This serial actually had a decent, if confusing, plot. The thing that stuck out in my memory, however, was how ridiculous the Sensorites look. That’s them in the picture. What are they wearing, footie pajamas? Do all Sensorite clothes cover their feet? If not, are they supposed to be naked? And those feet! Are those just circles of cardboard attached to the actors’ feet? The masks look pretty scary, but once the Sensorites start talking their mouths don’t move much.
The pretty lame cliffhanger at the end of “The Aztecs” finds the TARDIS aboard a future-human ship. It’s been unable to get back to Earth because the Sensorites are holding it captive around their planet. The Sensorites had also driven this guy named John to madness and Susan wants to help. Susan’s soooo wonderful. She has psychic powers! Why does she get the psychic powers and not the Doctor? I don’t know. I don’t like Susan.
That’s John on the right. The funniest line in this entire serial is when one of the future-human crewmembers makes a remark that John’s hair is white, and the Doctor replies: “There’s nothing wrong with that.” This show has the best lines sometimes.
Susan negotiates with the Sensorites and everybody goes to the planet’s surface to try to solve the Sensorites’ problem. A lot of them have been dying, but nobody knows why. But the TARDIS crew quickly discovers that the water has been poisoned when Ian falls ill.
Meanwhile there’s political intrigue because the third-in-command doesn’t trust humans. I don’t know. He murders the second-in-command and takes his place, able to pull it off because (I kid you not) the Sensorites can’t recognize each other without the sashes that identify their position in government. What kind of society is that?! It’s not a society where everyone in the same class is exactly the same, like robots or something. These aliens have distinct personalities! How do the people who aren’t in government office tell each other apart? What about the children? Do they have an elaborate system of clothes–Oh my goodness. Maybe this is why they all wear footie pajamas! Because their clothes are like a second skin! I’m a genius.
Long story short, it was actually humans poisoning the water supply, and the third-in-command’s plot is foiled. The TARDIS crew sets off, and this time the Doctor is determined to get Barbara and Ian back to Earth, whether they like it or not.
Next: The Reign of Terror.