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Trivia / Doctor Who S19 E4 "The Visitation"

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  • Acting in the Dark: The opening sequence in the TARDIS follows on directly from "Kinda". Since this story was filmed first, the cast had to act out their characters' responses to the events of that story based solely on the script, hence things like Tegan's mispronunciation of "Mara".
  • Creator Backlash:
    • Eric Saward disliked Michael Robbins' performance as Richard Mace, largely because he kept changing his lines. Robbins, for his part, is said to have hated working on this story.
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    • Peter Moffatt strongly disliked Paddy Kingsland's incidental music for this serial, saying it was replete with "turgid chords". However, Kingsland called Moffatt his "favourite director to work with".
  • Creator's Favourite Episode: Peter Davison named this as a favourite. Matthew Waterhouse recalled Davison entering the rehearsal room shaking the script with excitement.
  • Inspiration for the Work: The story was inspired by the work of a former girlfriend of Eric Saward's, who had been studying the architecture which arose in the wake of the Great Fire of London. She observed that the black rats which carried the plague became virtually extinct within months of the Great Fire, and Saward thought that this would provide an effective science-fiction “hook” for a story about social conditions in Stuart era England.
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  • Prop Recycling: One part of the Terileptil's laboratory re-uses a Hymetusite crystal from "The Horns of Nimon".
  • Recycled Script: For his first script, Eric Saward recycles the basic premise and plot beats of Robert Holmes' "The Time Warrior".
  • Self-Adaptation: Eric Saward wrote the serial's novelization.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • The Terileptils, and the pioneering animatronic masks used to bring them to life, were intended to return so as to Shoot the Money. Those plans fell through. One mask did end up being reused in modified form on a delegate from Posikar in "The Trial of a Time Lord".
    • BRIAN BLESSED, Donald Houston and Donald Pleasence were considered for Richard Mace.
    • Eric Saward had submitted this story for the previous season.
    • Saward originally intended for the serial to end with the Doctor claiming a new sonic screwdriver out of a cabinet full of the devices: we could've seen far more of the sonic in the classic series, but John Nathan-Turner decided that it made things too easy for the Doctor and was a writer's crutch. Also slightly coupled with Executive Meddling.
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  • Working Title: The Invasion of the Plague Men and Plague Rats.