Monday 15 June 2020

H is for... Hibbert

George Hibbert was the Managing Director of a small plastics company - Auto Plastics - located in Essex. He fell under the mental dominance of a man named Channing, who was really an Auton duplicate. Channing caused him to get rid of his staff and to turn the factory over to producing an Auton army. Some were crude versions, designed to guard the location and to go out and find and collect Nestene spheres which landed in two waves in the area, whilst most of production went into creating hundreds of Autons disguised as shop window mannequins. The spheres contained a fraction of Nestene intelligence, and these were used to create a physical form for the creatures which could survive on Earth. Hibbert had sacked one of his salesmen - Ransome - whilst he was abroad on a business trip. On returning to England he confronted Hibbert, but Channing maintained his influence over him. Suspicious, Ransome later broke in and discovered the Autons and was forced to flee. He alerted UNIT to what was going on at the factory before Channing hunted him down with an Auton and had him killed. Later, when Channing and Hibbert went to Madame Tussauds to collect a number of Auton duplicates hidden amongst the displays, the Doctor and Liz Shaw were discovered by Hibbert - but he declined to warn Channing of their presence. His own mind was reasserting itself and he eventually rebelled against Channing and tried to destroy the growing Nestene creature. Channing had an Auton guard kill him.

Played by: John Woodnutt. Appearances: Spearhead From Space (1970).
  • This was the first of four appearances by Woodnutt in Doctor Who. He returned later in the Pertwee era as the Draconian Emperor in Frontier in Space. His next role is probably his best known - that of the Zygon warlord Broton. Woodnutt played the Zygon version and the version disguised as the Duke of Forgill, plus the real Duke in the fourth episode. His final appearance was as Seron, in The Keeper of Traken.

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