- "The Blorgons' Cunning Scheme": Layla's Heroic Sacrifice halfway through the serial set the precedent for how Anyone Can Die, even Associates, in the programme.
- "The Lost Asteroid": The first metamorphosis episode—swapping the First Inspector with the Second—must have been a huge whammer for the contemporary viewing audience way back in the 1960s.
- "The Crime Sports": It wasn't enough that Susannah Overseer returned for a hasty but significant cameo, never to be seen again. Even more surprising, the mysterious background figures glimpsed throughout Season 6 were finally revealed to be the then-unnamed Infinity Knights' Internal Affairs Watchdogs—and they were not happy with the Inspector's conduct on his enigmatic mission.
- "The Three Inspectors": In the final installment of the serial, the future Inspector reveals that Yosif is a girl.
- "The Theft of Space": King Sonacry dies. It is revealed that Barbartron is populated with the descendents of exiled Kayaclaschians. And then, Reena, having finally come into her own as a Lady of War, has just finished her coronation speech and watched the Inspector proudly depart when she is literally stabbed in the back by the traitorous Constable Dredan.note
- "Mathsville": It was a real surprise for the Inspector to metamorphose into a woman as BTV had kept Lynda Bellingham's casting under wraps by floating the rumour she would be a new associate.
- "Corporation of the Blorgons": The Orange Warden returns and gives the Blorgons their "powerboating licence", removing one of the race's major weaknesses. The Blorgon Commonwealth of Sentients collapses into three hostile factions. And then Jeffrey dies.
- "Odyssey's Beginning": Yorke casually mentions that he is also one of the Time Deviants that the Inspector has been pursuing.
- "Brooke Gets Hitched": The mysterious voice telling the Inspector "It's time for quiet, time to rise" wouldn't be explained until "Nothing But Blorgons" in Series 7 since the next episode was the universally reviled "1981 Inspector Spacetime Holiday Special".
- "The Alias of the Inspector": When you think the episode is finished, there is a man standing in the dimensioniser revealing himself to be the Unknown Inspector!
The First Inspector
A versatile theatre actor who specialized in Shakespearean roles, French at first seemed an odd choice for the patronising, cantankerous, and notably lower-middle class First Inspector. Although pleased by the programme's popularity at first, he left suddenly at the start of the fourth season to avoid being typecast. On television, he went on to appear in such programmes as Dixon of Dock Green, Z Cars, The Avengers (1960s), and The Singing Detective. He returned once to the series, making a brief cameo in the 20th Anniversary Special.
- Grumpy Old Man: The First Inspector was grouchy and rather distant, though he loosened up a little starting in Season 2.
- Noble Bigot with a Badge: Especially at the very beginning of the show. He mellows a bit as his tenure progresses.
- Old-Fashioned Copper: This Inspector, having a more classic "police man" feel about him in comparison to his successors, could sometimes have elements of this trope.
The Second Inspector
He has often been summed up as "Sherlock Holmes in space", a cold and austere man who nevertheless has a passion for high culture and fine art, always dressed in the latest understated and conservative fashion... except for those battered Wellington boots. When he truly wished to "brood over the cosmos" he would play his ocarina. Word of God has said the show was just playing to Lee's strengths as an actor, but this hasn't stopped the popular theory that the change from French's version was somehow a "promotion", prompting a more upper-class outlook.
Lee filmed two IS movies while the First Inspector's televised run was still being taped and aired. These movies, which posited a half-human Inspector, are now considered alt-canon. Following French's abrupt decision to leave the show, hastily conscripting Lee to reprise the role on television was therefore the obvious choice. While his new(-ish) version of the Inspector quickly proved to be quite popular, Lee has never made any bones about the fact that he became the Inspector mainly because it offered a steady paycheque. After his departure from the series, he never reprised the role in film or television, except for the 20th Anniversary Special, where he was persuaded to (literally) phone in an amusing voice cameo. ("Crikey! That's what you used to sound like?!") The positive reception to this led to him further agreeing to reprise the role in a series of radio dramas which are considered quite good and, more importantly, canonical.
- The Comically Serious: An extremely serious individual who had no intent of masking his intelligence to deal with a situation.
The Third Inspector
The Third Inspector is well known for his abhorrence of any sort of strenuous physical activity, and his habit of taking long tea breaks at (seemingly) the very worst moments. Continuing the theory mentioned above, some claim that following the events of "The Crime Sports" this Inspector was somehow "retired", even though he pretty much kept on doing what he always had.
Unlike French and Lee, Fox cheerfully embraced the role from the start, came back for a guest appearance whenever he was invited, and has been a beloved fixture at worldwide IS conventions for forty years.
- Berserk Button: For the love of God, don't ever spill his tea.
- Let's Get Dangerous!: This Inspector may not have liked to exert himself, but when he did... watch out.
The Fourth Inspector
Goring was a surprising choice for the Inspector, given the over-full nature of his filming schedule at the time.
The Fourth Inspector is known for his crazily coloured iconic ascot and knee socks, affinity for small sweetsparticularly wine gums and sherbet lemons (some suggest that Albus Dumbledore's affection for treats and sherbet lemons was an homage to the Fourth Inspector). He is also known for his extraordinarily high body count.
He returned to the series twice for guest appearances: the 20th Anniversary special and "The Only Inspector."
- Anti-Hero Substitute: This incarnation of the Inspector was a lot more brooding and more willing to use lethal force.
- Dissonant Serenity: It took a lot to visible rattle the Fourth Inspector.
- The Eeyore: Conversely, he never tended to display a lot of overt humor and good cheer. Of course, he had reason enough to be gloomy.
- Grumpy Old Man: The Fourth Inspector generally had two moods: mildly annoyed, and very annoyed.
- Knife Nut: Most metamorphoses of the Inspector used the Optic Pocketknife as rarely as possible, but Four cut a slew of throats in his time. He's also the only Inspector to use an Optic Pocketknife balanced especially for throwing.
- Knight in Sour Armor: As Goring himself put it: "He's basically like a disgruntled janitor. He keeps cleaning up these messes everyone else creates, only for a new one to be made. But unlike a janitor, these messes cost lives and homes, and he just wants it all to stop trying to involve another piece of himself being torn out because he can't save everyone." Nonetheless, he always steps up to save the day.
- When He Smiles: Which made those oh-so-rare smiles he did unleash all the more glorious.
The Fifth Inspector
Bellingham was the first, and for many years the only, actress to take on the role of the Inspector (until Phoebe Waller-Bridge became the thirteenth incarnation of the role). She had the absolute worst wardrobe of all the Inspectors, most egregiously a hat that must be seen to be believed. (One expanded universe novel even made it into a sentient life-form.) She also liked ampersands and took to wearing them in the most unlikely of places.
The metamorphosis from 4th to 5th was very difficult for the Inspector to achieve. Continuing the theory mentioned above, some have speculated/joked that after "retirement" comes "death" and then "rebirth" into a new childhood. In a sad real-life reflection of this, her final episode, "The Hills of Androgyny" was infamously plagued with behind-the-scenes troubles, including a rushed production schedule, numerous last-minute script-rewrites, catastrophic prop breakdowns (some of which forced said re-writes) and an ironically arduous rain-drenched location-shoot in what appears on-screen as an idyllic paradise. Relations were also strained between the episode's director Trav Morgus and the cast, but Bellingham has always denied rumors that things deteriorated to the point that she physically slapped him.
Despite all of this, she reappeared on the show in "The Only Inspector", only a year after leaving, which was lampshaded: "Too soon! Too soon!".
In later years, Bellingham did admit to sharing many fans' dissatisfaction with her hastily cobbled-together final regeneration scene. Finally, in 2006, she revealed that she had been writing one of her own to redeem her Inspector's departure. This culminated in her (re-)reprisal of the role, albeit several decades, older in "Space Wreck". Because everything from that last scene had been negated, the Fifth Inspector was rewritten to die at an older age, and since she had been alone with the Booth during her transformation, there was no need to worry about rewriting for an associate, just implanting a Time Skip. The only true hurdle was painstakingly reconstructing her old Booth interior, which is now a star attraction of the Inspector Spacetime Undertaking. Sadly, this was Bellingham's last work on the show. She lost a long battle with cancer in 2014. Her Inspector's Booth interior at the Undertaking was dedicated to her memory as a tribute to the late actress.
She also went on to be cast in That Ripoff as an Inquisitor. The hat she wore in the role was considered by many a wink to her wardrobe as Inspector. (This would be neither the first nor last time That Ripoff stole an actor from IS or gave a cameo role, such as in the case of Landlord's recent role as George the Security Guard in "Closing Time", to an Inspector.)
- All Just a Dream: What her previous regeneration scene was retconned to in her new final episode. The whole angle of hallucinogenic moss was kept intact. The Tenth Inspector doubled back over his timeline because he needed a sample of the moss to stop a nuclear meltdown the size of Denmark. Except this caused him to accidentally save his fifth self from her demise, and erased her tentative future. However, she retained some form of memory from the original events that would have killed her, though somewhat lulled away as her timeline shifted. In the Fifth Inspector's eyes, she interpreted her aborted timeline as a dream, and likened the memory loss as to that kind of feeling a person experiences when they wake up from a dreamlike state and their recollection of said dream wanes following the jump from an unconscious to conscious state.
- Beware the Silly Ones: She may have seemed goofy and harmless, but you did not want to get on her bad side.
- Cerebus Retcon: A spectacular application of one that morphed into an Author's Saving Throw for her controversial final story. Fans lament that Bellingham passed on, as they felt she could have done the same for the demise of a certain multi-coloured time traveler in his sixth incarnation from that Ripoff. With the release of a new story in 2015 to do justice to said time traveler, some fans believe she had a hand in it, after all, and if not, that it was her passing that inspired someone to follow in her footsteps and mend continuity where it needed it the most.
- Mythology Gag: The Tenth Inspector slaps the Fifth Inspector in "Space Wreck" so she can awaken from her hallucinating stupor, alluding to the rumors mentioned above.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Or perhaps "Obfuscating Ditziness". Her wardrobe and carefree exterior was cover for an ice pick of a mind.
- The Smurfette Principle: The Inspector changed into a female because his (er, her) metamorphosis was artificially induced, causing a shift in gene chromosomes. Later "corrected" during her farcical metamorphosis scene in "The Hills of Androgyny", widely derided as a low point in the series and finally retconned. The Inspector gets loopy dragging the enormous pile of hallucinogenic moss into the Central Temple to head off the Androgyny-Shattering Kaboom. This causes her to be gender-confused and think she will die unless she decides whether she's a man or a woman. She gets the genders switched around and thinks man is woman, and vice versa. She's then tricked into drinking the venom of a Spector Bat (by an "automated defense-dispensing system" no less) in a spectacular case of Idiot Ball, immediately killing her. The venom does as it was expected to do however, inverting her gender. It apparently messes with her genes, causing a poorly-Hand Waved mutation that metamorphoses the Inspector back into a male. As noted above, this was all a last-minute hash thrown together to salvage/finish the episode after numerous behind-the-scene disasters.
- As Take That! at that scene, when the Fifth and Tenth Inspectors meet in the revived series by accident, Ten actually slaps Five for what she is going to do that will stupidly get herself killed. He unknowingly alters the future and because Five isn't actually going to die from hallucination-induced idiocy, she instead metamorphoses under more heroic terms, but the resulting time paradox spawns the Indictor. Essentially, the entire last season of the Sixth Inspector's tenure and his death was thus retconned as being the Tenth Inspector's fault.
The Sixth Inspector
The Inspector was one of Chapman's final roles. Defying expectation, Chapman's Inspector was one of the most sombre and monochrome. The extreme colors of the Doctor in That Ripoff at the time was seen as a move by the Ripoff's producers to distinguish themselves from IS.
This was also the era in which some of the serials just got weird (much to the delight of many fans). The most (in)famous example is probably all those puppets turning up in the serial "Mindscrew".
- Failure Hero: Nothing ever went right for this Inspector. Nothing. Some fans claim that his taking on Jeffery was symbolic of his failure, while Jeffery's death shows his failure at failing. And after that, he failed to recruit any new Associates for the rest of his runnote . In his final episode, he is sentenced to banishment in an alternate universe and can only return home by dying.
- Lotus-Eater Machine: Learns the alternate universe he was banished to is actually one (or it was real, but was specifically created for him... or something.. has the era's weirdness been mentioned?), and the only way to get out is to overload the dimension with his psychic abilities. However, the negative feedback from doing so causes him to become fatally injured and start a metamorphosis that gets cut off during a cliffhanger, bringing in a huge number of views eager for "Space or the Maharani", which producers smartly decided to air early and had preemptively filmed, knowing Graham Chapman was dying from cancer.
- Nice Character, Mean Actor: Quite a few accounts of Chapman's tenure detail many verbal crossfires between him and the production staff, due to either showing up drunk or having his sexuality challenged.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Graham Chapman's crippling struggle with alcohol and his diagnosis of cancer proved too much for him and he announced that he would not film any more episodes except a finale, previously voicing that he felt he would have the shortest run of any Inspector due to sickness. The BTV controller at the time took great sympathy with him, perhaps more than any other actor who played the Inspector during his time at the BTV, helping to pay for Chapman's medical expenses and promising that he would help him complete his tenure as the Sixth Inspector by going out with a bang.
The Seventh Inspector
Fry had one of the shorter tenures as Inspector and is best known for all of the "what could have beens" and his associates. The scripts, in a misguided attempt to rein in the weirdness of the Chapman years, were reduced to repetitive explosive-laden pabulum, while the budget had been slashed to almost the level of That Ripoff. After limping along for three lacklustre seasons, the plug was pulled on the show. As the least popular of all Inspectors, Fry divides fans as either not a good enough actor for the role's complex demands or the scapegoat for the producers' notes for him to play the character against his thespian strengths. (Chapman's departure only because of his deteriorating health did not help the transition for his successor.) Ironically, many fans feel that his ten-minute appearance at the start of the one-off Eighth Inspector movie was easily his best acted and scripted work as the character. The Seventh Inspector is very popular in Fan Fic because of this, and many like to imagine how the series would have ended if it had hired better writers. Eventually, an animated series was launched to envision and capitalize on some of the best ideas posed by fans, leading to much wish fulfillment and a bit of Lampshade Hanging about the rocky road the Seventh Inspector faced in the years the show was off the air.
- Animated Adaptation: Given a series financed by the Veteran Old Expeditions Studio that ran for 60 episodes, continuing right from where "Failure", his last TV story left off. The series started with "Spacebyrd: Cessation", and completed with "Heartwheel". An additional 61st episode was made called "The Living Nights", a backdoor pilot for the Eighth Inspector's travels, but unlike the beloved Seventh Inspector, it never got off the ground due to less positive remarks about his successor.
- Break the Cutie: He goes through a lot of traumatic events and turns extremely glass half-empty near the end of his tenure.
- Broken Ace: Gives up hope on his incarnation being capable of doing anything worth keeping it around.
- Darker and Edgier: Has a series of animated adventures that serve to connect the dots between his TV era and the movie. It effectively cashes in on all the potential his character could have had. However, it is rife with pot shots at all the people who got the show cancelled in the first place. Until by the end of his incarnation, he has become a darkly cynical presence who tells off everyone he meets, growing highly resentful and almost downright cruel at the conception of how badly he has been treated.
- Driven to Suicide: Arranges for his own death, finally admitting this incarnation was a failure.
The Sergeant: Just give up and let me kill you, already! You've put off your death long enough!The Inspector: Sorry, old chap. Death's not on my schedule!
- Ironic Echo: This draws back to when the Sergeant famously taunted the Inspector as a failure in his titular final TV episode, "Failure" (a Lampshade Hanging of the series's cancellation).
The Sergeant: You can't put it off any longer. It's time to die, Inspector.The Inspector: Right on schedule.
- And then comes the TV movie, where a broken and disillusioned Seven lets the Seargeant gun him down.
- Heartbroken Badass: Revealed to be one in his last animated adventure "Heartwheel", which leads into the TV Movie.
- My Name Is Not Durwood: Dynamo kept calling him "Copper", never quite understanding the gist of his duties as an Infinity Knight.
The Eighth Inspector
Carell's turn as Inspector was an early attempt to revive the series after the disappointment of Fry's run. Carell starred in a made-for-TV movie alongside Anne Hathaway who played his Associate, Charity Galloway. Many (though not all) fans prefer to pretend this movie never existed and sometimes choose to disregard the movie as canon. (It at least allowed Stephen Fry to end his version of the Inspector on a note of dignity.}
The Eighth Inspector's books, which were more tightly written and not subject to horrible theatrics, are notably better. Likewise, his audio plays, which often poked fun at his short run as the Inspector, received wide acclaim for his writing, especially the tragic "Bright Faces". The Inspector's primary Associate in the later books and broadcasts was Fitzwilliam Fort, an amateur detective.
- Go Out with a Smile: Was satisfied with how his life had turned out in "The Twilight of the Inspector" and bid a fond farewell to his past companions. He felt like it was the universe's way of forgiving him for having such a crappy time as his predecessor. Unfortunately, that made the matter of his next life feeling too entitled to die.
- Inspector Oblivious: Fans complained about this comic typecasting for Carell in the TV movie, but in his later adventures, this is revealed as a cunning ruse.
- Lighter and Softer: Has a series of audios where he enjoys a very lovely and uplifting life in this incarnation following the downtrodden suffering of his predecessor, becoming extremely confident, with his finest hour taking place in "For a Birth", securing the destruction of the Space Manipulator Blorgon and saving not only three companions from death in a Big Damn Heroes moment, but the whole of humanity. Harsher in Hindsight given that his next adventure was the grueling "Bright Faces".
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping / Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Another source of fan complaints. Carell only attempted an English accent during the first fifteen minutes of the movie; afterward, he spoke in his natural accent and would turn to the camera and wink whenever he said something British like "lorry" or "packet of crisps".
The Unknown Inspector (a.k.a. the Undercover Inspector)
As revealed in the 50th anniversary special, the Infinity Knight High Command assigned the Inspector to go undercover as a rogue cop to investigate renegade fellow space-time officers who were conducting their own private war against the Blorgons. The Eighth Inspector secretly adopted the identity of the Unknown Inspector with the special assistance of the mystic Teman Mothers, who transform him in a different version of the standard Kayaclaschian metamorphosis. What he did not suspect was that his inquiries would lead into the Time Wave...
- Awful Truth: He's the one blamed for the final catastrophe in the Time Wave, and the Inspector subsequently disavowed this incarnation entirely.
- Came Back Wrong: Dialogue implies he metamorphosed in his sleep. The Ninth Inspector found it embarrassing, and related it to "wetting the bed." Later information given explains that the Inspector went into a deep hibernation while linked up to a biology defragementer (homebrewed medical equipment) that would essentially simulate a metamorphosis by reformatting his body into the form of his Unknown incarnation. But unfortunately, the Inspector put so much strain on his mind by flickering through his former incarnations, his mind could not handle the strain. He awoke too early, causing his nervous system to go haywire, implode in on itself, and destabilize the whole body. He passed out again, remarking that he felt "a bit thick", at which point a real metamorphosis kicked in to prevent him from dying outright.
- Commuting on a Bus: William Hurt expressed interest in returning every now and then to the series, resulting in the decision not to make his metamorphosis stick.
- Gone Horribly Wrong: The Unknown Inspector's mountains of regret caused him to have a yearning desire to return to his younger, more innocent days when the Trans-Temporal Tourbillon was activated. He didn't known this would influence it to regress him back to his first incarnation.
- Diagonal Cut: Starting using the Optic Pocketknife as a weapon more often than usual and got adept as using it to deliver a finishing blow with a single strike.
- Fedora of Asskicking: Doubles as a Shout-Out to the Nice Hat worn by Christopher Lee's early non-canonical Inspector Spacetime character in the 1964 and 1965 films.
- Karmic Death: Grew particularly attached to this body and tried to keep it young and primed for combat, unable to put his worries to rest that he would need to keep on fighting against the universe. His resistance to aging got the better of him when he decided he wanted it back, only to screw up, lose another metamorphosis and wind up in a totally different body.
- Killed Offscreen: Implied to have tried reversing his botched metamorphosis somehow after undoing a paradox that reset him to his first incarnation, and then rapidly shifting between all of his previous selves during an adventure involving a soap opera. But instead of it returning him to his Unknown incarnation at the end, his experiment was ever so slightly off, resulting in him having a genetically unstable form. That malformed body immediately metamorphosed, which caused him to end up with a new body entirely. The concept of this metamorphosis posed to directors is often the bane of their existence, as there is much frustration on how it should be interpreted, and the effects it calls for are just too demanding for it to be shot on film without eradicating the series budget.
- Finally tackled in an audio adaption in 2014, "The First Journey", for his metamorphosis story, which alleviates any need for an on-screen depiction and adequately explains the presence of the First Inspector. However, since it is a Battle in the Center of the Mind type story due to Unknown hooking himself up to a machine and going unconscious, and the implied appearance of the Blue and Orange Wardens, enforcing the change because it just is his appointed fate to change, as is the same with all things who answer to him. Fate's argument was that the Inspector was going to lose sight of his morals if he stayed the Unknown because he was stuck in the role of someone he was pretending to be for so long he was losing sight of his true identity and the Orange Warden was attempting to make the Inspector think the Unknown was the only real self he ever had, thus setting on the path to become He Who Fights Monsters. But by his own words, "fate never leads anyone astray and is always kind in the end." Fate was doing him a kindness by enforcing this transformation. Yet the audio is full of so much subsequent Mind Screw that it seems fans still cannot wrap their heads around what exactly happened.
- The audio was later itself adapted into a CGI film for the tenth anniversary of the revived series, which took great liberties to explain things much better through visuals and new scenes that revealed the Unknown was flashing back through all of his previous lives and had to Set Right What Once Went Wrong in a series of trials to prove he deserved the right to keep on living, with each task complete helping to make him remember who he really was, before finally being face with an ultimate trial where he was made to execute a child with a mask on his head, with the Orange Warden jesting "This child is an Unknown just like you- who cares if you kill them?" The Unknown unmasked the child and discovered it was him as a child in his original incarnation, and Fate decreed "Had you killed him, you would have destroyed yourself in the very act of rebelling against me- the one who is at the root of ALL beings' fate. No plant can survive with its roots torn asunder, and I am your gardener, while my adversary tries to lay siege to my garden. I have more plans to help you grow yet, Inspector." The moral here? If one adaptation doesn't work out the kinks, adapt the adaptation and tackle them further down the rabbit hole.
- He Who Fights Monsters: The underlying mentality behind his attachment to this body, and what proved to be his undoing. Unknown was so fixated on keeping this incarnation, he refused to have a numeric categorization or be labeled an Inspector, believing he should become immortal, and that he was held back by his moniker after seeing the advantages of going incognito.
