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22 October 2014

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The Doctor and his new ally Ramo anxiously wait for Thous, the ruler of Atlantis, to come to a decision about Professor Zaroff.

The doors of the council chamber swing open and guards stand aside to make way for a visitor.

'There is your answer,' says Thous as someone approaches.

Zaroff sweeps into the room. 'Do with them what you will,' says Thous.

Zaroff looks at Ramo and his fellow conspirator with contempt. 'So you're just a little man after all Doctor, like all the rest. You disappoint me.'

The Doctor asks Zaroff whether he has told the people of Atlantis what he has in store for them. Zaroff responds by threatening to return the Doctor and Ramo to the high priest, Lolem, so the sacrifice can be resumed.

The Doctor tells Zaroff that Ramo is innocent, and that he persuaded him to help. 'That is not true,' says a defiant Ramo. 'I have always distrusted you, Zaroff.'

'Goodbye Doctor,' sneers Zaroff as the Doctor and Ramo are taken away.
The Doctor turns to face Zaroff. 'Let's not say goodbye, Professor. We'll be seeing each other again.'

'Not in this world, Doctor', replies the Professor.

As the door closes behind the prisoners, Thous asks Zaroff if there is any truth in the Doctor's claims. 'Have I not sworn to you that Atlantis shall rise again from the sea?' rants the Professor. 'Haven't I? Haven't I?' There is an awkward silence as Thous gazes at the clearly disturbed Zaroff.

'What are you staring it?' asks Zaroff, as his eye begins to twitch.

A masked executioner watches impassively as a fanfare announces the beginning of another sacrificial ceremony.

Chanting dignitaries wearing fish masks lead a procession into the temple.

They part to make way for children, also wearing fish masks.

The children are followed by Lolem, who bows before the huge statue of Amdo before turning to face the prisoners.

'What happens now?' asks the Doctor nervously. Ramo casts his eyes towards the executioner, who is holding a large sword.

'I'm sorry I got you into this Ramo,' says the Doctor, as their necks are placed on blocks.

'We all have to die some time,' says Ramo. 'It is the will of Amdo. It is inevitable.'

As the executioner prepares to bring his sword down on the Doctor and Ramo, a loud shriek fills the air and a disembodied voice booms: 'This is the voice of Amdo. Bow down your heads that Amdo may accept your sacrifice. Let no human eye witness this awful moment.'

'I know that voice,' says the Doctor, sitting up. He soon notices Ben, gesturing frantically from behind the statue. He grabs the overawed Ramo and they scurry away, unnoticed by the bowing Atlanteans.

The Doctor and Ramo join Ben in his hiding place behind the statue. When Lolem finally rises from his feet he proclaims the event to be a miracle. The Doctor, meanwhile, is overjoyed to be reunited with his friends, who introduce him to Sean and Jacko.

'We shall surprise the whole of mankind!' exclaims Thous, overjoyed that Zaroff's plan will be ready in two days. 'A very great surprise,' smirks Zaroff. 'Perhaps the greatest ever.'

Lolem bursts in to tell Thous and Zaroff about the 'miracle' in the temple: 'They vanished into air before they could be beheaded.' Zaroff accuses Lolem of allowing his prisoners to escape.

Zaroff tells Thous that if the Doctor is at large he could represent a significant danger. 'We must search the whole of Atlantis for him.'

'It shall be as you wish,' says Thous, a note of despondency entering his voice.

'Where do we go from here?' asks Polly.

'We must attack Zaroff,' says the Doctor. 'He has gone mad, and he's bent on destroying the whole world.' The Doctor suggests leading a revolt of the Fish People, thereby depriving Zaroff and his people of food.

Ramo explains that their people have no stocks in reserve, as Zaroff could find no way to keep seafood fresh for more than a few hours.
The Doctor recommends making the hiding place behind the statue their headquarters. Sean and Jacko leave to stir up a revolt, while the Doctor hatches a plan to kidnap Zaroff.

Atlanteans buy and sell exotic wares at the bustling market.

Polly and Ara enter the market, cautiously looking around them as they move between the stalls. They are dressed identically in ornate outfits bearing patterns of shells.

The Doctor – who is disguised in a cloak, headscarf and dark glasses – rattles a small tambourine to attract their attention.

He returns the tambourine to a tray of musical instruments suspended from his neck and plays a few notes on his recorder.

Polly pours scorn on the Doctor's disguise, and Ara says he looks like a sailor. 'That's what I'm supposed to be!' says the Doctor.

'Do you know what to do?' whispers the Doctor.

'Wait a minute,' says the Doctor, gripping Polly's arm. 'Something's gone wrong!' Polly and Ara quickly withdraw as Zaroff's guards begin searching the marketplace.

Ara asks her friend Nola, the carpet trader, to help her. Polly lies on the floor while Nola rapidly covers her up with a rug. One of the guards prods the neighbouring roll of carpet before Nola stops him going any further. 'How shall I sell my carpets if you stick holes in them?'

