Doctor Who: The Twin Dilemma (Story #136)

5.5 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting: 4/10
Visuals: 5/10

Kind of like the Jacondans and Gastropods

Not a fan of Colin Baker's Doctor


Damn…I’ve got a nice blonde afro…William Katt better watch out!!!

There is a new Doctor (Colin Baker) and his companion Peri Brown (Nicola Bryant) is quickly discovering that there is something wrong with him.  While exhibiting erratic behavior, the Doctor realizes he must collect his thoughts and prepares for a period of contemplation…regardless if Peri wants a part of it or not.  Travelling to Titan 3, the Doctor plans for solitude, but instead find themselves involved in the search for kidnapped Earth twins named Romulus (Gavin Conrad) and Remus (Andrew Conrad).  When the Doctor discovers another Time Lord named Azmael (Maurice Denham) is involved, the Doctor learns that the Jacondans and Gastropods have need of the twins…and their plans could threaten the universe.

Doctor Who:  The Twin Dilemma was the last serial of the twenty-first season of the BBC’s long running series Doctor Who.  The series aired in four part from March 22, 1984 to March 30 1984 and followed the final appearance of Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor in Doctor Who:  The Caves of Androzani.  The series has been collected and released as part of The Colin Baker Years as Story #137 (or Story #136 if you do not count the unaired Doctor Who:  Shada).


To be fair…don’t we all want to choke Peri?

With the “death” of the Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker), I found a change in tone in Doctor Who that I didn’t really love…younger companions and some goofier plots.  With the regeneration of the Sixth Doctor, I found more disagreeable shows and an extremely unlikable Doctor (and companion for that matter).

The story for the show is much like most Doctor Who serials.  The series main storyline is about the kidnapped twins and plot to send the Gastropod eggs all over the galaxy.  It is a fair story that takes a bit too long to get to.  I do like the Gastropods and the bird-like Jacondans who are being controlled by them.  The basic plot of the story is interesting but like many Doctor Who episodes is too drawn out…I also found the twins rather incidental and thought there was going to be more done with them.


Hey…who are you calling goofy looking!!!

The real plot however of this episode is the regeneration of the new Doctor and the instability it causes in him.  After two “nice” Doctors, the producers of Doctor Who thought it would be good to have a more dangerous and unpredictable Doctor…and you get him strangling Peri.  Now I don’t love Peri (or her really horrible American accent), but having your main character rage against her probably isn’t the best way to endear the audience to the new Doctor.  The plan was to soften the Doctor as Colin Baker played him over the years, but it just doesn’t work…this Doctor is a jerk.

Doctor Who:  The Twin Dilemma is one of those “must see” episodes just because ever regeneration episode is interesting.  It is always exciting to see how a new Doctor will handle himself and how his companions will take interacting with a completely new person.  The unfortunate thing is that both with Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor, a bad period of Doctor Who commenced and eventually led to the series’ hiatus.  Doctor Who:  The Twin Dilemma was followed by Doctor Who:  Attack of the Cybermen.

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Preceded By:

Doctor Who:  The Caves of Androzani (Story #135)

Followed By:

Doctor Who:  Attack of the Cybermen (Story #137)

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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