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Home > Doctor Who > 31 Classic Doctor Who Monsters #11: The Primords

31 Classic Doctor Who Monsters #11: The Primords

October 11th, 2012

It’s odd that a series about the possibilities of time travel so rarely has flirted with parallel universes. In 49 years of televised adventures, the Doctor has visited exactly two. Viewers of modern Who will be familiar with “Pete’s World,” the alternate Earth in which Rose’s dad was still alive. Thirty-six years earlier, the 3rd Doctor slipped between dimensions to a world threatened with destruction and overrun by…

The Primords!

Inferno (1970)

Jon Pertwee’s side-trip served several purposes, not the least of which was stretching the serial out to seven episodes. It also allowed the regular cast to indulge in playing their own evil counterparts. And finally, it gave the production team the opportunity to have their Earth and wreck it too.

Both realities were endangered by an out-of-control geothermal project that the Doctor feared would crack apart the world. One of its side-effects was the release of a toxic green goo that mutated humans into werewolf-like creatures. Truthfully, the Primords were less of a menace than a distraction. More dangerous was good old human stubbornness, doubly so in the fascist England of the parallel universe.

What made Inferno a unique entry was the Doctor’s utter failure to save the day, instead fleeing from the wave of lava devouring the alternate Earth. Happily, he was considerably more successful in his home reality.

Tomorrow: Bumbles bounce!

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