4th Doctor
The Leisure Hive
Serial 5N

John Nathan-Turner

Executive Producer
Barry Letts

Script Editor
Christopher H Bidmead

Tom Yardley-Jones

Written by David Fisher
Directed by Lovett Bickford
Incidental Music by Peter Howell

Tom Baker (Doctor Who), Lalla Ward (Romana), John Leeson (Voice of K-9) [1], Adrienne Corri (Mena), Laurence Payne (Morix) [1], John Collins (Brock), David Haig (Pangol), Nigel Lambert (Hardin), Martin Fisk (Vargos), Roy Montague (Guide), Ian Talbot (Klout), Harriet Reynolds (Tannoy Voice) [1,4]*, David Allister (Stimson) [2], Clifford Norgate (Generator Voice) [2-3], Andrew Lane (Foamasi) [3-4].

* Also in Part 2, uncredited.

The Argolin-Foamasi War lasted for just 20 minutes, during which time the planet of Argolis was turned into a blasted cinder - a radioactive wasteland deadly to almost all.

The few surviving members of the now ageing and sterile Argolin race made a remarkable decision: the story of their people and the husk of their world would stand as a lesson to the galaxy about the horrors of war. The planet would become the most unlikely of holiday resorts...

To the Doctor and Romana, Argolis seems like a restful and fascinating place to relax after their recent adventures. They can take in the beauty of the multi-coloured shifting sands from the safety of the towering Leisure Hive, and catch up with Argolin advances in the obscure science of tachyonics.

Typically enough, however, murder and intrigue follow the time travellers wherever they go; and a lunatic's plan to restore Argolis' proud warrior past could, quite literally, tear the Doctor and his friend apart...

Original Broadcast (UK)
Part One		      30th August, 1980		6h15pm - 6h40pm
Part Two		      6th September, 1980		6h20pm - 6h45pm
Part Three		      13th September, 1980		5h55pm - 6h20pm
Part Four		      20th September, 1980		6h15pm - 6h40pm
  • Released on video and DVD in episodic format. [+/-]

    U.S. Release U.K. Release
    • U.K. Release: January 1997 / U.S. Release: May 1997
      PAL - BBC video BBCV5821
      NTSC - CBS/FOX video 4166
      NTSC - Warner video E1135

    • U.K. Release: July 2004 / U.S. Release: June 2005
      U.S. DVD Release PAL Region 2 - BBCDVD1351
      NTSC Region - Warner DVD E2217


      • Commentary by Lalla Ward, Lovett Bickford and Christopher Bidmead.
      • 'A New Beginning' - examination of John Nathan-Turner's relaunch of the series.
      • 'From Avalon to Argolis' - focus on writing and script-editing.
      • 'Synthesizing Starfields' - in-depth look at the creation of the new title sequence.
      • 'Leisure Wear' - featurette on costume designer June Hudson.
      • Blue Peter - a look round the revamped Longleat exhibition in 1980. U.K. DVD Release
      • Music only option.
      • Photo Gallery.
      • Production Information Subtitles.
      • Who's Who (Region 1 only).

      LINK: The Restoration Team work for The Leisure Hive DVD.

  • The music soundtrack has been released on CD by BBC Music. [+/-]


      Music by Peter Howell. Includes tracks from The Leisure Hive, Meglos and Full Circle.

    The Music of Peter Howell

    • Released: 2002
    • WMSF 6052-2
    • Running time: 72:11
      • 1. Doctor Who: Opening Theme (0:38)

        The Leisure Hive
        2. Brighton Beach / K9 Kaput (2:54)
        3. Into Argolis (2:36)
        4. The Generator / Intruders (3:20)
        5. "His Time Has Come" / Earth Shuttle Arrives (1:55)
        6. Tachyon Terror (0:56)
        7. Into The Generator (4:16)
        8. The Hive / Mena Fades (3:04)
        9. Looking For Mr. Brock (3:57)
        10. Testing Time (5:09)
        11. The Limitation Program (1:56)
        12. The West Lodge (2:03)
        13. The Child Of The Generator (1:39)
        14. The Foamasi (4:59)
        15. The Argolin Dawn (3:05)
        16. "We, Pangol" (3:55)
        17. Re-Creation (4:11)
        18. Rebirth (3:19)
        19. Back To Work (0:46)
        20. Argolis Exterior Planet Atmosphere (2:05)
        21. Earth Shuttle Arriving (1:04)
        22. Generator Hall (1:30)
        23. Boardroom (1:38)
        24. Hologram (0:32)
        25. Corridor Background (0:57)
        26. Generator And Screen (0:31)
        27. Tachyon Drive Engaged (0:30)

