85) THE SEEDS OF DOOM

31 January - 6 March 1976

Average Viewing Figure: 10.9M

Plot

When a Krynoid Seedpod is found in Antarctica, The Doctor and Sarah must stop a millionaire from destroying the world

76) THE ARK IN SPACE

Cast

Tom Baker (The Doctor), Elisabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith) Tony Beckley (Harrison Chase), John Challis (Scorby)

Mark Jones (Arnold Keeler), Hubert Rees (John Stevenson), John Gleeson (Charles Winlett), Michael McStay (Derek Moberley)

Kenneth Gilbert (Richard Dunbar), Michael Barrington (Sir Colin Thackeray), Seymour Green (Hargreaves)

Sylvia Coleridge (Amelia Ducat), David Masterman (Guard Leader), Ian Fairbairn (Doctor Chester), Alan Chuntz (Chauffeur)

Harry Fielder (Guard), John Acheson (Major Beresford), Ray Barron (Sergeant Henderson), Mark Jones (The Krynoid's Voice)

Uncredited Cast

Peter Bailey (Radio Voice [Mike Wilson]), Patrick Milner, Ronald Gough (Marines), Pat Gorman, Bryan Nolan, Ian Elliott (Guards)

Ronald Gough, Keith Ashley (Krynoids), Keith Ashley (Secretary), Peter Bailey, Rowland Geall, Patrick Ginter

Tony Snell, Barry Summerford, Derek Wayland (UNIT Soldiers), Peter Bailey (Voice [Red Leader])

Crew

Robert Banks Stewart (Writer), Terry Walsh (Fight Arranger), Graeme Harper (Production Assistant)

Janet Radenkovic, George Gallaccio (Production Unit Managers), Ron Grainer (Title Music), Bernard Lodge (Title Sequence)

Geoffrey Burgon (Incidental Music), Dick Mills (Special Sound), Barbara Lane (Costume Designer), Ann Briggs (Make-Up)

Richard Conway (Visual Effects Designer), John Dixon (Studio Lighting), John Holmes (Studio Sound), Clive Potter (OB Lighting)

Vic Godrich (OB Sound), Keith Hopper (Film Cameraman), MAC Adams (Film Editor), Robert Holmes (Script Editor)

Roger Murray-Leachm Jeremy Bear (Designers), Philip Hinchcliffe (Producer), Douglas Camfield (Director)

Uncredited Crew

Steve Drewett, George Reed, John Brace, Charlie Lumm (Visual Effects Assistants), Maurice Watson (Props Buyer)

Bernard Fox (Technical Manager), Dave Jervis (Electronic Effects), Andrww Hunter (Grams Operator), Arthur Funge (Dresser)

Bert Robinson (Engineering Manager), Paul Jackson (OB Vision Mixer), Simon Fone, Frank Hudson (OB Cameramen)

Paul Kay (Senior Cameraman), Jan Spoczynski (Design Assistant), Briony Brown (Director's Assistant)

Sue Thorne, Graham Giles, Heather Gilder (Vision Mixers), Sue Shearman (Assistant Floor Manager)

Moria Fitzgerald (Elisabeth Sladen's Dresser), Gillian Bowles (Pre-Production Secretary), Carol Vigurs (Facilities Booker)

Nansi Davies (Artists Booker), Catherine Cary-Elwes, Janet Gilpin, Gillian Thomas (Make-Up Assistants), Steve Haggard (Floor Assistant)

Jack Wells (Armourer)

Broadcast

Filming Locations

  • Athelhampton Hall, Athelhampton Dorset

  • Ealing Film Studios

  • Television Centre: Studio 4

  • Country Road, nr Betchworth, Surrey

  • Buckland Sand and Silica Co Ltd, Buckland, Surrey

  • Television Centre: Studio 8

  • Television Centre: Main Entrance

Number of Production Days: 5

Deaths

  • Harrison Chase [pulled into his compost machine]

  • Scorby [drowned by The Krynoid]

  • Arnold Keeler [ceased to exist after becoming infected by The Krynoid]

  • John Stevenson [strangled by The Krynoid]

  • Charles Winlett [ceases to exist after becoming infected by The Krynoid]

  • Derek Moberley [strangled by The Krynoid]

  • Richard Dunbar [killed by a Krynoid]

  • Hargreaves [killed by vines controlled by The Krynoid]

  • Sergeant Henderson [pulled into a compost machine]

  • Krynoid [killed in an explosion]

  • Krynoid [killed in a missile strike]

Production Days

  • 15 Days between Thursday 30 October - Friday 19 December 1975

Production Errors

  1. During part one, Moberlet says he will 'take these to the stick bay', rather than the sickbay

  2. During part four, Chase tears off two cheques when paying Amelia Ducat for the painting he bought from her

  3. At the end of part four, The Doctor and Sarah leave the cottage when it is completely dark. However, when they go back inside at the beginning of part five the area is lighter

  4. During part six, when the tentacle withdraws from the window, the outside is exposed and it is black

  5. At the end of part six, the Tardis takes The Doctor and Sarah Jane back to Antarctica because The Doctor failed to re-set the coordinates. However they never went to Antarctica in the Tardis, they went by helicopter 

Working Titles

  • [no known working titles]

Verdict

The Seeds of Doom is many aspects is a pivotal point in the show’s history. Veteran director Douglas Camfield makes his final contribution to the show history and Sladen had announced her exit from the show at roughly the same time. The Seeds of Doom takes The Doctor to two corners of the Earth in the space of six episode where he battles a whole series of menaces; a plant-based alien who can destroy the entire planet, a millionaire, insane botanist who actions are driven on the basis of greed and power, and a trigger happy henchman who becomes an unwilling ally. The design work in renaissance era continues to the models shots and extensive location shoot at Athelhampton House for the majority of the last two episodes. The cast are continually strong, and the first two episodes are some of the best in the show’s history. A witty, dark humoured script from Banks Stewart, he appears to be more focused on his ideas this time compared to Terror of the Zygons and closely shot studio scenes all make for a continually brilliant viewing experience. There is so much that can be said about The Seeds of Doom, but one would have to watch it to understand and appreciate its sheer brilliance. *****​