- Pride: The one drawback from deciding to take on this appearance- an overwhelming sense of hubris, influencing an unwillingness to move on with his existence when this chapter of his life was due to end. He just couldn't take the fight out of him no matter how hard he tried, so fate intervened for him and made the Inspector metamorphose out of this incarnation by force. Fate reasoned for that as long as this incarnation existed, he would stagnate and become too close-minded to think of proper solutions that the offbeat Inspector would care to dream up, and the universe would go to hell and a handbasket as a result.
- Zero-Approval Gambit: The only way to prevent history from remembering the Infinity Knights as having been as bad as the Blorgons, if not worse, was for him to obliterate both sides with a trans-temporal tourbillon, even though this means his Taking the Heat for the Time Wave. Subverted in that the Unknown is not the Inspector and thus nobody will blame that identity, and no one knows it is really him and will make the connection between them, thinking the Ninth Inspector is just the Inspector resurfacing after laying low while waiting out the end of the wave, and the official story given is that the Unknown was said to have committed suicide out of guilt, which is actually quite true- the whole Inpsector and Unknown being one and the same is something that was conveniently omitted.
The Ninth Inspector
Mark Williams revived the Inspector with sad humor and a genuine presence. Unfortunately, his obligations to the Harry Potter franchise cut his tenure to only one season. Williams also played the Inspector in a charity event with Daniel Radcliffe as his associate. Many fans were upset to learn that the combination was for the charity special only; however, most forgave the writers when the first episode introduced a new associate, Lily Taylor.
The Ninth Inspector had a curious aversion to leather.The Ninth Inspector also traveled with Rory Williams. Rory's role ended when he learned how to cheat death and had to lose all of his memories as a consequence. Darvill would go on to play the exact same character on That Ripoff, with memory loss and cheating death skills fully intact. Interestingly, Mark Williams would later be cast as Rory's father Brian on That Ripoff, which may have been intended by the show's creators as a Casting Gag.
- The Call Put Me on Hold: Spent 222 years trying to decide whether or not he wanted to go back and accept Lily Taylor as his companion, wondering if he should try being the Inspector again.Inspector: 222 years should be enough time to set things straight. Maybe redecorate, this place is a mess- you can thank the Homenes for that. And I'm still getting used to this new body. The paint's not even dry! Need some time to have the shocks adjusted, go see some places, find a sandwich shop with halfway decent chips. Sure 222 years sounds like ages, but don't forget I'm an Infinity Knight. From your perspective, Lily, it'll be just a few seconds! Don't worry, I'll bring you back a pastry when it's all said and done!
- Noodle Incident: During that time, he visited Hyroblits and got a new optic pocketknife made in his honour for saving their eco-friendly energy plant from Circuit Chaps, sacrificing the old one his Unknown Incarnation had to defeat them. He even arranged for a watermelon grove to be planted outside the facility as away of returning the kindness, and they sent him another gift- the Prophetic Parchment.
- Catchphrase: "Dreadful!"
- The Dandy: This Inspector's ridiculously posh outfits, even more so than the Second, often drifted into this territory.
- Establishing Character Moment: Shown waking up out of bed with his body finishing up a metamorphosis. As his Booth is careening down to Earth at breakneck speeds, it doesn't register to him. He just lets out a yawn, smacks his chops, and lazily opens his eyes, remarking that he feels like he just awoke from a long nightmare. Then it hits that the Booth is crashing."Ah, glad that's over with. A dream after all. The nightmare finally ended... At least it can't get any worse... (loud booming sound; Booth jitters around) And we're under attack. I just had to push my luck. (catches his reflection in the Booth windows) Hang on a tick- new face...! New lease on life! Oh, that's just dreadful- I'm in my nighties! Oi! You lot with the guns! Could you spare me a time-out? I'm not dressed for my demise!! Good thing, too- I'm ignoring the summons! This Knight in his nighties that will not die this night! At least not without putting up a fight! ...Well, I've just proven I'm a swell rhymer as this version of me. In that case, New Me, let's flee to '03! ...On second thought, better make it '04- '03's the year where I got those rubbish chips in Lancashire. (Booth quakes from Homene gunfire) ...Really, I have got to stop doing that. Such dreadful poetry. I wouldn't be surprised if that's why those aliens are trying to kill me! (Booth is rocked again) For Pete's sake, I just got this body! Hardly a minute old and my head's already on the chopping block! If I were a referee, I'd call foul!"
- Notably a radical move by the writers to film his regeneration out of nowhere to new viewers. Although it would leave them confused, it was a way of testing who would continue to watch the show. The ones that stuck around to the Series 1 finale would be reward with an explanation. This choice was also to allow someone else to fill in the blanks as they pleased and show the first half of the metamorphosis of the past incarnation move seamlessly into the new one retroactively. Except the transition ended up being depicted in audio after quite a lot of impasse trying to depict it as a TV story.
- Pajama-Clad Hero: Lampshaded and averted. He outright refuses to be one at the start of his life.
- Skewed Priorities: The first thing he did after his metamorphosis completed and the BOOTH started crashing to Earth? Barge straight toward the dressing room to change out of his drab pajamas.
- The Stoic: As a result of being Last of His Kind, the Ninth Inspector became more and more detached, adopting a "stiff upper lip" persona that he'd maintain even in the most dire of situations.
The Tenth Inspector
Landlord played the first black Inspector in the series. Landlord was a virtual unknown when cast, but some fans consider him the best of the recent Inspectors.
The Tenth Inspector is known for his coke-bottle glasses, endless string of bizarre and humorous shirts, and strong character growth. The Tenth Inspector is also bookended by two of the favoured AssociatesLily and the Constable.
- Adorkable: By far the geekiest of all the Inspectors.
- Bald of Awesome: And the Inspector is overjoyed about it. It's a dream come true that he always wanted to happen to him. He'd thought it would be fun to be a baldy-waldy, since it meant he wouldn't need to waste his money on hair gel to do up his hair into some modern style that stuck out every which way.
- Black and Nerdy: The first black Inspector, and definitely the nerdiest.
- Specs of Awesome: Word of God states it is a Shout-Out to the First Inspector.
The Eleventh Inspector
Richey is most known for being the Inspector chosen to feature in the short clip in the TV show Community. The clip, from early in his run while he still traveled with the Constable, is credited with truly reviving the fandom.
The Eleventh Inspector is known for his bowler hats.
The Eleventh Inspector traveled with the Constable and later with a young couple, Angie Lake and Aidan Davies. Brooke Rhapsody, a puzzle shrouded with mystery, was also part of his life. His time was marked by an increasing popularity among the denizens of the universe that can cause problems when he needs to save the day and simply doesn't have time for all the autographs. His associates were known to be kidnapped just so that the abductors get a chance to meet him, causing the Eleventh Inspector to start seriously questioning whether he should just make his associates wear a bell.
- Heroic Self-Deprecation: Hit a very low point in his last season where he decided he wanted a metamorphosis as soon as possible, after his whole world just fell apart and his past selves did nothing to stop the catastrophe, and one even went as far as to make it play out in the most tragic way possible. He went out overjoyed to be changing into a new body.
- Iconic Outfit: Bowler hats, to the point that it is nearly a symbol of the show.
- Took a Level in Jerkass / Took a Level in Kindness: After his awful final encounter with the Snarling Lions, he "took a leave of absence" for a while, donned darker clothes, and became a bit allergic to social interaction. But he grew out of it, save a few chronic fits of anger whenever his lost companions were brought up in conversation.
The Twelfth Inspector
- Broken Base
- The Faceless
- The Generic Guy
- Multiple-Choice Past
- Nice Hat
- The Shadow Knows
- Shrouded in Myth
- Shrug of God
- The Unreveal
The Thirteenth Inspector
- Cruel and Unusual Death: In her early episodes, she developed a habit of dispatching foes in bizarre and almost sadistic ways.
- Female Misogynist: Upon seeing her face for the first time, the Inspector scowled in contempt.Inspector: Oh, terrible!
- The Smurfette Principle: As far as the new series goes. note
- Walking Techbane: This incarnation of the Inspector is always constructing cool and interesting gadgets, that invariably go wrong in some unforeseen and unexpected way.
Susannah Overseer (First Inspector)
- As You Know: She and the Inspector's dialogue suffered from this.
- Early Installment Weirdness: She is presented as secretly being the Inspector's superior or at least auditor in some fashion, hence her "real" name.
- French Maid: Initially introduced as the Inspector's maid in an attempt to explain why a young(er) girl like her is living with him. Not actually French, though. And see directly above.
- Put on a Bus: She was written off the show when it was realized her character simply wasn't working; both the actress and producers have said the split was as amiable as possible under the circumstances.
- The Bus Came Back: Did a cameo in the final episode for the Second Inspector, appearing as an unwilling witness in his trial.
Irma Rong and Bart Gilbert (First Inspector)
- The Adventure Continues: They leave the Inspector to explore the future in a captured Blorgon space-time machine.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: See below.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Irma, particularly, if pushed too far.
- Constantly Curious: One of the reasons they went traveling with the Inspector when offered the chance.
- Cool Teacher: While they left their formal teaching careers behind, both of them still had their moments.
- Jumped at the Call
- Morality Pet: To the Inspector, to a degree, helping keep his inflexibility towards law-breakers from becoming too harsh.
- Slap-Slap-Kiss - Vitriolic Best Buds: Their relationship falls somewhere in this spectrum. Towards the end of their run, it started shading more into Sickeningly Sweethearts, and they get married in their final episode.
- The Watson: They served as excellent ones for the Inspector; it's nearly universally agreed that their replacing Susannah as the Inspector's Associates drastically improved the show and launched it into the phenomenon it became.
- You Can't Go Home Again: They quickly find they no longer fit in with 20th Century Earth.
Layla (First Inspector)
- The Future Is Shocking: Layla found it difficult to reconcile her Code of Honour with modern concepts of law and order.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Halfway through "The Blorgon's Cunning Scheme".
- Jeanne d'Archétype: Although in this case, she's an English Lady of War from the Dark Ages.
- Phone Call from the Dead: Made a fleeting cameo in the 30th anniversary special and revealed that she was doing fine in Heaven, as a reward for her honourable life in the living world. She arranged for a psychic projection to communicate with the Inspector. Layla had been observing him from above and noticed he was surprisingly inactive for the past few years and seemed to be losing his touch (a nod to the show's cancellation), so she thought she'd check up on him. Fans can't seem to make up their minds whether they loved or hated this scene, but it served as the turning point for the Seventh Inspector into a more interesting and rather mysterious character. And it was O'Farrell's final performance as Layla before passing away in 1999.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: The first Associate to show how Anyone Can Die in the programme. And also the first one to show there really is an afterlife, as opposed to that Ripoff's gloom and doom imagery of a nothingness.
Officer Tara Parradyce (First Inspector)
- Action Girl: At the beginning of epic twelve-episode serial "The Blorgon's Cunning Scheme", she introduces herself as a Space Police agent.
- Combat Pragmatist: Tara uses improvised weapons and various dirty tricks over the course of her appearance.
Layla: You fight without honour!
- After Layla sees Tara zap a Blorgon In the Back.
Tara: I fight with a Ray Gun.
- Dark Action Girl: [[spoiler:What she turns into over the course of "The Blorgon's Cunning Scheme".
- Future Spandex: Epitomized by her Space Clothes version of the Spy Catsuit.
- Zero-Approval Gambit: What turns out to have been her plan all along at the end of "The Blorgon's Cunning Scheme" (hence her ultimate unsuitability as a continuing Associate).
Nicola "Coco" Coates (First Inspector)
- American Accents: Famously invoked with her Chicagoese accent and then revoked by BTV following audience complaints her character was impossible to understand.
- Cute and Psycho: Heavily implied this kooky bohemian in a Dangerously Short Skirt is related to the flapper-gun moll the Inspector encountered decades earlier in "The St. Valentine's Day Massacre".
- Plucky Girl: Ready to stand up anyone and anything, from the outlaw gunslinger Frank James to the M7 Peacemaker automata.
- Put on a Bus: Literally. She and the Inspector tearfully part company at Victoria Coach Station at the beginning of "The Opium Dealers".
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Quayle had requested her character's departure in "The Peacemakers" at the end of Season 3 when she learned that Leslie French would be leaving (and the imposing Christopher Lee would be his replacement), but producers convinced her to come back at the beginning of Season 4 so her character could receive a proper farewell.
Peter/Petula (First and Second Inspectors)
Aiden (Second Inspector)
- Big Damn Kiss: He shared a kiss with Joey in his final story.
- Brooding Guy Gentle Girl: The Brooding Guy to Joey's Gentle Girl. Joey balanced out his warlike tendencies with pacifism and mercy.
- Cool Sword: Never seen without his high-tech claymore.
- Happily Married: He married Joey in the end.
- Master Swordsman: See above.
- Noodle Incident: Born in Scotland of the far-distant future; most of what little the audience learns about that place and time came from the comments he would occasionally drop. ("Course I know what an elephant is. The wretched beasts came blundering around every time they opened the Sgian-dubh Gate.")
- One Steve Limit: Avoided; the Inspector later had another, entirely unrelated, Associate named Aiden.
- One True Love: It was pretty clear from the beginning that he and Joey were made for each other. The Susannah love triangle only serves to tell the audience that Joey is his destined wife.
- The Other Darrin: Due to Hamish Wilson contracting the measles, he was briefly replaced by Frazer Hines for part of "The Infinite Cyclorama". No in-story reason is given for Aiden's sudden change in appearance.
- Warrior Poet: Along with his swordsmanship, he was well-educated and capable of turning a pleasant phrase on occasion.
Regina Ayrefield (Second Inspector)
- Catchphrase: Although Regina is nobody's Screaming Woman, she would loudly exclaim "How quite extraordinary!" when encountering the aforementioned Monster of the Week.
- Fish out of Temporal Water: Not even the novels of her beloved Herbert Wells could prepare her for travelling with the Inspector.
- Silk Hiding Steel: While the Edwardian Suffragette received a proper upper-class upbringing, she is eminently capable of defending herself against the Monster of the Week.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Unfortunately, the future does not hold up to her rather utopian ideals, so at the end of "Rage of the Depths", she decides to return to her own era to improve things there.
Constable Rosamund (WPC Rosamund Murray of Exo-Pol) (Second Inspector)
- Married to the Job: Aiden's attempts to flirt with her while she's assisting with the investigation in "The Underground of Doom" receive only silence.
- The Silent Bob: Although she has only three lines ("How d'you, Inspector.", "Look out, Inspector!", and "Good-bye, Inspector"), Massey's reactions to the Inspector and the Superintendent did more with a blink, an eye-roll, and a raised eyebrow than volumes of dialogue.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: To Susannah Overseer, to a certain extent for a human.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Her stoically stepping up for a Suicide Mission against the Magma Men planning a volcanic eruption at the Piccadilly Circus station is a Tear Jerker.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Averted. It seems like Aiden doesn't have any feelings toward her while she is smitten with him. However, Aiden is actually so bashful about it he dupes himself into thinking he isn't, and then Joey's breakdown triggers a Love Confession and a marriage confession all in the same breath to snap her out of it.
- Badass Unintentional: Lived a relatively normal life until the Inspector popped in to offer her the opportunity to unravel the mysteries of the universe and save planets.
- Be Yourself: The moral of her story. Idealism is what made Aiden fall in love with her, and he wanted to be with her over Regina and gave up because he thought she was too good for him. Joey then melts into a mess of tears and admits she practically adores Aiden and is so happy he wants to be with her.
- Big Damn Kiss: Smooched Aiden in her departure episode... Then again... and again... and again...
- Brooding Guy Gentle Girl: The Gentle Girl to Aiden's Brooding Guy to Joey's Gentle Girl. Whereas Joey was likely to solve a problem with violence, Joey would approach with brains.
- Broken Tears: Her final episode, where she tells the Inspector that it isn't fair she has to say goodbye to him like so, because she has no one left to believe in. The Inspector then hugs her and tells her she does matter in the grand scheme of things and will not be forgotten. Because it turns out the Inspector has been a Shipper on Deck...
- The Glomp: She hugs everybody she meets. Even the Blorgons.
- Hair Of Gold Heartof Gold: Probably the kindest of all the Inspector's associates.
- Happily Married: The very last scene of her character shows her getting married to Aiden.
- Love at First Sight: Secretly, and you might miss it at first, but she gives a very sweet and syrupy glance to Aiden the first time she lays eyes on him.
- Ms. Fanservice: Known for her costume's plunging necklines.
- Tears of Joy: When she discovers that Aiden wants to marry her and loves her for the idealist she was all along.
- Took a Level in Cynic: Her final season, at first. She feels like her faith in all things is dead and is inching towards an emotional breakdown. Utterly defied in her final episode, where she bounces back to her original characterization when she is made to depart the Booth with Aiden... to get married.
- Trying Not to Cry: From the moment she sees Susannah die up to her last story, Joey tries to hide her sorrow, until she is forced to leave the Booth unwillingly, causing her to get intensely angry at the Inspector, and the Inspector recognizes what's really going on. He invites her anger even more until it finally gives way to her real feelings of hurt and sadness and she collapses into tears, sobbing horrifically while being held by both the Inspector and Aiden.
- Unfazed Everyman: Becomes this after a few adventures. Later subverted when we learn she's actually in a VERY deep Angst Coma on the inside, ever since she witnessed Susannah getting killed, and needed to cry it out.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: At first, but she grew out of it pretty fast. Subverted and reconstructed in the end when the Inspector rebuilds her confidence in what is widely regarded as the best companion departure of the entire series.
Elisabeth "Bess" Wilde, M.D. (Third Inspector)
- Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: While the Third Inspector's post-metamorphosis hypochondria could be exasperating, Dr. Wilde's bedside manner was pretty frosty in general.
- Bulletproof Fashion Plate
- Informed Ability: Although the Inspector often talks up Bess's preeminence as a physician back in 20th-century Oxford, she never offers a medical opinion.
- The Stoic
- Thou Shalt Not Kill: With her adherance to the Hippocratic Oath, Bess is an Actual Pacifist compared to the Inspector's technical one.
- This was used as the rationale for her departure between seasons seven and eight.
Yosif (Third Inspector)
- A-Cup Angst: Only mentioned briefly, but the time she was teased about it by Markus Rogen was one of the few occasions she was genuinely hurt.
- Beware the Nice Ones: She once bitchslapped a woman until she cried for calling her a "brain-dead kid", screaming "MY NAME IS YOSIF, AND IF YOU DARE TO CALL ME THAT AGAIN, I'LL MAKE SURE YOU GO BRAIN-DEAD!". A magnificent moment of female empowerment in the classic series that was rare for its day. Made as an answer to a scene from that Ripoff where a similar character was called a "stupid child" and did nothing to defend herself, which the writer of the episode (a woman of her generation) said was like "telling all young women our age we are brainless bimboes who should have no voice and just take the insults." Later repeated with her exit story when she met her love topped this scene when a very sexist character made her angry enough to pistol-whip him. It was Love at First Punch.
- Brilliant, but Lazy: With the Third Inspector displaying similar tendencies, their run of the show was once described as "One enormous tea-break punctuated by the occasional exploding planet."
- Samus Is a Girl
- Wholesome Crossdresser
Markus Rogen (Third Inspector)
Superintendent Irvine Leith, London Branch, Exo-Pol (Third and Fourth Inspectors)
- Catchphrase: "Blighter with the gills. Ten shots steady."
- The Superintendent: Trope Namer
- Deadpan Snarker
- Married to the Job
- Old-Fashioned Copper
- Reasonable Authority Figure: At least at first.
- Insusceptible to Handcuffs: The bane of his career.
Mary Sue Brown (Third and Fourth Inspectors)
- Anything That Moves: Part of the reason her spin-off is considered Darker and Edgier than its parent show.
- Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence: Went to Heaven for all eternity, despite all the no-no's she did in her mortal life. It was her last act that redeemed hergiving up all mortal pleasures in a selfless act to save the man (and occasionally woman) she loved the most.
- Actor Existence Failure: What ended her live-action highly rated spin-off, The Mary Sue Predicaments. Writers just stopped producing any form of story with her in it, until one called them out and said the character needed a proper wrap-up story, which led to discussions for the animated continuation.
- Death by Adaptation: An animated continuation of her series was produced with an actor masterfully impersonating her voice, continuing the fifth season where it left off and tacking a final sixth season onto the show, including a Halloween special. In the Grand Finale, "Adieu, Our Mary Sue", Mary Sue united with every incarnation of the Inspector that will ever exist and performed the ultimate Heroic Sacrifice- sacrificing her time left on Earth to save all of them, giving perhaps the most well-known classic associate the greatest closure, but also the most bittersweet.
- Died Happily Ever After: Mary Sue was reunited with her Aunt Matilda and parents in Heaven, and her Forgotten Fallen Friend, who immediately proposed to her. Mary Sue realized she had been trying to replace the memory of her old friend with the Inspector and fell in love with him due to his resemblance of the boy she once loved.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: In a way, her final sacrifice, the ultimate sacrifice, fittingly ensured her everlasting happiness.
- Famous Last Words: "This tale will go on forever and ever. And I shall be reading... always. I love you. Every single one of you. Good-bye."
- Heroic Sacrifice: The Prankster, her Arch-Enemy, tricked Mary Sue into calling on the Inspector for help. He was subsequently lured into a time trap and the Prankster began to dissolve the Inspector's timeline, which, in turn, began to destabilize his corporeal form. Even though the Inspector was saved from the trap, his timeline was severely compromised and he would vanish within moments. In that instant Mary Sue gave up hers to fill in the gaps and used the time trap device to transfer her timeline into his like filling the cracks in the pavement. As a result, she could no longer exist within the mortal realm and had to pass on to Heaven. However, she fulfilled a prophecy that the Prankster had been fighting.
- Intrepid Reporter: A talented photojournalist who took her skills as a celebrity tabloid reporter to fighting monsters.
- My Greatest Failure: An episode with the Prankster reveals that Mary Sue once failed to save her childhood sweetheart from a burning building. She makes a deal with him that causes the man to come back to life. The Prankster later tries a similar tactic by altering time so that he lives to be middle age so Mary Sue can get married to him, but he's forced to sacrifice himself again to prevent the Prankster from subsequently altering time to become ruler of the world.
- No Man of Woman Born: The Prankster targeted her because it was said one day he would meet his end at a being who existed outside the normal laws of time.
