Doctor Who (1963–1989)
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Colony in Space: Episode Four 

The Doctor descends into the Primitive city to try and find Jo while the colonists receive a visit from the Adjudicator.


Michael E. Briant (as Michael Briant)


Malcolm Hulke (by)




Episode complete credited cast:
Jon Pertwee ... Doctor Who
Roger Delgado ... Master
Katy Manning ... Jo Grant
Bernard Kay ... Caldwell
Nicholas Pennell Nicholas Pennell ... Winton
John Ringham ... Ashe
Morris Perry ... Dent
Tony Caunter Tony Caunter ... Morgan
Roy Skelton ... Norton
Helen Worth ... Mary Ashe
John Tordoff John Tordoff ... Alec Leeson
Norman Atkyns Norman Atkyns ... Guardian
Pat Gorman ... Primitive
Roy Heymann Roy Heymann ... Alien Priest


The Doctor descends into the Primitive city to try and find Jo while the colonists receive a visit from the Adjudicator.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

1 May 1971 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This episode was watched by 8.1 million viewers on its original transmission. See more »


The Master: I'm afraid you're both about to become the victims of stray bullets.
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User Reviews

Way Out West
26 September 2014 | by A_Kind_Of_CineMagicSee all my reviews

Review of all 6 episodes:

This is basically a Western plot adapted to space with a colony of farmers who equate to Wild West settlers, alien 'Primitives' playing the role of the Native Americans, the mining corporation which equates to mining companies, railroads etc in Westerns and The Master playing the role of a corrupt Marshall. The Doctor is sent on a mission by the Time Lords, presumably because they see he is far more suited than anyone in their society to engage in such actions, to stop The Master getting his hands on a 'doomsday weapon'. He is sent to the colony on a barren planet where a small group of humans are struggling to forge an existence with crops failing. There are indigenous 'alien' inhabitants known as 'primitives' who are mistrusted and slightly threatening from outside the colony but with some subservient primitives within the colony. The mining company seeks to push out the colonists and exploit the planet's minerals while the Master masquerades as an adjudicator to gain access to the Primitives ancient doomsday weapon.

The worst aspect of the story is the effects, sets and costumes which are all pretty shoddy. It does let down the production but the writing and acting mostly makes up for it.

The first episode is very interesting and really well done in terms of script and characterisation. It is not the most exciting or polished of episodes and the production values are disappointing but thanks to the acting and dialogue it holds up as a decent episode. The quality steps up in the next couple of episodes 2 & 3 with intriguing, absorbing drama, great characters, intelligent ideas, political and moral themes and smart dialogue. Pertwee is at his best as the Doctor and almost all the guest cast are strong. The story runs out of steam a bit in episodes 4 & 5. Once again it shows that stories longer than 4 episodes, with notable exceptions, often stretch a story. It puts pressure on keeping the quality up and on keeping the credibility up and those both suffer here as events get a bit silly at times and it gets less political and less interesting. It becomes more just a run-of-the- mill sci-fi adventure with very unimpressive and rather laughable aliens. Acting and better aspects of dialogue keep it from falling too far and the arrival of Roger Delgado as the Master is the main plus in these 2 episodes. His conniving, smooth villainy, superbly played by Delgado, maintains interest. The final episode is stronger again though not as good as parts 2 & 3.

My ratings: Part 1 - 8/10, Parts 2 & 3 - 9/10, Part 4 - 7/10, Part 5 - 7.5/10, Part 6 - 8/10. Overall average - 8.08/10

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