Doctor Who (1963–1989)
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Inferno: Episode 1 

The Doctor and UNIT investigate strange happenings at a top secret government drilling project headed by the pompous Professor Stahlman.


Douglas Camfield


Don Houghton (by)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Jon Pertwee ... Doctor Who
Caroline John ... Liz Shaw
Nicholas Courtney ... Brigadier Lethbridge Stewart
Olaf Pooley Olaf Pooley ... Professor Stahlman
Christopher Benjamin ... Sir Keith Gold
Derek Newark Derek Newark ... Greg Sutton
Sheila Dunn Sheila Dunn ... Petra Williams
John Levene ... Sergeant Benton
David Simeon David Simeon ... Private Latimer
Derek Ware Derek Ware ... Private Wyatt
Walter Randall ... Harry Slocum
Ian Fairbairn ... Bromley


Project Inferno is designed to drill down to the center of the Earth, where it will release a wonderful new energy source called Stahlman's Gas named after the project's director. But the Doctor realizes that unleashing Stahlman's Gas will have horrible consequences from the planet, fears confirmed when a power surge in the TARDIS console sends him to a hostile parallel universe where the project is nearing completion. Written by Anonymous

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Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

9 May 1970 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Originally SGT Benton role was to be a nameless SGT, however Directer Douglass Camfield decided to make the role Benton to allow his Protege John Levene to expand his acting career, this combined with Previous producer Derick Sherwin's suggestion that the 1970 series feature Benton, both of these factors led to Levene receiving a regular contract for the following year. See more »

Alternate Versions

International broadcasts and the VHS release of this serial include an extra scene in episode 5 that was not broadcast in Britain. For the 2006 DVD release, this scene has been removed and included as an extra feature. The scene featured the voice of Jon Pertwee as a radio announcer. See more »


Featured in The Chronic Rift: Doctor Who (1990) See more »

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User Reviews

Better than it has any right to be
30 May 2015 | by Leofwine_dracaSee all my reviews

Review of the Complete Story:

On the face of it, as a DR WHO serial INFERNO sounds a bit odd: a lengthy story in which the Doctor spends much of the running time trapped in an alternate reality doesn't sound too hot. And yet, thanks to quality writing throughout, this turns out to be a rather splendid effort that brings to life the sci-fi staple of alternate realities in a realistic and entertaining way.

The story sees an Earthbound Doctor and his companion Liz Shaw working at a power station which is drilling into the centre of the Earth. Unfortunately, the drilling releases some kind of primordial goo that turns those who touch it into snarling killer werewolves. During the course of the story, the Doctor ends up in an alternate reality where he discovers fatalistic consequences for the Earth itself.

There's plenty of fun to be had here, and the elements are stacked in the story's favour. The nuclear power station setting is an evocative one, and the presence of the Brigadier and his men is as welcome as ever. Jon Pertwee is on top energetic form and we even get a chance to see an 'evil' Brigadier and Liz Shaw, which for novelty value is unique. The 'end of the world' countdown scenario is packed with tension. The addition of the cheesy werewolf villains I'm less sure about it, but at least it ups the pace of the narrative and adds to lots of those fun cliffhanger endings for each of the seven episodes. All in all a sterling effort.

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