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Le Tunnel Du Temps

Everything's gone French for episodes nine and ten of The Time Tunnel. This means a fascinating mix of genuine accents, and some rather splendid comedy ones. It also means that the boys get to play dress up again, which as we know by now is one of Tony's favourite hobbies. Lately I've been getting the impression that he likes being lost in time. By the end of episode ten, I'm quite convinced of it.

He's probably not having quite so much fun in episode nine, though. Crash landing on Devil's Island, Doug and Tony get confused with two escaping crooks, who leap into the sea and try to swim for freedom just as the boys arrive. Not at all discouraged by the fact that they now have two men with American accents, in place of the Frenchmen with completely different heads of two minutes previously, the guards take Doug and Tony along with the rest of their new intake of prisoners, and set them to work clearing the jungle. Tony's habit of yelling at everybody within reach, and generally being rather excitable, doesn't endear him to the head guard; and Doug manages to annoy the commandant almost immediately. So neither of them is doing especially well this time out. They have to wear really ugly uniforms as well, which adds to the indignity. Rousing their fellow prisoners to a bid for freedom, they realise that they are doomed to failure when the others insist on bringing along new inmate Dreyfus as well. Dreyfus is known to have never escaped; and indeed the whole escape attempt has been orchestrated from behind the scenes by the commandant, who wants an excuse to execute a few troublesome prisoners. Life is never easy for a time traveller, is it.

Having escaped from Devil's Island, as usual there's no time to rest. This time the boys land in 1793, where Doug is promptly captured by some soldiers out looking for people to guillotine. I love the beginning of this episode. First Tony ducks for cover like a pro at the first sound he hears upon arriving - he's learnt the ways of the time tunnel by now - and then, in order to rescue Doug, he goes into full-on Secret Agent Mode, sneaking about in the shadows as though he's been fighting soldiers all his life. He loves this stuff, he really does. Meeting up with a shopkeeper, they get caught up in local politics in order to help their new friend. Naturally this involves dressing up in borrowed clothing, again with some brilliantly silly headgear, and plenty of battling and derring do. Then, having saved the Dauphin (or somebody they think is him), they're off back into the swirly lights and on their way once again. Out of The Land Of Silly Hats, and straight into a Cold War espionage plot. Still, at least they don't have to worry about guillotines this time.

Pictures, then.

Tony starts off well in prison life by attacking the nearest guard. This is, of course, always popular behaviour.

A guillotine. Generally frowned upon by Civil Rights groups as a way of dealing with rowdy prisoners.

Devil's Island Class Of 1894.

Tony is less than impressed when this week's chance to play dress up turns out to involve purple-and-red-striped pyjamas.

The guard is not sympathetic to his unfortunate sartorial plight.

French Accent #1. Somewhat regrettable.

French Accent #2. I like this one. This one can stay.

Despite the wardrobe misfortunes, Tony has endeavoured to appear quite stylish after all, which amuses me no end. I'm sure his shirt has a more flattering cut than anybody else's, and he's realised that if he rolls his sleeves up he can look pretty cool even in pyjamas. His nemesis, the head guard, is immediately jealous.

Doug, meanwhile, has left Tony to his guard-baiting, and gone to try to persuade the commandant that they don't belong in prison.

The commandant is as sympathetic as you'd expect...

... and Doug's plan goes about as well as usual...

... leading to him being dumped in the "Hole", which seems to be a common feature of every prison movie ever.

Captain Dreyfus. Largely unnecessary celebrity addition to the cast.

Tony begins auditioning new sidekicks, just in case Doug doesn't make it out of the Hole.

Go away.

Reunited, Doug and Tony set about writing their own slashfic.

Tony has found a new hobby - looking dark and sultry whenever the lighting is at all appropriate.

Oh for heavens sakes. Stop scooping people up in that blasted tunnel!

Tony's still practising sultry looks in the gloom of his cell.

Doug's not quite got the hang of it, though.

Man Scooped Up By Tunnel is discovered missing by the guards. Tony, as is his way, attempts to explain exactly why he's gone. This is met with much the same response as usual, and he's told that he'll be first in the guillotine if the man doesn't come back. Not meaning to seem unfair to Tony, but I can understand the guards' concern. Mr Disappeared is, after all, the most convincing Frenchman that they have on the island.

The threat of guillotining has inspired another dark and sultry moment. This is rapidly becoming an affliction.

As is Doug's habit of being bossy all the damned time.

I think the commandant seriously needs to organise a security review. That's twice he's been held at gunpoint by a prisoner in the space of half an hour.

Elsewhere, having tried to persuade the others that they can't take Dreyfus with them, Tony also winds up at gunpoint. Being taken prisoner by your fellow prisoners seems like overkill. Doesn't that make him Prisonered2?


The other prisoners escape, sans Tony, Doug and Dreyfus. Left behind on the beach, Doug and Tony prepare for another trip into Discoland, arriving in France in 1793.

Since the time tunnel sent them here, Tony immediately assumes that the locals won't be friendly, and vanishes. Doug, on the other hand, decides to try saying hello.

