Splendid Chaps episode two cast.
Dr Djoymi Baker, Toby Truslove, Petra Elliott, Ben McKenzie and John Richards on stage recording Splendid Chaps: Two/Evil at 303 in Northcote, Melbourne.


Hosts Ben McKenzie, John Richards and Petra Elliott discuss Patrick Troughton and the nature of “Evil” in the second live Splendid Chaps episode, recorded at 303 in Melbourne on Sunday, February 17, 2013. With special guests Toby Truslove, Dr Djoymi Baker, and Dean Acuri performing a tribute to one of the Second Doctor’s lovely companions.

Splendid Chaps episode two cast.
Dr Djoymi Baker, Toby Truslove, Petra Elliott, Ben McKenzie and John Richards on stage recording Splendid Chaps: Two/Evil at 303 in Northcote, Melbourne. Photo by Robert Young.

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Don’t forget you can go into the draw to win a copy of The Reign of Terror by commenting on this episode below! Join in the conversation on Troughton’s era, discuss the way evil works, or just let us know what you thought of this episode; write your comment before March 9 to be in the running, and we’ll announce the winner at the recording of Three/Family on March 10.


  1. There are some corners of the interwebz which have bred the most splendid podcasts. Things which act as a snapshot in time of everything we believe in as fans. They must be downloaded.

    …..and comments left in order to win freebies.

    Great podcast folks. Much love. Can’t wait for next Brisbane session.

  2. David Ross says:

    I have to admit, I’ve really enjoyed it, I havn’t laughed so hard in a podcast in aages. the fact that it’s Doctor Who Related it a massive plus.

    Very Funny I can’t wait for the rest of them. I’ll have to come and watch it live 🙂

    Totally Brilliant. thanks to all involved

  3. Jim Vinton says:

    What a great show to listen to while minecrafting.
    My question for the team is, given I’ve watched Dr Who since well since Pertwee’s episodes weren’t repeats. And indeed I know most of the story lines backwards, thanks to all those times it was a repeat. And last year I rewatched all of doctor who (or at least all that still exists.) Why is it I haven’t got a clever question for you?

  4. Rohan says:

    I’ve not seen much Troughton being 17 and all but I thouroughly enjoyedthisand wanna see some now

  5. John H says:

    great show, very interested to hear about Pat being talked about coming back after Colin, never heard that before.

  6. Pôl Jackson says:

    Another splendid podcast! I’m really enjoying these. Thanks for all the hard work you’re putting into them!

  7. Loved this 2nd edition of the podcast.. Like a lot of fans, I haven’t seen a whole lot of Troughton episodes – for obvious reasons – but I do have a lot affection and respect for him, and for his ‘cosmic hobo’! : )

  8. Richard Ingram says:

    I have not yet seen any Patrick Troughton episodes, but i definitely must now. I am looking forward to the rest of the podcasts.

  9. Fraser says:

    People are saying the podcast is really good. So far I have only listened to the Splendid Chaps in the flesh so far, I may have to download it to see what all the fuss is about 😉 And also to see if anything is actually cut!

    As I will not be in Adelaide in the near future, that episode will definitely make it on to my podcast list.

  10. Scott Vandervalk says:

    Loved the podcast! Some interesting insights into Patrick Troughton on Doctor Who and beyond. Was great to hear thoughts on the nature of evil in Doctor Who, particularly the darker side of things in The Curse of Fenric (one of my favourites).

  11. Jack Green says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed this episode of Splendid Chaps. Evil is such an interesting concept for Doctor Who. As explored in the podcast it suggests the existance of a stoppable but never entirely beatable force that absolutely will not stop until you are dead… no wait… sorry, that’s Terminator. Still, as I say, Evil is such an emotive word because it does suggest the force can’t ever be beaten. It’s a deep-rooted thing from the dawn of time and is incapable of change. It only has one goal – to be badder than the baddest thing ever.

    But wait… incapable of change? That must therefore mean that the Daleks (described by many as the most evil killing machines in the universe) aren’t evil after all as we saw quite clearly in “Dalek” and “Evolution of the Daleks” that they can change, see the bigger picture, and not be quite so vile. The same goes for the cybermen – all you need to do is flick an emotional inhibitor and Robert is your father’s brother, they’re good guys again.

    Even the guardians aren’t (pardon the pun) black and white good and evil. The White Guardian, for example, on meeting the 4th Doctor inferred that he could subject nothingness onto him for all eternity. And if the black guardian was so evil why didn’t he kill The fifth Doctor himself? Because he was scared to interfere. He can’t be truly evil then – surely evil doesn’t get scared.