- Prophecy Twist: It turns out the person the prophecy really meant was the Inspector, because once Mary Sue intercessed and filled in his timeline, the Inspector became "the Compound" of lore. The Prankster exists by stealing timelines and twisting them around, because it is easy to rip them apart, but as the Bible says, a twofold chain is stronger. The Inspector's twofold timeline was so resilient he became too powerful for the Prankster to consume, and it caused the Prankster to be torn apart and destroyed, and in Heaven, Mary Sue met Michael the Archangel who told her that the Prankster's soul had been sent right into the belly of Hell for judgement, from whence he would never return, and as a reward for saving creation from the wicked wretch for all time, she was granted passage into Heaven.
- Symbolism: Of the religious manner. Mary Sue intercessing her timeline was like intercessing for the Inspector's sins, and thus she was intercessed for.
DI Gary Mulligan (Fourth Inspector)
- I Was Quite a Fashion Victim: Collins had to live down this character's extra-loud wardrobe.
- Odd Couple: He's a Cowboy Cop from the U.S. of A., he's an earthbound alien detective—They Fight Crime!!
- The '70s: Gary wore his sideburns long, his ties wide, his trousers flared, and his polyester suits in earth tones. Can you dig it?
- They Knew the Risks: His epitaph on his mutually fatal fight with his mechanical duplicate in "The Robot Revolution", capping his Tragic Bromance with the Inspector.
Reena (Fourth Inspector)
- Action Girl: With an affinity for whips.
- Dropped A Bridge On Her: Possibly. The last the viewer sees of her, she's just been literally stabbed in the back; whether she actually died from the wound has never been explicitly revealed in-show.
- Jungle Princess: Literally. In her final episode she was crowned Queen of Barbartron IV following her father's Heroic Sacrifice.
- Ms. Fanservice: Her whole planet is example of this. Except for her father.
- Nerves of Steel: Though she also sometimes had problems with Hair-Trigger Temper.
FE-Line (Fourth Inspector)
- The Dandy: Surprisingly relevant; the show made something of a Running Gag of her not wanting to have her exterior scuffed or marred.
- Do-Anything Robot
- Female Feline, Male Mutt
- Non Human Side Kick: A robot cat.
- Punny Name: It's actually pronounced "Iron-line".
- Robot Buddy
- That Poor Cat: Another Running Gag was her being invariably hit by anything that gets thrown.
Infinity Knight Lunda (Fourth Inspector)
- Insistent Terminology: Lunda was an Infinity Knight, not an "Infinity Dame."
- Knight Templar: Willing to do whatever it took, including (see below) dying a couple of times, finally taking the Bolt in Space on a one-way trip out of Space, into another dimension, to keep it away from the Orange Warden forever.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: A rare in-universe example: She metamorphosed twice while on the show (everybody kept dying around the Fourth Inspector...); and, very much unlike the Inspector's various incarnations, all three times was played by similar-looking actresses who portrayed the role in much the same manner. This provoked both a million fan-theories about male/female Infinity Knight biology and many complaints of Unfortunate Implications, especially since along with being tall and thin, all three actresses were black.
Veneziana (Fourth and Fifth Inspectors)
- Action Girl / Faux Action Girl: Drifts back and forth between these two. She is good with a lasso, but she's not quite as tough as she looks or pretends.
- Americans Are Cowboys: Or at least their 24th century descendants are. Always wears a bushranger hat and carries a lasso. She did eventually ditch the spurs.
- Nice Hat: Never seen without it.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Considering the accent they came up with for the character to sport, it's surprising this didn't happen more often.
- Overly Long Name: So long the viewer never even hears all of it: "Veneziana Lopez Kelly Gab... Heck, mates, just call me Veneziana."
- Running Gag: Afraid of horses, and so constantly has to deal with them."Someday, we're gonna crack open the door to that X7 and there's gonna be a goldurn horse crammed inside."
- Why Did It Have to Be Horses?
Thorough Visor (Fourth and Fifth Inspectors)
- Bertie Wooster IN SPACE!: Though Laurie didn't officially play Bertie until after his stint on IS.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer
- Fanservice: wore very short shorts.
- Hidden Depths
- Human All Along: It seems at first he's an alien, but it's eventually revealed that he's a 20th-century human from a very eccentric family.
- Nice Guy
Nymeria of Planet Kraken V (Fifth Inspector)
- Insistent Terminology: She is a "Krakenite", not a "Human".
- The Medic
- The Ojou
- Pstandard Psychic Pstance
- Psychic Powers
- Psychic Strangle: Very much to her horror, she learns she can do this.
- Lady of War: Thanks to Character Development
Mimmek (Fifth Inspector)
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome
- Cowardly Sidekick: Mimmek quickly became such a Nervous Wreck while adventuring with the Inspector that he retreated to the Booth at the end of "The Slumbering" (and according to Word of God has never emerged).
- Punny Name: Averted. Preliminary Special Effects Failure required his extraterrestrial ability to be hastily rewritten from mimicry to invisibility.
Jeffrey (Sixth Inspector)
- Butt-Monkey: His (mis)adventures with the Sixth Inspector were supposed to elicit the audience's sympathy for him, but by the end of his run, viewers tuned in just to see the latest awful development to be visited on the horrid teen.
- Get A Hold Of Yourself Man: Puts the Sixth Inspector in a chokehold in "The Triplicate Catastrohpe" in an effort to snap him out of his post-renewal mania.
- Pretty Boy: Producers had counted on Mayall's good looks to ensure his character's popularity.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Mayall's attempt to play Jeffrey as an ordinary American teenager resulted in his pronunciation vacillating between New Jersey and the entire Midwest.
- Stupid Sacrifice: At least Jeffrey's tragic death saved him from the fans' extreme hatred of him, although it was of questionably necessity.
Benjamin (Sixth Inspector)
- Bleached Underpants: In order for the show to move forward, it had to disown the one short made with Benjamin and start fresh with an amended next season.
- Forgotten Fallen Friend: Seriously, who ever remembers Benjamin?
- Hand Wave: At the start of the revised season, the Inspector makes a line referring to Benjamin's fate without referring to him by name (for legal reasons, as per agreement of the lawyers who reached a settlement deal on the show).
- Real Life Writes the Plot: He was introduced in a short episode that was going to lead into the season that got put on hiatus. The actor who played Benjamin was revealed to be a very sick man whose character on the show reeked of perverted overtones and the episode was swiftly Ret-Conned and pulled from circulation, with the master tapes burnt and a lone copy surviving for police evidence that eventually got released in a documentary.
- Put on a Bus to Hell: Savile's character was given this in spades through one amusingly over-the-top line by the Inspector.Sixth Inspector: I once met a chap on an adventure involving a child. He seemed like a good companion. Then he kidnapped the child. I would go on to learn that was only the tip of the iceberg. You see, he had kidnapped countless children across the universe and made them play absolutely revolting games- nay, personal violations- of the most putrescent manner. Things which I cannot repeat. Things so vile it actually caused even the worst of my worst enemies to come to my aid to stop him. When we brought him down I was so appalled by him that I realized I was at a loss on how to punish him. I let the Blorgons have first crack at him, then Vosrda, then the Circuit Chaps, then the Rostatraans, and finally, the Sergeant. We all agreed he was the most evil being in the history of time and put them all to shame, so they got rid of the competition. After all of them had veritably gang-banged him, they tossed him into double-ended singularity where the Blue and Orange Wardens would ping-pong his sorry arse back and forth across the dimensions for all of eternity. I tried to save him, but he was irredeemably evil. Nothing will fix him. Not even Mary Whitehouse.Jeffery: Who's that, Inspector?Sixth Inspector: The person who hated my fourth incarnation so much that she tore down my masculinity until I had no chose but to metamorphosize into a woman for number five. But now I'm back to my male self again.Jeffery: You sure about that?Sixth Inspector: I beg your pardon?Jeffery: Number six looks like he's still got a strong taste for me-Sixth Inspector: SHUT UP, JEFFERY. note
- Ret-Gone: Benjamin was deleted from the Inspector Spacetime universe due to his actor's unscrupulous behaviour forever staining the character.
- The Unfavorite: Benjamin's existence is the reason why Inspector Spacetime went on hiatus, as the resulting fallout from the Jimmy Savile scandal resulted in an entire season having to be shelved and reworked and the show going off the air due to the criminal investigation involving every major actor on the show. He also caused the person who cast him to be fired, who was accused of colluding with Savile to write more children into his stories and enable his dirty behavior, resulting an inquisition by the executives overhead and a mass exodus of writers, directors, and staff in general who didn't want to be involved with the resulting fallout. Ultimately, the show had to acquire many new writers who were total unknowns and gamble with the prospects of their stories being bad. The matter nearly ruined the network because a court suit came up and the settlement almost bankrupted it, with a last-minute agreement to settle the matter out of court saving the whole thing from complete financial ruin and cracking the foundations of the classic series very deep. Fortunately, the lemons turned into lemonade when the replacements on staff hit the audience with totally bizarre way out of left field stories that were so unusual the audiences praised them for their surrealism and introspective looks on reality, comparing them to anthology shows like The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, and the works of Alfred Hitchcock.
Theodora "Dynamo" McRae (Seventh Inspector)
- Action Girl: Attacked a Blorgon with a hockey stick. Yeah.
- Dodgy Toupee: A technical example, at least, as you can see by looking at her picture there.
- Famous Last Words: "Couldn't forget you for the world, Copper. See you in the next one."
- Hormone-Addled Teenager
- More Dakka: Her answer to most problems.
- Soap Opera Disease: The Inspector learns she will suffer Alzheimer's disease later in her life, which will eventually claim her life. He was tempted to cure her, but then finds out her demise will inspire her descendants toward a breakthrough cure for many human memory illnesses which will not come to pass if Dynamo's future is changed. His foreknowledge of this prompted him into goading Dynamo off the Booth to start a life on Earth before she got too old to enjoy one.
- Straw Feminist: Thanks to the era's lackluster scripts, she sometimes edged into this territory.
- Stuff Blowing Up: Would compulsively leave dynamite in buildings to have this affect. Joined up with the Inspector after almost doing as much to the X7.
- TV Teen: Dynamo's just a typical teenager. Yeah.
- Turned into a Take That, Critics! with her appearance in the TV Movie, in which she plays the character under old-age makeup.
Charity Galloway (Eighth Inspector)
Fitzwilliam Fort (Eighth Inspector)
- Added Alliterative Appeal: "Fitzwilliam Fort, fearless finder of freakish phenomena."
- Amateur Sleuth
- Badass Longcoat
- Celibate Hero: As he puts it, "I've got plenty of problems, but a dame ain't one."
- Hardboiled Detective: He acts like one, but he's eventually forced to admit he's not a real private investigator and never was.
- Nice Hat: A fedora. At least, he thinks it's nice, despite people telling him it's cliche and a bit naff.
- Private Eye Monologue: The books he narrates are written in this style. He has a bad habit of narrating aloud to himself as well.
- Talks Like a Simile
- Theremin: He plays one in the books, but ironically, it never comes up in the audio plays.
Georgina "George" Liddell (Eighth Inspector)
- Break the Cutie: She starts out sweet and naive, but she gets her best friend fired from his job on her first day and things just go downhill from there, until she's trapped in the mind-bending Peculiar Dimension, neck-deep in evil cattle, fending off Infinity Knights who want to kill her for being a walking paradox with one hand and disgustingly fused to the Inspector by the other.
- MacGuffin Super Person: A few Well Intentioned Extremists have attempted to take advantage of her nature as a walking Stable Time Loop to achieve their ends, such as altering causality to make fit impossible to go back in time and do something as icky as becoming your own aunt.
- Mind Screw: How she became her own aunt.
- My Own Aunt: Leading to all sorts of drama with the Infinity Knights, who think it's kind of weird and gross.
- Temporal Paradox: Went back in time and accidentally became her own aunt.
Mmm'Fash't'ஐ'lan'zac (Eighth Inspector)
- Beware the Nice Ones: Eventually revealed to have murdered an entire dimension. But it was just the Peculiar Dimension, with no space, only time, and no one liked it anyway.
- Coconut Superpowers: A shapeshifter who prefers the form of a parrot, which is probably the reason he's restricted to audio plays. Subject to a lot of Leaning on the Fourth Wall, wherein he uses his powers to become invisible and asks the Inspector to check whether he can see him; the Inspector replies in a pointed tone, "I'm pretty sure nobody can see you."
- Magic Pants: Averted; probably the other reason he's audio-only.
- My Nayme Is: It's pronounced "Chris".
- Pūnct'uatìon Sh'akër
- Voluntary Shapeshifting
Jimmy McSporran (Eighth Inspector}
- Expanded Universe: Fort, McSporran, Liddell, and Mmm'Fash't'ஐ'lan'zac have never appeared on the actual show but have proved popular in various radio dramas and novels.
Rory Williams (Ninth Inspector)
- Ancient Grome: In regards to the ''other'' show. He spent a brief stretch of time posing as a Greek Demi-God in on the show; the other one tried to play homage to this but got the nationality wrong, making him Roman.
- Combat Medic
- Chaste Hero: Has zero intention of being tied down with anyone, because a part of his inner subconscious is telling him that he's already spoken for. Naturally, he speaks his mind without being criticised by a doting girlfriend.
- Hand Wave: His appearance in two separate shows is explained away due to a paradox that was created when reality began to fall apart in that other show, and he ended up falling through a crack into the IS universe, memories wiped clean. Later, it happened again and the reverse occurred- back to the other show, this time as an ancient robot.
- Immortality: The story of his inability to die needs no repeating here. Mainly because he's been turned into a robot.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: At the end of his tenure, he lost his memories. The actor, however, was not ready to give up the role and continued it on that other show, hoping to improve upon its quality.
- Robotic Reveal: Learns he was turned into a machine by a race of aliens similar to the Clothons, alerting him that he's from an entirely different dimension.
Lily Taylor (Ninth and Tenth Inspector)
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Her ultimate choice. After her brief time as the Good Lamb, in which she personally saves countless billions of lives from the Blorgons, the Immortals offer Lily a seat in their pantheon. Lily spends her remaining time on the show debating this, before ultimately choosing to accept her destiny as the Good Lamb and ascending to watch over the universe with the Immortals."Remain safe, Inspector. Whisked from the clutches of the true devil."
- Audience Surrogate
- Bare Your Midriff: In a metallic silver tanktop.
- The Bus Came Back: In Series 4, on multiple occasions.
- Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Part of her reasons for leaving Minnie: She felt she wasn't good enough for her. Minnie did not take it well- she headbutted Lily in outrage, but later apologised.
- Lipstick Lesbian: Although she was hinted to be bisexual.
- Ms. Fanservice
Minnie Smythe (Ninth and Tenth Inspectors)
- Affectionate Nickname: "Minnie the Genius" by the Inspector.
- Always Second Best: She is always being compared to Lily by the Inspector. That is, until Lily headbutted him in anger and began Calling the Old Man Out in a glorious rant after her most expensive pair of shoes she owned got melted due to his antics.
- Ascended Extra: Originally only appeared in the episode "Lily" as the girlfriend that Lily leaves behind but was eventually picked up as an Associate by the Tenth Inspector.
- Ask a Stupid Question...: Minnie despises them.Tenth Inspector: Look at you- hair twice as long, and shoes all gone. Did you alter your appearance this way because you love Joanna?Minnie: What, did you think I grew out my hair and stopped wearing shoes because I love dandruff and fuzzy bugs crawling beneath my feet? What about you?Tenth Inspector: Well, you look happier without shoes, and I can't argue on the dandruff angle...Minnie: I beg to differ! I'm barefootin' my merry way now because there's no point in wearing shoes if they always get ruined. Most of which were ruined by you, might I add! All the money I woulda blown on continuing to replace them goes to conditioning me hair, me new pride and joy! Jonna's thrilled with it, and so am I!Tenth Inspector: Mine's nothing worth looking at.Minnie: What, d'you catch my dandruff after I sent it packing?Tenth Inspector: Haven't you noticed this incarnation of me is bald!?Minnie: Exactly. Your dandruff is so bad, it killed all your hair cells.Tenth Inspector: Oh, very astute, Mindy. Bang your head on a couple dozen desks to come up with that gem?Tenth Inspector: Minnie the Genius, everyone.
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: Sometimes loses her train of thought. When she revealed she had headbutted herself against blunt objects for quite some time, her friends and lover feared that her spacing out was a result of brain damage. Nope- Minnie's just scatterbrained, as was revealed by a scan the Circuit Chaps tried to use on her mind when trying to convert her into their Circuit Director. It was this quality that allowed her to resist conversion and ultimately defeat them.
- Badass Boast: Two to a Rostatraan in her final appearance, after becoming known as one of the Barefoot Bounty Hunters with Joanna:Minnie: "Hello. We're two women who want to play kickball with your head. And just to make sure you know we're serious, we're in our bare feet. (raises her right bare foot in the air, pointing to it and flexing her toes) Why? So we can enjoy the nice, squishy feeling of bits of your brain getting tenderised between our toes."
- Berserk Button: Don't mention cinnamon around her. She will begin headbutting everything in sight.
- Catchphrase: Two:
- Cerebus Retcon: Her head-bashing gag was funny in her first season. Her second season turned it into an outright saddening Freudian Excuse. Minnie bashes her head into things because her late grandfather hit his head after falling off a malfunctioning stairlift and she guilts herself over being the one who bought it in the first place without knowing it was faulty, wondering what it must've felt like when he got killed. This is how she punishes herself for her failures.
- Cloud Cuckoolander:
- Got into a belching contest with a Glissadeen because she thought it insulted her.
- Once hijacked a special ed bus full of children because she needed it to save the world, rather than go find an empty one. No less than thirteen cops were called to arrest her. She spent the night in lock-up and cried herself to sleep. An insane asylum was called in to take her away, but luckily, it was the week of Christmas, and the coppers took mercy on her when the Inspector posed as her distant uncle with the Prophetic Parchment and gently explained with great expertise that she had been distraught following the "loss of a childbirth", so she kidnapped children to fill the void of being deprived her own.
- Gave up shoes because, "Me toes are too lonely in shoes. They want to come out and play! Why didn't I figure it out sooner? Here, play with 'em!" (wiggles them intrusively in Joanna's face and pinches her nose between her big and second toes; a confused Joanna gives her a saucy blush)
- Had a tickle fight with Joanna to celebrate their first big score as bounty hunters.
- Cuddle Bug: Adores The Glomp. Perhaps a little too much for her own good. When she administered it to the incredibly girl-shy James Haggard, he got so flustered... he threw up. On her new Mary Janes. Minnie had to be lulled to sleep with a Martian rock ballad to avoid going into a trademark headbutting fit.
- Deadpan Snarker: At times. Especially around the InspectorNinth Inspector: You'll have to forgive Minnie. She's a bit of a... spacey-out sorta person.Minnie: Oh, pick on the spacey-out girl, eh, Inspector? You're one to talk. You practically live in space!
- Does Not Like Shoes: She adopts Joanna's barefoot lifestyle, admitting that after traveling with the Inspector, running around all the time in filthy places, she's tired of cleaning the mud off her shoes and ruining so many pairs. Joanna playfully suggests that if she were a barefooter like her, she'd just get her feet dirty with a healthy layer of earth and wouldn't have to worry about soiled shoes anymore. Minnie actually accepts her proposition, tosses her most recently ruined shoes off a bridge, and they charge through a patch of mud with bare feet together.
- Epic Fail: After defeating a Glissadeen with cinnamon, the one substance that makes them explode into goop because they're all deathly allergic to it, she broke a heel and slipped on its soupy entrails, falling face first into it with her mouth open. She freaked out and tried every trick in the book to cleanse her breath of its stink. Until finally, after much desperation and resulting insanity, Minnie began headbutting herself against things just to knock herself out cold so she wouldn't have to endure the bad taste it left in her mouth.Johnnie Taylor: Minnie, it can't have tasted that bad!Minnie: (sentences punctuated by Minnie slamming her forehead into a cabinet door) Makeitstop(THUMP)makeitstop(THUMP)makeitstop(THUMP)MAKE(THUMP)IT(THUMP)STOOOOOPPP!!!Johnnie: Oh, my God! Minnie! Why are you bashing your head into that cabinet?!(Minnie suddenly and eerily calms down. Recoils back from cabinet, lowering firsts. Turns around with her eyes cheerily closed and gives Johnny a shitfaced grin)Minnie: ..W-Why?...Whyyyy?(eyes bug out, expression twists into a huge snarl)Minnie: (literally foaming at the mouth) WHY!?! IT TASTES LIKE RAW ONIONS SHAGGING BLOODY SKUNK ARSE!Johnnie: Minnie, stop it! Get a hold of yourself right now, before you really hurt yourself!Minnie: I'LL TELL YOU (THUMP!) WHEN I'VE (THUMP!) HURT MESELF (THUMP!) YOU STUPID BOLL-(KLAAANG!)(Minnie misses the cabinet and smacks headfirst into a metal support beam; she turns her head around with a dazed expression on her face)Minnie: (dizzily) Waaaait... what was I mad about again...? (faints)
- Expository Hair Style Change: Grows it out to enormous proportions after becoming Joanna's girlfriend.
- Malicious Misnaming: Sometimes called "Mindy" by the Ninth and Tenth Inspectors just to get her goat.
- Naïve Everygirl: At first.
- Nice Shoes: Early-seasons Minnie was an avid shoe-lover, with many beautiful pairs of shoes to her name. One by one, they got wrecked, until she was literally down to makeshift cardboard moccasins. Once those were ruined, she quit trying to fight fate and decided to go shoeless. In her final appearance, however, the Tenth Inspector gifts her with all-purpose indestructible metamorphic shoes, which he created in one of his botched attempts to fix the Booth's camouflage.Minnie: Joanna... we're gonna have to re-think our nickname as bounty hunters... 'cos Minnie the Shoe-Lover's back!
- No Indoor Voice: When enraged.
- Pair the Spares: With Joanna.
- Running Gag: Minnie loved to shop for shoes. Every time she got caught up in one of the Inspector's adventures, they got trashed. Minnie would immediately direct the phrase below at the Inspector:
- Tears of Joy: Normally not one to cry, her floodgates opened when she discovered an alternate universe version of her long-dead grampy. Minnie immediately glomped him and sobbed heavily into his chest.
- The Smart Girl: After her Character Development.
- Took a Level in Badass: Over the course of her travels with the Inspector. She faced the Circuit-Chaps single-handedly to save the Inspector and Joanna, for crying out loud! And then she becomes a bounty hunter with her wife.
- Use Your Head: Her signature quirk. Minnie headbutts things when frustrated or just plain pissed.
- Later revealed to be a habit that she developed subconsciously as a way of getting over the death of her grandfather, which she still blames herself for. Minnie would bash her head against things until she was too numb to feel regret.
