Pull To Open
Pull To Open
Sphere of Fear (Plundering “The Pirate Planet”)

Sphere of Fear (Plundering “The Pirate Planet”)

The hottest sci-fi writer on the planet in 1978 was Douglas Adams. Not only was he about to bestow upon the world the original radio plays of The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, he also wrote his first Doctor Who adventure, The Pirate Planet. There are so many similarities — in tone, plotting, and effortlessly clever dialogue — that it’s easy to tell this story came out of the same creative spigot as Hitch Hiker’s, but the recycling doesn’t detract from this incredibly ambitious story about a planet-size genocide machine commanded by a cybernetic pirate captain. But is it still as good as its author’s reputation? By the cavity-ridden teeth of the sky demon, we’re going to find out.

Commentary for The Pirate Planet begins at 27:01.

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Story Essentials

  • Season 16, Serial 2

  • Story number: 98, per the The Pull To Open Codex

  • Writer: Douglas Adams

  • Director: Pennant Roberts

  • Producer: Graham Williams

  • Aired 30 September - 21 October 1978

Pull To Open: The Pirate Planet

  • Season 4

  • Episode 23

Hosts: Pete Pachal and Chris Taylor

Music: Martin West/⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠Thinking Fish⁠

Pull To Open
Pull To Open
There are many Doctor Who podcasts. Only one dares review the entire show... in entirely random order!
Join journalists Pete Pachal and Chris Taylor as they summarize stories in record time, play the Whomoji game, enter the History Corner, answer the Four Questions to Doomsday, and cower in fear before the almighty Randomizer.
New episode every Saturday!