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Home > Doctor Who > 31 Classic Doctor Who Monsters #13: The Tractators

31 Classic Doctor Who Monsters #13: The Tractators

October 13th, 2012

The three-year run of the 5th Doctor was a bit light when it came to introducing new and notable monsters. There were returning creatures such as the Cybermen, Daleks, Silurians and Sea Devils; as well as recurring villains Omega, the Master and the Black Guardian. But a fair number of the would-be monsters seemed more like afterthoughts. The Garm, the Ergon, the Plasmatons and the Magma Beast didn’t even qualify as second-stringers. And the less said about the Myrka

There were a few exceptions. And my favorites among them were the scourges of the planet Frontios, the gravity-generating mealworms…

The Tractators!

Frontios (1984)

In the far, far future–beyond even the scope of the Time Lords’ knowledge–the human colony of Frontios was frequently bombarded by meteors drawn to the planet’s surface. And one by one, the colonists were being swallowed up by the ground itself.

The Tractators were mindless creatures that needed a controlling intelligence–the Gravis–to focus their gravity-manipulation abilities. Its plan was to dig a honeycomb of tunnels that would transform the entire world into a “gravity motor.” And for its next trick, it blew up the TARDIS!

Admittedly, the Tractators suffered from the inherent limitations of trying to turn a human actor into a convincing non-humanoid life form in the days before inexpensive computer graphics. The stiff costumes kept them from curling around their victims as originally intended.

Tomorrow: Kroll! Kroll! Kroll! Kroll!

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