Captain James Haggard (Ninth and Tenth Inspectors)
- Allergic to Love: Often regrets being so. Richard Miles shunned him when he turned down a chance to be lovers (Then again, Miles is a raving alcoholic and a controversial character among parents who let children watch Peacemist- he was designed as a example of a bad role model for a Very Special Episode: an obvious PSA for anti-alcoholism). Once he overcomes his shyness, he patches things up with Richard again.
- Armoured Closet Gay
- Cerebus Retcon: His shyness in romantic situations and closet gayness is initially Played for Laughs, but it's later revealed that it's been a major source of distress for him for as long as he can remember (which admittedly isn't long, due to his endlessly-mysterious amnesia).
- Chaste Hero: He's embarrassed by or oblivious to to flirting or innuendo of any sort. It's eventually revealed that this is partially caused by the fact he's ashamed of his sexuality.
- Chivalrous Pervert: Easily-flustered and sexually conservative, initially.
- Coming-Out Story
- Cry Cute: Practically bawled his eyes out once he thought the Tenth Inspector was going to die.
- Does Not Like Guns: Hates shooting people, even though he's Immune to Bullets. It's because he knows they can die, but he can't, and it would mean he'd have to live with the regret of cold-blooded murder.
- Establishing Character Moment: Shown yanking a telescope from a perverted soldier as he stares at Lily Taylor's bottom.
- Gayngst: Went through deep emotional trauma due to his inability to accept his pansexuality.
- Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: Lily eventually gets fed up with his repeated insistence that he's straight and suggests that he prove it by kissing her."No, sorry, I — not that you're not a pretty girl — or I'm not straight, or anything — oh, look, is that a Blorgon? Thank goodness!"
- Long-Lost Relative: His sister Violet. She has a heart of gold and is a Cuddle Bug who set up a simulator that would help her brother overcome his fear of romance. It malfunctioned and lasted for what seemed 5,000 years in his head (really two days in real time). Haggard still says was the best time of his life.
- Noodle Incident: Angered a Tibetan warrior princess by turning down her marriage proposal, which led to himself, the Inspector, and Lily bolting into the Booth chased by her ten thousand guards, narrowly avoiding the wrath of a hundred thousand arrows.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Then the Booth was yanked from its flight path and brought to the events that got him killed and made the Inspector metamorphosize.
- Took a Level in Kindness: Did so in a very heartwarming scene in the finale of Peacemist: Terra's Progeny, where he had been given the choice to sacrifice his granddaughter Sally or let the 321 abduct all the elderly from the Earth. Until the Ninth Inspector (during his 222 year pilgrimage alone) answered his call for help and aided James in saving the day. Although Nine did not recognise his future companion, James told him they'd meet again someday and was grateful for the help in his darkest hour. When Sally cried at the way her grandpa had scared her, James also broke down crying, cradling his granddaughter in his arms and tearfully told her that no one would ever hurt her again. This act also convinced Ifan Johnson to finally marry him. He spent the following year on an extended honeymoon with his husband.
- Touched by Vorlons: Given the gift of immortality by the Good Lamb's enveloping wool.
- Who Wants to Live Forever?: Almost entirely averted. Haggard's immortality is of the no-drawbacks kind, and he remains very cheerful about this aspect of his condition.
Yorke (Tenth Inspector)
- Always Chaotic Evil: He is a Time Deviant, after all.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Pretends to be a loyal friend to the Inspector right up until he reveals his true nature.
- Big Bad Friend: He genuinely considers the Inspector a friend, but is still determined to kill him because of the danger he poses to the Time Deviants.
- Deadpan Snarker
- Faux Affably Evil: Hes witty and charming, but still a dangerous Time Deviant. He sometimes slides into Affably Evil, mostly around the Inspector.
- No-Sell: Downplayed. While he has survived being shot, burnt alive, and even melted no worse for the were, he admits that it still hurts like hell.
- Uncertain Doom: He is last seen being teleported to deep space via wormhole, but since its previously been established that Time Deviants dont need air to survive, its unclear if hes still around or not.
Mona Virtue (Tenth Inspector)
- Badass Normal: Her profession is a treasure seeker, though you wouldn't know it by looking at her. She simply hates desk jobs. Instead, she likes to adventure and write about it afterwards. When the Inspector turned up in her life, it was almost like a match made in Heaven.
- Big Damn Kiss: Enjoyed a rather gratuitous one with Nick Palace, her on-and-off boyfriend.
- Catchphrase: Commonly called the Inspector and other aliens "Time Dude"!
- Disappeared Dad: Her dad, Norman Noble, a treasure hunter, was often away from the family as he searched for a legendary family heirloom buried by his ancestors. While in the Amazon, he discovered the heirloom... only to contract kalediomania, an unknown disease that was not fatal, but severely debilitating. Norman's skin developed a shingled appearance in multicolour that was constantly changing shape and leaving him in excruciating pain to the point where he needed constant sedation and could not lucidly participate in the lives of his wife or daughter aside from the occasional phone call or letter. He remained ill during her childhood and had to be hospitalised on and off for a long time for antibiotic treatment whilst doctors sought out a permanent cure. Mona lacked a strong authority figure in her life because of this, and became a timid, reserved person. Thanks to the medical expertise of Joanna and the Inspector, he was cured of his illness and resumed life with his family, happily retired. The medical bills were easily paid off once Norman cashed in the heirloom and the Virtues got a massive fortune in return. It is said that this story provided partial inspiration for the plot of Hey Arnold! The Jungle Movie.
- Fiery Red Head: Averted. One of the most quiet and demure associates on the show.
- Genki Girl: By her final appearance, Mona has outgrown years of insecurity and is very outward and loving to her newlywed husband, Nick.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: Painfully admits she feels alone because her father was never there to take care of her, and grew attached to the Inspector because he was the father figure she never knew. The Inspector, knowing it would be awful to leave Mona without her memories of him, indirectly introduces her to Nick Palace, a secret admirer that enjoyed reading about her exploits. What he didn't expect was how simple it was to get them to hook up.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: The result of being blasted with metamorphic energy. It began scrambling her DNA and almost caused her to undergo a metamorphosis of her own, rolling back her middle-aged body to ten years younger. But since metamorphosis was a process engineered for Infinity Knights, humans obviously could not handle the same kind of experience, and she started to regress. Some of her impassiveness was undone as she was no longer feeling beaten down by her unsupported dad, and Mona's repressed side of her personality was brought out, making her very hyperactive to the point of nearly frying her mind. The Inspector forced the energy to leave her, which soothed her mind, but caused some level of memory loss. The Inspector decided to leave her behind so she could heal, and predicted she'd get her memories back in about a year's time. Her dad had a change of heart and began to nurse her back to good health.
- Love Confession: Has a glorious one in her final appearance. She admits that Nick has been the only person to actually listen to her ever since Norman got sick, and kisses him for saving his life.
- Mind Rape: Some consider her eventual fate this. She got better in stages.
- My Beloved Smother: Her mom, Shirley Virtue, adores her child and showers her in loads of affection... so much so that Mona gets annoyed and thinks she's overcompensating for Norman's coma.
- Shrinking Violet: Grew quiet and impassive due to parental neglect from her father. Then the Inspector had a chat with him and fixed this.
- When She Smiles: A smile so tender it made hearts melt.
Joanna Martin (Tenth and Eleventh Inspectors)
- Affectionate Nickname: "Joanna the Shoe-Stuffer", after her hatred toward shoes and socks.
- All Love Is Unrequited
- Barefoot Loon: Joanna is very free-spirited, silly, and barefooted. She is also secretly bisexual.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Spent most of her first episode running around in bare feet, annoying the Inspector by constantly introducing herself, complimenting his shirt, then going up behind him and repeating the process. Won the Inspector over by successfully arguing that taking the travel agency to Mars via the shuttle express that ran through Solar Meadows Sanatoriumwhile amusingwas in fact illegal and getting them all returned safely.
- Chekhov's Skill: Medicinal cures. Nick later seeks out Joanna to help synthesize a cure for Norman's kaleidomania. He discovered that the disease stemmed from microscopic parasites deemed kaleidoworms that had worked their way into his system and fed on his cells could only be cured with special immunologic nucleotide to resist them until they starved and dissolved in his system; because the DNA didn't have any virus protection, they had to conjure some. Norman needed to be cured because he knew the location of the fabled black-tipped starburst needed to defeat the Sergeant.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Her eyes turn green every time Lily is mentioned.
- Coming-Out Story: She caught Minnie's bedroom eyes and suddenly found herself demonstrating a Luminescent Blush. It soon spiraled into a full-on romance.
- Does Not Like Shoes: She loathes shoes to a legendary degree, rivaling River Tam's screen time spent in her bare feet.
- Grew up in the countryside and went barefoot in the grass all the time. It stuck with her for life.
- She immediately discarded them and ran around Solar Meadows Sanatorium in bare feet when she was informed they had a "no shoes" rule, even turning down a pair of booties that were allowed in their sanitation code because she liked the idea of romping across Astroturf. Forgot to go back for her shoes in the Sanatorium, forcing an annoyed Inspector to go fetch them, only to end up going back in time too far and hand them off to her in the past, creating a Stable Time Loop. She realized they were still in her knapsack after being so caught up the events of her first adventure with him. However, not long after putting them back on she tried to go barefoot again in the Inspector's Booth, but he curbed that habit. This didn't stop her from shoe-doffing, though.
- It becomes a Running Gag for Joanna to go without shoes at least Once per Episode- in the case of "Stare", the whole episode. She mentioned taking them off and leaving them in the Booth to tiptoe by Snarling Lions. When one Lion got a chance to pounce them, she and the Inspector were stranded in the future without the Booth, meaning she was stuck barefoot. She giggled to herself and whispered "Shoes are overrated". When the Inspector reminisces about his time in the Game Show Apocalypse, Joanna notes she once applied for Big Brother "'Cos no one cares if you wear shoes or not in a house, myself included, and people have been evicted shoeless." Unfortunately, she was turned down with a cease-and-desist order towards future auditions because she had a criminal record for threatening to burn down a shoe store and the producers feared for the safety of the houseguests and the house itself.
- Joanna eventually decided to stop wearing shoes permanently after being forced to wear them for a year non-stop on the Moon and they wore out completely. It was symbolic of her growing annoyance with the Inspector, gifting him with her tired sneakers. Afterwards, she became a barefooter with Minnie. Until Minne re-adopted her love for shoes.
- Earthy Barefoot Character: More often than not barefoot in Series 3, rarely wearing shoes or socks. Following "First of the Inspectors", Joanna is always barefoot. Often considered an unhealthy obsession and a trait that marks her as a weirdo. But then she explains it in an endearing discussion with Minnie that shows it's a meaningful choice. It's so effective that it caused Minnie, a girl who was the antithesis of barefoot, to actually hop on the barefoot bandwagon:"You know how a normal person views a home? Four walls that surround them. Maybe a backyard, and that's it. The rest of the world is foreign to them. Not for me. I made it top priority to familiarise myself with the layout of this world. I made it feel like home no matter where I go. People forget every inch of the Earth is their home. I know for sure it is my home, so I treat it with respect. And one of the rules that I follow to do so is that I don't wear shoes or socks in my home. Because they disconnect me from it. I want to feel home. And since I never technically leave my home, I don't need them anywhere. So I shall romp around this huge home of mine in my bare feet. I let my toes mingle with floor, dancing loose and free to my heart's content.... However, I wore shoes and socks in the Booth and the rest of the universe because I thought they weren't my home. Places I don't actually live, just visit from time to time, and so I need shoes. It's the land beyond Earth, my home and backyard in one, and as soon as I'm back on Earth, I kick my shoes off anew and it's back to bare feet. But now... I know the whole universe is my home. I never needed shoes or socks. This is my boundless barefoot wonderland. So Minnie, if you really think the universe is home to you, let go of those shoes and enjoy it barefoot alongside me. You never needed 'em. Just ten toes that love to wiggle and a yearning for complete freedom and a prideful marker of wealth as an excuse to mock those with less. We were born barefoot, and in my opinion, God got it right the first time. Man came up with footwear as some kind of one-up on him. It is fundamentally flawed. We have free will, and footwear is like a constraint placed on it. Why, I wouldn't be surprised if the Devil had a hand in their creation. Without any, we are humble, we are ourselves, our true selves- we are FREE! Don't you want to be free, Minnie dearest? Then do what your heart is really screaming for- set your piggies free, my love! Set them free and never ever look back!"
- Establishing Character Moment: A beaten up pair of tennis shoes and faded socks are seen lying abandoned by a tree in Hyde Park, followed by a pan up shot of her humming a gentle tune ("Barefootin'" by Robert Parker) while strolling around the park barefooted, the soles of her feet covered in very heavy grass stains, listening to a medical journal on CD through headphones. She wades into a lake to clean off the stains, and then gets paged for her hospital shift. She almost leaves the park... before remembering to go back for her socks and sneakers, fussing impatiently with the laces as she reluctantly slips them on for her job.
- Feet-First Introduction: Introduced walking barefooted through a park.
- Granola Girl: Incredibly so, to the point where she only got into medical school on recommendation because her eccentricities would have gotten any normal student kicked out. She's constantly seen in flared, ripped jeans with dirty bare feet, munching on granola bars in an Indian-style yoga pose.
- Handy Feet: Uses her toes to pull the trigger of her gun while captured by a Rostraan and sassily remarks that her abandonment of shoes was the best decision she ever made in her life, because it actually saved it.
- Mythology Gag: She became the barefoot character she is now because her actress whined about the original portrayal's high-heeled shoes and literally begged to take them off on the first day of filming for promos of her new character in commercials, as she would rather work barefoot than be subjected to this. That caused the showrunner at the time, who hadn't written any stories for her yet, to be inspired and envision her as a bohemian, saying "All right, you'll get your bare feet. You'll have them as much as you like." He then Flanderized it as time went on at her request because the actress actually grew to love being without shoes and called it her all-time favorite role because it was like a Casual Friday all day, every day, and a never-ending holiday from the horrors of heels.
- Pair the Spares: With Minnie.
- Soapbox Sadie: Always has to have her way, no matter how ludicrous the argument, which is why the Inspector got so annoyed with her because she just wouldn't leave well enough alone and would often invite more conflict their way by being so outspoken.
- Walking the Earth: Has dreamed of exploring the Earth, with bare feet and a portable medical kit to administer first aid to ailing strangers. Eventually gets around to doing just that.
Constable Reggie Wigglesworth (Tenth and Eleventh Inspectors)
- Bad Ass Normal: Is at the center stage of the Tenth Inspector's final adventure and into his first adventure as the Eleventh as a human who is an able-bodied veteran cop.
- Early Installment Weirdness: He was originally a one-off character whose name was Frank but was reworked into a recurring character due to popularity. "Frank" was Ret-Conned into him being in an undercover beat cop cover that was revealed in his first reappearance.
- Heart Broken Badass: His wife Felicia divorced (well, separated from) him a long time ago because she was mad at him for putting his job before their marriage. By the finale the Inspector has managed to convince Reggie to retire and Felicia admits she never actually filed the divorce papers.
- Parental Substitute: He is the closest thing Mona had to a father figure for a long time. Neither he nor Shirley ever thought about dating, because he was still sore over his separation and she obviously was loyal to her husband.
- Retirony: Just barely averted when the Inspector intercepted a radioactive suitcase meant for Reggie on the day he retired from police duty. Reggie even lampshades it:Reggie: Mercy... Black cop puts in for early retirement... shoulda' known better. All I'm missing is a damn red shirt!!
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The Sergeant handcuffed him to radioactive gas-filled suitcase in an evil ironic twist of carrying a literal nuclear football that he threatened to detonate if Reggie didn't do exactly as the Sergeant asked. When the Sergeant got sent into the void, Reggie learned the suitcase was going to gas him if the Sergeant was more than 100 feet away from him as a fail-safe in case Reggie tried to run, and it started to beep three times as a 3-second countdown commenced. The Inspector was able to uncuff him but the suitcase gassed the Inspector instead because he didn't have enough time to ditch it, thereby fulfilling a prophecy that he would die and metamorphosize.Three beeps will signal the end.
Camilla Sea (Tenth Inspector)
- Aborted Arc: Her character had a bigger arc planned but the actress got a better offer abroad.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Absorbed the Time Deviant strain to save the Inspector. It did not end well for her...
- Put on a Bus: Due to her joining the cast of the WormHole Extreme: Starship Horizon as plucky Scottish medic Melody Mcallister Scott, she was brought back only once after being turned into a Time Deviant.
Angelica "Angie" Lake (Tenth and Eleventh Inspector)
- Fiery Red Head: Very much so. Literally, in the episode "See No Evil".
- HeelFace Turn: Started travelling with the Sergeant due to a series of misunderstandings, but eventually switched to the Inspector's side.
- Just Friends: Towards Rory.
- My Future Self and Me: Angie: "Well kiddies, things took a turn for the strange."
- Slap-Slap-Kiss: With Aiden.
- Victorious Childhood Friend: Again with Rory. Although that didn't work out so well.
Aidan Davies (Eleventh Inspector)
- One Steve Limit: Averted, with the Second Inspector's associate of the same name. ("You're not Aiden! Aiden had a sword!")
- Slap-Slap-Kiss; With Angie.
Brooke Rhapsody (Eleventh Inspector)
- Action Girl: Armed with her laser blaster and hallucinogenic nail polish.
- Career Versus Man: Completely averted, thank the dimensional vortex!
- Catchphrase: "Hi, honey!"
- Hot ScientistAdventure Paleontologist: Brooke has a career as a paleontologist.
- Walking Spoiler: Her presence in the series is part of a huge plot twist that you have to watch the show to understand.
- Weapon of Choice: Her big hammer, laser blaster, and nail polish.
Geneva Stilton (Eleventh and Twelfth Inspectors)
The Blorgons (a.k.a. Blogons)
- Art Evolution: The Blorgons benefited greatly from the new series' increased budget. You can barely see the duct tape at all these days.
- Catchphrase: "ERADICATE!"
- Spell My Name with an R: Following initial confusion over the pronunciation of their name, the fanbase is divided on the spelling of "Blo(r)gon," and BTV seems to have changed their official stance multiple times during the show's runone official episode guide even referred to the race as the "Blorgrons," the "Blogrons," and the "Blogrolls" on the same page. Needless to say, this isn't a controversy that'll end any time soon: Although a majority of fans seem to favour "Blogon" at present, the programme officially calls them "Blorgons".
The Digifleet of the Circuit-Chaps (also known as the Kybermenschen)
- Creepy Monotone: Subverted in "The Lost Asteroid" when the Inspector first attempts to communicate with the Digifleet in an imitation robotic accent, and the Circuit-Chaps counter with a characteristically chipper comeback.
- Dissonant Serenity: The Circuit-Chaps are always in infamously high spirits, even when they're plotting the destruction of all organic life.
- Do Androids Dream?: The eerie question surrounding the Kybermenschen is whether they actually possess the mechanical equivalent of emotions or are merely simulating them to put their opponents off balance.
- Turned Against Their Masters: In "The Retirement Home of the Circuit-Chaps", the Inspector learns about the Second Industrial Revolution on their home planet that led to their ascendance.
- Weaksauce Weakness: In early serials the Circuit-Chaps were completely invulnerable to everything except lead particles, which clogged up their condensers and caused them to overheat. This worked well for a while, but as the series wore on the weakness was exaggerated to the point where anything even related to leadlead bullets, lead plumbing, lead paint, lead pencils, etc.would make them explode.
- This was fixed in the new series by their creators who state that "early prototypes reacted badly to the lead soldering on their circuitboards, but using gold instead solved that problem immediately."
- You Will Be Assimilated: "You will be modified," the Circuit-Chaps reassure ordinary appliances and everyday gadgets before turning them into cheerfully murderous conscripts of the Digifleet.
- Affably Evil: Treats his rivalry with the Inspector as a friendly competition.
- Beard of Evil: His infamous moustache. Subverted when he shaved it upon his sixth rejuvenation, much to the Inspector's shock.
- Depraved Homosexual: Controversially suggested by his unhealthy marriage to a Mexican shoeshine boy in the new series.
- Dirty Cop: Although he is no longer associated with any police force, he still occasionally wears a police uniform and often uses police slang.
- Early Installment Weirdness: First introduced as the Postmaster in "The Crime Sports" (debatably).
- Eye Patch Of Power: Gained one after the Knife Fight with the Inspector in Series Four.
Marius De Vries
- Anti-Villain: As her name suggests, this Infinity Knight set out to literally "educate the dear Inspector" rather than commit any outright villainy. The program was always very coy about whether she took this task upon herself, or was carrying out Infinity Knight orders with enthusiasm.
- Obfuscating Disability: A borderline example, in that she always wore dark glasses and carried a white cane, but never explicitly tried to pass herself off as being blind.
Oscar del Manhattan
- Big Bad: Revealed to be behind the season's Arc Words- "The Stars are Vanishing". As detailed below, he was adding them to his collection.
- Corrupt Corporate Executive
- Death by Materialism: Was killed when he couldn't reach the X7 while his museum was collapsing, due to trying to carry so many of his artefacts at once. Though the Inspector tried to save him, del Manhattan just kept trying to grab one more artefact and trying to pick up the ones he dropped, forcing the Inspector to leave him behind.
- Greed: As detailed to the Inspector, del Manhattan literally wanted to rip the stars from the sky, label them, and stick them in a lovely glass case for all the world to see and marvel at.
- "I Want" Song: Has one of the few Villain Songs in IS history.
- Evil Cripple: Following a near-lethal dose of radiation, Vosrda replaced the entire top half of his body with Blorgon cybernetics. The sight of his terrifyingly spindly little legs struggling under the weight of a robotic pepper shaker has driven many a child behind the sofa.
- Mad Scientist: Well, he DID create the Blorgons, and he DID try to kill everyone with them.
- Eventually becomes an Emperor Scientist, somewhat against his will.
- Brownface: Subverted - Chandra Sin seems to be an obvious Indian stereotype, but he's actually an Irishman in disguise.
- Fake Irish: Averted, the very Northern Irish Blakely played Devlin. Played straight with David Collings as Michael Collins.
- Oireland: Appears briefly. Michael Collins is snatched from a rural green field in Devlin's homemade Chrono-Hotpress.
- You Look Familiar: Blakely returned later in a recurring role as the wheeler-dealer Infinity Knight Kang.
- Future Me Scares Me: The Inspector is horrified at the idea of becoming (or having been!) the Indictor.
- Obviously Evil: Subverted. Despite his Villainous Fashion Sense, the Indictor is canonically Lawful Neutral.
