139) THE MARK OF THE RANI

2 - 9 February 1985

Average Viewing Figure: 6.8M

Plot

The Doctor discovers The Master and The Rani are up to no good in the nineteenth century, Killingworth

Cast

Colin Baker (The Doctor), Nicola Bryant (Peri), Anthony Ainley (The Master), Kate O'Mara (The Rani), Terence Alexander (Lord Ravensworth)

Gawn Grainger (George Stephenson), Peter Childs (Jack Ward), Gary Cady (Luke Ward), Richard Steele (Guard), William Ilkley (Tim Bass)

Hus Levent (Edwin Green), Kevin White (Sam Rudge), Martyn Whitby (Drayman), Sarah James (Young Woman), Cordelia Ditton (Older Woman)

Uncredited Cast

Leon Laurence, Nick Joseph (Miners), Dave Mitty (Peddler), Tony Deli (Boy), Gordon Young (Guard Harry)

Terence Cotton, Clive Cartwright (Guards), Nigel Johnson (Josh), Alan Talbot (Tom)

Crew

Pip and Jane Baker (Writers), Ron Grainer (Title Music), Jonathan Gibbs (Incidental Music), Dick Mills (Special Sound)

Kevin Rowley (Film Cameraman), Barrie Tharby (Film Sound), Ray Wingrove (Film Editor), Tony Redston (Production Manager)

Sue Anstruther (Production Associate), Carolyn Mawdsley (Production Assistant), Penny Williams (Assistant Floor Manager)

David Barton (Visual Effects Designer), Dave Chapman (Video Effects), Jayne Beckett (Vision Mixer)

Alan Arbuthnott (Technical Co-ordinator), Alec Wheal (Camera Supervisor), Hugh Parson (Videotape Editor)

Don Babbage (Lighting Director), Keith Bowden (Studio Sound), Dinah Collin (Costume Designer)

Catherine Davies (Make-Up Designer), Eric Saward (Script Editor), Sid Sutton (Title Sequence), Paul Trerise (Designer)

John Nathan-Turner (Producer), Sarah Hellings (Director)

Uncredited Crew

Tom Davis, George Reed (Visual Effects Assistants)

Broadcast

Filming Locations

  • Granville Colliery Spoil Heaps, Donnington Wood, Salop

  • Blists Hill Open Air Museum, Telford, Salop

  • Coalport China Works, Coalport, Salop

  • Park Wood, Ruislip, Middx

  • Television Centre: Studio 1

Deaths

  • Luke Ward [unknown but turned into a tree]

  • Edwin Green [killed by The Rani]

  • Sam Rudge [fall down a Mine shaft to this death]

  • Josh [killed by The Rani]

  • Tom [shot and killed by The Rani]

Production Days

  •  15 days between Monday 22 October - Tuesday 20 November 1984

Production Errors

  1. When The Doctor dangles above the pit he barely fit with room to spare however when The Tardis is thrown down the pit, it fits with room to spare. The Tardis is much bigger than The Doctor. 

  2. As The Doctor dangles about the pit, one of three miners falls in. However, in a following shot, there are three pairs of hands aiming weapons at The Doctor when there should only be two miners left

Working Title

  • Enter the Rani

  • Too Clever by Far

Verdict

A middle of the road adventure which is neither fast enough to be fully enjoyable but is visually pleasing enough keeping it from being a laborious tale. Whilst the period setting, and filming locations are highlights there are far too many slapstick moments and the story is repeatedly dull. The dull plot is of no reflection of Sarah Hellings directing ability or Pip and Jane Baker as writers they all have little moments of brilliance such as the topical issue of machinery pushing miners out of work. The Rani is a surprisingly strong character, the best female Time Lord in a long time, helped by the brilliant acting abilities of Kate O’Mara. The Master on the other hand has no place in the plot and whenever the two Time Lords are on-screen together they act like an annoying old couple from an unfunny television comedy. The final product is fine piece of television but the lack of energy throughout keeps it from being anything special. ***