    My question is this then. If the Daleks, the Cybermen, and The Guardians, three of the bad-assiest races in Who history, aren’t completely evil, what is?

    • Ben says:

      Hi Jack! Thanks for the great discussion. I think the Daleks are still considered forces of evil, though; the Daleks who change (via the human factor, or contamination from Rose) are rejected by the rest of the Daleks, and/or destroy themselves. They are rebels and misfits and aberrations meant to prove the point that Daleks are creatures of evil who won’t even treat their own well.

  12. Tom Denham says:

    Really wish I saw this live…alas, very deep and intriguing discussions.

    One of the finest eras of Doctor Who if I say so myself. I did find it interesting that in this time the Doctor was “cruel” sometimes as to now they say “He’s never cruel”. The notion of evil is also enjoyable. You could almost say that the Doctor has a bit of evil within him, I especially thought this when I watched the end of ‘Dinosaurs on a Spaceship’ when the Doctor ejects Solomon’s shuttle causing it to be hit by missiles. Do you agree or disagree that this could be an act of murder?

    I am upmost looking forward to Three/Family. Keep up the good work, splendid chaps!

    • Ben says:

      Thanks Tom! Glad you’re enjoying the show.

      The Doctor isn’t your usual hero figure; he generally speaking doesn’t go about killing “bad guys”, though he often destroys monsters (a difference highlighted by the comparison of Troughton to Odysseus). Dinosaurs on a Spaceship presents a harsher, perhaps more personally vengeful Doctor. Certainly Solomon’s death is murder, but it’s meant to “feel” like justice, in much the same way as the Doctor putting the Dominators’ own explosive device in their ship, or warning Davros or the Cyberleader not to use the Gallifreyan weapon he’s allowed them to get their hands on. Those are monsters, though, terrible agents of “elemental evil”; it feels much more brutal to kill one old man (who’s soon to be William Hartnell, I might add!), no matter how cruel and greedy that man might be, or how many people and creatures he’s killed. In Doctor Who such characters most often are killed by their own folly or accidentally killed: Chase in The Seeds of Doom, Kleig in Tomb of the Cybermen, De Flores and Lady Peinforte… But none of them were killed off seemingly so needlessly as Solomon – the Doctor could easily have teleported him back to the SIlurian Ark as well, he chooses not to. It’s pretty cold, but is it evil? It’s seemingly not meant to come across as such; none of the others question the Doctor’s actions, unlike similar occasions when Martha or Donna might have done so. Tricky, innit?

  13. Phil says:

    Thank goodness for bad TV or I would never have have stumbled upon this podcast. It’s refreshing to hear Dr Who being talked about with such humour and still have massive respect for the show. I thought that in your last podcast though, that it would have been mentioned the Patrick’s son, David appeared in ‘The War Games’, ‘Curse of Peladon’ and ‘Midnight’. Still, enjoying it and waiting impatiently for the next podcast.

    • Ben says:

      Thanks for stumbling upon us, Phil! We are big fans and love the show immensely, so you won’t hear us making any tired old gags about wobbly sets or Daleks conquered by stairs (1988, people!).

      As for David Troughton, I think we may have briefly mentioned him in the live show, but we’re also trying to focus on the discussion and things our audience may not know, so he didn’t make it to the final edit. Much more surprising to learn that Dudley Dursley is played by Troughton’s grandson! An acting dynasty continues…

  14. Ben says:

    Really enjoying the podcast so far, I’m not hugely familiar with classic Doctor Who. Hearing about the first and second Doctors has made me really keen to check some of them out.

    As a sidenote – ever tried the Doctor Who Pinball Machine? It’s heaps fun and way too complicated for its own good.

    • Ben says:

      Hi Ben! I love the Doctor Who pinball
      Machine, it’s amazing. Despite my geeky bias, it is widely considered to be one of the best; the bonus level where the Daleks pop up from the underneath is great, and being able to choose a Doctor was terrific! (I was all about Sylvester McCoy when it came out, so I played as him or Troughton most of the time.)

  15. Manuel Bouw says:

    Highly amusing. I love the format and look forward to the future… podcasts.

  16. This is fast becoming one of my very favourite podcasts and it makes me sad to think there will only ever be a year of them! You lot are making me actually be interested in watching the available black and white episodes, which I never thought would happen! Look forward to this each month, thank you!

    • John Richards says:

      At the end of the year Ben and I will be pushed out on a burning canoe from the end of St Kilda Pier, Tehani. It’s what we would’ve wanted. Cherish us while you can!

  17. Lucas Testro says:

    Great ep. Interesting discussion about where the Second Doctor’s “clown” tag came from.