- Villainous Fashion Sense: Let us count the ways:
- Timey-Wimey Ball: Whether the Indictor is from the Inspector's personal future or past.
The Homene Awareness and the Clothons
The SloughersKiller sunbeams waiting for someone to open one of the countless windows in the Archive, an entire moon full of photo negatives featured in Eleven's two-parter "Darkroom/Lightroom."
The Snarling Lions
The LirusiansA species of aliens who are due to move in once the humans have left the Earth. A kind race, quite open to peaceful relations with humans.
The Time DeviantsThey look human and can blend in seamlessly with our society, but they're soulless psychopaths who feed off of chaos and destruction.
The Quiet MenWhen you look at these aliens, they will cause you to remember meaningless things so you don't focus on them. If you do remember them, that means that they don't care if you remember or not...because you'll be dead soon. They cannot shut up.
The Orange Warden. The Blue Warden.
- Blue-and-Orange Morality: The trope-namer. The Blue Warden is "good", and the Orange "evil," though the Inspector could never be sure how either of them was going to act.
The ImmortalsA pantheon of mostly benevolent cosmic beings who maintain the balance in the universe. Among others, includes the Orange and Blue Wardens, the Prankster (the Big Bad of The Mary Sue Predicaments, and Lily Taylor/The Good Lamb.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Comes with the territory of joining the Pantheon.
The Exploding Rock
- Anti-Villain: At no point is the Rock being actively malevolent.
- Exactly What It Says on the Tin: It's a living rock made of Explodium. Which explodes. Repeatedly.
- Made of Explodium: The Trope Namer
- Silicon-Based Life: Though it's not much of a life.
The AggrolistenersResidents of the Roman city of Herculaneum, who after consuming alien contaminated pumice from the nearby volcano, gain the supernatural power to have anything told to them in confidence become true, though only within a limited distance of the city. Despite the best efforts of the benevolent alien Cryogenials (who were aghast at their ships engine core radiation affecting the pumice and causing the effect) and the Inspector they caused the destruction of their city after a mad old women burst into a privy while an Aggrolistener was performing his ablutions and shrieked "The volcano will erupt in five minutes!"
- Be Careful What You Wish For: Oh so true - after many minor disasters (such as a horrific transformation caused by one person saying their sister "looked like a horse") the city was destroyed by the aforementioned privy incident.
- "Exurb of the Blorgons"
- "Oil of the Circuit-Chaps"
- "The X7 Dimesioniser"
- "Sunbeams of the Denah Avatars"
- "The Uncanny Valley of Fear"
- Camera Screw: Combining fixed camera perspective with stalking missions down long and twisted corridors does not make for good gameplay.
- Captain Ersatz: Doctor Mory Schmarty, the Diabolical Mastermind in "The Uncanny Valley of Fear", is obviously Professor Moriarty with the Serial Numbers Filed Off.
- Continuity Nod: The game episodes include several references to serials from the Classic series.
- The episode featuring the Blorgons mentions their earlier schemes from "The Blorgon Incursion of Midgar" and "Exodus of the Blorgons";
- In the Circuit-Chaps' episode, they bring up how the Inspector thwarted them in "Ennui of the Circuit-Chaps" and "Bronze Friends".
- Endless Corridor: The episodes' generous estimate of two hours of gameplay includes time spent running down numerous seemingly endless corridors.
- Exposition Fairy: The Inspector, whether or not you're playing as him.
- Stalking Mission: In a couple of episodes, the Inspector and Constable Reggie must follow assorted Mooks to their hideouts in order to arrest their respective criminal masterminds.
- Uncanny Valley: After receiving criticisms about the first season episodes' almost-but-not-quite-lifelike graphics, the game designers produced a self-consciously titled final episode to wind up players.
- The Inspector destroying the Blorgon Fleet by reflecting back their death rays with a bent spoon.
- Dynamo once beat up a Blorgon with a hockey stick. That's right, a hockey stick.
- The first time Yosif puts an effort into The Inspector's adventures, showing up the Blorgons and saving the day.
- The usually demure Nymeria telling off the Great Council of Infinity Knights in "The End of the Line." Word of God states that she dropped quite a few Kraken vulgarities in her tirade.
- "The time for quiet is over. Now it's time...to make some noise."
- The Inspector's speech atop the Great Pyramid of Giza. ALL OF IT.HELLO, GIZA! You're all here for a show, so let's give it to you! Here for the Promethium? Hard luck, mates, because I'm on the case! HA! Listen, you blokes-you think you're all special. You think you stand a chance. A ten-millenium-old Infinity Knight, Greeks, and a Brit! But the question is-which of you lot's going to snatch it from me, eh? Well, then?! None of you! Because it's so improbable that it just might work. I might just win. And it's not the first time. The Battle of Stronium, the Crash of the Time Wheel, Invasion of the Blorgons...so, if you're up there in your ridiculous tiny starships (although, look who's talking) with those ridiculous tiny guns, just remember who's blocking your path! Remember every damned time I beat you! Now are you going to try to beat me again...or are you going to save your own skins?*All of the alien species that have come to defeat The Inspector GO OFF INTO HYPERSPACE AS FAST AS THEY CAN.*
Cabin:: Be afraid of me. I dispatched of thousands of Infinity Knights.Inspector:: Be afraid of me. I dispatched of most of them.Cabin:: Ha-ha-ha. You die now.
- Who can forget this little classic?
Inspector: I'm the Inspector. Now, bugger off.
- First Episode with the eleventh Inspector:
- Brooke's massive hammer that killed a Quiet Man, in turn, destroying part of the universe.
- The Inspector's bowler hat is destroyed. "Nobody! Messes! With My! Bowler!"
- When Lily fuses with the X7 to become the Good Lamb and destroys the Blorgons with the power of fluffy wool and counting sheep. Now that was impressive.
- Aidan keeping his mouthpiece on, despite the fact that it's spitting fire into his mouth, so he can withstand the Quiet Men's mental assault while he hold them off from entering Stonehenge (in reality, a disguised Dimensioniser).
- The Tenth Inspector entering his rejuvenation with dignity and grace, a scene that was sadly butchered by that other series, in an attempt to be darker and edgier.Inspector: I'm ready to go. ARRIBA!
- "The Gloom of Aquanus": An episode which consists almost entirely of the Inspector, Bart and Irma standing around in a dark, empty TV studio. And it works.
- Pretty much every time Rory Williams shows up on screen. Say what you will about the ripoff, but even they knew that Rory had to be awesome... eventually.
- Let's be serious here for a second and give a round of applause to all of the Tropers who made these pages as long as they are, and for making it so both Doctor Who and Community fans can like it.
In 1967, English publishing house Creation and Concept Comics Publications' first issue of Inspector Spacetime hit the newsstands. While the series has earned its share of accolades — Alan Moore and Warren Ellis, both longtime fans of the Inspector's adventures, have written a few award-winning issues — it's also drawn its share of criticism for cutting corners, and is regarded as one of the most wildly uneven comics series of all time. Nevertheless, this is the only comic adaptation true enough to the source material to even qualify as part of the Expanded Universe.
This comic provides examples of:
- Art Shift: Due to strict deadlines, about a third of the comics consist of immobile stick figures with transcripts taken from various episodes pasted over their heads. And the less said about the issue drawn (and, alas, written) by Rob Liefeld, the better.
- Race Lift: The first few issues in the Tenth Inspector's run depict him as white. In a later issue the Inspector claims he was "feeling a bit peaked from Venusian flu" at the time.
In the early '70s, Archie Comics, on the lookout for hot new properties and aware that American teens were still gripped by the anglophilia that followed in the wake of Beatlemania, purchased the rights to produce a comics series (under its Red Circle imprint) about the burgeoning British phenomenon that was Inspector Spacetime. They then immediately forgot what they were doing and handed the writing duties over to Henry "Bud" Wickerman and L. W. Grievely, two interns whose lack of writing experience or knowledge of Inspector Spacetime was balanced by their enthusiasm and love of illegal drugs. Starting in 1973, the team produced over 400 (increasingly convoluted and surreal) IS comics which fans now call "ISRC" (for "Inspector Spacetime Red Circle") or "UMC" (for "unadulterated madness comics").
ISRC was finally canceled in 1979 when a new bill closed the obscure tax loophole that had allowed the comic to remain profitable despite its readership of approximately thirty people. The comics are now valuable collector's items.
This comic provides examples of:
- Cerebus Syndrome: Over the course of its run, the series became more and more burdened with its authors' half-baked political, religious, and philosophical views. The book was canceled in the middle of an arc about the 22nd Inspector riding a colossal robotic Ayn Rand into battle against God while wielding a marijuana leaf made out of flaming swords.
- Continuity Snarl: Over the course of four hundred issues, the comic develops a rich, textured, and completely self-contradictory continuity. The Inspector is variously said to be a.) an ascended human, b.) the last member of an alien race, c.) the son of God, d.) the son of two differently-gendered versions of himself from the future, and e.) a peyote-induced hallucination.
- Crossover: The issue drawn by Robert Crumb introduced Fritz the Cat to the IS universe.
- Disowned Adaptation: Needless to say.
The Inspector Spacetime manga spinoff (大胆な現実の調査官4, or Bold Reality Investigator Four) was released in Japan between 1989 and 1992. It focuses on Reality Investigator (loosely based on Marius Goring's Fourth Inspector), a moody but stunningly beautiful alien prince who rights wrongs throughout all spacetime with the help of a pagoda-shaped time travelling phonebox, a perky high-school girl named Ayano, and a cute robot cat named Nyuichi.
This comic provides examples of:
- Bishounen: Reality Investigator, so much.
- Calling Your Attacks: "Visual Satchel Blade, GO!"
- Ridiculously Cute Critter: Nyuichi, the manga's version of FE-Line.
- Shout-Out: When the Inspector is asked his age, he responds that he is "Over 9000." This might jokingly refer to Akira Toriyama's brief involvement with the manga.
- Tournament Arc: For reasons that aren't fully explained, Reality Investigator spends six issues engaging a series of opponents, including his previous three metamorphoses, in superpowered martial arts battles. These issues bear Akira Toriyama's signature art style, although the work is credited to a mysterious manga-ka named "Mayor Ita."
- The first appearance of the Blorgons. For something that became so scary, their first appearance was pretty bad.
- The Inspector holding his trademark "eh" sentence-ender for a full minute and a half before being knocked out by the Monster of the Week in "The Time Gallery".
- At the end of "The Marathon Pursuit", when Bart and Irma are about to part company with the Inspector.The First Inspector: You two have been with me through some terrible times indeed. When the Blorgons kidnapped me in the 27th century, you were by my side. When the Spanish Inquisition interrogated me in their torture chambers, you were there. When the Radarmen almost marooned me off the Scutum-Crux galactic arm, you were there, too. When somebody left the time booth door open during takeoff, there you two were still. [Beat] Do you know what?
Bart and Irma: [Together] What, Inspector?
The First Inspector: I think you're bad luck!
- BTV's production department's attempt at depicting an Ejector Seat in action during "The Retirement Home of the Circuit-Chaps" led to one of the show's more hilarious/infamous Special Effect Failures.
- From "The De-Faced Doppelgängers":
- The serial "The Saviour of Earth" wrung many comic gags from Christopher Lee doubling the roles of the Inspector and his Criminal Doppelgänger Basile Lisque. At one point, the Inspector hides from Lisque in his headquarters by pretending to be part of a huge poster advertising Lisque as "The Saviour of Earth", and later, they even re-enact the famous Mirror Routine from the Marx Brothers' film Duck Soup.
- The Inspector at the end of "The Cube in Time" (and his second season), when Aiden urges him to "celebrate" their hard-fought victory. Nowhere else in the universe will you see Christopher Lee playing an ocarina and doing, just for a moment, a little soft-shoe dance in Wellingtons.
- The bit with the pot of blasting powder and the torch in "The Revolution". Classic enough that Lee recreated the moment decades later when playing Saruman in The Lord of the Rings.
- From "The Spores of Doom":Aiden: Do you think you can beat the Sulphur Squadron Leader in a duel?
The Second Inspector: I can best him blindfolded.
Aiden: What if he's not blindfolded?
The Second Inspector: Then it might be a bit more difficult.
- From "The Phobia Parasite" (the second appearance of the Sergeant):The Third Inspector: Can you describe the person you saw last night?
Witness: He was male Caucasian with a moustache. About six-foot-four.
The Third Inspector: It couldn't have been the Sergeant—his moustache isn't that big.
- "The Kittens" very possibly had the most unintentionally funny "villains" of the entire series, but the Inspector's various gags with that bit of string are genuinely hilarious. Marvel at Bernard Fox making something out of almost literally nothing.
- The Inspector to the Sergeant as he finally arrests him in "The Space Creature":The handcuffs are tight because they're new. They'll stretch out after you wear them a while.
- The Third Inspector and his long-time Associate Yosif had a Running Gag about his mental abilities:
The Third Inspector: Not to worry, I have a photographic memory. My mind is like a camera.
- In "The Talons of Asox":
Yosif: Always going out of focus?
The Third Inspector: Not to worry, I have a photographic memory. My mind is like a camera.
- In "The Ocean Demons":
Yosif: It needs developing?
The Third Inspector: Not to worry, Yosif, I'll never forget you. I have a photographic memory. My mind is like a camera.
- In "The Blue Ruination", during their Tear Jerker parting scene:
Yosif: [Trying Not to Cry] Can you still find film for it?
- The clashes between Fourth Inspector and the Superintendent were always good for a laugh during the programme's Exo-Pol years.
Before the Blorgons come back with their next criminal enterprise, would you kindly set your watch five minutes fast so you could arrive slightly ahead of the nick of time?
- The Inspector to the Superintendent after the Final Battle of "Exodus of the Blorgons":
The Superintendent: On what grounds are you going to arrest that machine?
- When the Inspector is trying to take into custody a computer terminal that he suspects has been suborned by the Digifleet in "Reappearance of the Circuit-Chaps":
The Inspector: Probably cause.
The Superintendent: Probably cause? What's that? Don't you mean probable cause?
The Inspector: No, I do mean probably cause—probably cause it's winding me up!
The Superintendent: I won't stand for any more antics like yours last summer in Westminster. Is that clear?
- The opening to the "Horror of the Asterozoids" serial apparently refers to an incident in between Seasons 12 and 13:
The Fourth Inspector: When I see the last Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt appear in the middle of Regent's Park in full view of 1,200 people, I must investigate the chronal anomaly. Am I clear?
The Superintendent: That was the Open Air Theatre's production of Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra!
- The Fourth Inspector's Witty Banter with Mary Sue Brown was one reason she always tops the lists of fan-favourite Associates:
Andrew Royd a.k.a. Android Z1: Brain Trust, Ltd. has ensured that all the people in our Human Resources Department operate strictly within the law. That's the truth, pure and simple.
- From "Android":
The Fourth Inspector: Ahem. I'm not simple, and she's not pure.
Mary Sue: Besides, Inspector, the truth is rarely pure and never simple.
DI Gary Mulligan: [As robot versions of the Inspector and Mary Sue emerge from the aliens' fabber] You make a lovely couple.
- From: "The Robot Revolution":
The Inspector and Mary Sue: [Together] A lovely couple of what?
The Fourth Inspector: This proves that the midget who escaped from Wormwood Scrubs yesterday is really a clairvoyant alien! Do you realize what that means?
- From "The Moribund Mind":
Mary Sue: There's small medium at large?
- Lots of glorious black humor in Terror at Tooth Point, starting with that title; while the action does in fact take place on Tooth Point, it turns out the villain of the piece is a Classical Movie Vampire.
- One specific example: when Reena joins Morbius's collection of hypnotized thralls, instead of wearing a long flowing gown like the rest, she switches to a fluffy white version of her usual Jungle Princess bikini.
- Veneziana, Nymeria and Thorough's reactions when the newly metamorphosed Inspector cheerfully emerges wearing her... rather striking... new outfit, topped with that hat, particularly Veneziana's terrified little squeak. The Inspector then applies some lipstick with suspicious confidence and expertise...Inspector: There! How do I look?
- From "Genesis":Interplanetary Rescue Patrol: Come in, unidentified spacecraft. What is your position? Repeat, what is your position?The Inspector: My position? Well, I'm a Detective Inspector of the Infinity Knights from the planet Kayaclasch in the Boötes Galaxy."
- This exchange, in reference to one of "The Stinging Nettles":Thorough: That thing looks incredibly dangerous.
Nymeria: ...What are we going to do?
Inspector: Poke it with a stick!
- The Inspector-Muppet in "Mindscrew". In addition to being adorable.
- The Fifth Inspector's blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameo in "The Only Inspector":Door gets yanked open"Oh! Hello there!""No, no! Too soon! Too soon!"Door gets slammed shut
- Pretty much the entirety of "Spectre Night". Sure, a lot of fans think it's an overly simplistic Neo-Creationist parable, stretched over far too many episodes, but the writers more than make up for the thin plot with the sheer volume of jokes for the Inspector, e.g.:As my old playwright friend Bernard Shaw once asked, if the world were only one of God's jokes, would you work any less to make it a good joke instead of a bad one?Evidence is for people who find reality more interesting than anything they could make up themselves.Biology is the only science in which multiplication means the same thing as division.Under these rigorously controlled conditions of temperature, pressure, humidity, etc., etc., the organisms, I predict, will do exactly as they please.[To the Intelligent Designer aliens] You probably also think that homology is the study of real estate, serology is the study of knights, bacteria is the rear of the cafeteria, and the hippocampus is where hippos go to university.If Darwin was right after all, you should probably figure it out in a few million years.
- The sudden disappearance of his I Am Very British Fake Brit accent within the first fifteen minutes, only for it to suddenly pop back up again toward the end."I say, you certainly don't look like a zombie, poppet!"
- His response to having exactly three hours before dying in "The Day of the Inspector":"Three hours? That's all? I'm too busy! I was planning to write an autobiography, attend the opera! I've still not solved my Rubik's cube... Quick- spare me a chisel to carve a wooden duck!(Beat)"Ohhhh... who am I kidding? There's nothing interesting left for me to do! Let's get this over with already."
- The Eleventh Inspector calling him "Michael Jackson" due to his fedora.
- His response to his nickname being used by the Inspector General:Inspector General: "They sent Michael Jackson to stop me? What, are you going to do a fancy moonwalk and tell me the kid really is my son?"Unknown: "It won't be if you keep that up."Inspector General: "Oh, really? Care to elaborate?"Unknown: "If you call that me again, I will travel through time, take my Optic Pocketknife, and NEUTER EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOUR INCARNATIONS!!!"(The Inspector General's jaw drops)
Nine: This is exactly why I regret being him. I don't recall any one of my incarnations ever being that ruthless. Not even number four.Eleven: I hope number twelve isn't this bad.Ten: Technically, wouldn't that be you?(Eleven gives Ten a ugly look)Eight: (awkwardly) Well, judging from what you said, you already metamorphosised a clone... wouldn't... he be number twelve...?(All the Inspectors look at Ten expectantly)Ten: (begrudgingly) ...Yes. As a matter of fact, you're right. My clone's worse than all of us combined. Even our numberless self.Eleven: Can't you go one day without messing things up for the rest of us? First, you created the Indictor, then you got two of our past selves killed!Ten: ...I'm fairly certain number six got himself killed.Eleven: That is entirely beside the point! You indirectly helped it happen!Nine: (sotto) I wanted 222 years all to myself- but I didn't mean like this.
- The snarking between Eight, Nine, Ten, and Eleven that occurs after this exchange as they watch Unknown confront the Inspector General:
- This gem in the US Thanksgiving special:American Inspector: How come you don't celebrate Thanksgiving like us Americans?Unknown Inspector: Because if I ate turkey on Thanksgiving, it'd make me sluggish. I might fall asleep and wake up too late to stop you crazy Yankees from destroying the planet on Black Friday if you didn't get the biggest plasma screen on the discount rack.
- From "The Creation of Earth":The Inspector: Orbitting that star over there is the Dodo Planet. There's a strange and terrible story about how it got its name.
Lily: What is it?
The Inspector: Nobody knows. We know only that there's a strange and terrible story.
- The Ninth Inspector is much more Sarcasm-Blind than either the Fifth or Eighth Inspectors, e.g. this exchange in "The Humans of Westminster":The Inspector: Detective Inspector, Chronospatial Inquiry Division. I must get inside.
Buckingham Palace Guard: Of course you are, and I'm the Queen's uncle.
The Inspector: Your Grace, I must get inside!
- The wonderful scene in "A Spacetime Musical" where the Inspector replaced James Haggard's nuclear missiles with a grove of watermelons. The lyrics and choreography to that number were a hoot, as well.
- The Inspector goes off the rails momentarily in the middle of his Patrick Stewart Speech in "The Xmas Rebellion":The Inspector: I ask you, is that fair? Of course it isn't—fair is a place where you jump around in the bouncy castle, get sick on candy floss, and step in monkey poo. Or was I asking rhetorically just then? Or right now?
- The Inspector has a little trouble adjusting to early 21st-century London police in "The Nicodemus Examination" after his stint with Exo-Pol in the 1970s:The Tenth Inspector: Did Doctor Nicodemus leave a ransom note about Joanna?
DCI Drake: Yes, I sent the note to our crime lab. It's demanding one million Euros.
The Tenth Inspector: Why would your crime lab demand a million Euros?
- In "Stare", where the Inspector describes the Snarling Lions as "wibble wobble time things". A real classic, and the Trope Namer for Wibble Wobble Time Thing.
- The reaction when it's finally revealed that Henry Anglo is really the Sergeant: "You shaved off your moustache!?"
- Pretty much every minute that guest-stars Hugh Laurie or Stephen Fry are on-screen in "Fry And Laurie", but especially when they finally meet at the end of the episode.Inspector: Why are you stopping us?Security Droid: All patrons at Solar Meadows Sanatorium must discard footwear before entering Solar Meadows Sanitation Ward. Risk of tracking foreign particles indoors must be contained. Do not worry- we have installed top-quality artificial lawn carpeting so that your lack of footwear is made accommodating.(Joanna grins cheerfully and begins unlacing her tennis shoes)Inspector: Oh, that's right. You had a field day after that one Intra-Majorian tracked in radiation from the trenches of Marzipan. But it would look rather undignified to go shoe-free. So I brought regulation-meeting booties for myself. Got a buy-1-get-1-free deal, so there's enough to spare.(puts on one set of booties and extends his hand to Joanna with the other set)Joanna Martin: What, you gonna put those on your hands or something?Inspector: Of course not! They're for you!Joanna: I'll pass, thanks very much!Inspector: May I ask why?Joanna: Grew up in the Gloucestershire countryside, full of lush green grass. I explored the fields almost everyday from spring 'til early winter, rain or shine. My dad said I'd get grass stains on my shoes, so I always went barefoot. Loved how the grass caressed against my toes. I felt so carefree, like I could wander the whole world. Since then, shoes just annoy me, because they feel so uninviting for wandering. Heck, I hate shoes. They're so stuffy and sweaty. And the fact we're by the Sun of all things... they're like frying pans for my feet. They're comin' off and the toes are goin' in for a landing on that faux-grass! When I see Astroturf carpets waiting for me... I can't resist.Inspector: You really sure you don't want the booties?Joanna: Nope! They say intelligent people are practically allergic to shoes. I think I look brainier in my bare feet.(kicks off her shoes and they crash to the floor with loud thumps)Joanna: And now for these stinkers- Adios!(Flicks her socks away)(Wriggles her toes in the Astroturf)Joanna: Ahhh! So much cozier! My dogs are in paradise!(Patters down the halls barefooted)Joanna: Yeaaaah! Shoeless by the Sun!
