Doctor Who (1963–1989): Season 1, Episode 21 - The Sea of Death - full transcript

On the planet Marinus, the Doctor and his companions are enlisted by Arbitan to seek out the keys to an ancient and powerful machine. Their quest takes them across time and space; will they...


Any radiation, Doctor?

No, nothing to speak of.
The counter's hardly reading anything.

Shall we take a look?

Pity you don't have coloured television.

-Oh, but I have.
-Where is it then?

Well, at the moment
it's temporarily hors de combat.

Oh look, that's the sea, isn't it?

SUSAN: Yes and sand!
Grandfather, I wonder where we are.

Well one thing's sure,
we're not at Southend.

(CHUCKLING) Grandfather,
can we go and have a look, can we?

Yes, I don't think...

I don't see why not. There's nothing...

No danger about it. Come on.
Let's go and have a look.



I thought when you
switched the scanner on,

I thought I saw something move up there.

Oh, probably just a shadow.

Well, let's go outside and have a look.

It is the sea.

It's beautiful!


Absolutely calm.

Not even a ripple.

-It isn't frozen, is it?
-No, impossible in this temperature.

Besides it's too warm.

Grandfather, do you think it's safe
to go for a swim?

Oh, no, no, no.
Not at the moment, child.

However inviting that water looks,

we don't know what sort of creatures
might be lurking beneath its surface.

-It's so quiet.
-Yes, it is.

-No birds or anything.
-There's nothing growing.

I say, what do you make
of this, Chesterton?


-IAN: Oh, it's glass!
-DOCTOR: Yes, it is, isn't it? Yes.

Glass instead of sand, eh.
Intriguing. Intriguing, my boy.

Do you think the sand turned into glass?

Or was the glass put here deliberately?
And if so, why? Hmm?

SUSAN: Hmm, There's a lovely
pool over here.

If I can't swim, at least I can paddle.

-Now I go...
-No, Susan, don't!

Ian, what is it?

It must be some sort of acid.

But it was so fast.
It just seemed to dissolve.

-And I was gonna paddle in it.
-It's all right, Susan, it's all right.

Look, you've got some more shoes
back at the ship, haven't you?

Well, go and put them on.
We'll wait here for you.

-All right.
-Here, you'd better take my boots.

I can't put those on.
They're much too big for me.

Now come on, it's better than
cutting your feet open on this glass.

All right.

-I'm gonna fill them up with sand.

-All right?

Give you lovely corns, those will.


Stumbling about in boots...


This is a tidal pool.

Yes, I agree.

Rather ties up with the glass beach,
doesn't it?

Then everything out there

is acid, too.

A sea of acid.


Sea of acid? Hmm. Astonishing!

You know, in all my travels, I've never
come across anything like this before.

However, Susan wasn't harmed anyway.

No. She was a bit frightened
at losing her shoes,

but she's gone back to the ship
for another pair.

Yes. And if you'd had your shoes on,
my boy,

you could have lent her yours.

You mustn't get sloppy in your habits,
you know.


Good gracious!

It looks like a glass torpedo.

Or a one-man submarine.

Well, it's certainly designed
for going under the water.

-Under acid, more likely.

I don't know whether
it's occurred to you, Doctor,

but this means this place is inhabited.

Oh yes, it has occurred to me.
Let's see what it is.

Help me get this top off.


There's another one over here.
And there's something inside it.


See that crack along there?

It's where the acid must have seeped in.


That's got it.

Ah, let's have a look at you.

-Use that.
-Oh, all right.

It's a protective suit.

DOCTOR: Yes, and whatever it was
wore it is...

Was similar to a human being, hmm?

IAN: Yes, but how did it get out?
Seems to be perfectly intact.

BARBARA: I don't think it did get out.

There's a tear in the material here.

IAN: You mean the acid got in?
Poor devil.

Yes. Well, I think we ought to go back
to the ship

and try and find Susan.

She should have caught up with us
by now. Come along.

Look at that fantastic building.

Good, good!

Now perhaps we might learn
who it is that uses these strange ships.

