So, even with the whole thing starting with a Mars mission, I am really starting to think there are no Ice Warriors in this serial…
What does this serial have? An empty capsule.
Yes, there was a good reason why the astronauts keep repeating themselves. When the space center guys cut their way inside, there’s a tape recorder in there set to issue standard replies every time someone asks it a question. Oh, and the inside of the capsule is incredibly radioactive. How did the astronauts get out?
Simple. They were never inside. They couldn’t have been. The radiation would have killed them. This time when the Doctor makes an assumption, it makes sense.
So, yeah, the real astronauts are still in space, and there was a period when the capsule was not in UNIT’s possession. There was a brief period when it was held by some military guys. And yeah, the Brigadier doesn’t know anything about them.
Whatever was in the capsule has been taken!
See, the Doctor and the Brigadier go see the guy in charge again, and this time he says he isn’t in charge and brings in a military man, one General Carrington. He says there were concerns that the astronauts picked up a radiation poisoning that would be contagious and preemptively took them away for security reasons. Beardy scientist guy was ordered to keep the code a secret since it was supposed to tell the people on the ground there was a problem.
OK, so, that explains a little. We have three guys in space suits, we can’t see their faces, and they apparently need radiation. There are some soldiers and scientists watching them when…some more guys show up, kill everyone, and take the three astronauts.
So, three factions? UNIT, the military, and these other guys who know they need to keep pumping deadly radiation in on the three guys in the space suits or else those three die.
And there’s some interference from Carrington to send a rescue mission to the three astronauts still in space.
No wonder the British space program never got that far.
OK, but then Liz gets a call from the Brigadier to come out to a different location to help out, and the Doctor tosses her the keys to Bessie. But after Liz leaves, the Brigadier shows up to say he never summoned Liz anywhere, and we see Liz getting chased and captured by some goons. Hired goons, no doubt.
The Wheel Of Time “A Place Of Safety”
The X-Files “Blood”
Hunters “The Trial Of Adolph Hitler”