Roots: "This had better not be The Name of the Rose", says Tamsin, also referring later to a plot point of the same book ("Face down in a vat of pig's blood"), The Sound of Music (Tamsin's alias 'Sister Maria from Saltzberg), Tamsin quotes the song See You Later, Alligator, calls the Doctor Einstein and herself "a bear of little brain" (Winnie the Pooh). She quotes from Hamlet Act IV scene v (Rosemary, that's for remembrance..."), Macbeth Act II scene iii ("Knock knock who's there..."), and Peter Pan ("second star from the right and straight on 'til morning"). As the Doctor guesses the Monk has based his alias on jazz musician Thelonius Monk; Brother Bernard refers to Olaf as "Alexander [the Great]". Norse mythology (Valkyries "Odin's beard!" Valhalla - Sidric's steed is named after that of Odin's six-legged horse). Dungeons and Dragons (see: Goofs)
Dialogue Triumphs: The Doctor and Bernard: "Yes, you remember me now, don't you? Sure I've regenerated several times but I'm still the same man inside. I am the Doctor!"
Goofs: "Sadly we clerics are not permitted to carry edged weapons", says mace-bearing Brother Bertrand, which appears to be based on the popular character class restrictions in Dungeons and Dragons. It's otherwise believed that the 'Clerics' and blunt weapons association is a Nineteenth Century misconception. But there's nothing to say Edwards doesn't know this and is playing the card for humour anyway!
Technobabble: The Monk has made a rudimentary time scoop using the dematerialisation circuit of his TARDIS (the very same Mark 4 ship he has had in all other stories), a neutrino filter, time accelerator and epsilon modulator - the latter component appears to be lacking in the Doctor's Type 40 model. It is only calibrated for interstitial space.
A TARDIS being time scooped from the Vortex (described by the Doctor as like being "reeled in") cause a Doppler Effect, which causes the Ship to travel so fast it turns blue-hot.
Continuity: The pleasure world Carissima Maximus boasts billion-year-old forests of oak trees hundreds of metres high and housing tree homes in their branches. The planet is also home of the legendary Loquacious Waterfalls.
Vortisaurs are indigo-hued, with zebra-like stripes.
The Monk has regenerated at least once since his and the Doctor's last encounter. It is suggested that the events of The Time Meddler were indeed their first meeting. His TARDIS 'backfires' in the Vortex due to a malfunctioning directional circuit in its Dematerialisation Circuit.
Tamsin is not good with rats. She was scrum half in her school rugby team and ought to wear her glasses more than she actually does. Her drama school had a formidable librarian. She always hated "impro", On her fourth or fifth driving test she backed into something. She once had a dingy flat whilst living in Suffolk. She always hated playing Sardines since a game where Darren Green took the opportunity to [presumably] expose himself to her.
The Doctor carries with him a stethoscope, plus a spectroscopic instrument that can detect time eddies. This appears to be the first time he has encountered the Monk since The Daleks' Masterplan.
Location: Kells Abbey, near Dublin, Ireland 1006AD.
Links: The Time Meddler, The Daleks' Masterplan, Mention is made of vortisaurs (Storm Warning) and time scoops (The Five Doctors)
The Bottom Line: "'Sitric' - don't tell me, he's famous for his acid putdowns?"
Another solid entry from Barney Edwards with his usual stellar casting. Jim Carter is well overdue an audio spot and isn't wasted here, and with Graeme Garden on board as well, you know you're getting value for money. We did see through the Lucianus thing, though. Nice trick, that.