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State of Decay: Misc


Dr Who

Up to date as of January 31, 2010

From TARDIS Index File, the free Doctor Who reference.

"A little refreshment?"
State of Decay
Series: Doctor Who -
TV Stories
Season Number: Season 18
Story Number: 113
Doctor: Fourth Doctor
Companions: Romana II
K-9 Mark II
Enemy: Great Vampire
Setting: Unnamed Planet in E-Space
Writer: Terrance Dicks
Director: Peter Moffatt
Broadcast: 22nd November - 13th December 1980
Format: 4 25-minute episodes
Previous Story: Full Circle
Following Story: Warriors' Gate



The Doctor, Romana, K9 and Adric - an Outler from Alzarius who has stowed away aboard the TARDIS - arrive on a planet where the native villagers live in fear of 'the Wasting' and of three Lords named Zargo, Camilla and Aukon who rule from an imposing Tower. The Lords are soon revealed to be vampire servants of the last of the Great Vampires, a race referred to in Time Lord mythology.

The Great Vampire is about to be revived from its resting place beneath the Tower - in fact the spaceship in which the Lords, in their original human forms, came to E-Space - but the Doctor launches one of the ship's three shuttle craft and it pierces the heart of the creature, killing it. The Lords, deprived of their master, crumble to dust.


to be added




  • Romana used to work in the Bureau of Ancient Records and once saw a reference to the Record of Rassilon.
  • The Record of Rassilon is held on magnetic card in Type 40 TARDISes.

Story Notes

  • The story was originally entitled The Witch Lords and was written by Dicks to open Season 15. At that time (mid-1977) the BBC was preparing to mount a major production of Dracula and so cancelled the story. Dicks' replacement script was Horror of Fang Rock. The script was kept and then put into production. Dicks struggled however to add Adric into it.
  • This is the second story in the 'E-Space Trilogy'.
  • Working titles for this story included; The Wasting, The Vampire Mutations and The Witch Lords.
  • For the only time during his era as the Doctor, Tom Baker had to have his hair permed before filming commenced. It had lost its natural curl due to the actor being in ill health.


  • Part 1 - 5.8 million viewers
  • Part 2 - 5.3 million viewers
  • Part 3 - 4.4 million viewers
  • Part 4 - 5.4 million viewers


  • This story's location scenes were shot at Black Park near Iver Heath in Buckinghamshire. (They were shot at Burnham Beeches near Amersham, also in Buckinghamshire - it was Full Circle's location scenes that were shot at Black Park.)

Filming Locations

  • Burnham Beeches, Burnham, Buckinghamshire
  • Lucas CAV, Acton, London
  • KJP Trading, 250 Western Avenue, Acton, London
  • BBC Television Centre (TC3 & TC6), Shepherd's Bush, London

Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

  • The Doctor says the Tower decor is rococo when actually it's late Saxon/early Romanesque.
  • In part three, Tarak bursts into the Doctor's cell, catching him across the nose with the door (Tom Baker appears slightly stunned, and misses his next cue because he was really struck by the door).
  • In the cliffhanger to part one there are hundreds if not thousands of bats - who seem to conveniently dissapear before the reprise in episode 2, of of these bats falls to the floor and does is still.


DVD and Video Releases

  • State of Decay was released by BBC Worldwide on video as part of a boxed set featuring; Full Circle, State of Decay and Warriors' Gate.
  • State of Decay has been released as a box set alongside Full Circle and Warriors Gate. The box set in titled The E-Space Trilogy.



Main article: Doctor Who and the State of Decay

See also

Vampire stories

External Links

  • BBC - Doctor Who - The Classic Series - Episode Guide: State of Decay
  • Doctor Who Reference Guide - Detailed Synopsis - State of Decay
  • Doctor Who: A Brief History of Time (Travel) - A Brief History of Time (Travel): State of Decay
  • The Locations Guide to Doctor Who, Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures: Story Locations - State of Decay
Season 18
The Leisure Hive  • Meglos  • Full Circle  • State of Decay  • Warriors' Gate  • The Keeper of Traken  • Logopolis

This article uses material from the "State of Decay" article on the Dr Who wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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