        Meglos [Sound effects]
        28. The Screens Of Zolpha-Thura (1:01)
        29. Laboratory Ascends (1:11)
        30. Dodecahedron Energy Beams (0:31)

        Full Circle [Sound effects]
        31. Mistfall Mist (0:51)
        32. Operating Room (1:02)
        33. Starliner Instrument Panel (1:02)

        34. Doctor Who Theme: Original Version, 2002 Stereo Remix (2:21)

  • Novelised as Doctor Who and The Leisure Hive by David Fisher. [+/-]

    W.H. Allen Edition Virgin Edition

    • Hardcover Edition - W.H. Allen.
      First Edition: 1982.
      ISBN: ?.
      Cover by Andrew Skilleter.
      Price: ?.

    • Paperback Edition - W.H. Allen.
      First Edition: July 1982. Reprinted in 1982, 1983, 1984 and 1987.
      ISBN: 0 426 20147 7.
      Cover by Andrew Skilleter.
      Price: 1.25.
      Also released as part of The Second Doctor Who Gift Set in 1982 [ISBN: 0 426 19289 3].

    • Paperback Edition - Virgin Publishing Ltd.
      First Edition: October 1993.
      ISBN: 0 426 20147 7.
      Cover by Alister Pearson.
      Price: 3.50.
      Retitled: Doctor Who - The Leisure Hive.
  • Doctor Who Magazine Archive: Issue #191.
Part One
(drn: 23'33")

The Doctor plans to take Romana to Brighton, but misses the opening of the Pavilion for the second time and arrives in the off-season, when it's too cold for swimming or sun-bathing. K9 spouts off a list of all recreational facilities in the galaxy, and Romana, frustrated, tosses her beach ball into the surf for him to fetch. But the Doctor has forgotten to update K9's sea defenses and the robot explodes the moment he hits the water. Romana takes the damaged K9 back to the Doctor and demands to be taken somewhere else; following K9's lecture she's decided she likes the sound of the Leisure Hive of Argolis, built by the survivors of a devastating war with the reptilian Foamasi in the year 2250.

Forty years have passed since the war, and the Leisure Hive is now in dire financial trouble due to declining bookings and equipment failures. As far as their Earth agent, Brock, is concerned, the Argolins have frittered away their savings on pointless experiments in tachyonics while other Leisure Hives have been expanding to offer new and more attractive services. Brock turns down Chairman Morix's offer to join the Hive's board of directors, but shortly afterwards he arrives on Argolis in person. He and his lawyer Klout have a counter-offer from an alien species which wishes to buy the entire planet. Morix's son, Pangol, refuses point-blank; as the youngest of a species which was all but wiped out, he has developed a great mistrust of aliens. Morix -- who is reaching the end of his lifespan -- dismisses Pangol while he listens to Brock's offer, but is shocked to learn that the species which wishes to buy Argolis is the Foamasi. Ironically, due to the war, only the reptilian Foamasi can survive unprotected on the radioactive surface of Argolis. Morix dies, still refusing to sell his world, and with his death his consort Mena automatically becomes the new Chairman.

The TARDIS materializes in the observation hall of the Hive, where Pangol is demonstrating the Tachyon Recreation Generator to the visitors. The Doctor becomes intrigued when he realizes Pangol is manipulating a solid tachyonic image of himself, but he and Romana agree that despite the neat solutions the Argolins have developed to the problems of generating and manipulating tachyons, such images could only have a limited life span. Meanwhile, a reptilian creature breaks into the Hive in an empty corridor, and watches from hiding as Pangol invites a sceptical visitor to take part in a further demonstration -- but something goes terribly wrong, and instead of harmlessly manipulating the tachyon image, the generator tears the real Loman apart. The Doctor and Romana rush forward to offer assistance, and the Argolin, who have been expecting a scientist to arrive from Earth at Mena's request, assume that the Doctor is that scientist and take him and Romana to the boardroom to speak with Mena.