Anyway, let's go back to the ship
and find Susan.

Later perhaps,
a little visiting, I think.

IAN: Yes.

She isn't inside anywhere.

Oh, wretched child!
Now where has she got to, I wonder?

BARBARA: Ian, there are your boots.

There are Susan's footprints
in the sand here.

Yes. Sand here and glass on the beach.

I'm beginning to think
that sea of acid is a defence barrier.

Except against glass submarines,
eh, Doctor?

What you mean is that
all visitors are unwelcome.

-Yes, it would seem so.
-We must find Susan.

She may have gone
to have a look at that building.

Yes. Yes.


Oh, it's enormous!

Look at the joins in the blocks, Ian.

Yes. No mortar.

Must have been built
with tremendous accuracy.

Yes, the Egyptians did the same thing.

So did the Indians
of Central and Southern America.

A precise distribution of weights,
that's the key, isn't it?

-Yes. It's marvellous, isn't it?

Well now,
before you two get carried away

I think we'd better go and find Susan.

Yes, you're quite right.

Well, for a start,
let's make a circuit of this place.

Excellent. Now I suggest
we go different ways

and meet back at the furthermost point,

which is probably
round the corner there somewhere.

-Off you go, off you go now.


-Did you hear that?
-Yes, it was Susan. Come on.

-I could have sworn I heard her.
-We certainly heard something.

I can't be sure it was Susan, of course.

-Well, I am sure.
-Yes, but where's the Doctor?

I mean, even if he'd been
travelling at half speed

he should have reached
that far corner by now.


Well, there's only one thing to do.
That's another circuit of the walls.

IAN: I've just been all around
and I couldn't find a door anywhere.

Well, I suppose there's every chance
she didn't come this way.

She's probably back at the ship,
waiting for us.

I said she's probably back at the ship,
waiting for us.





Dreadful, the wall just seemed
to swallow me up

and then this...this man grabbed me.

And the next thing I knew
he fell dead in front of me.

-Yes, yes.

From what Susan has described,

he was wearing a suit similar
to the one we found on the beach.

Are these the ones that live here?

No, no. The man wearing the monk's habit
lives in this building.

So the men from the glass submarines
are intruders like us.

Yes. With one difference,
which is puzzling, but relieving.

They died and we're only prisoners.

-Well, maybe we're to be killed, too.
-I shouldn't worry too much about that.

That young schoolmaster friend of yours
is very resourceful.

Whilst he's free,
our chance of rescue is still good.

Oh well, that's just it, Doctor.
He isn't free.

He was captured before I was.






Why do you protect me?

-Are you a prisoner here?
-In a way.

I can never leave here,
but in a way, this is my home.

-Where are my friends?

I saw your machine materialise.

Until I knew otherwise,
I had to treat you as potential enemies.

The Voord were trying
to penetrate the walls.

The Voord?

The man you just saved me from
was a Voord.

It's many years since the last assault,
but now they've returned.

And, if they continue to come,
they're bound to succeed eventually.

I should have thought
this place was impregnable.

-How many of you defend it?
-How many?


I'm alone.


let us release your companions
and then I...I'll try to explain.

IAN: Good idea.

DOCTOR: Yes, yes, I want to know more
about this planet.

Your technology, you say,
reached its peak about 2,000 years ago?

Yes and all our knowledge culminated
in the manufacture of this.

At the time, it was called
The Conscience of Marinus.

Marinus, that is the name of our planet.
At first, this machine was simply

a judge and jury
that was never wrong and unfair.

And then we added to it, improved on it,
made it more and more sophisticated,

so that finally it became possible
to radiate its power

and influence the minds of men
throughout the planet.

They no longer had to decide
what was wrong or right.

The machine decided for them.

I see. And in that case it was possible

to eliminate evil from the minds of men
for all time.

That is exactly what happened.

Marinus was unique in the universe.

Robbery, fear, hate, violence
were unknown among us.

Yes, yes.

For seven centuries we prospered.

And then a man named Yartek

found a means of overcoming
the power of the machine.

