So first, a little history lesson on Doctor Who. As you may know, unlike modern Doctor Who, in it’s original run it had stories split into several episodes usually ranging from 4 parts to 6 parts. Although usually referred to by the story title, in the first few years each individual episode had a seperate title too. The titles were usually along the same vein as the story titles. For example The Dalek Invasion of Earth is split up into:
Day of Reckoning
The End of Tomorrow
The Waking Ally
All of those episode titles sound fairly serious and quite exciting. The reason I am highlighting this is because the episode titles for The Myth Makers were originally all going to be based around puns. Yup. Puns. This idea was scrapped but it does leave one or two of the titles sounding like Blackadder episodes or any other historical sitcom. The titles were intended to include:
Zeus Ex Machina
Is There A Doctor In The Horse?
Small Prophet, Quick Return
Only the last title was allowed to remain. Even so I’m pleased that the decision to change the episode titles was made. When you look at a list of Doctor Who episodes, it would be so frustrating to have such strange titles amidst the serious ones; and the tone isn’t really right for Doctor Who generally.
Anyway now that is out of the way, onto the story itself. We get a couple of things that feel completely lifted from other stories. For instance, when exiting the Tardis, the Doctor is instantly mistaken for a God; just as Barbara was in The Aztecs. Being mistaken for Zeus, he is taken to the Greek camp and forced by Agamemnon to help against the Trojans. Meanwhile the Tardis gets taken inside the walls of Troy as a prize. This obviously foreshadows the Trojan Horse idea later.
After leaving the Tardis, Vicki is then mistaken as a sign from the Gods. There is then a plot point that came across as rather tedious in the reconstruction. Because Steven has been going by the name of Diomede, when Vicki calls him by his real name, they cause suspicion and get locked up.
Vicki has also been falling in love with Priam’s son, Troilus. It’s a shame that for a character who was such a copy of Susan to have to follow the same reason for departing the show. Another storyline and reasoning would have been more creative.
The Doctor then presents the idea of a Trojan Horse to Odysseus; after he had decredited the idea himself earlier. So in a Timey-Wimey way, the Doctor invented and devised the legendary invasion technique. I usually like it when Doctor Who causes historical events or solves historical mysteries; but again it feels a little bit on the nose.
It may have been due to the way that I was watching the reconstruction, but Katarina seemed to be such a background character that it slightly surprised me when she became a companion. I did however like the fact that Katarina thought that she had died and that the Doctor was taking her on a journey to the after life.
Vicki’s ending seemed so out of the blue, and not allowed to develop in the same way that Susan’s was. Neither was it followed with any of the emotional farewell that Susan received.
With the ways that The Myth Makers repeated quite a few story elements, and due to my limited enjoyment as a reconstruction; I will award the story with just four Trojan Horses out of ten.