Mena has just returned from Earth with news of a breakthrough; the scientist Hardin has finally found a way to use the tachyon's supraluminal velocity to manipulate Time. Brock watches in astonishment as Mena plays a recording of Hardin's experiments, in which an elderly woman is restored to youth. At that moment, however, the Doctor and Romana arrive in the boardroom -- two unidentified visitors without spaceport passes, who were seen taking notes about the Generator before Loman's accident and who have now seen Hardin's secret experiments. The medical centre informs Mena that Loman has died of his injuries, and the Doctor and Romana take advantage of the distraction to slip away. Both realize that the recording they saw had been edited -- Hardin's experimental results have been faked. Romana wants to return to the TARDIS and leave, but the Doctor's curiosity has been piqued, and when she tries to drag him back to the ship he slips his scarf over a nearby statue and enters the Generator's imaging cubicle to investigate further. Romana, trying to open the cubicle, doesn't notice the reptile creature activating the control panel -- but she does notice the tachyon image of the Doctor which appears in the viewing bubble and which is torn apart...

Part Two
(drn: 20'45")

Pangol and Brock arrive too late to save the Doctor -- but fortunately he's already opened up the back of the generator and escaped. The tachyon image in the viewing bubble fades away as Argolin security guards take the Doctor and Romana back to the boardroom. There, Hardin has arrived on Argolis at last, although he and Mena both know that Mena's new duties mean that their relationship must be purely professional from now on. He is forced to admit that his experiments are not yet complete, and when the Doctor and Romana arrive, Mena offers to overlook their unconventional arrival in the Hive on condition that they help Hardin with his experiments.

As night falls over the Hive, the Doctor and Romana comment upon the beauty of the dust storms outside -- a legacy of the war which has rendered Argolis radioactive and uninhabitable. The Argolin will be unable to emerge from the Hive for at least three centuries, and thus devoted their shelter to the cause of cross-cultural understanding to prevent such genocidal wars from ever occurring again. One of the reptile creatures, meanwhile, sabotages a fibre-link connection, shutting down power to an experiential grid -- one of many faults which have plagued the Hive recently, Loman's death being the most prominent. While dealing with the crisis Mena suddenly collapses, aging years within seconds, just as Morix had done before her. The war has bequeathed the Argolin a metabolism which remains steady for years before suddenly collapsing -- and as well, all of the Argolin who survived the war are sterile.

Brock approaches Hardin about the investment potential of his experiments, and Hardin weakly tries to fob him off with vague promises. His partner, Stimson -- who had urged Hardin to fake the experiments in order to ensure continued funding from the Argolin -- fears that Hardin is about to blow it all, and his fears are confirmed when Mena brings the Doctor and Romana to the laboratory and Hardin sees that Mena is dying. The Doctor departs to investigate Loman's death, and Romana pushes past Stimson to examine the laboratory equipment. She obviously knows what she's doing, and when Hardin admits that the experiment doesn't really work, Stimson slips out of the lab and tries to book passage off Argolis as quickly as possible. All of the shuttles back to Earth are fully booked, however. Desperate to get away, he tries to contact Brock, but finds his quarters empty -- and when he opens Brock's closet to search it he finds the empty husk of Klout's skin hanging on the hook. Horrified, he flees from the cabin, but he has been observed by one of the reptile creatures, which follows him to the observation hall and kills him.

Hardin and Romana manage to solve many of the problems inherent in the time-reversal machinery, but although Hardin's theory is sound the hardware still won't work properly. Nevertheless, by increasing power they manage to halt the flow of Time over an hourglass, and a further increase of power causes the sand to flow upwards into the upper bell of the hourglass. Romana and Hardin depart to report success to Mena -- and moments later, there is a tachyon surge and the hourglass explodes.

