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parrot_knight [userpic]

A Doctor Whoish thought...

March 28th, 2010 (12:28 am)

In episode two of The Invasion, Does anyone else think that the Brigadier's response to Jamie's question whether UNIT is an 'international secret police', that they don't actually arrest anybody, should be followed by "Only seize them without explanation, imprison them without trial, try to disintegrate them if they are robots, and generally deploy coercive force without obvious authority." After all, the Brigadier says they are an 'independent' security service, and it must only have taken forty years for the UN to catch up with the Brig's unauthorized use of the name...


Posted by: http://elevatormusic.space (sebastienne)
Posted at: March 28th, 2010 12:39 am (UTC)

To a certain extent, yes, UNIT have always been as scary and uncertainly-moral a force as they are in New Who; it's just that the Brigadier is such an upstanding, honourable, downright British sort of a chap that he must be on the side of right... right?

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 28th, 2010 01:09 am (UTC)

The Brig is a fairly warm figure with (in the context of the story) a comfortably authoritative management style in The Invasion, I find, with a streak of old-fashioned sexism which is deployed in plot terms to spur Zoe and Isobel into being action heroines. He hits problems as soon as he meets Pertwee. In the first Pertwee season he's fairly antagonistic towards the Doctor, and is prepared to take drastic action, such as blowing up the Silurians (or at least sealing their caves) and ruthlessly shooting suspected villains without asking questions in The Ambassadors of Death. Once Barry Letts retools the UNIT set-up to provide Jon Pertwee with an ensemble cast to bounce off, and maintaining the narrowing of his outlook established in the first Pertwee series, then he's set on the trajectory which leads towards the "I'm pretty sure that's Cromer!" of The Three Doctors.

There are other Brigadiers too - Ben Aaronovitch's young officer with an African concubine in the New Adventure Transit, unquestioning of his superiority towards a colonized people for one. I hope that SJA's Enemy of the Bane isn't the last we see of the character, because I didn't think he was well-served.

Posted by: http://elevatormusic.space (sebastienne)
Posted at: March 28th, 2010 09:40 am (UTC)

While the SJA appearance may be the last we see of Nicholas Courtney, I can't imagine that the Whoniverse will be able to leave the character altogether alone...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 28th, 2010 11:04 am (UTC)

I sometimes consider whether they would recast. Eleven materialises in "the 1970s. Or was it the 1980s?" and there are the Brig, Benton and Yates, with Three and Jo off on Peladon or Solos or in the English Channel or somewhere...

Posted by: thanatos_kalos (thanatos_kalos)
Posted at: March 28th, 2010 01:05 am (UTC)

Absolutely. UNIT might be the 'acceptable face' of homeworld security, but they can still be very very scary if not run by a good person.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 28th, 2010 01:11 am (UTC)

Yes... and I think the Brigadier is established as a good person in his first two appearances, and despite his stance wobbling in the first Pertwee season is maintained as such in his later more comedic incarnation.