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Home > Doctor Who > 31 Classic Doctor Who Monsters #1: The Voord

31 Classic Doctor Who Monsters #1: The Voord

October 1st, 2012

This year’s Halloween countdown might have been better timed if I’d saved it until Doctor Who‘s 50th anniversary in 2013, but I’m in the mood now. So, join me for the next 31 days as I look back at the creatures that menaced the first seven incarnations of everyone’s favorite nigh-immortal, time-and-space-travelling British TV hero.

For the most part, I’m going to skip well-known baddies such as the Daleks, Cybermen and Sontarans in favor of the deep roster. Some are one-hit wonders deserving of a reintroduction. Others are better yet forgotten, but here we are anyway.

Our first member of this galaxy of terrors hails from the first season* of Doctor Who. In April 1964, British kids were still gripped firmly by the sucker arms of Dalekmania. After a lengthy journey with Marco Polo, the show was ready to visit its second alien world. The seven-part serialĀ The Keys of Marinus would introduce the first in a long series of pretenders to the mighty Daleks’ throne…

The Voord!

The Keys of Marinus (1964)

Given that we have never seen episodes entitled Genesis of the Voord, Asylum of the Voord, or simply Voord, we can agree that they were not, as hoped, wildly popular in London’s playgrounds.

Even today, no one is sure what the Voord really were. They were humanoids in dark wetsuits topped with all-concealing helmets. Were they loathsome batrachians or rubber fetishists?

The Voord sought to take control of The Conscience of Marinus, a supercomputer that made it impossible for residents of the planet to harbor evil thoughts. Well, except for the Voord, which seems like a flaw. After six episodes spent questing for the keys that governed the great machine, the Doctor’s companion Ian substituted a fake which, when inserted, caused the Conscience to explode. Good job, Ian.

After their one TV appearance, the Voord showed up in spin-off media such as a set of trading cards, but never caught on. In 1987, acclaimed comics writer Grant Morrison wrote a piece of continuity-porn called The World Shapers in which he revealed that the Voord were the species that later became the infinitely more-popular Cybermen. However, that was silly and everyone ignored it.

Come back tomorrow for the second installment!

*Pedants will point out that the British refer to a year of episodes as a “series,” not a “season” as is the case for American TV. Remind me of this next time I’m blogging from the U.K.

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