Published on December 20th, 2013 | by admin0
Doctor Who The Doctor’s Revisted Volume 1 DVD Review
Summary: Overall, this first volume is a slickly packaged primer, mainly aimed at new series fans.
Doctor Who The Doctors Revisited Volume 1
Distributor: BBC Roadshow
Reviewer: Robert Mammone
The Doctors Revisted is a three volume set, looking at the background of each Doctor, and the man who played him. One Doctor features per disc, and each disc is chock full of interviews from a range of people in front of and behind the camera. Steven Moffat and David Tennant each speak from a great love of the series, and in the absence of Hartnell, Troughton and Pertwee, we get an interesting cross section of former companions to flesh out the sadly absent men themselves.
The first volume covers what many consider to be the golden era of Doctor Who – an 18 year unbroken run of success with William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker heading the series. Each documentary is slanted towards the featured story, but also cover topics like favourite companions and influential monsters. It is especially fascinating to hear people like Peter Purves (Steven) and Frazier Hines (Jamie McCrimmon) recounting stories of their time in the TARDIS. Aside from David Tennant, who gives some very considered views on these early Doctors, the highlight is watching Camille Coduri (Jackie Tyler) basically drooling while reminiscing over youthful memories of Jon Pertwee.
The use of people associated with the new series exemplifies the generational impact these first Doctors had on television viewers. Moffat’s evident passion for the Davision era is shown in him bringing the Fifth Doctor back for the entertaining short, Time Crash, while it is well known that Tennant modelled some of his portrayal on Tom Baker. Speaking of the man, Tom Baker has well and truly returned to the welcoming arms of the Doctor Who family, and his memories of working with Liz Sladen (Sarah Jane Smith) and Louise Jameson (Leela) demonstrate this.
On each disc, Steven Moffat introduces a story designed to demonstrate the strengths of each Doctor. Not surprisingly, he does attempt to link elements of these stories with the modern series, to lesser effect in some instances.
The stories selected for each Doctor demonstrate the sheer range of the series. Hartnell’s The Aztecs is a tautly written historical that is not only educational (the series original remit) but demonstrates the pitfalls of time travel. Oddly, the copy on the review disc appears to be unrestored, whereas the other stories are. Tomb of the Cybermen, before the return of two almost complete Patrick Troughton serials, is the obvious choice to show off the virtues of the season five, commonly called the monster season. The all film Spearhead from Space, Jon Pertwee’s debut, while atypical of his era, is nonetheless and startlingly good beginning to a fondly remembered era. And how could they have gone past the gothic horror charms of Pyramids of Mars, one of the best Tom Baker stories?
Overall, this first volume is a slickly packaged primer, mainly aimed at new series fans. While not essential purchases for fans of the classic series (who no doubt will have each and every story released on DVD lovingly ordered on their shelves, there is enough here to satify even the hardest of hardcore fans.