Inspector: So this is the Booth.Joanna: Not much to look at inside, is it?Inspector: Oh, you haven't seen the hidden rooms, yet.Joanna: What, there's more?Inspector: Yep! I have to disguise the Booth's interior so nobody learns what's really inside if they stumble into it by accident. Once I pull this lever, a whole six dozen or so rooms will open up.Joanna: And what kind of rooms are they?Inspector: Whatever you want them to be. They assume their appearances based on how you picture them.Joanna: (beams) By any chance, could I make a giant room full of grass appear?Inspector: Go for it! (pulls lever)Joanna: Really? Ehehe! Forget these! Never gonna need 'em! (strips off her shoes and socks again)(stubs her toe on the corner of the Booth's interior)Joanna: Yeow! (clutches foot) Hey! What gives! I should be barefoot in a wonderland of grass right now!Inspector: About that... The Booth only has one room.Joanna: ...Seriously? You lied?Inspector: Have you not been paying attention? I said the Booth has rooms based on how you picture them... as in your imagination.Joanna: (sarcastically) So in other words, you got snubbed on the luxury suite?Inspector: In other words, Miss Joanna Martin, travelling through space and time is dangerous. You can't just go gallivanting off unshod! Remember how you almost branded your soles on the scalding hot gantry of the Sanatorium when it floated too close to the Sun? As long as you're in my company, you better follow my dress code. And that means shoes required, on my ship, and all other walks of the universe.Joanna: Fine, fine! (unethusiastically replaces footwear) But if I have to wear those stupid coke bottle specs, I'm painting this whole thing purple just to spite 'ya. I adore the colour purple. The eye-searing red is paining my irises worse than the blinding Sun did!Inspector: They are not stupid specs!
- Later a Brick Joke:
- Mona Virtue's short, but witty response to the Inspector's ordeal in "Noon" in the closing moments of the episode:Inspector: Mona, it was awful! Just awful! For half the day, I was stuck on a bus full of mimes! Mimes!Mona: "..."Inspector: Not you, too! (runs away in panic)Mona:...Inspector...? Inspector! It was just a joke!
- The final story of the Tenth Inspector's run has one. Some Gallows Humor from Reggie as he lampshades how Genre Blind he was right as the Sergeant entrusts him with a suitcase rigged to gas him with nuclear compound if he tries anything funny.
- "I wear a bowler hat now. Bowler hats are neat."
- "The Earth said 'om nom nom'. Must be Saturday."
- "Oh, look at that. A shovel-y thing. I love a great big shovel-y thing."
- "Quiet Man? How come you can't shut up!"
- "I demand custard creams! And coffee!"
- "That doesn't even make sense!"
- This conversation with Cabin, the X7's in-flight hologram waitress:Cabin: Be afraid of me. I dispatched thousands of Infinity Knights.
The Inspector:: Be afraid of me. I dispatched most of them.
Cabin: Funny. You die now.
- Eleventh explaining the mating ritual of "The Satan Theorem"'s Alien of the Week includes lager, Vegemite Vindaloo, the complete collection of UB40, and cattle prods for the extra bit of romance.
- A blink-and-you'll-miss-it bit of Slapstick from "Let's Kill Hitler":
- The Eleventh Inspector advises to Reggie on retreating in the opposite direction from the scary thing that is scary.Inspector Spacetime: When in doubt, run!
Constable Wigglesworth: I hope there's a Plan B.
Inspector Spacetime: [Grins] Run faster!!
- Eleventh addressing babies in "Grand Opening".
- Eleventh's gleeful reaction in "Cavemen on a UFO" to winning the "Cavemen vs. Astronauts" Debate with Angie and Geneva over whether Ancient Astronauts abducted Neanderthals to crew their spaceships when they locate one exploring Bode's Galaxy in the 35th millennium BCE:The Inspector: Cavemen! On! A U-F-O!!! *Squee!*
- For added hilarity, his voice cracks.
- When, at the climax of Capt. James' character arc, he overcomes his paralyzing self-doubt to be with his beloved Gwaednerth Smith. The story of their ensuing domestic bliss is chronicled in the spin-off, Peacemist: Nicer Post.
- In a related piece, the wonderful story of how they single-handedly disposed of death, meaning that people could live happy immortal lives, as chronicled in Peacemist: Destruction of Death.
- Though he still laments in every episode that even with all the alien tech at their disposal, their coffee still tastes like sweaty socks run-off filtered through wet dog hair.
- The exchange between James and the (Tenth) Inspector in "Intersection of the Parallels", which serves as a Call-Back to Lily's ascendance:Inspector: Why did you save me?James: The Good Lamb always returns to its shepherd, remember?
- Aiden's response to finally finding out that Angie had a crush on him their entire childhood is heartmeltingly sweet.
- When Veneziana and Ked Nelly jetboat off into the sunset together at the end of the episode "Moon of Water" it was truly Love at First Sight.
- In The Horrendous Space Kablooie: After having had his beloved bowler hat destroyed in The Promethium Closes, Brooke Rhapsody uses a matter-alteration setting on her gun to create a new one in midair. The look of thanks on the Inspector's face when Angie catches it and plops it on his head is heartmelting.
- After Constable Reginald Wigglesworth compromises his ethics and humanity to gang-press a team of Timelocked Snarling Lions, a dying Rostraans seeking glory and former Associate and Reginald ex turned soulless Time Deviant Camilla Sea into rescuing the Inspector from the Paradox Torment. The following conversation is a borderline Tear Jerker.Inspector Spacetime: Why did you do it Reginald? You sacrificed your name, what you stood for. Even what's left of your poor broken heart to save me.Constable Reginald: Somebody had to do it, Inspector. You're the boss and I am the loyal sidekick. And the cost was... acceptable.Inspector Spacetime: (somberly) Surely, I am not that good of a boss.Constable Reginald: No. (beat) But you're that good of a friend. Besides you would have done the same for me.Inspector Spacetime: -Without a second thought or a moment's hesitation, old friend, and the Universe herself could not stop me.
- Along with being quite a Tear Jerker, Lily's ultimate choice to leave this physical universe and embrace her destiny as the Good Lamb by joining the Pantheon of Immortals, just for the sheer selflessness of the act. Her goodbye to the Inspector is adorable, too.Lily Taylor: You are my shepherd, Inspector, and I am yours. Watch over our flock for me.(Lily shines with the energy of the Good Lamb, and ascends into the heavens. The Inspector smiles, proud and yet regretful at his associate leaving. We linger on one final shot of Lily, clad in the Good Lamb's white robes and carrying a shepherd's crook, as she enters the Pantheon of the Immortals. Roll credits.)
- "The Intersection of the Parallels" gives the Ninth Inspector a humourous but bittersweet farewell, as he speaks to an ascended Lily by opening a spatial gateway to say his final good-bye:Lily: I'll never forget what happened today.
The Inspector: Oh, so you remember?
Lily: Either I've gone daft, or you were prancing around like a maniac.
The Inspector: Then you'd be wrong. I simply screamed and the Blorgons all jumped ship in terror.
Lily: I think I was lost. Hang on- I was in the Booth, and darkness swallowed me up. I remember clear as day!
(A small current of blue energy pulses through the Inspector's palm, and he stares at it grimly)
The Inspector: Lily Taylor. Think of all the places we'll never see. Marzipan. I don't mean the sweet, I mean a whole planet. You'd probably despise it. Dreadful spot. There's these cats with no tongues. Who knows what got them? (laughs awkwardly)..... I could tell that joke late into night over and over, and the crickets would die of boredom.
Lily: But, couldn't we go anyway?
The Inspector: Perhaps we could, and perchance I could. Unfortunately, it will be different.
Lily: Oh, no... I think I get what you're playing at.
The Inspector: I may not be capable of playing, period, depending on what happens next. I'm worried I'll have multiple butt cracks, or no butt crack at all. I fear what would happen if I had no butt crack. (Beat) Please spare me the details on how stuffed on me own sod I'd be.... It's a clean and simple procedure. I get a glimpse of what I'm about to turn into. Until the amnesia hits.
(The Inspector doubles back in anguish with a flash of blue light briefly erupting from his body.)
The Inspector: Step back, Lily! I don't want you to get hurt!
Lily: Inspector, are you dying on me!?
The Inspector: I drew in the full power of the Space Parabola. Anyone can tap it to heal themselves, but you can only handle so much. My body is being forced to make new cells too fast and it's disrupting the natural progression of my biological processes. They're utterly knackered now.
Lily: But surely you can fix this... can't you?
The Inspector: Well, that's just it. I'm already fixing it as we speak. Infinity Knights posses this big gimmick; it's what we consider as a way of redeeming more life. However, this means I'm going to be altered quite a bit, and as you might suspect, the side effects are often jarring. Sorry... I can't stay as I am now. No longer as my present self. No more innings with this wily semi-mint mug of mine. So when I depart-
Lily: Cut that talk out. You're really scaring me...
The Inspector: Lily, forgive me. I have to depart. And when I do, please don't think of my exit as dreadful. You were far from dreadful to me. I think so much more of you than you give me credit for... I wish I could say the same of myself... Honestly? I think I could have been a little better. (smiles meekly and closes his eyes, bracing for the change)
(The Inspector hunches over the Booth and blue flames envelop his body. He metamorphosizes into the form of a tall black man with a bald head)
The Tenth Inspector: Hola. Dread- Wow. Fresh skin colour- it's all dark this time. How unusual. Well, where did I leave off? If I'm correct... Marzipan!
(Lily stares at the new Inspector dumbfounded as he gives her a puzzled frown as to why she's not reacting positively to his metamorphosis)
Inspector Spacetime's been on the air for over 50 years. That is also the amount of time the programme's monsters will keep you awake at night. Not for nothing is it said that kids can watch only from behind the sofa, with their hands over their eyes, while wearing a welding mask that blocks out 90% of all light.
- The Blorgons. They may look stupid, but they will give you nightmares.
- Clothons. Just think about it. Waking up one night as you find your own pajamas strangling you to death, being attacked by underwear in a retail store, forced to wear clashing colours....
- The Quiet Men and the fact that they won't shut up, especially concerning the Ironic Nursery Rhyme about the Inspector's impending doom.Ring ring, goes the bell/One day we all must quit/Ring ring, goes the bell/Till the Inspector snuffs it
- As soon as you see a Quiet Man, you instantly are stricken mute, leaving you wide-eyed and helpless as it gets ready to blow you to pieces. Oh, Crap!.
- The Cacophony. They engulf your mind with disturbing sounds of their feeding on you, your friends and family. The more there are, the less you can think about anything else, until your mind simply overloads and shuts down, giving them the opportunity to feed on your comatose body.
- The Sandmen, from "The Deserts of Venus". Humans who have been infected by a silicate-virus, turning them into shuffling zombies with sand and dirt constantly pouring off them. The sand gets into machinery and clogs up the insides, rendering them useless. Most terrifying, however, is their method of infecting others: They bury people in the sand they constantly produce, effectively mummifying them, and then the infectee bursts out of the pile of sand in typical zombie-esque fashion.
- The Hollow Men, from the Ninth Inspector two-parter "The Cambiare Machine"/"A Spacetime Musical". Their Black Eyes of Evil are literal voids. They're walking bombs whose shrapnel turns people into more Hollow Men. And their screeches are... enormously creepy.
- The Inspector-Muppet in "Mindscrew" was rather adorable. The Final Stage puppets... not so much.
- Ailurophobes will tell you that "The Kittens" serial features the scariest Inspector Spacetime Monster of the Week ever, repeatedly subverting the Cat Scare trope in the most frightening fashions possible.
- Chilopodophobes argue that although the Creepy Centipedes from "The Monster in the Crevasse" were intended just to provide a little atmosphere, they're scarier than anything the show has done before or since.
- Nergal from "The Ziggurats of Venus": "I am Nergal the Burner, Nergal the Raging King, Nergal the Furious One! COWER BEFORE THE DESTROYING FLAME OF NERGAL!"
- The Snarling Lions. Does this even need explaining? Many a fan has found themselves unable to watch The Lion King (1994) ever again.
- The Sergeant verbally dissecting Joanna's family and the de-aged Inspector as he holds them hostage during the dinner party. Julian Sands' subdued performance as the Sergeant lends some legitimate creepiness to the performance as he, one by one, brings all of the Martin family to tears without even leaving his seat. Even worse: it's implied that he did this to them every night during The Month That Was Meant To Be, while holding them hostage on his submarine.
- The Teaser from Season 22's "The Mark of the Maharani." The Sixth Inspector relaxing in a leather armchair, staring directly into the camera, and muttering quiet, rhythmic gibberish (that, it turns out, is a synopsis of the episode's plot in backwards Latin)? That's a bit creepy. But upon repeat viewings, fixated Inspectrum fans insist, you pick up strange details—like how he doesn't seem to blink even once during the nearly two-minute-long intro, or that there are amorphous things churning in the darkness behind him, or that for a few frames toward the end his eyes appear to be charcoal drawings, or that the Inspector is referring to you by name.
- No one at BTV claims to remember writing or filming this intro, and Graham Chapman always denied the person in the chair was him.
- At one point the Inspector's pipe appears to vanish in a puff of smoke, only to reconstitute itself when he exhales.
- Even the armchair is unnerving, with those odd interlocking patterns stitched into it...
- Those are faces.
- I spent a few hours watching the intro over and over, trying to spot something I'd missed before. I woke up drenched in sweat with unexplained sores on my hands and back and dozens of index cards filled with neat block print that read "THEY YEARN TO MEET YOU."
- The Humiliation Conga at the end of "Anger of the Inspector" when the Inspector forces the Haemo Clan to undergo horrendous punishments. Haemo Daddy having to spend the rest of eternity in the form of a Mexican luchador's underpants was bad enough, but the punishments of the rest of the Haemo Clan are too horrible to mention.
- The climax of part one of the Snarling Lions two-parter Stare Into Darkness/See No Evil, where the lights come on and the Inspector realizes that the darkened building that he has just chased the Lion into is a house of mirrors.
- Yeah, yeah, they did "The Gloom of Aquanus" when they were going over budget on sets, but the sequence with that Shadow Vector thing is still damn creepy.
- Especially when it shows up in the White Void Room at the cliffhanger before the final episode.
- That... thing from The God Spire. Light Is Not Good indeed.
Images for the television programme Inspector Spacetime
- The official Inspector Spacetime t-shirt◊
- An official Inspector Spacetime poster◊
- The Eleventh Inspector◊
- Inspector Spacetime and Constable Reggie Action Figures
- An Eleventh Inspector Comic
- Another Eleventh Inspector Comic
- The wrong phone box
- Art nouveau Geneva Stilton
Inspector Spacetime has accumulated numerous Noodle Incidents, as the protagonist is a time-travelling alien investigator whom even his close associates only know by a job title. In the new series, Noodle Incidents have become a Running Gag.
The Classic Series:
- The details of the Inspector's mysterious overarching mission from the Infinity Knight High Command are referred to only obliquely, even in their appearances in "The Crime Sports", "Return to the Sphere of Strands ", "The Lethal Murderer", and the "Internal Investigation of the Inspector" arc.
- We don't know why the Sergeant turned to a life of crime when he and the Inspector apparently started out as colleagues.
- The Doctor frequently alludes to future crimes and criminals in Earth's timeline, such as the Great Brain Robbery, Mac the Nipper, the Trey Clones, and assorted interplanetary gang wars.
The New Series:
- The Time Wave that destroyed Kayaclasch and (supposedly) the Blorgons in the new series is the most prominent example. Lots of maddeningly cryptic hints have been dropped about who did what to whom when and where, from such strange events as the Rise of Hy-Brasil and the Inundation of Ysnote to the heavy implication that the Inspector himself was framed for the destruction Kayaclasch. Of course, we've never seen what actually occurred, though "The Last Minutes" throws in a few Red Herrings.
- From "Explodingville": "I told you we should have turned right!"
- "The Chaucer Puzzle" ends with one: Following the arrest of the highwaymen who robbed Chaucer, a fat drunken knight shows up, recognises the Inspector, declares that he is his "bosom friend", and promises to pay back the money he owes him. As the Inspector hasn't met him (yet) he has no idea what was going to happen. "The Last Minutes" clarifies this a bit: Apparently, his old drinking chum is Sir John Oldcastle, the historical inspiration for William Shakespeare's Falstaff.
- "Fangs in Florence":The Inspector: That's a nuisance, 1580. Machiavelli was born a hundred and eleven years ago. Wanted to look him up. He owes me a chicken.Aiden: Machiavelli owes you a chicken?The Inspector: *briskly* Long story, I gave him a recipe.
This is the "recap" page for Inspector Spacetime.note
- A Timeless Man
- The Blorgons (a.k.a The Throwbacks)
- The Tip of Ruin
- Ferdinand Magellan
- The Gloom of Aquanus
- The Incas
- The Radarmen
- Reign of the Nightmare (a.k.a The Spanish Inquisition)
- The Case of the Open Dimensioniser Door
- The Blorgon Incursion of Midgar
- The Saviour
- The Carthaginians
- The Sphere of Strands
- The Two Princes' Murder
- The Time Gallery
- The Marathon Pursuit
- The Spacetime Rabble-Rouser
- Solar System 16 (one of the infamous "lost" serials)
- Journey to Déjà Vu (lost)
- The Legend Locators (lost)
- The Blorgons' Cunning Scheme (episodes 1, 34, 69, & 1112 lost)
- The Saint Valentine's Day Massacre (lost)
- The Hulk
- The Transcendental Tinker
- The Desperadoes
- The Noble Savages
- The Peacemakers
- The Opium Dealers
- The Lost Asteroid
- The Might of the Blorgons
- The Netherlanders
- The Sunken Peril
- The Sun HQ
- The Crusta Infestation
- The De-Faced Doppelgängers
- The Beneficence of the Blorgons
- The Retirement Home of the Circuit-Chaps
- The Unspeakable Lavamen
- The Sulphur Soldiers
- The Saviour of Earth
- The Underground of Doom
- Rage of the Depths
- The Cube in Time
- The Servitors
- The Infinite Cyclorama
- The Revolution
- The Crütonnes
- The Spores of Doom
- The Time Bootleggers
- The Crime Sports
- Vanguard of the Void
- Inspector Spacetime and the Case of the Eocenes
- The Envoys of Entropy
- Return of the Nylans
- The Phobia Parasite
- The Talons of Asox
- Communality Above the Atmosphere
- The Kittens
- Night of the Blorgons
- The Inspector's Mad Holiday
- The Ocean Demons
- The Throwbacks
- The Space Creature
- The Three Inspectors
- Circus of Creatures
- The Border of Time
- Satellite of the Blorgons
- The Blue Ruination
- The Space Viking
- Incursion of the Mastodons
- Funeral of the Blorgons
- The Inspector's Mad Holiday, Part Two
- Return to the Sphere of Strands
- The Trawler in Time
- The Rostraan Scientific Method
- Exodus of the Blorgons
- Reappearance of the Circuit-Chaps
- Horror of the Asterozoids
- The Good World
- Ziggurats of Venus
- The Robot Revolution
- The Moribund Mind
- The Spores of Death
- The Festival of Atropa
- The Foot of Terror
- The Lethal Murderer
- The Visage of Villainy
- The Mechanical Men of Doom
- The Claws of Shennong
- Terror at Tooth Point
- The Unseen Threat
- Photo of the Dahlfen
- The Star Creators
- Blood and Servos
- The Theft of Space
- The Sobor Development
- The Buccaneer Comet
- The Megaliths of Plasma
- The Robots of Arat
- The Might of Zorl
- The Doomsday Scenario
- Fortuity of the Blorgons
- The Mona Lisa Caper
- The Monster in the Crevasse
- Night Terrors of Nede
- The Tusks of Pigator
- Ashata (never aired)
- The Nest of Free Time
- Infinite Loop
- Vampires From Space!
