Hound of the Korven was the twenty-fifth episode of the first series of K9.
Thorne entices K9 to hand over his regeneration unit in exchange for his missing memory chip. It is a double cross. The fake chip contains a code turning K9 into a bomb. Starkey is taken by an old enemy who has a few surprises for K9 and his friends too.
Darius is sleeping inside Mariah when Thorne taps on the window, frightening him. Thorne says Darius may want some news about his father. They enter virtual reality, where Darius finds his father in a pure white prison, trembling in fear. Darius speaks to him, but his father can't hear him. This is Harry Pike's world now, white, no corners and no detail to draw the eye or distract the mind. He will endure years of this. Darius asks Thorne what he wants. Thorne wants something from K9. K9 won't give it to him and he must have it.
Darius refuses to get it for him, Thorne says he wants a certain circuit from K9. He can function perfectly well without it, the cybernetic equivalent of an appendix. Thorne uses his vid-com to transmit a high-pitched sound, putting Pike in agony. Darius gives in and they exit virtual reality. Darius says he will talk to K9 but he can't promise. Thorne assures him he has a deal for K9 too. He has something of K9's he thought lost forever, his memory disc, destroyed when K9 came through the STM.
As Darius and K9 move through the sewer tunnels, Darius sees no cameras and no cops. K9 calculates the likelihood of a double-cross is 99.99%. Darius admits they've had their differences. K9 says it is because of his tendency to be irritating. Darius says that he appreciates K9 doing this for him and his dad. K9 tells him that he isn't doing this exclusively for Harry. The prospect of having his memory restored is appealing. The chance his memory disc survived is remote, but still more than zero.
K9 and Darius are followed by Starkey and Jorjie, who report Gryffen. Starkey says they will be there to help Darius if it is a double-cross and if it's legit, they don't want to stop K9 getting his disc back. Starkey notices some foul-smelling slime on the wall: it's Jixen.
Thorne and four CCPCs arrive. Darius asks Thorne why he needs the bodyguards, Thorne says there's not any length K9 wouldn't go to for what he's carrying. K9 spots the memory chip and asks him to return it. Thorne offers it to him, then reminds him of Darius' father. Thorne wants K9's regeneration unit in trade. Starkey and Jorjie interrupt. Starkey refuses to let K9 do it. Thorne asks if he has a deal. Starkey warns K9 that without his regeneration unit he will be as vulnerable as everyone else. Darius agrees. Thorne says he isn't doing it for Darius, but for his poor old dad. K9 agrees reluctantly and they make the trade.
K9 accesses the memory disc and starts routing all power to his photon reactor, warning he will self-destruct in twenty seconds. As Thorne and the CCPCs leave, the kids try to get K9 to stop. The countdown is terminated, but K9 warns a destruct sequence has been built into the memory disc. An unknown target will trigger it when he comes in range. In the Department Mobile HQ, the Department Technician informs June the Jixen is coming within range and the stun mines and gas cannisters are ready. June tells him to delay the order. She asks Thorne if the tunnels have been cleared of civilians. June doesn't take Thorne's assurance and orders the technician to hold off the gas. She will supervise its deployment.
In the tunnels, Starkey assures the others that Gryffen will know what to do. A hovering stun mine arrives. It knocks Darius to the ground. Starkey hears a Jixen roar. K9 notes the Jixen will trigger his self-destruct. He moves to intercept it. Another stun mine appears. It shocks the Jixen, who takes another route. Darius notices the roar is getting closer. K9 speeds off. He cannot allow the Jixen close. His self-destruction will destroy every nearby lifeform. Starkey races off to stop him. Darius follows, but is stopped by yet another stun mine. Starkey tries to find K9 but finds another stun mine. He turns back to see a gas canister. The tunnels are gassed. Starkey collapses and is dragged away.
June and four CCPCs are nearby. She orders one to drop the final cannister. The CCPC spots two citizens in the tunnels. June has the CCPCs get them out, to discover who they are. They are taken to Department Mobile HQ. Darius warns that Starkey is still in the tunnels. June asks if he has K9 with him and says he should be fine; the gas is a sleeping agent. His main problem is the Jixen. Darius eyes the exits. Jorjie says she knows about the Jixen and that Starkey could be vapourised by a bomb. Darius races out. Jorjie tries to follow him but is stopped.