    I think it’s multiple things. As you said, partly it probably was a trick of memory, both for the fans and Patrick. It was also probably an impression created in viewers’ minds by his contrast to Hartnell. Hartnell’s comedy skills, and the First Doctor’s liking for mischief, are underestimated, but nevertheless his dominant characteristics were those of the gruff, chiding old man, and Troughton was certainly a radical departure from that – and since we love categorising things he was maybe therefore classed as a “clown” without paying due attention to his more serious side.

    But I think it’s mostly just a reflection of Troughton’s skill as an actor. He’s the best actor ever to play the role IMHO, rivalled only by Matt Smith, and what both those actors bring to the role is what actors would call being “present” in a scene. Rather than having preconceived ideas of how he was going to say certain lines (like, for instance, Pertwee) you can see and feel Troughton playing each scene in the moment and reacting to the other actors around him. This leads him (like Matt Smith) to have regularly throw up reactions that surprise us, and since people & things reacting differently from what we expect in a situation is really the essential heart of comedy, he feels to us like a funnier Doctor. Not because he’s doing one-liners or horrible attempts at puns like McCoy, but because he’s utterly unpredictable.

  18. Kevin Turner says:

    OH GODS! Ben and Richard are fighting in my head. And petra likes care bears.

    I think this is the only situation where I am happy to have missed the live recording so i could experience that unprepared.

  19. Kevin Turner says:

    It should be noted that the touchy and clingyness of Jamie and The Doctor has created such a huge amount of fanatical ‘shipping’ on tumblr. There are entire tumblrs dedicated to the relationship between those two because of that constant physical relationship between them.

  20. Jim Kee says:

    Just thought you’d want to know that I am jealous. Listening to 2 and its freezing here in New Jersey.

    • John Richards says:

      It’s nice to know someone is feeling the benefit, Jim. This has now been officially declared the hottest summer EVER since records have been kept in Australia, and the audience at our first two shows was definitely aware of that!

  21. Matt Kelly says:

    Thanks for producing such an intelligent, funny, ground breaking podcast. It’s great to hear an Aussie perspective on the Whoniverse. I’m so disappointed that I’m out of town when you record your Adelaide show.

    Your last podcast was great. Love the Troughton era. Your discussion on evil highlighted that the Doctor is a complex character and not just a one dimensional guy fighting for truth, justice and the Gallifreyan. I wonder if we’ll ever see the Doctor go full over to the dark side. Perhaps we’ll see that play out somewhere between his twelfth and thirteenth regenerations.

  22. actualchad says:

    I never saw any Troughton growing up, until the ABC pulled out The Dominators and The Krotons in the late 80s.
    The Troughton era is the one most affected by the destruction of episodes, and therefore the least is known about it, especially by people brought up on Pertwee and Baker I. Plus I think it falls in between “The original Doctor” and “The in-colour Doctor”, which almost makes it the forgotten Doctor. In fact, it was only when I saw the cover to the original Programme Guides that I knew what he looked like.
    Of course, I’d seen “The Three Doctors” by then, but to me, he was just a guy who used to be the Doctor. He wasn’t really the Doctor.
    Even the cover to “The Enemy of the World” had Bill Kerr on it.
    That said, Patrick Troughton always had that warm, craggy face that someone like Sylvester McCoy would have paid money for when trying to be the vicious, kind uncle to Dorothy McShane. So Troughton always had that certain gravitas with his performance, even when acting the fool.

    Meanwhile, no mention of “The World Shapers” comic from DWM that had the audacity to kill Jamie? AND it pulled together the Cybermen and the Voord. That took a lot of balls, much like when they did their own regeneration. Teenage mind blown.

  23. I loved listening to this episode as much as I loved watching it live. Actually, more, because I was able to listen to it in less than 40C heat.

    I was watching City on the Edge of Forever recently, that great Doctor Who episode that’s actually an episode of Star Trek. After landing in the 1930s, Spock tries to identify how they’ve altered history. The key, as with all American shows, comes down to the US not getting involved in WWII. The Nazis took over the world, and there was no space program.

    What’s interesting is his wording. Spock singles out a “pacifist movement” that stopped the US from getting involved, bogging them down in peace talks. This episode was broadcast within a year-and-a-half of The Dominators, in which the idea of pacifism is taken apart.

    This strikes me as a distinctly post-World War Two attitude, in which the idea of non-resistance was seen as… well, French. For a generation with WWII still fresh in their memory, a war in which physical resistance was nobler than it had ever been in history, it makes a lot more sense that pacifism should be feared.

    Nowadays, post Vietnam/Gulf War/Gulf War II: Gulf Harder/War on Terror, we have a different view of it. But suddenly The Dominators’ position doesn’t seem so silly.

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