He and his followers, the Voords,
were able to rob, exploit, kill, cheat.

Our people could not resist
because violence is alien to them.

But surely by this time, this machine
had become a great danger to you?

If it had fallen into
the hands of the Voords

they could have controlled Marinus.
Why didn't you destroy it?

We always hoped
to find a way of modifying it

and making it again irresistible.

So instead of destroying it,
we removed the five key micro-circuits.

What did you do with them?

One of them I kept. There it is.

The other four were taken and put
in places of safety all over Marinus.

Only I know where they are.

And, now, the time has come
when they must be recovered.

BARBARA: Well, why don't you
simply make new keys?

The keys are very simple,

but the micro-circuits inside
are very complicated.

A permutation of numbers and signals

that would take a thousand years
to unravel.

And, besides, since the
keys were hidden,

I have worked on this machine
and modified it

so that when they're replaced...

When they're replaced, it would mean
that your machine is irresistible

and you can overcome
and control the Voords again.


Surely there must be someone
you can send for these keys.

Through the years all my friends,
all my followers, have gone.

They have never returned.

Last year, I sent my daughter.

She has not come back.

All I have now to comfort me is the

distant echo of her voice.

The imagined sound of her footsteps.

But now your coming
has brought new hope.

Oh, yes, yes.

You must find the keys for me.

Ian, wait a minute.

-The Doctor's miles behind.

I don't know about you,

but I felt terrible leaving
that old man.

-We seemed to be his last hope.

I wish there had been something
we could have done for him.

Oh, come on, Grandfather.

I'm coming, child,
don't rush, I'm coming.

Well then, don't just stand there,
come along, come along,

keeping me waiting.

But what...

What is it?

Some sort of invisible barrier.
What do you make of it, Doctor?

I don't know, I don't know.
There's no substance here.

Have a look around the sides, child,
go along.

It's like an invisible wall.

Is it a circular barrier?

It goes all the way round.
There aren't any corners to it.

No, of course, there wouldn't be. No.

The molecules would be at their weakest.

Ha ha!

Ha! It's fascinating, Chesterton.
Yes, I've got it! I've got it.

You know, I think a force barrier
has been thrown up around the ship.

ARBITAN: I'm sorry you forced me
into keeping you from your ship,

but your refusal to help me
left me no alternative.

-Arbitan, where are you?
-That is not important.

If you help me find the keys of Marinus,

I will let you have free access
to your machine

when you have delivered
all the keys to me.

If not, you will stay on the island
without food or water.

The choice is yours.

Choice? What choice?

Well, at least we know
the rough location of the keys.

Now all we have to do is get them.

As soon as you've started your voyage,
I will release the force field.

Your ship will be available to you
when you return.

If we return.

I know we have no choice,
but this whole affair is outrageous.

Blackmail, pure and simply blackmail.

Doctor, don't let's go through
all that again.

Let's just get on with the job.

Perhaps you will bring me news
of my daughter.

I miss her. Yes, I miss her.

And another thing.

If you think I'm going to travel
across that acid sea

in one of these primitive submersibles,
you're very much mistaken.

I wouldn't think of asking you to travel
in such an absurd way.

No, I'm going to give you a device

which will enable you
to move from place to place.

-Oh really?

The principle is much the same
as that of your ship -

place that around your wrist, please -
you told me about.

Except that this will enable you
to cross space,

not time.

-What? This little thing?
-Oh, don't be ridiculous, my boy,

this is a perfectly acceptable
method of travel.

Very compact and very neat, sir,
if I may say. Yes.

They're all programmed
to the same destination.

You have only to twist the dial once.

Like this?



What have you done to Barbara?

You must not waste time,
you must follow her quickly.

One final word.

If when you return you find the Voord
have taken this building,

do not let them get the keys.

You understand? Destroy them.

Now, now...

Twist the dials.

For the sake of all my people,

I hope you succeed.



Oh, how exhilarating!

So where's Barbara?
She should be here now.



It's Barbara's travel dial.

Look, there's blood on it.