Doctor Who (1963–1989)
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The Curse of Fenric: Part One 

The Doctor and Ace travel to a navel base off the coast of Northumberland towards the end of World War II. Where the Time Lord and his companion become entangled in an old Viking curse.




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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Alfred Lynch ...
Nicholas Parsons ...
Janet Henfrey ...
Tomasz Borkowy ...
Captain Sorin (as Tomek Bork)
Peter Czajowski ...
Sgt. Prozorov (as Peter Czajkowski)
Marek Anton ...
Mark Conrad ...
Joann Kenny ...
Joanne Bell ...
Cory Pulman ...
Kathleen Dudman
Aaron Handley ...
Baby (as Aaron Hanley)


The Doctor and Ace arrive at a Naval base on the cost of Northumerland towards the end of World War II. The Time lord and his young companion pretend to be from the war office. The purpose of which is that the Doctor wishes to meet the wheelchair bound Dr. Judson who's work at breaking German Cyphers is very important to the war effort. This is achieved through the use of the Ultima machine. An invention of the crippled genius's. Unknown however to the Doctor, Ace and Judson. A platoon of Russian soldiers lead by Captain Sorin have secretly arrived on the coast of Northumberland. Their goal: To steal the Ultima Machine. But unknown to the Doctor. The theft of the Ultima Machine has been partly devised by Commander Millington. The bases supreme commanding officer. A ruthless, military man who is unnaturally obsessed with Norse Mythology. For centuries ago a Viking ship moored on the very shores, next to where the base stands. Carrying with it an evil curse. The Time Lord soon realize ... Written by Robert McElwaine

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Release Date:

25 October 1989 (UK)  »

Filming Locations:


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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Jonthan Morris and Christopher Villiers was considered for wainwright. . See more »


The Doctor states that they are in 1943, but the Russian soldiers are equipped with semi-automatic SKS rifles, which were not developed until 1944, and did not go into testing until 1945 in Germany. The SKS was finally adopted by the Russian army in 1949. In 1943, Russian soldiers were commonly equipped with the Mosin-Nagant 1891/30 bolt-action rifle, or possibly its M44 carbine variant, which was being field tested in 1943. See more »


The Doctor: [translating a Norse inscription] "We hoped to return to the North Way, but the curse follows our dragon ship... the Wolves of Fenric shall return for their treasure, and then shall the dark rule eternally."
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Referenced in Doctor Who: The Zygon Inversion (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

McCoy is the doctor, and he's in trouble
22 May 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Doctor Who was coming to the end of its original long run in 1989, and Sylvester McCoy would be the last to play the Time Lord for some time. Stories from the last series would be a little patchy, but this one - perhaps because of its supporting cast (Nicholas Parsons, Alfred Lynch, Dinsdale Landen, Anne Reid) - doesn't disappoint.

There are aliens, a war plot, a fiendish chess game, a computer encryptor, a priest who has lost faith in God, and - a common theme in the series - men in the armed forces who may not be all they seem. This story has a reputation of being one of the best, and it is certainly clever and slightly scary. McCoy himself was a good Doctor, giving the character a bit of vulnerability and charm alongside the eccentricity, while Sophie Aldred as Ace was a good sidekick.

Comparing 'The Curse of Fenric' with some more recent stories from the new era is interesting as it comes out rather well; and perhaps that bit more convincing.

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