Doctor Who Planet of the Giants
Or Honey I shrunk the Tardis.
Ever since The Incredible Shrinking Man,
putting people next to giant props and pretending that they have been
shrunk has been a staple of sci-fi. Fantastic Voyage, Irwin
Allen’s Land of the Giants and the Goodies seemed to do it
a lot, or perhaps they just had a theory about the size of a prop and
its proportionate hilarity.
In this Three Part, first Doctor the entire crew of
the Tardis is afflicted with a “smallening” when the landing goes wrong
and the doors open during flight. This makes everything about an inch
high; including the Tardis itself. At first the crew aren’t sure what’s
going on, but then it becomes clear that they have landed in someone’s
garden path on Earth. As per usual something is afoot. In this case it’s
that there has been a murder. A scientist has fallen, nearly on Ian and
in a great moment of almost quixotic optimism instead of saying, “Hey we
are microscopic, we have our own problems,” they resolve to solve the
murder. They soon learn that the murder has something to do with a
pesticide called DN6; a pesticide so powerful that it could kill all
insect life on earth. It turns out that Forrester, a millionaire
industrialist was the man behind the murder and that he killed the
scientist because he was going to reveal to the world that DN6 was far
to deadly to be released on the market. Forrester clearly has a terrible
business model and hasn’t accounted for the lack of repeat business that
killing every insect on earth would necessitate. None the less he won’t
be steered off his “no foresight, murder everyone that gets in my way”
course. Maybe he’s depressed.
Can the Doctor and his companions make a makeshift
bomb that goes off in Forester’s face and then start a fire to alert the
police in a very unlikely way? Yes. Yes they can.
Audio: Audio is good
for an episode of this age.
Video: Video is good
for an episode of this age.
Commentary: with vision
mixer Clive Doig, special sounds creator Brian Hodgson, make-up
supervisor Sonia Markham and floor assistant David Tilley. Moderated by
Episode 3 and 4 Reconstruction: Originally shot as a four-part
story, the final two episodes of Planet of Giants were edited together.
How much you want to watch these reconstructed episodes will depend on
how you answer the following two questions;
Do you like unconvincing CG
If the director decided that
this story was too slow for transmission in the 1960’s what the chances
that today’s audience needs to see a longer version of the story?
Rediscovering The Urge to Live:
What you will need to do after watching the recompiled episodes. Also a
documentary where professional Doctor Who fan Ian Lavine talks about how
he got to direct Susan and Ian and a number of “sound alikes” remake the
two most boring episodes in Doctor Who’s history.
Doctor Who Stories – Suddenly Susan Carole Ann Ford chats about
her tenure as the Doctor’s granddaughter taken from the documentary “The
story of Doctor Who”.
Verity Lambert Tapes Part 2 – Doctor Who’s original producer
talks about her tenure and comes off as being genuine, smart, funny and
knowledgeable. Take that Ian Levine.