Doctor Who: Kinda (Story #118)

doctor who kinda dvd cover
6.5 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 5/10

Like the native stuff and some of the guest cast

Mara special effects are awful


Oh no! The worst thing on this planet is a jack-in-the-box!

The Doctor (Peter Davison), Nyssa (Sarah Sutton), Adric (Matthew Waterhouse) and Tegan (Janet Fielding) have arrived on the planet of Deva Loka where an ongoing survey is being led by Sanders (Richard Todd), Todd (Nerys Hughes), and Hindle (Simon Rouse).  The planet is inhabited by a group called the Kinda and members of Sanders’ group have been disappearing.  When Tegan falls asleep, she opens her mind to the Mara and sets a chain of events in action that could doom the Doctor, his companions, the survey, and the Kinda themselves.

Doctor Who:  Kinda aired during the nineteenth season of the long running BBC series.  The serial aired in four parts from February 1, 1982 to February 9, 1982.  Following Doctor Who:  Four to Doomsday, Doctor Who:  Kinda was collected as part of The Peter Davison Years as Story #119 (or Story #118 depending on how you count the unaired Tom Baker story Shada).


I want the twin Tegans on the TARDIS

Though Peter Davison is better than many of the later Doctors, I still find this a pretty tedious section of Doctor Who.  A lot of the fun has been taken out of the stories and having the kid companion brigade doesn’t help because I find Nyssa, Tegan, and Adric to have little personality (and the whiny Adric is also one of the worst companions of all time).  The serial does benefit from Nerys Hughes who reminds me a lot of Sarah Jane (and would have made a better Doctor companion at this time) and I also like the humorous performance by Richard Todd who is driven mad.

This is a bit of a weird Doctor Who story.  At the beginning of the story, Nyssa collapses and is put in the TARDIS to rest…and doesn’t show up again until the end of the story.  This is because the series was written for three companions and instead of rewriting the story, they just took Nyssa out of the equation.  It is really strange and leads to an odd ending where Nyssa just asks what happened.


Wait…the danger is a paper snake?

The downfall of Doctor Who:  Kinda has to be the Mara.  The Mara is snakelike in form but when it manifests itself, it looks like a goofy Chinese dragon model more than a snake.  With great imagery available through the natives and characters, it seems like they could have done better with the Mara.

The events of this storyline also affect a later story.  The Mara returns for Doctor Who:  Snakedance (Story #124) in which Tegan once again is possessed by the Mara.  I do like it when events in a Doctor Who storyline actually have a great effect since the stories often seem very episodic…I just wish that the Mara wasn’t the creature they brought back since it is pretty ridiculous.  Doctor Who:  Kinda was followed by Doctor Who:  The Visitation (Story #119).

Preceded By:

Doctor Who:  Four to Doomsday (Story #117)

Followed By:

Doctor Who:  The Visitation (Story #119)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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