The Doctor checks the generator controls and finds them set to eliminate intruders, but before he can investigate further, he is arrested by Argolin guards who have found Stimson's body with the Doctor's scarf wound tightly about his neck. The Doctor is taken back to the boardroom to stand trial, and swears his innocence before the Helmet of Theron, the symbol of the Argolin who led the war against the Foamasi. Mena insists upon a civilised trial, but Pangol would prefer the more traditional trial by ordeal. At that moment Hardin and Romana arrive to announce their experiment's success, but before risking Mena to the time-reversal process Hardin needs to conduct an experiment on another living organism. And this gives Pangol an idea.

The Doctor reluctantly agrees to undergo trial in the recreation generator while the Argolin observe. Pangol watches sceptically; the experiment may extend the lives of a few individuals but he doubts the value of the process for his species as a whole. While Hardin powers up the generator Romana returns to the laboratory to start recording the experiment, only to find the shattered remains of the hourglass floating gently to the floor in a field of slow Time. Realizing that something has gone wrong, she rushes to the hall to stop the experiment, but is too late. Hardin manages to shut down the generator, but when the Doctor emerges from the imaging cubicle, he is an elderly man with long, flowing white hair...

Part Three
(drn: 21'21")

The outcome of the trial by ordeal seems obvious. The Doctor and Romana are taken back to the guest quarters and fitted with limiting collars; if they attempt to enter a prohibited area or remove the collars, the collars will administer electrical shocks. The Doctor and Romana, left alone, try to figure out why the experiment went wrong, and although the Doctor's memory is failing he recalls seeing a second baryon shield in the generator. He didn't have time to see what was behind it, but it seems clear that there must be a second circuit in the generator, with a purpose which they don't yet understand.

Hardin supports the ailing Mena back in the boardroom, until Pangol arrives to announce that the guards sorting Stimson's effects have found proof that the experiments were faked. Hardin admits the truth but insists that he was close to a genuine breakthrough, which he achieved with Romana's help. Mena is bitterly disappointed in him but nevertheless agrees, despite Pangol's objections, to let Hardin continue his work -- alone. Hardin, knowing that he can't possibly succeed without Romana's help, releases her and the Doctor from their collars. The Doctor is beginning to suspect that the recreation generator isn't all that it seems -- what exactly is it meant to re-create?

Pangol discovers that Hardin's experiment has destabilised the generator, and works through the night to repair the damage. He then returns to the boardroom to find Brock presenting Mena with the Foamasi contracts, which Pangol tears to pieces. The contract appears to have come from a private group named the West Lodge, but Pangol knows that the Foamasi have outlawed private enterprise and concludes that the "offer" is an attempt to foist unwanted restitution for the war upon his people. Pangol's own plans to rebuild the New Argolis are near completion, and Mena is too weak to stop him from revealing the Argolin's greatest secret to Brock. He, Pangol, is the first of the new Argolin, a product of cloning experiments conducted in the recreation generator. The technology was outlawed when most of his brethren emerged stillborn or disfigured; only Pangol survived, whole in body and mind, to come of age as a fully proficient tachyon engineer. And now he is ready to conduct the next phase of the experiment...

The Doctor, Romana and Hardin arrive in the observation hall to see Vargos and the other guides conducting repairs to the generator. Somebody needs to find out what the second circuit is for, and Romana is the only one who can survive if exposed to another tachyon surge. The Doctor and Hardin distract Vargos while Romana slips into the imaging chamber; once there, she removes the second baryon shield to expose the circuitry beyond it, but is then confronted by one of the reptile creatures. Pangol spots the Doctor on the surveillance monitors and rushes to the hall to stop him. The Doctor and Hardin have gone by the time he arrives, but the generator controls are registering an intruder; certain that it's the Doctor, Pangol programmes the generator to age him a further two thousand years.

