Roots: Illuminati theories. The legends of Herne the Hunter and Robin Hood, Robin of Sherwood, The Lone Ranger (the Doctor cries "hi-ho Silver!"), Silent Running, Logan's Run, Ecclesiastes 3:1 ("To everything there is a season...") the Star Trek episode For The World Is Hollow And I Have Touched The Sky.
Goofs: Should the robot dogs really be called "androids"? How did that terminology get past the Doctor (or Colin Baker for that matter?)
Dialogue Triumphs: "Ideals in themselves are not evil. It's those who corrupt them. In the hands of the wicked or depraved or the dangerous and incompetent the finest of dreams can be turned into a nightmare"
Double Entendres: "If I'm going down today, I won't be the only one who is!"
Continuity: The Sentinels of the New Dawn are a shadowy 'Illuminati'-styled group whose five hundred year existence saw them massing great wealth and criminal influence on Earth. Among their tools of subjugation was a revival of the feared legendary figure Herne the Hunter, this time represented by a metal and bone 'biomechanoid' taller than a man and armed with a tungsten alloy axe. Numbering in their hundreds the enclave escaped the solar system whilst being tracked by Earth authorities and effectively disappeared, hiding inside the Leviathan. The Sentinels have been dead for 100 years, sleeping in their hundreds of cryo-capsules since the twenty-second century.
The Leviathan is a decommissioned Leviathan-class space craft, immense in size and large enough to contain an entire ecosystem of woodland including waterways, caves and living creatures. It is typical of 22nd century spacecraft in that its propulsion is pre-photon drive and therefore unable to achieve hyperspace speeds. Its human cargo is clones, 'recycled' (reduced in vats) after being culled around their mid-teens to provide nutrients for the next generation of clone embryos and the Sentinels themselves. Overseeing all of this is the Zeron, a master computer in control of the Leviathan and an android crew. This particular vessel was disabled in a meteor shower fifty light years from the planet Phlegathon and around a hundred years in the ship's past, killing the sentinels on board - it has since drifted unarmed and in a state of deterioration.
The TARDIS is in need of repair and makes an emergency landing (see: Links) - it appears the state of disrepair continues after the end of this story.
According to the Doctor the planet Phlegathon is very much like earth with verdant vegetation, a temperate climate and plenty of water. During its winter months however its indigenous dragon-like giant reptile population emerge from their shelters to devour any living thing they can find, making it a somewhat dangerous world.
Peri can't ride a horse.
Location: Deep space (but within reach of Earth shuttles), the 22nd century
Links: This story follows directly on from Mission to Magnus, with Peri suggesting that the TARDIS' navigation has been tampered with by Sil and Rana Zanduthia.
The Bottom Line: "Smack-bang in the Middle Ages. An interesting period in its way, but in increasingly small doses"
The surprise entry, given that so little has been known about this storyline, and little of it mentioned as a genuine 'Lost Season' entry. For that it happily gives lie to the notion that Big Finish's volley at 'finding' the Lost Stories is an exercise in remounting a dead horse, because Leviathan, while ultimately not entirely a revolutionary script, has enough colour and intrigue to make you wonder why it was overlooked. Besides the obvious model budget, of course.