anyone, which is why I leave all my victims next to an electric fire before gutting them. I’m not blunting expensive steal on solid plastic... LET EM MELT! BWAHAHAHAAHA!"
Paul McGann Speaks!
"I liked this one. That’s all you’re going to get for this entry."
Sheridan Smith Speaks!
"I’ve always loved Doctor Who, like, more than just a friend. Fancied all the actors. Even Peter Cushing. I’ve always been a bit of a Whoey Whovian whatever-the-hell-they’re-called, but not a particularly good one. When I did the audition, I did a Vulcan salute and Alan Barnes was so embarrassed he had to numb his brain by smashing his skull against the desk forty-eight times without hesitation or deviation. A lot of repetition though. I stress I only did the hand thing cause I’m thick, not because I was nervous or anything like that."
Eddie Hitler Speaks!
"For the second season, I really wanted to get an old-fashioned feel of TARDIS adventures, a direct shot of 1975 adrenaline into the heart of the rotting corpse that is Doctor Who on audio. But I didn’t want it to be something that requires vast amount of effort, so we just decided to bring back all the monsters from the Tom Baker era we could think and trusted to luck. Pretty much the only other thing we could have done is replace Paul McGann with Tom Baker himself, but frankly that guy terrifies me. Anyone who can drink Oliver Reid under the table and still demand breaks for chasers is not someone you want to mess with. Or share a urinal with. Apparently he’s hung bigger than that bloody scarf he wears, at least that’s what Indie Fisher told me..."
9 out of 10 Doctor Who fans think that if the 1996 TV Movie had featured Autons instead of the Bastard, it would have been marginally less crap. 1 out of 10 Doctor Who fans refuse to accept the 1996 TV Movie exists and even if it did, it’s not canon and Paul McGann doesn’t count as the Doctor no matter HOW many times he turns up on screen in RTD-era episodes.
Rumors & Facts -
In August 1990, someone calling themselves Max Fischer turned up at East Hampton with a large sum of money he invested in a plastic factory. And on certain nights, when he’s in a humorous mood, he visits a the shallow grave of the REAL Max Fischer hidden in the factory grounds and leaves some plastic flowers by the graveside...
Still, enough of my halcyon childhood memories, on with Doctor Who!
Hitler had long wanted to do a Doctor Who story that crossed over with Heartbeat, allowing the Doctor to discover how a show that ran for 17 years could still be set inside a decade, especially as the last five series had been stuck in the yea 1969, even though the entire was aging in accordance with normal time flow.
Hitler simply couldn’t be bothered to work out a proper plot for this story, so the "Town Stuck In Time" was handed over to the first writer for the season he bumped into – and as luck (good or bad, no one can tell) would have it, that was Jonathan Clements.
Following his spectacularly epic Immoral Bedfellows, Clements demanded yet another story to be penned for the Eighth Doctor and Lucie. This request was immediately granted on the grounds that those foolish enough NOT to grant Clements his wishes tended to end up headless radioactive corpses washed up on the shores of Canada.
Clements was quite prepared to work with the town concept having suffered a particularly tedious wedding of his childhood sweetheart to the wrong man. A particularly pushy photographer ordered everyone indoors and stand to attention with nothing to entertain them except the bridal stero playing a well-known Bryan Adams song on a perpetual loop. Clements believed that writing a story about this hellish experience could be even more cathartic than beating up the photographer, harvesting his organs and leaving the unconscious unwitting donor in a bathtub full of ice.
However, it quickly became apparent that the explanation COULDN’T involve the town being in some pocket universe or a repeating time loop as those plot devices had been done to death elsewhere in the exact same season. Clements took this aboard and decided to rip off the old late eighties John Travolta film The Experts and reveal said town would be a Soviet recreation of the English Riviera – a setting so utterly plausible and mundane even Terry Nation tended to screw it up.
Around this time, Hitler realized that RTD’s first ever TV episode featured the Autons and the Nestle Consciousness and, on the grounds that it worked for the big fat Welsh git, immediately decided to the first ever audio story for the Autons. Five minutes later he realized precisely WHY there hadn’t been a previous audio Auton story, since traditionally the dialogue-free faceless plastic robots spent the entire story stomping up and down high streets shoots passers by while crème eggs glowed with evil Lovecraftian spookiness.
Since the villains, defined by being mute, simply couldn’t work on audio, Clements decided the only logical course of action was to approach the Autons from a completely new direction since that would be easier than reinventing the wheel. Mind you, most things are easier than reinventing the wheel – personally, I still don’t know which colour it should be.
The story suffered an incredibly tortured genesis as everyone tried to come up with a decent story title that didn’t give the entire game away. Hitler liked dubbing it "Proxy" since that sounded rather rude, but Clements was torn between "Legacy Code" which was completely meaningless and "The Plastic Population" which would allow anyone to twig who the monsters were in three seconds flat.
Finally they decided the best thing to do was lie outright. Since story titles CANNOT be copyrighted, Hitler decided they rename the story Brave New World and let everyone automatically assume it would be an adaptation/crossover with the infamous Auldus Huxley novel, whose title, after all, was nicked from William Shakespeare ANYWAY!