Thorne contacts June. He wants a comment on reports the operation has stalled. June says it is suspended on her authority; she doesn't answer to him. Thorne warns her that like him, she answers to those above. When June refuses, she is contacted by Lomax, who asks if the orders are not clear. She tells him that the orders need clarifying in light of new information. Lomax says she doesn't need to understand to obey. Thorne was acting in the best interests of the Department. June wants to argue, but Lomax insists that she does her duty.
At the mansion, Gryffen calls K9 to say he has been trying to get through to him for ages. K9 suggests the stun mines, the Department's attempt to corral the Joxen, have interfered. He is en route to deal with it as part of his new programming imperative. As soon as he is in range of the Jixen, he will initiate self-destruct. Gryffen warns K9 that without his regeneration unit, he will be destroyed. K9 says that as it is his programming imperative, he is destined to self-destruct to destroy the Jixen. K9's sensors indicate the Jixen is in the tunnel.
Starkey awakes with his face in a pile of books inside the Jixen's lair. The Jixen moves towards him. Starkey is shocked when the Jixen says his clothes are marked with his scent. The Jixen has been learning English. He becomes frustrated when Starkey corrects his mistakes and warns he may forget his duties as a horse. Darius moves through the tunnels calling out for Starkey. When Starkey spots a book entitled, Land of the Lost, the Jixen says it tells his story, a peaceful emissary from another time protecting an ignorant people from the monster living among them. He was the emissary's guard and he failed to protect him from the machine, his enemy, Starkey's friend, K9. Starkey says the Jixen started smashing up the mansion when they came through the STM, K9 came and protected him, giving his previous life to save his. The Jixen says that he is the one confused as he was protecting the emissary.
The Jixen were winning the war against the Meron until new energy weapons cost them their home. The Jixen tells Starkey these weapons were supplied by the Korven. Starkey confirms he knows the name. The Jixen says they were the peaceful emissaries. Humanity was the ignorant people and the Korven were the monsters. The Jixen tells him that the information was lost with the emissary, destroyed by the Korven agent, K9. The Jixen knows the Department has been infiltrated by the Korven and Starkey will lose his home as he lost his. Starkey says that then he needs to get out of here and alert the world.
The Jixen shows him the way out. As Darius searches for Starkey, the Jixen becomes increasingly uncertain about Starkey's plan for him to meet K9. Starkey believes K9 and the Jixen should be on the same side, as the both want to save the ignorant humans. The "cybernetic beast" can understand him. They soon bump into Darius. Darius is shocked to find a friendly Jixen. The Jixen assures him he is his alibi and gets angry when Darius says he means ally.
Starkey says they need to find K9 and explain to him that the Jixen isn't his enemy. Darius suggests that they do it fast; here he is. K9 prepares his self-destruct sequence as the Jixen prepares to protect himself. Starkey stands between them and tells them to stop threatening each other and talk. Starkey says that "Jixey" is a friend. K9 continues his countdown. Darius wants to run, but Starkey says they are going to sort this out. He tells K9 that the program Thorne put in him was Korven tech and he has to fight it. His sensors got it wrong and the Korven are losing him. They wanted the Jixen destroyed because he came here to warn about them.
June arrives with Jorjie and threatens the Jixen. As K9's countdown reaches zero, Starkey shouts stay. K9 reroutes his circuits. He has overwritten the program and is no longer being controlled by the Korven. Back at the mansion, Gryffen takes a look at the chip. June cannot believe the Jixen is an ally of humanity and calls it a remarkable development. Jorjie notes it isn't the only remarkable development. She told Lomax to "stick it". June says she didn't use those exact words. Jorjie is proud June refused to let the gas be dropped in the tunnels. June informs Darius that she has checked on his father. He's safe in a minimum security environment. Darius is pleased that his dad is safe, the Jixen got away and K9 didn't blow up everyone. Gryffen says they haven't quite stopped the Korven plan. K9 agrees with the Professor. A significant part of their plan seems to be for Thorne to get his regeneration unit, which succeeded. Gyrffen asks what he wants it for.
As they speak, Thorne is at a Department base. He hands the regeneration unit to an unknown force.
to be added
- In Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane Adventures, if the title of an episode contains the name of an alien, that alien appears in the episode. The title of this episode solely refers to K9, the titular Hound of the Korven, and the Korven make no appearance, although they are mentioned and Lomaxx is silhouetted.
to be added
Home video releases
This episode is featured in the following DVD sets:
- Series One complete box set, released in Australia on 29 September 2010.
- K9: Series 1: Volume 2, containing episodes 13–26, released in the UK on 31 January 2011.
- K9: Ultimate Collectors Edition, containing the full first series, scheduled for release in the UK on 11 June 2011.