The reptile, a Foamasi, helps Romana to escape from the imaging cubicle as Pangol powers up the generator. Neither Romana, the Doctor, nor Hardin can understand the Foamasi's clicking, whirring mode of speech, but the Doctor understands exactly what the circuit board Romana found behind the baryon shield is meant to do. The Foamasi takes them to the boardroom along with another of its kind; there, Pangol is gloating over Mena's imminent death, which will usher in the next chapter of Argolin history. Brock realizes that Pangol has revealed all the Argolin secrets to him in order that Brock should act as a witness to the dawn of the new Argolis, and the rising of the Children of the Generator. But then the Doctor and the Foamasi arrive, and Brock retreats in horror as the Foamasi close in on him -- and pull off Brock's false flesh-mask to reveal that underneath, he too is a Foamasi...

Part Four
(drn: 21'19")

The Foamasi who rescued Romana takes Brock's voice synthesizer and explains that the real Brock never left Earth; both he and "Klout" were replaced by criminal Foamasi, the leaders of the local branch of the West Lodge. Since the West Lodge has been outlawed on the Foamasi homeworld they intended to move their base of operations to Argolis, and they and their agents are responsible for the acts of sabotage and murder which have nearly driven Argolis into bankruptcy in order to make their offer seem more attractive. The criminals are placed under restraint to be taken back to the Foamasi homeworld for trial, but the Doctor isn't convinced that the troubles are over. Indeed, Pangol seems to have gone completely over the edge by now, and as dawn breaks over Argolis he shuts down the Hive completely, refusing to let the Foamasi leave -- even though this could be considered an act of war against their government. Pangol seems convinced that the Foamasi and the Doctor are collaborating in an alien plot to infiltrate the Hive and conquer the Argolin, but he can stop them now. Mena is too weak to prevent him from seizing the Helmet of Theron and preparing to usher in the dawn of the new Argolis. "We, Pangol, will be the army..."

The Doctor, Romana and Hardin return to the laboratory, to find that Pangol has already recovered the control circuitry from the generator. They need another random field frame to stop him and protect against the generator's tachyon surges; the Doctor suggests using the Randomiser from the TARDIS, but Romana isn't convinced it will work and instead she and Hardin begin to build a new one. Pangol, meanwhile, orders the Argolin to assemble in the great hall to witness the dawn of the new Argolis, and Romana and Hardin fear that he has taken power due to Mena's death; but Hardin sees on the monitors that Mena is still alive, barely, and rushes to the boardroom to help her. Romana then realizes that the Doctor has gone and sees him on the surveillance monitors, taking the Randomiser into the imaging cubicle.

Romana rushes to the observation hall, but finds the Argolin unwilling to stop Pangol. The Foamasi shuttle attempts to leave without permission, and Pangol has it shot down -- a deliberate act of war. Pangol then enters the imaging cubicle, wearing the Helmet of Theron, and Romana watches in horror as an army of tachyon-duplicated Pangols begins to march out of the cubicle. The Pangols grab Romana and begin to drag her out of the Hive, and Pangol orders that Mena's body be disposed of outside as well. But once they're out of the hall, the clones drop Romana and remove their helmets to reveal that beneath they are all images of the Doctor, restored to youth. Moments later the army vanishes, as all of the tachyon images were fundamentally unstable; only the original Pangol and the original Doctor remain.

The Doctor and Romana return to the observation hall to find Pangol trying to alter the settings on the generator, convinced that this is a temporary setback only. Hardin arrives with Mena's body in his arms, trying to get her to the generator before it's too late, but Pangol pushes him out of the way, refusing to let anything interfere with the dawn of the new Argolis. But in the confusion both Pangol and Mena fall into the imaging cubicle, and the programme begins again. The Doctor throws the Helmet of Theron into the viewing bubble, which explodes, shutting down the generator -- and Mena emerges from the cubicle, restored to youth, with a squalling baby in her arms. This time she must try to bring him up properly. The Foamasi agent arrives in the hall, explaining that the criminals overpowered him and his agents and tried to escape, only to be shot down by Pangol. Mena and the Foamasi retreat to the boardroom to open negotiations for the use and funding of Hardin's new technology. Hardin is thus left to deal with the baby Pangol, as the Doctor and Romana -- having decided to leave the Randomiser where it is -- return to the TARDIS and depart.

Source: Cameron Dixon

Continuity Notes:
[Back to Main Page]