Varos is a very important planet in the universe. The planet has a number of important natural resources, however unbeknownst to most people is that Varos is in turmoil. The government of the planet has been corrupted by aliens and they broadcast torture and execution to the public for entertainment. It is into this dark world that the Doctor (Colin Baker) and Peri (Nicola Bryant) arrive. Accused of being rival spies, they are soon on the run - but will they be able to survive the terrifying trials on Varos?
"Vengeance on Varos" was the second serial released during the show's 22nd season. Following in the season's footsteps, the serial proves to be a dark story, but is still a very exciting one. It is wrought with suspense as the Doctor and Peri must escape the Punishment Dome, the building in which prisoners are tortured and executed on live television. This idea of television being a vessel to display cruel acts would appear in an episode of the newer Doctor Who series entitled "Bad Wolf." Due to this, it is interesting to see this serial which might have acted as inspiration for the latter.
|The Doctor and Peri arrive at the wrong place|
at the wrong time
All in all, "Vengeance on Varos" is an overlooked gem. It stands out as a testament that the show's quality didn't dip so dramatically at this point. As always, Colin Baker performs wonderfully and there's lots of creepy, unsettling atmosphere prevalent throughout the serial. Of all the stories from Season 22, this one is probably the best. Let's just remember this feeling when it comes time to watch "Mark of the Rani" and "Timelash." (Gulp)
Coming Next Time: How many times have you ever heard the word 'luddite' in conversation? Well, your about to hear it a lot more since they make up a great deal of the plot for "Mark of the Rani."