- Return of the Infinite Cyclorama
- Oddly Out of Place
- The Persistence of Memory
- Doomsday at Four O'Clock
- The Arrival
- The Stinging Nettles
- Rainbow of Eternity
- Samba of the Cobra
- Mawdrone Alive
- The Dark Ages
- The Queen's Angels
- Five Inspectors, One Time Booth
- The Ocean's Teeth
- The Slumbering
- The End of the Line
- The Recollection of the Blorgons
- Moon of Water
- The Hills of Androgyny
- The Triplicate Catastrophe
- Ennui of the Circuit-Chaps (working title: Overused Cliche of the Circuit-Chaps)
- Brouhaha on Beeb (working title: Help- Overworked, Underpaid, Taking the Piss)
- The Mask of the Maharani (working title: The Martyr of the Macaroni)
- The Only Inspector (working title: The Andinodyne Gratuity)
- Spacewhip (working title, somewhat infamously: Lameshit)
- Corporation of the Blorgons (working title: Bugger This Corporation—of the Blorgons)
- The Obvious World
- The Lady-Bits People
- The Abominable Ally (AKA The Worst Thing I Ever Loved)
- Space or the Maharani
- Perdition High-rise
- Omega and the Postmen
- Oblivion of the Blorgons
- The Melancholy Mafia
- Bronze Friends
- The Worst Fête in Aeons
- Spectre Night
- The Spell of Roomion
- Concepts of Space
- Inspector Spacetime (a.k.a The Hero Without)
- The Twilight of the Inspector
- The Creation of Earth
- The Riotous Living
- Humans of Westminster (part 1 of 2)
- The Tenth Crusade (part 2 of 2)
- Short Work
- Mothering Sunday
- The Cambiare Machine (part 1 of 2)
- A Spacetime Musical (part 2 of 2)
- Good Lamb (part 1 of 2)
- The Intersection of the Parallels (part 2 of 2)
- Created Anew
- The Xmas Rebellion
2004 Interactive Special
- Assault of the Larhxe
- Old Planet
- The Teddy Bears' Picnic
- The Embarrassing 15th Anniversary Reunion
- The Boy on the Mantle
- Rise of the Circuits (part 1 of a 2)
- The Age of Clang (part 2 of a 2)
- The Boob Tube
- The Probable World (part 1 of 2)
- The God Spire (part 2 of 2)
- Hate & Heroes
- Love Him
- The Zombie Navy (part 1 of 2)
- Apocalypse (part 2 of 2)
- The Bride at the Altar
- Fry and Laurie
- The Chaucer Puzzle
- Light Traffic
- Blorgons in Hollywood (part 1 of 2)
- Creationism of the Blorgons (part 2 of 2) (part 2 of 2)
- The Nicodemus Examination
- The Answer
- The Identity of the Inspector (part 1 of 2)
- The Anger of the Inspector (part 2 of 2)
- Dystopia (part 1 of 3)
- The Blaring of Horns (part 2 of 3)
- First of the Infinity Knights (part 3 of 3)
2006 Absolutely Inspector Spacetime Animated Serial
- The Scarce Voyage
- Space Wreck
- Journey of the Blessed
- Accomplices of Good
- The Water of Venice
- World of the Radarmen
- The Rostraan Ruse (part 1 of 2)
- The Curing Sea (part 2 of 2)
- Son of the Inspector
- The Owl and the Pussycat
- Terror in the Shadows (part 1 of 2)
- Quiet in the Church (part 2 of 2)
- Turn Right
- Return to Earth (part 1 of 2)
- Odyssey's Beginning (part 2 of 2)
2008 Proms Special
- Song of the Dodecahedrons (a.k.a Ballad of the Inspector)
- The Previous Inspector (Harry Potter franchise crossover)
- World of the Living
- The Deserts of Venus
2008 Specials (Continued)
- The Last Minutes
- The Clock Strikes Eleven
- The Icon Above
- Return of the Revenge of the Blorgons
- Stare Into Darkness (part 1 of 2)
- See No Evil (part 2 of 2)
- Fangs in Florence
- Morton's Fork
- The Starveling World (part 1 of 2)
- The Earth Bites Back (part 2 of 2)
- Inspector Gidget
- The Inspector That Wouldn't Leave
- The Promethium Closes (part 1 of 2)
- The Horrendous Space Kablooie (part 2 of 2)
- A Christmas Story
- Rise of the Quiet (part 1 of 2)
- Day of the Sun (part 2 of 2)
- The Blessing of the White Squares
- The Inspector's Ex
- Sins of the Eyes (part 1 of 2)
- Sins of the World (part 2 of 2)
- A Pleasant Chap Stays At Home (part 1 of 2)
- Let's Kill Hitler note (part 2 of 2)
- Day Dreams
- The Child Who Left
- The Satan Theorem
- Grand Opening (working title: Why Won't You Leave Us Alone, Inspector!)
- Brooke Gets Hitched
- The 1981 Inspector Spacetime Holiday Special
Script to Screen Special
- Prouder than Platinum
- Lake Hobbies
- Bedlam of the Blorgons (working title: Nothing But Blorgons)
- Cavemen on a UFO
- A Village Called Sympathy
- The Last of the Snarling Lions
- Return to Sender (Epilogue to The Last of the Snarling Lions)
2011 Charity Minisode
- The Private Investigator
- Rostatraan Hymns
- When the Sun Falls
- The Skirmish of Angel's March: The Next Day
- Pokers and Tongs
- The Torcs of Vortigern
- The Great Game
- Seek (working title: The Seeker in the Scheme)
- Around the Century in 80 Yesterdays
- The Turquoise Terror
- Daydream in Bronze (working title: The First of the Circuit-Chaps)
- The Alias of the Inspector (working title: Requiem for Brooke Rhapsody)
- The Night of the Inspector50th anniversary special (75 min.) (preceded by the webisode "The Twilight of the Inspector")
- Quincy and the Quiet Men (Prequel to "The Alias of the Inspector")
Home Video Bonus Specials
- The Databotique
- Fire Demons
- Geneva and the Booth
- The Golden Jubilee of the Inspector
- Twelfth Knight (working title: Shallow Breathing)
- Behind the Blorgon
- Android of Camelot
- Space Swindle
- The Flatsitter
- Save the Satellite
- The Mysterious Affair at the Vampire's
- These Dark Satanic Mills
- Bright Air
- Life In Hell (working title: Sergeant-at-Arms)
- Christmas in July
- The Sorcerer's Superior
- The Wizard's Alien
- Over the Hills
- And Far Away
- The Chavette Who Carked It
- The Lady Who Relived It
- The Asterozoid Evasion
- The Asterozoid Eversion
- The Innocent Sleep
- Quoth the Raven
- Move Heaven and Earth
- Raise Hell
- The Exes of Brooke Rhapsody
- The Departure of the Doomlord
- The Wingman
- Glasgow Grin
- Thin Air
- Who's There?
- Extra Miss
- The Ziggurat at the Heart of the World
- The Lay of the LAN
- The Emperor of Venus
- The Devourers of Darkness
- Time's Winged Chariot
- The Inspector Rises
- Twelfth Night
- The Woman Who Sold the World
- The Phantom Memorial
- News of the Worms
- The Tsamba Solution
- Devils of the Khyber
- The Ghosthunters
- It Takes Me Back
- The Siege of Etaoin Shrdlu
- Inspectre (2 episodes)
- Fugitive 44
- Alan Turings Test of Horror
- Hunter of the Nooduj
- Death and Taxeus
- Did You Say Something?
- The "Sixty Second Time" AKA "Minute By Minute" as well as "The Groundhog Minute" This was a special one hour and two minute episode.
- Time And Time Again. note
The writers and producers of Inspector Spacetime have always enjoyed dropping allusions to other works that have influenced the programme.
- The First Inspector was originally inspired by the mysterious Inspector Goole from J. B. Priestley's 1945 play An Inspector Calls. While veteran actor Leslie French quickly established the role as his own with his portrayal of the patronising, cantankerous, but deeply moral First Inspector, he did acknowledge the debt by paraphrasing Goole's parting speech at the end of "A Timeless Man":The Inspector: We don't live alone in the universe. We are members of one intergalactic body. We are responsible for each other. And I tell you that the time will soon come when, if humans will not learn that lesson, then they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish. Good night.
- In the First Inspector serial "The Lost Asteroid", the use of "Bieber Variation" instead of Lagrange Point is not an allusion to Justin Bieber but to Quatermass II.
- The Fourth Inspector serial "The Robot Revolution" involves the megacorporation "Rur's Universal Robots", which is referred to by the recursive acronym RURan allusion to the classic science fiction play by Karel Čapek.
- The Ninth Inspector episode "The Riotous Living" of course slipped in some quotes from Charles Dickens, who tells the Inspector, "Death, fires, and burglary make all men equals." and "Your fancy London detectives come down to investigate and get absolutely nowhere because they come up with verdicts before investigating the crime more thoroughly, and they try to prove their verdicts."
- Similarly, the Ten Inspector episode "The Chaucer Puzzle" naturally includes many quotes from the poet's work, e.g. he describes his assailant as a "smiler with a knife under his cloak" and Sir John Oldcastle as, sarcastically, a "very perfect, gentle knight".
- The Tenth Inspector's proclivity for shout outs was lampshaded in the episode "Odyssey's Beginning". The Inspector, on the trail of the suspect, tells Constable Reggie, "We're going after the thin man, just like Nick and Nora Charles." Reggie admits he doesn't know them, to which the Inspector replies "Their films are before your timethat was probably a bad reference."
- In the Red Nose Day special "Spacetime", the Inspector's use of the Optic Pocketknife to make a "Bat-Climb" is a shout out to both Batman and 5 Kudretli Adamlar ("Turkish Blacula").
- The Eleventh Inspector pulled off a two-for-one shout out in "Cavemen on a UFO": "They say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it's not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance."note
This Spin-Off provides examples of:
- Adorably Precocious Child: Kenji/Kenny.
- Mega Neko: When in Giant FE-Line mode.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Despite regularly saving the world, FE-Line must struggle to earn respect from ordinary people.
- Who Wears Short Shorts?: Kenji/Kenny is never seen without them.
The Mary Sue Predicaments
This Spin-Off provides examples of:
- Cluster F-Bomb: From the first season finale of The Mary Sue Predicaments, while Mary Sue flies a nuclear bomb toward the Blorgon flagship:Blorgon Prince: We have infiltrated all of Earth's governments, poisoned your air, and captured your friends. Even now our fleet surrounds your pathetic world, ready to destroy it at my signal. What do you say to that?Mary Sue: Fuck you. Fuck you. Fuck you! FUUUCK YOUUU! (explosion)
- Continuity Snarl: The show's various attempts to reconcile the Fourth, Sixth, and Seventh Inspectors' investigations into Blorgon activity in London over the years ("Sympathy for the Borgons" in Series 1, "The Ultimate Blorgon" in Series 2, and "Ransom of the Blorgons" in Series 3).
- Retcon: Mary Sue's profession was retconned from photojournalist to vaguely defined social services caseworker in order to establish her connection to the Council Estate gang. Plus she somehow acquired a teenage son, Mark.
Peacemist: Nicer Post
This Spin-Off provides examples of:
- Aliens In Wylf-y-Fwddoch: The Trope Namer. The Welsh hamlet of Wylf-y-Fwyddoch, population 109, is the site of multiple rips in the fabric of spacetime, allowing anything that runs on chrono-spacial flux energy (like the time booths) to recharge its batteries there. (Also, it's a fair bit cheaper to film in the Welsh countryside than in London.)
- Arbitrary Skepticism: The local villagers are rather phlegmatic about their quaint community's known oddities but highly suspicious of the Peacemist Institute's investigations into possible new ones.
- Early Installment Weirdness: In the first episode of Peacemist, the titular organization is variously referred to as the Peacemist Institute, the Peacemist Ministry, the Peacemist Agency, the Peacemist Corporation, and, on one memorable occasion, the Meatspice Institute. This was mostly sorted out by the second episode, although throughout the rest of the first season a sign above Captain James' desk read "Peacemist Institupe."
- Title Drop: In the premiere episode, Captain Haggard remarks upon his arrival that the Peacemist Institute has sent him to a "nicer post" in Wylf-y-Fwyddoch than his previous one (i.e. bombed-out postwar Vienna in "The Cambiare Machine").
- Town with a Dark Secret: Wylf-y-Fwyddoch is home to at least eight different dimensional rips, five buried alien spaceships, a meteor capable of reanimating the dead, and a very suspicious flock of telepathic sheep. As it's not too dark, owing to the family-friendly nature of the show, Haggard generally resolves problems by inviting the Monster of the Week over for a pint of ale, shepherds pie, and a folk song.
- Layla's death in "The Blorgons' Cunning Scheme" is one, she was the first associate to die showing that no one was safe with the Inspector.
- When Coco is literally Put on a Bus as she and the Inspector tearfully part company at Victoria Coach Station at the beginning of "The Opium Dealers".
- Jeffrey's death. Just Jeffrey's death.
- Most of the TV Movie is camp and silly, but the Seventh Inspector's meeting with an elderly Dynamo (knowing that she will soon die and he is about to be forcibly metamorphosed) is truly touching. In one short scene, Stephen Fry managed to extract himself from the Scrappy Heap."Right on schedule."
- Patricia Taylor dying in Lily's arms in "Mothering Sunday", considered one of the most emotional episodes of Inspector Spacetime.
- James Haggard's character development as he comes to terms with his pansexuality. Having been raised in a conservative home, and forced into becoming a military man, James' troubles coping with who he is has won the show multiple awards.
- Camilla Sea succumbing to the Deviant Strain. Her body begins to glow and pulsate as the Inspector can only watch powerless. It's tragic, even if you didn't like the character.Camilla Sea: Oh God, it's happening, Inspector. I can feel it, I can feel everything. I am slowly dying!
'The Inspector: I'm so sorry Camilla, I—-there's nothing I can do.
Camilla Sea: (nearing hysterics) It's not fair Inspector, me and Reginald.. I saw our wedding, I saw our children, this isn't possible! How...?
The Inspector: The Time Deviants are walking Temporal Paradoxes. They are the impossible made possible. The past becomes an unreliable memory. The present, a fluid yesterday and the future, a constellation of chaos.
Camilla Sea: When you see Reggie (tears begin to fall) lie to him. Tell him his Scottish Princess was brave. Lie to him Inspector...Promise me. Tell him I wasn't afraid; tell him that.
The Inspector: Brave heart girl, you are not alone.
Camilla Sea: Inspector. Why can't I stay?
The Inspector can only watch in horror and sorrow as Camilla Sea explodes into Trans Dimensional Morphic energy leading to her new more alien Time Deviant form.
- The Eighth Inspector, played by Steve Carell, making a toast to all his companions — all of them!— before metamorphosing into the Unknown Inspector, played by William Hurt, in Twilight of the Inspector.
- Author Existence Failure:
- Jacqueline Bonham Pease, the daughter of show creator Anthony Bonham Pease, of whom's reaction to a spider helped created the theme song, was killed in a bizarre cooking accident during Season 8's production, of which Scotland Yard's forensics team said was "best left unsolved."
- Lyman Bonham Pease, the first executive producer, had left for spiritual enlightenment in India while on tour with the United States Peace Corps and never came back. He is either dead or performing classical Indian music.
- Fulla Pakhirdin al-Raqisa, the creator of the theme song, was killed in the early 80's when she spontaneously combusted on stage during a performance by the BTV Organophonic Quilting Bee members at a performance at Anarchist Allee in Oakham, Rutland - leaving behind what has been described alternately as a "globule" or a "stain"
- April Bananaman, the creator of the FE-Line puppets, was killed in 2009 when she went to visit the grave of theme song creator, Fulla Pakhirdin al-Raqisa, whose grave exploded due to methane gas build up.
- 19 different costume creators who created the classic series' infamous costumes all are dead. One of them died trying to jump over a tank full of sharks while on a tricycle in a freak show.
- Mercy, Anthony Bonham Pease's pet cat who was the model of the Kittens, was killed in 1984 after accidentally drinking her owner's coffee creamer.
- Owen Pantwhistle, the man responsible for "The Kittens", died after accidentally swallowing one of the swazzles used for the Blorgons' voice.
- Various BTV Organophonic Quilting Bee members are dead. Max J. Bieber died beating himself to death with his own shoes, N. Bushnell died after his PraderWilli syndrome made him mistake a Commodore 64 games joystick for a piece of cake, and Little Danny Schindler died skydiving off the roof of Nippon Budokan.
- Adored by the Network: Considered BTV's flagship show for decades. Sadly, the network has a long and storied history of being chronically short on funds, and suffering from decade-long internal power struggles. The whole "Internal Investigation of the Inspector" plot-arc had to be in part a comment on this, which probably contributed to the whole relationship souring at the end of the original run.
- Attractive Bent-Gender: Both invoked and strongly averted in the infamous "Peter/Petula" serials. When Associate Peter was transformed into Petula, the plan was for the beautiful Pamela Highwater to take over the role straight away, with Peter's actor, Roy Higginbotham, released from his contract. Unfortunately, no one had noticed that Higginbotham's contract had an unprecedented "pay AND play" clause. This required BTV not only to pay him for the entire series, but also to show him in all serials. The vivid contrast between the "sex kitten" Petula described in the script and Mr. Higginbotham in a miniskirt (seen here◊ in a rare production still) led many to believe that these not merely went missing, but were intentionally destroyed for the good of all mankind.
- Amateur Cast: Unlike The Ripoff, 90% of the villains' voices are not done by voice actors but rather by various show staff members (yes, even Anthony Bonham Pease himself has voiced the Blorgons).
- Cast Incest: The actor who played Inspector Spacetime's son in said episode is Landlord's real life father (It Makes Sense in Context) and is now in a real life relationship with the Fifth Inspector's actress.
- Credits Gag: Until the Tenth Inspector era, Marius Goring continued to appear in the credits as "The Best Inspector." Most fans thought this was an in-joke referring to the actor's enormous popularity, but in fact it was a term of Goring's contract.
- Enforced Method Acting: Rumour has it that actress Carla May Studebaker was encouraged by the producer to take a cocktail of tranquilizers to help her get into the dreamy, otherworldly, aloof character of Susannah Overseer. This also made her challenging to work with—she was famous for falling asleep in the middle of scenes—which may have contributed to the character being written out of the show.
- Executive Meddling:
- In the 1960s, Owen Pantwhistle, BTV's Vice President, Dramatic Television and Puppetry, was responsible for several bizarre decisions, including the idea for the monsters in Third Inspector episode "The Kittens". Due to a traumatic childhood experience that he refuses to talk about to this day, Pantwhistle insisted that the titular kittens would become the show's most terrifying monsters. Instead, the episode proved to be an extremely effective Nightmare Retardant and is widely hailed as the cutest episode of Inspector Spacetime ever.
- In 1966, Pantwhistle decided the show needed more sex appeal and instructed the producers to add a sexy female Associate for the remaining episodes of the series. The resultant contrived transformation of the Associate Peter into Petula drew protests from media watchdogs the Civic Eyes and Ears Council.
- Let us not forget the three-episode stint during which the Inspector became stuck in his apartment. During this period, Pantwhistle decided to temporarily replace the Inspector's actor with his own son, Sean (who was but seven at the time). The "Lil' Inspector" episodes (which are not considered a part of the series and which are only included in the Special Edition of the Eleventh Inspector Box Set) are usually referred to as "ridiculous".
- In the 1970s, after the CEEC's public campaign against the Fourth Inspector's grimmer atmosphere, BTV reassigned then-producer Brian Clemens to the crime-action drama The Professionals and ordered his replacement to return to the lighter space adventures of earlier series and to find a new head writer.
- Following the strangeness of the Chapman era, the producers attempted to make the scripts "less weird" and simply made them horrible instead.
- Sean Pantwhistle, the successor to his father, Owen, on the 1999 TV movie, issued an order to "inject some hip-hop urban flavour" into the relaunch, specifically mandating that the Inspector rap. While the younger Pantwhistle's increasingly odd demands and tense sixteen-hour standoff with the Metropolitan Police are the stuff of legends, the tie-in "Inspector Jamz" compilation album helped promote the careers of Jehst and Foreign Beggars.
- The 30th Anniversary Dimensioned in Space special saw its writers forced to write the entire episode centered around the Grace Brothers Mall in an obvious crossover with another popular show. Despite initial misgivings about what was rumored to be "a complete trainwreck", the energy of the comedians combined with the sheer amount of fun the Inspector Spacetime actors were clearly having onscreen (all of them were said to be fans of Are You Being Served?) resulted in a beloved moment in television that was seen as a fitting sendoff to the classic series as BTV finally went broke and was unable to continue producing more episodes despite desperately wanting to keep the show going, even with many of the actors offering to play their parts for free. This is one of televisions rare examples where Executive Meddling resulted in a superior episode beloved by all, the staunchest fans of the Fourth Inspector all pointing to his performance in this final appearance as his best work ever.
- Fan Community Nickname: The Inspectrum.
- Germans Love David Hasselhoff:
- Just as That Ripoff has achieved unexpected popularity in South Korea, Inspector Spacetime has enjoyed a cult following in Sarkhan for decades.
- Much like that ripoff show had a lot of its lost episodes recovered from old broadcast affiliates tapes from overseas TV station archives, a french canadian television station had a lot of Second Inspector tapes in a forgotten archive. As best as the documentation could recover, these were part of a french language dub deal that never went through and the tapes were meant to be destroyed but the guy in charge of doing so got fired that week under circumstances still unclear. While french canadian viewers lost a chance at a french dub, this nonetheless resulted in multiple serials being rescued from being lost forever in the BTV tape burnings.
- Missing Episode: Numerous examples over the show's long history:
- In the 1960s, like the BBC during the same period, BTV had a habit of reusing videotapes to save money. This is why so many 1962-1968 episodes of Inspector Spacetime are missing.note
- Several episodes were lost when the master tapes fell down a well in a freak bowling accident, including parts of "Solar System 16", "Journey to the Familiar," and "The Legend Locators". Later, the same freak accident befell tapes of the infamous "Peter/Petula" episodes, leading some fans to theorize that the episodes were, in fact, "pushed".
- The Peter/Petula episodes were later found, so they are disqualified.
- "Ashata" was left incomplete after a thunderstorm and resulting fire destroyed all the sets. The episode was never completed or aired, though a few scenes did appear in the Clip Show episode "Memories of Tomorrow". The rumour that one of BTV's police dramas opportunistically used the sets to depict an arson investigation is sadly just that.
- Steve Carrell's Inspector would feature in a remake for radio years later, alongside Maureen O'Brien as Susannah Overseer.
- "The 1981 Inspector Spacetime Holiday Special": After its broadcast's critical reception, the creator took a hammer and smashed all copies at BTV studios, though this did not prevent his knighthood being revoked.
- "The Missing Episode" from The Mary Sue Predicaments is not an example, as it never really existed. It was "made" both as a tie-in for the Cosmic Retcon crossover arc between IS and Peacemist and because every single extra showed up tired and emotional on the sole day of filming. However, the production numbers and DVD releases for Season One include a spot for the episode, and if you click on the episode title, a motionless image of a Snarling Lion slowly creeps into the screen.
- Old Shame: Christopher Lee, the Second Inspector, is a mild example. While not actively disliking the show, he has always expressed bemusement at society's ongoing fascination with a "rather silly little" character he was hastily conscripted to play forty years ago, and that he took mostly because it offered a steady paycheck for a few years. He has joked that he's grateful to the extent that at least it has kept him from being typecast as "that chap who used to be Dracula."
- Poorly Disguised Pilot: "Communialty Above the Atmosphere", which eventually led to the moderately successful series. Ironically, the resulting programme took so long to actually air, is so different in tone and focus, and makes such few and fleeting references to its originator, it's not generally included in the list of spin-offs above.
- The Problem with Pen Island: In the early years of the World Wide Web, the inspectorspacetime.com URL was owned by Ukrainian marathoner Irina Nikolaevna Spector and used to host her pace time calculator programs. Ms. Spector finally sold the URL to BTV in 2009 when she added social networking features to her site. Adding the ability for users to post their own pace times, she then moved the "I.N. Spector's Pace Time" page to its current location at pacetimesexchange.com.
- Troubled Production: The original version of the show was always a bit ramshackle, but with the episode "The Hills of Androgyny", just about everything that could go wrong did.
- "The Inspector's Mad Holiday" had this issue. Despite being filmed in the Dominican Republic, there weren't many Dominican actors willing to appear as the werewolves, so BTV just flew in television actors from Puerto Rico.
