96) UNDERWORLD

7 - 28 January 1978

Average Viewing Figure: 9.7M

Plot

The Tardis lands on the spaceship R1C who is searching for the P7E a spaceship that could save the Minyan race

76) THE ARK IN SPACE

Cast

Tom Baker (The Doctor), Louise Jameson (Leela), James Maxwell (Jackson), Alan Lake (Herrick), Jonathan Newth (Orfe)

Imogen Bickford-Smith (Tala), James Marcus (Rask), Godfrey James (Tarn), Jimmy Gardner (Idmon), Norman Tipton (Idas)

Frank Jarvis (Ankh), Richard Shaw (Lakh), Jay Neill (Guard Klimt), Stacey Tendeter (Naia), John Leeson (K-9 Voice)

Christine Pollon (Voice of the Oracle)

Crew

Bob Baker, Dave Martin (Writers), Dudley Simpson (Incidental Music), Dick Mills (Special Sound), Mike Cager (Production Assistant)

John Nathan-Turner (Production Unit Manager), Mike Jefferies (Lighting), Richard Chubb (Sound), Richard Conway (Visual Effects Designer)

A.J Mitchell (Electronic Effects), Rupert Jarvis (Costume Designer), Cecile Hay-Arthur (Make-Up Artist), Anthony Head (Script Editor)

Dick Coles (Designer), Graham Williams (Producer), Norman Stewart (Director)

Uncredited Crew

Jane Shepherd (Design Assistant), Bob Warans (Properties Buyer), Mike Chislet (Studio Lighting), Gerry Borrows (Grams Operator)

Shirley Coward (Vision Mixer), Sue Williams (Floor Assistant)

Broadcast

Filming Locations

  • Television Centre: Studio 3

  • Television Centre: Studio 4

Number of Production Days: 5

Deaths

  • Rask [killed when The Oracle detonates a bomb]

  • Tarn [killed when The Oracle detonates a bomb]

  • Ankh [killed when The Oracle detonates a bomb]

  • Lakh [killed when The Oracle detonates]

  • Minyans [killed during a rockfall]

Production Days

  • 6 Days between Monday 3 - Tuesday 18 October 1977

Production Errors

  1. Due to CSO problems, K9 appears to float in midair at various point throughout the serial 

  2. A rock that is positioned behind Leela is a hollow piece of plastic. It squashes whenever Leela jeans against it

  3. The rock which The Doctor and Leela hide behind visibly moves when they step away from it

  4. Why would The Doctor leave hundreds of people on Minyan ship, on a 400-year journey, on a tiny spaceship, when he could take them in the Tardis?

Working Titles

  • [no known working titles]

Verdict

Underworld is without a doubt the worst Doctor Who serial of all time. Impressive sets aside the writing is bogged down, slow, tiresome, dull and tedious. Underworld is full of Gods, prophecies, mythology, religious ceremonies, interrogations, rebellions and double bluffs which have been seen many times before but never to the level of this. Some of the worst CSO shots, they are literally everywhere, can be seen here, and creativity is nowhere to be seen. Just look at the ridiculous levitating scene in episode two. There are constant recycled shots, sets and footage which just proves how lazy everything is. They use the same shot of a Seer and Guards walking in a cave – THREE TIMES! The villains are dimwits realising at the last second when things are going wrong and do nothing to prevent themselves from being killed. Multiple Guards literally walk into the line of fire. None of the characters are worth of a mention, they simply appear and that’s their introduction and a few of them look like they cannot bear to be around each around. Look how Jackson just leaves Herrick behind with little to no encouragement. At the end The Doctor simply say goodbye and he is off. Who can blame him? The extras are awful who seems totally confused about how they are supposed to be acting. The whole production is a abysmal and the similarities to The Face of Evil is astounding and the repetitious tagline ‘The Quest is the Quest’ only proves how little it has going for it. *​