July 22, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Doctor Who “The Curse Of Fenric Part 4”

The Seventh Doctor. "The Curse of Fenric," Final Episode.

You know, after sitting through serials like this, I do wonder why Ace willingly continues to hang out with the Doctor.

True, most companions ends up in a lot of danger just for associating with the Doctor, but Ace more than most suffers psychologically, often for some gambit the Doctor himself set up to defeat the bad guy du jour.   That seems a bit…new

That really happens here.  The evil entity Fenric has possessed the body of Professor Judson, and the Haemovores seem to be obeying his commands, enough that they summon one of their oldest forbears.  That one is the Ancient One, and he won’t be teaching Dr. Strange much of anything.

See, the Haemovores know the future kinda sucks for them, and that dick Millington has been stockpiling chemical weapons, so Judson can simply suggest the Haemovores use the stuff to wipe out the human race a few centuries early to improve their own future.

The Doctor, meanwhile, has his own plan.  First step is setting up a chess board because he and Fenric have been playing a rather literal game of chess for a few centuries and Fenric for one is not someone who can just quit a game.  Fenric spends so much time staring at the board, he doesn’t notice other things.  Sure, the Haemorvores have converted many of the women on base into more of them and are killing the men, but Ace manages to rescue one woman with a baby that has the same name as Ace’s hated mother.  Likewise, the surviving Soviets and English learn to team up against the real enemy, Millington and Fenric.  Millington dies.  Ace sees a solution to the chess problem that both sides team up and rushes off to tell the Doctor and Soviet Captain Sorin, but the Doctor isn’t there.  Sorin is, but Fenric possessed his body so Ace gave away the game to the baddie by mistake.

But this is the chessmaster Doctor.  He’s already won.  It was easy.  Once the Ancient One caused all the other Haemovores to disintegrate, the Doctor just talked to that guy, pointed out that ruining the ecosystem in the 40s would also ruin the planet in the future, and got the monster man to switch sides.

And sure, Fenric can put Ace between himself and the Ancient One, knowing Ace would have complete and total faith in the Doctor to save the day and complete and total faith acts as a Haemovore ward.  Plus, Fenric was the reason Ace was on Ice World in the first place to even meet the Doctor.  He even lets out the baby Ace rescued was Ace’s own future mother.  This guy sucks, and then the Doctor does something awful by basically saying Ace could die because he couldn’t help.

Ace lost her faith, the Ancient One attacked Fenric, and the day is saved.  I guess Ace got her faith back, and she wasn’t too mad about that even though she totally should have been.  But she concludes that she has some complex feelings for her mother and has lost her fear of water, so I guess all’s well as the pair walk off for the next adventure.

Which, it just so happens, is also their last though nobody knew it at the time.