- Leslie French abruptly departed from the role as the First Inspector at the beginning of the fourth series after a dispute over typecasting with BTV.
- Christopher Obi was credited under his screen name Daniel Landlord when he debuted as the Tenth Inspector but after finishing his tenure decided to revert to his given name to prevent being too closely associated with the role.
- Vacation, Dear Boy: "The Inspector's Mad Holiday" and "The Inspector's Mad Holiday, Part Two", along with the whole existence of the planet Bolaron, were created simply so the cast & crew could go on holiday in the Dominican Republic. According to Word of God, Anthony Bonham Pease directed both just by simply yelling "cut" and "action" while lying down in a hammock.
- What Could Have Been:
- In the later seasons, new script editor Roger Giles decided that the Inspector was still 'too mysterious' and planned to reveal much of his background and personal information, including his family history, his exact age, his medical exam results, his favourite kind of filling, his name it's Chet, and his shoe-size. This became known as the "Giles Counter-Plot". The show's cancellation prevented this, thankfully, and much of the information that was planned to be revealed was made non-canonical by later Expanded Universe works, which means his name isn't Chet.
- A lot of fans think that Richard Ayoade would have made a pretty awesome Ninth Inspector if not for Boogatron Media wanting a bigger name to restart the franchise.
- Mind = Blown.
- Jossed in "Brooke gets Hitched".
- Wait, would that mean the X7 is his TAR— *BANG*
- No, obviously his BOWLER is his TAR-*BANG!*
- Guys, the bowler is really a fe-BANG BANG BANG*
- Would that mean that Brooke is a part Tim- *BANG*
- Gee, this is turning into another Candle Jack. Why can't anyone say Inspector Spacetime is a
- Hmmmm.. Looks like everyone needs to see the Doc—*BANG*
- All I was going to say was that a Doc— BANG BANG *
- Okay, how about a Dent-BANG BANG BANG * COME ON I WAS GOING TO SAY DENTIST!
- All I was going to say was that a Doc— BANG BANG *
- Now that you mention it, the Optic Pocketknife is rather similar to the Son- BANG Ha! Missed, you dumb cu- BANG!
- And going by that trope, it would be a bad wolf...
In The Theft of Space, she is stabbed, but we never saw the conclusion, I think that killed her body but she survived and changed appearance. In the process, she probably lost her heart, becoming a true Infinity Knight. It is fair to assume she stays as a Queen doing what's good for her people.
Then there's "The Recollection of the Blorgons", in which we are shown the list of the planets that were attacked by the Blorgons. Blink and you'll miss it, Barbatron IV is on the list. So, the Blorgons have apparently invaded Reena's planet, but what happened to Reena? You have to remember it is before "Corporation", the Blorgons at that point couldn't have killed an Infinity Knight. But Barbatron IV is still listed as a planet controlled by the Blorgons, which means that Reena fled. However, those people didn't know how to build spaceships and even with Reena's knowledge, I doubt they did. I think that Reena escaped by stealing a Blorgon capsule like the ones found by Irma and Bart in "The Space Marathon". We all know these capsules can travel in time, so this explains her presence in past Earth.
Read that exchange from "The Mask of the Maharani" when the Inspector meets the "Maharani".
- Sixth Inspector: Hello, I'm the Inspector and I've come to arrest you!
Maharani: Don't be so pretentious, don't you recognize me?
Sixth Inspector: I've met a lot of people in this big universe, and you're not one of them, my dear.
Maharani: I'm the Maharani, your old rival, Inspector!
Sixth Inspector: The Maharani? You seemed to be smarter last time I saw you, I'm disappointed.
Maharani: I'm not the same person, Inspector.
EVERY TIME the Inspector meets the Sergeant with a new face for the first time or another Infinity Knight, he instantly recognises them, but here he doesn't recognise the Maharani, doesn't it feel weird? What if she is not the Maharani and her last sentence is a clue?
And just to prove my point, in "Afterworld", the Inspector mentions to Reena "the Maharani, she carried a huge bag which contained all sorts of candies" in that episode, the Maharani spends most of the time trying to give candies to the Inspector, because it is the only thing that she know about her. Even the title is a clue, "The Mask of the Maharani" means that Reena is wearing the mask of the Maharani.
It would also explain why the Maharani never tried to actually kill the Inspector, she loved him too much.
The Sergeant never before or since displayed the powers or universal ambitions that he did in this set of episodes, particularly in "Mathsville" itself. ("I think not!" POOF!) So it's really the Orange Warden, either impersonating or outright possessing him. The fact that the newly-reincarnated Fifth Inspector immediately faced the Orange Warden in her first set of episodes merely adds fuel to the fire.
- The First Inspector changes into the Second at the end of "The Lost Asteroid" (clear transition)
- The Second Inspector change his look at the end of "The Crime Sports" (there is a cliffhanger as we don't see the Third Inspector)
- The Third Inspector leaves Kaclayasch in the beginning of "Vanguard of the Void", on his retirement, still in the Second Inspector's clothes (this clearly takes place mere minutes after "The Crime Sports")
- The Third is clearly seen changing into the Fourth in "Return to the Sphere of Strands" (clear transition)
- The Fourth is seen changing into the Fifth in "Mathsville" (clear transition)
- The Fifth is seen changing into the Sixth in "The Hills of Androgyny" (clear transition)
- The Sixth Inspector, (very basically) dies while destroying the parallel Terran Empire to return to his home universe, as seen in "The Worst Ally". (We only see big explosions, the Inspector falling in the BOOTH, landing in a deserted land, with flashing lights coming from inside)
- The Seventh Inspector begins in "Space and the Maharani" without any mention of a recent change or any of the previous season's threats. (not a clear transition)
- The Seventh Inspector changes into the Eighth in the TV Movie (clear transition)
- The Ninth Inspector begins in "Lily" apparently freshly metamorphosed (implied by his comments on the mirror)
So, before 2012, the official order was:1->2->3->4->5->6->7->8->9->10->11 (this seems pretty logic)
But with the 50th Anniversary, we now have two more scenes to include:
- The Eighth Inspector becoming the Unknown Inspector thanks to the Teman Mothers in "The Twilight of the Inspector" (clear transition)
- The Unknown Inspector turning into the First Inspector after the activation of the Trans-Temporal Tourbillon (clear transition)
Now begins my crazy theory:Six didn't change into Seven, he couldn't have, otherwise there would be no Nine, Ten, Eleven nor Twelve. Seven is the original Inspector (which would explain his character's regression), he becomes Eighth, Unknown becomes One and is taken by Susannah to an older Kayaclasch but the shock of the metamorphosis makes him forget his adventures. Then he lives "A Timeless Man" and the rest of the show until "The Worst Ally" where at the end, he turns into Nine.
I believe that the events of "The Internal Investigation of the Inspector" took place during the Time Wave (crazy Infinity Knights acting superior: check! Blorgons trying to destroy Kayaclasch: check!). It all makes sense: Six is sent in an alternate universe with alternate Blorgons, he escapes, the alternate Blorgons follow him to the main universe and fight the Inspector Detail. As Six lands back in our universe, he is put in his right timestream and suddenly remembers his life as Seven, Eight, and Unknown as Kayaclasch fades in the sky and he becomes Nine. Nine then meets Lily and tells her of the horrible Time Wave.
The correct order is:7->8->Unknown->1->2->3->4->5->6->9->10->11->12
I know these problems will be brought up, so I will answer it now.
- You might tell me that the presence of Benjamin in both 6's last story and 7's first invalidates my theory, but it doesn't. When Benjamin is introduced as a witness it only says he is an associate of the Inspector. We are shown an adventure of Six and Benjamin, but they already know each other, meaning they met at an earlier point. At the end of the serial, Benjamin is still in Kayaclasch when the Inspector tries to return and we never see them reuniting. He is there in Season 24 with Seven and they never mention the events of Season 23. In my theory, Benjamin is the original associate of the Inspector, he leaves him in "Krakenice" but he found him again as 6, had a few adventures and then dies when Kayaclasch explodes.
- The Inspector giving up the BOOTH in favor of the HMS Spacetime 12 makes actually more sense considering that theory. In this vision, the Seventh Inspector just left Kayaclasch, presumably to distance himself from the Infinity Knights. It is logical that he would get rid of their technology given the opportunity.
- Alas, Poor Scrappy: Jeffrey was generally loathed throughout fandom until his heroic-ish sacrifice.
- Angst? What Angst?: While the actual transformation was more difficult than usual, the Fifth Inspector got used to being a woman very quickly.
- A Wild Rapper Appears!: In the mid-1980's, the theme song's latest remaking included a rap, provided by Marko Kalfa (aka Latin freestyle singer Nolan Thomas).
- Broken Base: The "Blogon" vs. "Blorgon" war has bitterly divided the fanbase ever since the alien race appeared in the series' second episode. For the record, Brian Swansea, the Welsh in-house designer who helped create the iconic Inspector Spacetime enemy, used to insist on trilling the R in "Blorgon", while the posher Leslie French preferred to drop it.
- Cargo Ship: Some fans continue to ship the X7 with the Inspector, although this has never had any basis in canon.
- Creator Provincialism: Writer Sir Richmond Blaze was known to the staff for directing any conversation towards a long-winded discussion of his hometown of Bradford, West Yorkshire. His episodes taking place on Earth had much of the plot occurring in West Yorkshire - examples include "Doomsday at Four O'Clock" and "Rainbow of Eternity". Hell, even episodes that he was a co-writer on, such as "The Kittens" (idea by Owen Pantwhistle; written by Blaze, Brian Jacques (who went on to create a little novel series called Redwall), and BTV intern Ted Wizzle) prominently feature Bradford as a setting. This was averted with "The Ocean's Teeth", which Blaze wrote, but because West Yorkshire is landlocked he chose to have it take place in the New Zealand territory of Tokelau instead (this also acted as an excuse for the production team to go holidaying on BTV's dime or lack thereof whilst they filmed the outside scenes).
- 90% of Penn Bobba's episodes took place in Cornwall, where he was born and raised. "Ennui of the Circuit-Chaps" briefly has the plot take a detour to Truro, and is partially why there's a Big-Lipped Alligator Moment involving the Sixth Inspector running around the streets screaming "Rydhsys rag Kernow lemmyn" (Cornish for "freedom for Cornwall now") for no reason.
- Creepy Crossdresser: Some would argue that the Sergeant dabbles in this during the Made-for-TV Movie.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: Spangly, revealing costume aside, the Sergeant is widely considered to have been the brightest spot in the otherwise rubbish Made-for-TV Movie.
- Fandom Rivalry: Predictably, there's one between this and that other show. This is mostly because of the amount of stuff taken from the show and given a new name in the latter. Both fandoms don't take this rivalry seriously though.
- Fan-Preferred Couple: Veneziana and Thorough and that lasso spawned a thousand FanFics, even though there was never a hint of official on-screen attraction between them.
- Fetish Retardant: Roy Higginbotham as Petula, after the character's Gender Bender transformation but before Pamela Highwater took over the role.
- Fictional Document: It's widely believed that the Inspector's Encyclopaedia Cosmosica inspired Douglas Adams to do a little radio play titled The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy even as he worked on scripts for Inspector Spacetime's ripoff.
- First Installment Wins: The Sixth Inspector made his entrance in the dynamic and thrilling adventure "The Triplicate Catastrophe", arguably the best story of the classic series, due to stellar acting on the part of the triplets, grand special effects, a suspenseful cliffhanger where his companion puts him in a chokehold, and a daring choice to completely ignore the studio format and take a stab at a bigger production.
- Foe Yay: Averted. There is nothing implied about the relationship between the Inspector and the Sergeant.
- Genius Bonus: In addition to setting up numerous Historical Person Punchlines, BTV's writers enjoy showing off their Oxbridge educations in other fields. To name just a few:
- The Infinity Knight High Command's Black Museum comes from the nickname of Scotland Yard's Crime Museum.
- The Rostraans are named them after the Roman Rostra, the orators' platform that was also used for displaying the heads of defeated enemies of state during the late Republic.
- The Inspector refers to the Maharini's 10-dimensional henchbeings as "p-braned" in "Space or the Maharani".
- The chrono-crossbows in "The Envoys of Entropy" shoot "arrows of time".
- The temporal disintegration of the planet Kadakeys alludes to two of Salvador Dalí's Surrealist paintings in "The Persistence of Memory".
- Cardinal Continuum from the serial "The Last Minutes" gets his name from mathematician Georg Cantor's set theory work on "the cardinality of the continuum" (and the Lemniscate he uses is named after another term for the infinity symbol "∞").
- Ham and Cheese: The Sergeant was played in the Made-for-TV Movie with infectious enthusiasm, making something genuinely funny out of a movie trying much too hard for comedy and very nearly salvaging the whole mess.
- Harsher in Hindsight: Although the programme's typical ideas of what the future became obsolete soon enough, a few stories turned out to be coincidentally prescient.
- The serial "The Revolution" climaxed in street battles between the Circuit-Chaps and the Paris policewhich would soon look all too similar to the May 1968 protests.
- The final part of "The Kittens" climaxed in rioting and looting by the Kittens, ending with a huge standoff between the Kittens and the Inspector and his associates, assisted by the Bradford policeall of which look all too similar to the L.A. riots, the Ferguson unrest, the 2015 Baltimore protests, and other major riots in the 1990's, 2000's, and 2010's. To make it more eerie, a UK-based relative of Antoine Miller, one of the people involved in the attack on Reginald Denny during the L.A. riots, was an extra on this serial!
- In "Exodus of the Blorgons", the Inspector successfully detects the space-time rifts his nemeses are using to relocate to London by installing special surveillance cameras across the city. Forty years later, the UK has an estimated 1.85 million CCTV cameras.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: You remember that guy who criticised the Inspector's time machine's look in "The Waters of Venice". He's the Twelfth Inspector now.
- Ho Yay:
- To some, The Inspector and Constable Reggie Wigglesworth. To others, the Inspector and the Sergeant.
- Or Wigglesworth and the Sergeant!
- Memetic Mutation:
- Bowler Hats are Neat!
- WOT'S ALL THIS THEN???
- The Optic Pocketknife has a thousand settings, but you'll only need the edge.
- The intro to "Mark of the Maharani" has been making the rounds on YouTube in recent years and has spawned a few Image Macros. It consists of the Sixth Inspector (Graham Chapman) sitting in a darkened room, legs crossed, pipe in hand, staring unblinkingly at the camera, and reciting a summary of the upcoming episode in reversed Latin. While disquieting, the rumour that he addresses the viewer by name is, of course, completely apocryphal and easily disproven, as is the rumour that his eyes vanish at any point during the intro and are replaced with smooth, blank skin. Rumours that the shadows behind him contain roiling black shapes, like tentacles or smoke, were probably inspired by visual artefacts from the VHS transfer. These rumours are silly and should not be investigated further.
- "It's not (where, what, who or how) but when."
- "Look out, Blorgons!"
- Narm Charm: Naturally. It's part of the appeal, especially in Classic Spacetime. Those early Blorgons! Adorable.
- Nightmare Fuel: The Blorgons. Whether you find them terrorising in their own right or you just think "they look like walking salad spinners" varies a lot from person to person, though their episodes tend to score very high on the Terror Tracker. They usually score four or five out of six.note
- Nightmare Retardant: The titular monsters in "The Kittens". (They're just so darn adorable when they're pretending to eat people!)
- Older Than They Think:
- A great many science fiction and fantasy characters and concepts actually originated in IS:
- Despite what the books' fans say, Nymeria of Kraken V was created long before George R R Martin even imagined the name Westeros, much less its history and legends.
- Fans of that other show would do well to note that Inspector Spacetime began airing an entire year before it. In fact, the former show takes a lot of cues from IS.
- One-Scene Wonder: Adding up all of his time on screen from the single arc in which he appears, the Indictor spends no more than forty minutes onscreen in the entire series.
- Off-the-Shelf FX: Due to the show's limited budget, this was commonplace. Since the BTV production complex in Southampton was across the street from the local Plummer Roddis store, the prop-makers simply walked across the street to the Plummer Roddis store or went to local dollar/nickel stores to get props sometimes. Here's some examples:
- There's the one serial where the monster was just a dollar store FM radio with a mask similar to the one used for Booji Boy glued on, held on a string.
- The Fifth Inspector's communicator was an actual toy Inspector Spacetime communicator that was available in shops at the time.
- Some aerial shots in the late classic series episodes have the characters represented by Jem and the Holograms and G.I. Joe figures without licks of paint or anything.
- The Blorgons's laser effects in the early episodes were achieved by having the tricycle rider inside the costume hit a trigger that set off dolled-up torch/flashlights, and then painting onto the film with teal glitter acrylic paint.
- In the classic series' final episode "Failure", the communicator the Inspector uses to communicate with some of the Kittens from "The Kittens" is clearly just a Sega Master System video game console, without even a lick of paint or anything.
- The original super glue gun used by the Second Inspector was a spud gun spray-painted silver.
- In the 2016 episode "Pancake Breakfast Restaurant of the Circuit-Chaps", the shrunken BOOTH is just a Character Options Flight Control TARDIS toy from The Ripoff painted red.
- Paranoia Fuel: The Snarling Lions will attack you as soon as you look at them directly. Made even worse in one of their later appearances, where it's revealed that even looking directly at the reflection of one will cause it to be aware of you. Imagine the Inspector's unease at having to hunt one down in an Amusement Park of Doom's Hall of Mirrors.
- Poor Man's Substitute: In the trippy Second Inspector serial "The Time Bootleggers", Hamish Wilson's character Aiden is temporarily replaced by some bit actor from Emergency Ward 10 named Frazer Hines.
- Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Stephen Fry's turn as the Inspector was not well received in many quarters. He started on the road to redemption with his brief appearance in the Eighth Inspector TV-movie, particularly during his scene with the now-elderly Dynamo. And then, years later, when the show was revived again, he appeared in the episode "Fry and Laurie", playing not his version of the Inspector, but an epically hilarious send-up of himself.
- Retroactive Recognition: Sometimes it seems like every single famous British actor in the world started out playing a villain or Red Shirt on Inspector Spacetime. Perhaps the earliest example was Michael Caine, who hit it big in Zulu just months after appearing as the terrifying Cockney Radarman leader in "The Radarmen".
- The Scrappy: Inspector Minerva is seen as this by much of the fandom.
- Seasonal Rot: The Seventh Inspector's run is generally regarded as the series' lowest point, mostly due to the banal, repetitive and/or appalling scripts (though as noted above Stephen Fry's Inspector has his detractors as well.) "Cattlefield", with its ghastly abundance of Toilet Humour, may be the worst of the worst.
- Shocking Swerve: The First Inspector's abrupt death/metamorphosis near the end of "The Lost Asteroid" could be seen as an example of this.
- Shoo Out the Clowns: "Coco" Coates is arguably an example; the arrival of the rather dour Second Inspector saw her replaced as the Inspector's Associate by the sword-wielding Aiden.
- Special Effects Failure:
- The show's notoriously low budget often caused this. The most infamous example was the episode where the "monster" was clearly a carton of eggs with Dracula fangs glued on.
- "The Ocean's Teeth". Just, "The Ocean's Teeth". Elephant-shark hybrid monsters are not supposed to have mouths with visible hinges (that appeared to have been taken off a rusty old door)! Sometime you could even see the costume operator's fabulous red hair in the Makara's mouth, making viewers certain that there would be a big Scooby Doo Reveal and cursing of meddling kids by the end. How the actors managed to keep straight faces is a miracle for the ages.
- The "ejector seat" scene in Retirement Home of the Circuit-Chaps is another infamous example, complete with a "boinging spring" sound-effect.
- In their first appearance, the Circuit Chaps appear to have their costumes made out of paper lunch bags sprayed with a spray adhesive and spray-painted silver. Sometimes you could even see the costume operator's bored face through their eyes and mouths.
- The early versions of the Blorgons were simply professional tricycle riders peddling a tricycle with a garbage can and pieces of plastic covered in ironed tinfoil drilled on. Also, the Blorgons appeared to have disused ambulance revolving lights drilled to soup bowls spray-painted black for eyes.
- The FE-Line prop cost £120,000 to make, but the cast, crew and writers soon grew to hate it because it was poorly-made and constantly broke. It also moved very slowly and unsteadily, especially annoying as it was the companion of a Inspector who was forced to pace down his naturally fast and comical movements to speeds matching that of FE-Line, usually with an ad-libbed "move yer bloody butt, FE-Line" every time it just stopped for no reason. Many of the scripts are peppered with sarcastic stage directions for FE-Line, such as (from "The De-Faced Doppelgängers") "FE-LINE TROTS OFF AT WHAT PASSES FOR TOP SPEED IN THE MIND OF THE BUGGER WHO BUILT THE DAMN PROP", and (in one of the few recorded cases of on-set rivalries between a human and a prop robot) Christopher Lee developed a habit of subjecting FE-Line to ad-libbed verbal abuse in rehearsals, footage of which occasionally surfaces in Hilarious Outtakes shows. ("The Ripoff's dog version of this bitch is better than her"). On top of that, it was the FE-Line prop which was destroyed when it was dropped from a train as it was entering Kings Cross station, leaving smashed bits and pieces of a female feline robot behind.
- "The Theft of Space" has a terrifying alien invasion represented by terribly CSO-ed sock puppets covered in tinfoil. The DVD gives you the option of watching it with extras in hyper-realistic alien costumes instead.
- "The Underground of Doom"
- The original Blorgon Battlehub was simply a piece of ancient pottery loaned from the British Museum held on suspending guide wires.
- The Blorgon Battlehub's control panel in the 1980's episodes starting from the ones in 1982 is simply a Moog Source synthesizer◊, without even a lick of paint or anything.
- In the classic series' final episode "Failure", one of the kittens' flying saucers is represented by a Pillsbury Crescent Roll, then in the background of one scene you can see an unmasked kitten actor eating what was obviously meant to be his lunch.
- The Exploding Rock's sudden appearances were represented by an iris in and it's explosions were represented by an iris out. Pretty lazy for the BTV graphics department.
- Take That, Critics!: In response to ongoing Dawson Casting charges, Tracey Ullman's Dynamo appeared in the TV Movie in old-age makeup.
- Visual Effects of Awesome: Despite the above, occasionally the show pulled it off. "The Return of the Infinite Cyclorama" is often cited as the original series' highpoint in this area, especially the now-iconic shot where the Cyclorama re-emerges and devours the Blorgon Battlehub.
- What Could Have Been: All the plot-arcs that got scrapped during the Seventh Inspector's era.
- The Woobie: Almost any Associate, but Capt. James Haggard deserves a special mention.