Doctor Who: Kinda & Snakedance DVD Release Boxset 'Mara Tales' signed pre-order 28th March
An Earth colonisation survey expedition to the beautiful jungle planet Deva Loka is being depleted as members of the survey disappear one by one. Four have now gone, leaving the remainder in state of deep stress. The leader, Sanders, relies on bombast and rules; while his deputy, Hindle, is evidently close to breaking point. Only the scientific officer, Todd, seems to deal with the situation with equanimity. She does not see the native people, the Kinda, as a threat, but rather respects their culture and is intrigued by their power of telepathy. The social structure is also curious in that women seem dominant and are the only ones with the power of voice. The humans are holding two silent males hostage for "observation". Todd believes they are more advanced than they first appear, as they possess necklaces (possibly talismanic) of the double helix of DNA, indicating a more advanced civilisation.
Elsewhere in the jungle the TARDIS crew are also under stress, especially Nyssa of Traken, who has collapsed from exhaustion. The Fifth Doctor constructs a delta wave augmenter to enable her to rest in the TARDIS while he and Adric venture deeper into the jungle. They soon find an automated total survival suit (TSS) system which activates and marches them to the Dome, the colonists' base. Sanders is a welcoming but gruff presence, further undermining Hindle at regular intervals. At this point Sanders decides to venture out into the jungle in the TSS, leaving the highly strung Hindle in charge. His will is enforced by means of the two Kinda hostages, who have forged a telepathic link with him believing their souls to have been captured in his mirror. The Doctor, Todd and Adric are immediately placed under arrest as Hindle now evinces megalomania.
Tegan faces a more metaphysical crisis. She has fallen asleep near the euphonious and soporific Windchimes, unaware of the danger of the dreaming of an unshared mind (one not engaged in telepathic activity with another humanoid). Her mind opens in a black void where she undergoes provocation and terror from a series of nightmarish characters, one of which taunts her: “You will agree to being me, sooner or later, this side of madness or the other". The spectres are a manifestation of the Mara, an evil being of the subconscious that longs for corporeal reality. Mentally tortured, she eventually agrees to become the Mara and a snake symbol passes to her own arm. When her mind returns to her body she is possessed by the Mara. In a scene reminiscent of the Book of Genesis she passes the snake symbol to the first Kinda she finds, a young