An evil shape-shifting cactus named Meglos hires some old, goofy space pirates to kidnap Arthur Dent from Earth. The evil cactus turns into an evil Arthur Dent and then into an evil Doctor! The cactus wants to take control of the Double-deckerhedron, a cheap prop of unimaginative power from a nearby planet that's inhabited by badly be-wigged aliens who built the artifact so long ago that some of them forgot and think it’s a god now. They argue about it a lot too.
Three memorable moments include the feckless space pirates admiring the Doctor’s coat, the awkwardly delivered line “The Double-deckerhedron is not a god, it is an artifact!” and the crazy-obsessive performance Tom Baker gives us as the evil cactus Doctor-duplicate. Matt Smith’s take on the Cyber Controller in Nightmare In Silver looks as bad as it was compared to based Baker playing the part of an evil cactus.
This story is comfy as all hell and another exceedingly rare good story from JNT’s early seasons before he shat the bed. It’s got the Sexy Romana and no fucking Adric, who was introduced in the next story.
Jacqueline Hill, who played the First Doctor's companion Barbara Wright, makes a guest appearance as Lexa, marking the first time a companion has returned to play a role other than their original character.