The Doctor resumes his position next to the fountain, where he is joined by Jamie and Ben. Together with Polly and Ara, they spring a trap when Zaroff enters the marketplace.
The Doctor lures Zaroff away from the market. Assuming Ben and Jamie are guards, Zaroff tells them to accompany him as he gives chase.

Master of disguise

The Doctor heads for the temple, where Ramo pretends to pray before the statue of Amdo.

Zaroff, Ben and Jamie are close behind. Zaroff orders Ben and Jamie to seize Ramo, and then he spies his quarry. 'Ah Doctor, at last!'

The Doctor raises his recorder to his lips and blows a powdery substance into Zaroff's face. Zaroff staggers back into Ben and Jamie's arms. The stricken Professor is dragged into the room behind the statue.

'They're not people like us,' says Sean, surveying the Fish People. 'They're just a bunch of sardines.'

'You heard me!' he shouts, continuing to goad the slaves. 'A flat fish from Galway would have more guts than that bunch!'

The Fish People react angrily to his comments. Some wave their fists at Sean and Jacko, others throw rocks. Now he has their attention, Sean outlines his plan: 'You supply all the food for Atlantis, and it can't be stored, right?' The Fish People nod in agreement.

'Has it never occurred to your little fish brains to stop that supply of food? Feed yourselves but starve Atlantis. What do you think would happen then? Now is your chance – will you do it?' The Fish People nod enthusiastically.

'Will you stay fish slaves for the rest of your lives? You're men, aren't you? Well start the blockade right now!'

The Fish People confer among themselves with strange burbling noises, then slip off the rocks and into the sea.

Something fishy (music clip)

As the Fish People swim around, Jacko asks Sean: 'Do you reckon they'll do it?'

'Who knows?' says Sean as the Fish People mill around beneath them. 'We can only hope for the best.'

One by one, the amphibious Fish People duck beneath the waves.

With graceful strokes they make their way towards the depths.

The Fish People converge in a community built among the coral and weed that grows in clusters on the sea bed.

They expertly navigate the anchors, giant chains and other debris from ship wrecks that litter the underwater landscape.

The Fish People that witnessed Sean's rousing speech swim as far they can, spreading the news of the rebellion.

Using hand gestures to communicate the news, they begin to gather support.

One of them gestures to the surface – the home of their cruel oppressors…

'If you wish to stop my plans you're all too late,' says Zaroff, laughing. 'The process has started. My nuclear reactor is activated. When the desired figure is reached, fission will take place and none of this will matter for any of us.'

'He's only bluffing,' says the Doctor. 'The great Zaroff would have to be there to set off the explosion. Miss your big moment? I think not.'

'You're fools! Idiots!' exclaims Zaroff, rising to his feet. He suddenly grimaces and collapses. 'What's the matter with him?' asks Polly. 'He's had an attack,' says the Doctor.

Polly and Ramo stay to look after the Professor while the Doctor, Ben and Jamie head for the laboratory to ensure Zaroff's plan doesn't come to fruition.

As Zaroff struggles for breath he asks Ramo to help him to pray to Amdo for forgiveness. 'I think you should,' says Polly. 'He does look very ill.'

Ramo grants the Professor his last request, but as he goes to lift him up Zaroff springs to his feet and wraps his fingers around Ramo's throat.

Zaroff grabs a spear, using its handle to try to strangle Ramo. The priest collapses and as Polly tries to help him, Zaroff casts her aside. Zaroff runs the spear through Ramo, who lets out a short scream before falling silent. Zaroff takes a sword and grabs Polly. 'You will come with me!'

In the temple, the Doctor, Ben and Jamie hide behind fish masks during a religious service. Before they leave, Ramo staggers out from behind the statue and dies at the foot of the steps. Realising that Zaroff has taken Polly, the Doctor tells Jamie to follow them while he and Ben head off the other way.

Jamie catches up with Zaroff and Polly, and launches an attack on the Professor.

Zaroff defends himself with his sword, but Jamie jumps on his back. As Sean and Jacko arrive, the Professor throws Jamie off and runs into the tunnels. His maniacal laughter echoes behind him.

Polly and Jamie decide to look for Ara, who is the only one who knows the way to Zaroff's laboratory. Sean and Jacko head back to the temple.

Damon tells Thous that the Fish People are in revolt. 'I cannot let my people starve,' says Thous. 'Bring them before me that I may hear their demands.'

Thous is surprised when Zaroff breezes in. 'Where have you been? We've been looking for you. The workers are in revolt.' Zaroff pays little attention to his concerns and claims that he holds the whole world in his power. Thous realises that the Doctor was right and orders the Professor's project to be stopped.

'You're a fool!' shouts the Professor, who produces a gun from beneath his cloak and fires a single shot at Thous. He orders his men to kill Thous's guards. Zaroff's eyes widen as his voice gains a note of insane triumph. Nothing in the world can stop me now!'

NEXT WEEK: Will the Doctor defeat Zaroff's plan?

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