Time and the Rani

STORYLINE

The TARDIS crash-lands on the planet Lakertya. In the process, the Doctor has apparently been injured grievously and needs to regenerate. While the Doctor and Mel lay unconscious on the floor, the Rani, the culprit behind the TARDIS' forced landing, enters the console room and spirits the Doctor away.

As the Doctor wakes to a bit of post-regenerative confusion, the Rani convinces him that she is in fact Mel, and they both have been involved in an experiment that has gone awry. The Rani needs the Doctors skills to help her repair a machine necessary for her evil experiments.

Meanwhile, Mel has been found by one of the native Lakertyans, part of a rebel force desperately trying to rid their planet of the Rani. The pair must avoid the Rani's ingenious traps and bat-like servants, the Tetraps in order to join up with the larger group of rebels.

The Rani struggles to maintain control of the Doctor's new erratic persona. In order to deflect some of his unending questions, she convinces him that Mel is the Rani. Still a bit confused, the Doctor remembers that the Rani is evil, but he is sill uncertain enough to believe the obvious deception.

After narrowly escaping a few booby traps, Mel is convinced that the Doctor must be a captive in the Tetrap headquarters and she must get in to rescue him. While the Rani is distracted away from her headquarters, Mel slips in and finds the Doctor working on the machine. However, at this point, Mel has never seen this new incarnation of the Doctor, and he believes she is the Rani, so a bit of identity confusion ensues.

Realizing he has been fooled, the Doctor begins piecing together what the Rani plans. He discovers the Rani has been kidnapping and storing some of the greatest scientific minds in the universe. Mel slips back out as the Rani returns. The Doctor remains behind to maintain the Rani's ruse. Unfortunately, she realizes he is no longer under her spell, and he is forced to flee.

Along the way, the Doctor grabs a crucial part of the Rani's machine, but just as he is escaping, Mel is being caught by a pair of Tetraps. The Rani sends a cruel message to the Doctor that she will release Mel if he returns the part. With no other choice, the Doctor agrees to make the trade. The Rani, however, double crosses the Doctor and doesn't release Mel.

Before the situation can be corrected, the Doctor is also caught by the Tetraps and brought to the Rani. She promptly hooks him into her machine with the rest of the geniuses and cranks it on. The Rani finally reveals what she has been hiding in her private room, a huge brain creature. All of the geniuses and the Doctor are feeding their intellects into the brain. The Rani has miscalculated the addition of the Doctor to the mix. His new quirky persona quickly confuses the huge brain. Realizing her mistake, the Rani quickly moves to remove the Doctor from the machine, but the Doctor with Mel's help manages to reverse the situation and traps the Rani in her own machine.

Finally, the Doctor learns the full extent of the Rani's plan. The brain, a strange matter asteroid and an exploding Lakertya will give the Rani control over the sequence of all time. All it will take is the launching of a rocket to blow up the strange matter asteroid and everything will be set in motion.The Rani escapes to her TARDIS, planning to watch the planet and everyone on it explode from a safe distance.

The Doctor, however, manages to delay the launch of the rocket just long enough that it misses its mark, and the ensuing chain reaction never happens. The planet and the Lakertyans are saved. The Doctor and Mel gather up all of the displaced geniuses and take them home in the TARDIS.

Meanwhile, it looks like the Rani has salvaged an escape from her botched plans, but she is surprised to find that one of the Tetraps has joined her in her TARDIS , and he is none to pleased about the Rani's plans to leave the Tetraps to die with the planet.