REMEMBER: Just say mew.
The Doctor and Peri are visiting the Time Lord Vama on the planet Kyros in the solar system of Lagon 2. The days when the Time Lords were sworn to non-interference in the affairs of other races seem to be long gone, as Vama says
"I'm afraid I have some business to attend to . . . you know, pacifying a few Dalons, and sorting out the planets Rexac and Ex-calon . . . did you know they're at war again?and sounds as though this is a typical day in his life. His job is "overseeing" Lagon 2. The Doctor takes Peri to see "a purple lake that bubbles like the hot springs of the Earth".
"It's beautiful, Doctor," she gasped. "I must confess I was expecting it to be just like a lake on Earth, but with purple water. I didn't expect it to be so . . . well . . . tranquil. It's lovely!"
The Doctor is more concerned with the "dirty, black weeds" that he sees. An animal (a description is not given, but it's clearly the one in the second picture accompanying the story) noms the weeds and then goes
"A very small comet crashed into the south side of Kyros a short time ago. Not much damage was done and after the initial clearing up of debris and necessary repairs were done, nothing more happened. However, not long after-wards, a delegation of excavation experts were sent to the site. One of them returned in a state similar to your description of the creature by the lake. He was convulsing and died very quickly . . . but not before he too had turned a bronze colour. It was mystifying, to say the least."
The Doctor and Vama ponder the problem for a bit, but then they are interrupted by the story taking an unexpected twist.
As they spoke, a scream filled the control tower, and Peri rushed in, almost too stunned to speak. She was clutching her left arm, which was bleeding badly.
"Doctor, there's some kind of robot out there. It attacked me!"
This implausible turn of events is only the first of many as The Deadly Weed gets crazier. The Doctor and Vama go looking for the robot, but don't find it until the have only one room left to look in.
"That's where we keep our special munition in case of an emergency, such as a galactic war," replied Vama.
Well naturally you would leave searching in that room until last. It is the least likely place for an armed, hostile robot to be. The robot is in there.
Armed with a KGS Stunner, it quickly overcame Vama, who fell senseless to the floor. The Doctor lunged at a KGS Freezer from a row of weapons by the door and, working on pure reflex action, im-mobilised the robot.
Vama is only stunned into having sleeps, and when he wakes up he recognises the robot as Neltar, the manny who died and became bronze. The Doctor realises the implications - everyone who noms the weed is being turned into robots. As usual, the Doctor has seen something like this before, which is handy because it saves time finding things out and allows them to get on with the plot - there's less than three pages to go, after all!
"I would say that the reason for all this lies with the comet. It must have carried that weed from . . . yes, from Jerimi. The Tardis took me there once by accident, of course! It's inhabited entirely by robots who reproduce by a deadly weed that attacks other living creatures and changes them into robots like themselves."
So the weed comes from the planet Jerimi. With a terrifying name like that, those robots must be the scourge of the galaxy, feared by the Daleks, Sontarans and Cybermannys alike. Not really; it is a silly name for a silly place. If I were a suspicious cat I might suspect the writer did this deliberately.
The Doctor thinks that if they kill the queen of the weed, or its heart, or the centre, or something, then they can defeat it, so he leads Peri (her injury is never mentioned again after the paragraph in which she received it) and Vama in a commando raid on the comet's crash site.
The other robotised mannys attack them, and Vama sets Deltar, "the leader of his Imperial Guards" to defend them. Unfortunately, when the robots explode, they release particles of weed that turns any mannys they hit into more robots. Peri is scared by this, but
The Doctor was too engrossed in despatching yet another robot to hear her.
Vama and Deltar and their mannys put explosives in place, which makes me think of when Blake and Cally put explosives in Star One, and they blow up the whole crater.
The almighty explosion tore through the atmosphere, shaking the ground under them. A blue flash lit the sky and debris hurtled through the air.
This kills all the robots and the weed, and Vama uses his "Luna Scanner" to look at the whole planet to make sure.
"Yes, once the heart was destroyed, it would bring about a chain reaction. The life force of the weed, however wide-spread, was linked to the crater, where it all started. Thus, it and the robots were killed when the heart was," explained the Doctor. "I thought we'd be successful!"
Now that the main plot is over, the Doctor and Peri decide to leave. The narrative reason for Vama being a Time Lord - other than this story coming from an era where gratuitous references to and appearances by Time Lords were the fashion - is finally apparent: it is so the Doctor and Vama can tease each other about regenerations as the story's end joke bit.
"Perhaps when we come again," said the Doctor, "you will have regenerated. You really should try a new body, you know!"
"Oh, no, Doctor," laughed Vama, "I'm happy with the one I've got . . . besides, I'm not sure you did too well by regeneration!"
This is a story that is spoiled by having too many silly ideas crammed into its six pages, with unnecessary Time Lord references added on top. And with Peri getting shot and the Doctor acting like an action hero gunning down multiple robots, this is another story that fits in well well with the TV series during Colin Baker's time as the Doctor.
Sadly that is not a compliment, because it is the worst aspects of that era that The Deadly Weed imitates.