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Doctor Who - New Beginnings (The Keeper of Traken/Logopolis/Castrovalva) [DVD] [1963]

Tom Baker , Peter Davison    Parental Guidance   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
Price: 10.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Doctor Who - New Beginnings (The Keeper of Traken/Logopolis/Castrovalva) [DVD] [1963] + Doctor Who: The E-Space Trilogy (Full Circle / State of Decay / Warrior's Gate) [DVD] + Doctor Who - The Key to Time Box Set (Re-issue) [DVD] [1978]
Price For All Three: 46.50

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Product details

  • Actors: Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Anthony Ainley, Matthew Waterhouse, Janet Fielding
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: 2 Entertain
  • DVD Release Date: 29 Jan 2007
  • Run Time: 300 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000LE1HLQ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 14,431 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



A good value boxset that unites a loose trilogy of stories of varying interest from the back catalogue, Doctor Who: New Beginnings maintains the high standards set of late by the show’s catalogue releases. Beginnings is the underlying theme, with the stories following the introduction of the late Anthony Ainley’s take on The Master, the swansong of Tom Baker’s Doctor, and the debut of Peter Davison in the title role.

The first story, "The Keeper Of Trakken", tells of a living statue that poses a threat to Traken World. It’s quite a good tale, introducing Nyssa to the Doctor Who Universe, but more worryingly for the Doctor it also plays host to a resurgent Master. And it’s he too who plays a crucial part in "Logopolis", Tom Baker’s final story in the title role. It’s the best story in the New Beginnings boxset, as the Doctor battles both The Master, and the potential end of the Universe when the mathematicians of Logopolis are threatened. Along the way, he also adds Tegan to the crew of the TARDIS for the first time, with the first appearance of Peter Davison as the Doctor, too.

Davison’s first full story though, "Castrovalva"", is the weakest link of the set. Again it features The Master, and it follows the newly regenerated Doctor--in a very shaky state--as he heads for the supposedly peaceful retreat of the title, only to find, as you’d expect, that all isn’t as it seems. Sadly, the premise isn’t really realised, resulting in one of the more tepid stories of Davison’s reign.

Ultimately though, Doctor Who: New Beginnings delivers two very good stories. Yet this being Doctor Who, each is backed up by enough extra features to paper over even the most telling of cracks, and there’s plenty on offer to justify the asking price.--Simon Brew

Product Description

DOCTOR WHO - NEW BEGINNINGS boxset contains three classic stories from 1981-82: THE KEEPER OF TRAKEN (with Tom Baker), LOGOPOLIS (Tom Baker's final story) and CASTROVALVA (Peter Davison's first story). The stories show the re-introduction of the Doctor's arch enemy (and fellow Time Lord from Gallifrey), the Master - starring Geoffrey Beevers, and then, following his regeneration, by Anthony Ainley.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bubble memory never fades 25 Mar 2007
JUST as the looming, entropic undoing of the universe casts shadows before it the Doctor cannot ignore, this loose trilogy - and Logopolis in particular - has cast a long shadow across many seasoned Whovians' lives. Season 18 was a death-haunted, melancholy thing given it was `children's TV', a moody sequence of stories about partings, loss, societies in decay; in Tom Baker's finale even the Doctor couldn't escape, saving everything, but not himself. Could this box still evoke the same dark feelings it did in a ten-year-old, a quarter of a century on? Delighted to report - appalled to report - it's `Yes.' Logoplis is how to say 'goodbye' properly.

These stories appeal because they're Doctor-centric. ...Traken, the slightest of the three but ideas-rich and beautiful looking, opens with the kind of Doctor-companion exposition not seen since the Hartnell era. John Nathan-Turner's tenure as producer would eventually become top-heavy with references to the show's past, but here it's still beguiling (perhaps thanks to the guiding hand of golden Pertwee-era stalwart Barry Letts), the looks back adding gravity as the end of everything looms. It's all in Baker's face, suddenly older, more gravely etched than before. The excellent commentaries across all the stories add texture, and the lead actor admits in his that, having agreed to stand down, he had many fears about the future - a neat mirror to the Doctor's own unspoken fear that perhaps there wouldn't be a future. The grin wasn't hiding the fear, and so all-the-more heroic, in the face of a dreadful unknown.

Logopolis is the dark heart of this set, brooding and funereal.
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46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Entropy increases." 4 Feb 2007
By Hector Lerbioz VINE VOICE
Depending on how you approach the 3 serials in this box set, they're either tawdry relics of a cheaper, slower age of television; or they're pure gold. There are so many reasons to enjoy the release of NEW BEGINNINGS, but even fan boys like me can see that not everyone is going to be bowled over. So let's get the criticisms out of the way first.

