Doctor Who (1963–1989)
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Enlightenment: Part Two 

Captain Striker and his officers reveal themselves to be Eternals, mind-reading creatures who live outside of time and who require Ephemerals (humans and other "time dwellers") to relieve ... See full summary »




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Episode cast overview:
Christopher Brown ...
Tony Caunter ...
James McClure ...
First Officer


Captain Striker and his officers reveal themselves to be Eternals, mind-reading creatures who live outside of time and who require Ephemerals (humans and other "time dwellers") to relieve them of their emptiness. They race against other Eternals for the grand prize of Enlightenment, by which to grant their deepest wishes. That can't be good for the universe, but how can the Doctor strategize against beings adept at reading his every thought? Written by statmanjeff

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Release Date:

2 March 1983 (UK)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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This episode was watched by 7.2 million viewers on its original transmission. See more »


Captain Striker: There's no need to whisper, Doctor. You and your companions are free to come and go as you wish. You are our guests, not our prisoners.
Tegan Jovanka: I wanna die.
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User Reviews

Still enjoying it a lot.

Doctor Who: Enlightenment: Part Two starts as Tegan (Janet Fielding), Turlough (Mark Strickson) & the Doctor (Peter Davison) realise they are aboard a spaceship the SS Shadow modelled after an early twentieth century Edwardian racing yacht controlled by beings celled Eternals. Living outside normal reality in eternity they are alien beings who feed off the emotions, feelings & ideas of captured living beings whom they call Ephemerals. The whole Edwardian racing yacht came from the collective thoughts & ideas of it's human crew, the Eternals need Ephemerals to fill their empty eternity spanning existence & are currently in the middle of a race around the Solar System with other Eternal spacecraft the prize at stake being Enlightenment the knowledge to make all ones desires come true...

Episode 18 from season 20 this originally aired here in the UK during March 1983, the second episode from the third & final story from the Guardian Trilogy I am actually rather enjoying this whimsical & quaint little tale of an intergalactic Wacky Races (1968 - 1970) in which all manner of period Earth sailing ships are recreated & raced across our Solar System. The image of these period earth sailing vessels all lined up in space racing each other is quite good & rather likable in a fairy tale sort of way. The Eternals background is less interesting & it's not really clear who they are or why they would set such a race up anyway, the 'it's just for fun' type explanation is a little flimsy for my liking to be honest. Also I don't really understand how someone or something could live in 'enternity', I mean eternity is just a concept & not a physical or material entity, eternity is a measure of time like say an hour & I really fail to see how anything or anyone could live inside it. Do you? The story has maintained a fairly sedate pace although there's enough going on to keep ones interest with a potentially murderous saboteur, a revolt by the human Ephemerals brewing, the capture of the TARDIS, the subplot about Turlough's continuing troubles with the Black Guardian & the basic plot is intriguing. The cliffhanger to this episode is weak, are we really meant to be worried that Turlough might commit suicide? Frankly I am disappointed that he didn't...

I must say the spacesuits seen in this episode actually look very good, very sleek & quiet futuristic. Like the story before it Terminus (1983) the filming of Enlightenment was delayed by several weeks when an electricians strike at the BBC threatened to prevent the shooting of the entire second half of the twentieth season but the dispute was resolved although apparently one story, Eric Sawards Dalek story, was indeed dropped & made during season twenty one as Resurrection of the Daleks (1984). The delay in filming Enlightenment meant two of the original cast members had to be replaced when they could no longer do it, Peter Sallis was replaced by Keith Barron as Captain Striker while David Rhule was replaced by pop singer Leee John as Mansell. The delay also means that Peter Daviosn's hair is at it's longest during his entire tenure as the Doctor. I must say the end of this episode when Tegan & Marriner go on deck & the traditional wooden sailing yacht deck is seen with a star-field in the background is a nicely effective scene that plays really against expectation.

Enlightenment: Part Two is a good solid second episode to what so far is a great story that I have enjoyed & I am looking forward to Part Three. A big improvement over both Mawdryn Undead & Terminus.

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