124) SNAKEDANCE

18 - 25 January 1983

Average Viewing Figure: 7.1M

Plot

The Tardis lands on the planet Manussa where, The Doctor must stop the Mara entering our Universe once more

Cast

Peter Davison (The Doctor), Janet Fielding (Tegan), Sarah Sutton (Nyssa), John Carson (Ambril), Colette O'Neil (Tanha)

Preston Lockwood (Dojjen), Martin Clunes (Lon), Johnathon Morris (Chela), Brian Miller (Dugdale), Hilary Sesta (Fortune Teller)

George Ballantine (Hawker), Barry Smith (Puppeteer), Brian Grellis (Megaphone Man)

Uncredited Cast

Bob Mills (Lon's Bodyguard), Barney Lawrence (Tanha's Bodyguard), Chris Holmes (Ambril's Attendant), Jean Channon, Sheila Vivian

Derek Hunt, Brian Moorhead (Worthies), Ray Lavender, Derek Holt, Fred Redford (Demons)

Crew

Christopher Bailey (Writer), Peter Howell (Incidental Music), Dick Mills (Special Sound), Margot Hayhoe (Production Manager)

Angela Smith (Production Associate), Rita Dunn (Production Assistant), Maggy Campbell (Assistant Floor Manager)

John Baker (Film Cameraman), Ron Blight (Film Sound), Alastair Mackay (Film Editor), Andy Lazell (Visual Effects Designer)

Dave Chapman (Video Effects), Derek Thompson (Technical Manager), Alec Wheal, Geoff Clark (Senior Cameraman)

Carol Johnson (Vision Mixer), Rod Waldron (Videotape Editor), Henry Barber (Studio Lighting), Martin Ridout (Studio Sound)

Ken Trew (Costume Designer), Marion Richards (Make-Up Designer), Eric Saward (Script Editor), Sid Sutton (Title Sequence)

Jan Spoczynski (Designer), John Nathan-Turner (Producer), Fiona Cumming (Director)

Broadcast

Filming Locations

  • Ealing Film Studios: Stage 2

  • Television Centre: Studio 6

Deaths

  • Mara [destroyed once again]

Production Days

  • 7 Days between Wednesday 31 March - Wednesday 28 April 1982

Production Errors

  1. During the serial Lon states the fake crystal is made of glass however when it is later smashed, it is quite obvious that it's not​​

Working Titles

  • Snake Dance

Verdict

A much better tale from Christopher Bailey resulting in a visual pleasing tale that will forever overshadow its predecessor. Snakedance builds on various themes from its predecessor and improves them whilst also adding imagery of conquest and colonisation to the list. A good sequel should always improve and expand rather than repeat. The story is gracious enough to allow Tegan to be an integral part of the narrative, Janet Fielding is clearly enjoying herself playing the baddie. Although at times the plot does seem to forget about Tegan. The silent, peaceful Dojjen is also a delight reinforcing that characters do not need to speak to make the presence on the screen while Lon is a little underwhelming. The visuals are remarkable improvement, the bright, jumping off the screen costumes, the big, bustling sets especially the snake mouth cave entrance, camera angles which look like a snake’s (Mara’s) point-of-view, the skull in the crystal ball and the lives snakes, yes live snakes and music all add to the enjoyableness. A few more thrown away lines and a slow-moving part three does not bite off more than it can chew. A well thought out and executed story. ****