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Doctor Who Companion Profile: Kamelion

Doctor Who Companion Profile: Kamelion

Doctor Who Companion Kamelion plays the lute


Voiced by: Gerald Flood

Doctor(s): Fifth Doctor

Tenure: 2 stories- The King’s Demons (March, 1983) and Planet of Fire (March, 1984)

Background: Kamelion is a robot introduced in the control of the Master, as part of his nefarious scheme to undermine the reign of King John. The Master had discovered Kamelion prior to this and, despite Kamelion’s limited sentience, was quickly able to overpower him mentally. The Doctor frees Kamelion, who opts to join him on the TARDIS.

Family/Friends: We know almost nothing about his past and due to behind the scenes struggles with the robot, we rarely see him interacting with any of the TARDIS team during his tenure.

Personality: Kamelion is practically personality-less. The producers had much larger plans for the character, but due to circumstances outside their control, they were unable to use him, so he was quickly written off the show, his personality never explored. He does have his own identity and mind, but he is quickly controlled by those with a more commanding and powerful presence, leading him to stay aboard the TARDIS most of the time, lest he be overtaken.

Special Skills: Ability to assume any form

Best Story: Planet of Fire, though not flawless, is more successful than The King’s Demons, which is one of the Masters more forgettable appearances

Worst Story: The King’s Demons (see above)

Highlights of tenure: Nothing particularly comes to mind… Sacrificing himself in Planet of Fire?

Lowlights of tenure: See above. The character was barely used, so very little stands out about him, aside from his look

Memorable quotes: “I would make an excellent colleague… Unexpected as it may be, I do have a mind of my own.”  The King’s Demons

Other notes: Kamelion represents the show’s attempts to recapture the popularity of K-9. Unfortunately, the robot broke down constantly while they were filming, leading to the character’s quick sidelining. However, rather than leaving the TARDIS (or having him assume a favored form and be played by an actor) Kamelion journeys with the Doctor, Tegan, and Turlough for several stories without being seen, supposedly offscreen somewhere else in the TARDIS, before returning in order to be written out in Planet of Fire, an incredibly interesting misfire from this era of the series.