The plan worked brilliantly: not a single listener was expecting the return of the Autons. Unfortunately, this was because they were all eagerly awaiting a thrilling adventure with the Doctor and Lucie arriving in the World State during the year 623AF and having lots of obscene fun in the regimented individuality-free society they find there. The blatant lack of soma-consumption, recreational Malthusian Drills, Solidarity Services, or mass orgies of sex and self-inflicted violence meant that no matter HOW good the bits with Autons in were, no one gave a rat’s arse. Indeed, it was only gut-twisting terror at the retribution of the author that stopped critics thrashing it.
Brave New World leaves the open-ended fate of the Autons and the Nestles hanging. Do they immediately set about trying to conquer the genuine Cardiff and replacing Billie Piper’s boyfriend with an Auton? Or does Touchwood’s unhealthy interest in them lead to an all-out Auton civil war when they dug up that sole surviving crème egg and experimented on it?
I don’t know about you, but I smell a sequel in the works.
No... wait, it’s just the septic tank. My bad.
Having a truly frightening amount of blackmail on the author, I can exclusively reproduce here the script from the Youth of Australia episode set almost entirely in the afterlife due to a refusal to cop-out resolve the previous episode’s cliffhanger. Why do it? Cause it’s got AUTONS in it! Didn’t you look under Groovy DVD Extras?
Except from "Nigel Does Nirvana: Dead And Loving It!" -
(Setting: A strange, surreal street of half-wrecked buildings. A number of lifeless mannequins are scattered across the street. Andrew and Nigel appear from behind a ruined shop.)
Nigel: This place just gets better and better. What is this place, the new Jays Jeans promotional tour?
(Andrew trips over one such dummy. He struggles to sit upright, leaning on the dummy.)
Andrew: Odd. Feels rather lifelike.
Nigel: What, you think it’s a corpse?
Andrew: Dude, we ARE in the afterlife. (Checks dummy over) Nah, it’s just an ordinary window dummy.
(Nigel sighs and moves down the distorted street. Andrew looks sharply at the dummy, then chuckles affectionately.)
Andrew: You know, for one second I thought you moved.
(He pats the dummy’s shoulder condescendingly. Suddenly, it sits bolt upright, grabbing Andrew’s throat. He starts to choke.)
Andrew: Gah! Nigel!
(Nigel turns and sees what is happening. He starts to giggle.)
Andrew: (gasps) Stop... laughing... you bastard! Help!
(Nigel laughs even more. Another window dummy appears behind him, reaching out to throttle Nigel. He turns at the last minute and cries out. Andrew manages to plant his foot against the throttling dummy and kick himself free. All the other mannequins are now alive and closing in on Nigel and Andrew.)
Nigel: My God! They’re alive!
Andrew: Yeah! This is just like that time in Nabiac!
Nigel: Nabiac? What’s that got to do with anything?
Andrew: (Eyes widen) Nabiac?? Oh, I’d forgotten all about that place!
Nigel: So, what do we do, Memory Man?
Andrew: We don’t panic in the face of adversity, Nigel! We face it together, all right? (Long pause) RUN FOR IT!
(They turn and run down between two buildings. Zombie-like, the dummies stride after them, hands outstretched. Andrew runs down the side street and comes across a roadblock of wooden planks and rubble.)
Nigel: Andrew, if we’re ALREADY dead, why are we scared of these guys? I mean, it’s not like they can kill us NOW, can they?
Andrew: Nigel, this is the wrong time to improve your IQ to rival that of a seedless grape. Let’s just do what comes natural.
(They rapidly start to take the roadblock apart. A mannequin appears behind Andrew, who uses a plank to smash it over. Another dummy appears. A lump of plaster strikes it’s head, which it shakes, and then strides forward again.)
Andrew: Wait! I remember what to do in this crisis situation!
Andrew: (Shouts) THE PUBS ARE OPEN!!!
(The dummy about to grab him by the neck reels and falls down. Nigel throws another brick at the dummies. The one he is aiming at collapses and it misses. We see all the mannequins have collapsed.)
Nigel: They’ve gone back to plastic now. What did you do?
Andrew: Just used a mystical phrase, Nigel.
(They continue to take the roadblock apart.)
Nigel: Like THAT would stop them!
Andrew: They were Autons, dumbo. Lumps of plastic animated by some evil force. When I told it to just sod it all and head for the pub, it agreed and left, so the plastic lumps became plastic lumps again. Come on, already.
Nigel: No! Never! I am not going.
Nigel: Because you have said the words "come on" too many times!
Andrew: I’ve said it twice since we’ve died, you’ve said it more than me! Now, are you going to follow me down this mine-like shaft that goes down into Dimensions of Pure Evil or are you not?
Nigel: That is so unfunny it’s painful. Come on.
Andrew: ...you see?!
(They make their way over the wreckage and head for the outskirts of the shattered cityscape.)