This turns out about as well as everything else that he does.

Consequently, Tony once again begins interviewing replacements...

... before deciding that rescuing Doug will more fun. Why chat to a shopkeeper when you can climb about on walls and leap on soldiers?

Go away.

Having fought off the entire French army (or a bit of it), Doug and Tony steal some more clothes. Once again this calls for silly headgear. It seems to be a fetish.

This makes two people with amazingly indentical ancestors in the space of half a dozen episodes. Should we really be recycling plots this early? In this case it's General Killjoy Kirk with the historical double.

Doug and Tony are delighted to see their old friend, until he speaks to them in a peculiar accent, and demands that they surrender.

At which point they decide that perhaps they're not quite so happy to see him after all.

Must be prison time again, huh.

Yep. A dungeon. Still, on the plus side, at least they seem to have lost those ridiculous hats.


This time the fight does not go well, however.

And Doug, Tony and their shopkeeper friend have to come up with a cunning plan instead.

Oh, for goodness sakes. Seriously, stop taking people back in that wretched time tunnel! Not only is it getting extremely repetitive, but it also makes the failure to get Doug and Tony back look all the more ridiculous.

Doug and Tony's new friend takes them to meet Marie Antoinette. Tony enjoys this immensely. He even stands more or less to attention. Dressing up and meeting royalty is much better than the old job.

Oh do get lost.

Doug and Tony realise that the fate of the Dauphin is unknown, so they can therefore attempt to rescue him. Actually it's not unknown anymore, boys. Sorry about that.

Marie Antoinette is very excited by the offer to save her son, but it does seem a bit odd that she doesn't ask them to include her daughter in the rescue attempt as well. Maybe, like them, she's read the history books, and knows what happens.

Back at the other end of the time tunnel, the gang there are doing their usual annoying trick of showing the future to their random abductee, in this case showing Doppelganger Frenchman that he'll one day get to behead Marie Antoinette. Interfering like this, and showing people their futures in such a cavalier fashion, is perhaps the most annoying aspect of the control room storylines. They keep doing it lately. As with the abduction of the people in the first place, it's horribly repetitive; but it's also horribly irresponsible. You can't go around telling people their futures, especially when you have absolutely no good reason for doing so.

Doug and Tony have acquired some more silly headgear. This pleases them.

The Dauphin. A rather annoying small boy who, given what we now know about the fate of Louis-Charles, probably isn't actually the Dauphin after all. Goodness knows who he is. A random small boy who's being abducted rather than rescued, quite possibly.

Doug and Tony announce that they'll cover the retreat. Sadly they do this by firing into an empty corridor, and then running away when the enemy appears. Still, those are very nice rifles.


More creeping about in the dark, in this case in exciting, creeping-about-in-the-dark style cloaks. This is definitely much more fun than the old job.

Doug and Tony meet a guard on the boat that their shopkeeper friend and his random kidnap victim are trying to escape on. Tony realises who he is, and flatters him out of the way so that the shopkeeper and the anonymous child can sneak onboard.

When trying to sneak aboard a ship, it's always best to do it under the nose of a future Emperor of France. They're much more easily distracted than ordinary men.

With their shopkeeper friend and the random child now gone, Doug and Tony are snatched up once again by the time tunnel. Since only members of the guest cast are eligible for transportation to 1968, they soon find themselves in a foreign street, where a strange, glowing canister promptly explodes.

Boom! Next time on The Time Tunnel, intrigue, adventure, and lots and lots of cowboys. Hurrah!


( 6 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )
Jun. 23rd, 2011 02:26 pm (UTC)
Ha. Yes, Tony managing to look cool regardless of the hideous uniform made us laugh at Casa Here as well. And they were totally rocking those French uniforms! I call foul that Tony never got to dress properly like a Redcoat. Doug borrowed a coat for a bit, but he's not nearly as good at dress up.

PS: I can has Maison Blanche? Somebody ate it off Youtube.
Jun. 23rd, 2011 02:40 pm (UTC)
Yeah, 86jams left YT. Somebody else has posted it actually, or some of it. I'll hunt out the URL. You can have a copy though, sure, but it might take a day or two.

Tony would love a Redcoat uniform of his very own. I think he still misses Greece.
Jun. 23rd, 2011 06:58 pm (UTC)
Thank you, linkage would be awesome. David says you already did us a copy though, and he's usually right about these things, so i will turn everything upside down and see what safe place I put it in. If I don't come back in 48 hours please send out a search party.

PS did I tell you I've been recruiting? ;)

Jun. 23rd, 2011 10:10 pm (UTC)
You are evil! :D

The link is here. I don't think it's all up yet. The person is adding a bunch of the old storylines, so I guess it's a work in progress.
Jun. 24th, 2011 02:47 pm (UTC)
That link looks like a great way to waste some time. Thank you. :) And I found the disc. It was filed away with a bunch of others I didn't want to lose. about what you'd expect!

You are evil! :D

Guilty as charged. But you made the video. :p
Jun. 24th, 2011 04:52 pm (UTC)
It needed doing. ;)
( 6 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )

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