Generally, there are a number of problems that beset all of the productions. Firstly of course: the effects, though not ALL of them fall flat. For instance, after the poorly staged struggle between the Doctor and the Master on the Pharos project gantry, the sequence at the climax of LOGOPOLIS where Tom Baker's Doctor regenerates into Peter Davison's version works extremely well. However, this is one of the few exceptions. The fake eyes painted on Kassia's lids when she's possessed in THE KEEPER OF TRAKEN, the risible model work in LOGOPOLIS and the cheesy visual representations of the recursive trap in the citadel in CASTROVALVA aren't exactly high points.

Secondly, despite what I'm going to say about the acting later, it has to be said not everyone deserves a BAFTA. For example, Sheila Ruskin is well cast as the zealous, obsessive Kassia in THE KEEPER OF TRAKEN. But for my money she overplays certain moments. Witness her stagey collapse after the murder of Seron in episode 2.

This though is nothing compared to Anthony Ainley's Master in CASTROVALVA. Either he or the director seemed to think that his commendable underplaying in the previous tales was a bad idea, and he often relishes his part just a little too much. Take a look at the moment in episode four when he cries out: "My web! MY WEB!" All seriousness instantly evaporates.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Change, change, change... 20 Aug 2007
For this review, the best way to get around this boxset is to review each serial separately:

-'The Keeper of Traken' brings the events in this 'mini saga' to a start. Even though 'Keeper is the weakest story of the three, it still has much to offer. Geoffrey Beaver's brilliant portrayal of the villain is truely spectacular. And, of course, there's also Anthony Ainley's great double part (for those who know.) 'Keeper also shows a solid performance from Baker (not Waterhouse!) and introduces the lovely Nyssa.

-'Logopolis' brings the Baker era to the climax it deserves. Logopolis is, indeed, the best in this set. It's got interesting (and real) scientific concepts, truely funny moments, truely serious/shocking moments and, of course, The Master. Plus, of course, a lovely planet of Mathematicians (guess what that's called!)

-'Castrovalva' opens up the Davison era of the show. This was actuarly the forth recorded serial in Davison's first season. You can clearly see that Davison is confident in playing his role and plays his 'confused' Doctor with great skill. Never before has The Doctor went through his regenerations in one swift move. Plus- you also find out that the TARDIS has a whole room dedicated to cricket!
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From One Era To Another 22 Mar 2007
These three stories form what the fans term 'The Master Trilogy' and is noticable for the goodbye of Tom Baker and hello from Peter Davison.

The use of the Master was an old technique used by previous production teams in surrounding the new Doctor with familiar things to allow him to find his feet.

The Keeper of Traken is usually the forgotten story in this trilogy being overshadowed by the huge events of the next two but is in many ways the best of the three, I'm not going to go into plot details but will attempt to review to discs themselves. 'Keeper' has one wonderful thing going for it, an absolutely first rate audio commentary, by actors Matthew Waterhouse, Sarah Sutton, the late Anthony Ainley and writer Johnny Byrne.

This is such a refreshing change to hear Matthew voice his opinions without being constantly insulted and treated in a dismissive way by his fellow contributers as has happened on previous releases. Anthony Ainley gives his only contribution to a DVD in this commentary, recorded shortly before his death and has many points of interest to say.

There is also a 'making of' style documentary and Sarah Sutton's apperance on Swop Shop and a nice featurette on the return of the Master plus the usual PDF documents that appear on all three discs. It isn't often that I think that the audio commentary is so good as to be the best feature on the disc but it is here.

Logopolis is of course Tom Baker's final story and Doctor Who has never been as dark but again no plot reviews just the disc.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Series
More than likely buy again in the very near future if I see some more great series that I like
Published 24 days ago by GWJ Painter
5.0 out of 5 stars End of an era
The Keeper of Traken is a passable adventure which serves as a set-up for the next two adventures, though it does introduce Nyssa. Read more
Published 29 days ago by M. McGowan
5.0 out of 5 stars Present for the hubby
My husband wanted this and he was not disappointed. A big Doctor Who fan for many years and Peter Davison being his doctor, he really enjoyed watching the re-generation.
Published 2 months ago by Kelhen
5.0 out of 5 stars New Beginnings - Old Doctors
Addition to my collection and a worthy addition, too. A chance to relive the old Doctors in the 50th year.
Published 4 months ago by A Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Value Boxset
All the stories in this boxset are worth watching especially Logopolis which is possibly one of the most morbid regeneration stories. Highly reccommended.
Published 5 months ago by obi won kenobi
3.0 out of 5 stars First Story is Very Good
Keeper of Traken

What a lovely story. What a lovely production. It's like a late Shakespeare - Winters Tale or Cymbeline, possibly with a dash of All's Well and MND. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Alex Lyon
5.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Who - New Beginnings (1981-1982) - Farewell to the 4th Doctor...
In 28th of December 1974, Tom Baker came onto Doctor Who with great enthusiasm, and both producer Phillip Hinchcliffe and script writer Robert Holmes brought the new 4th Doctor to... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Mr G Turner
5.0 out of 5 stars The Genesis of the Doctor
Bought this as a present form my daughter and her boyfriend. This is the beginning. Hope they enjoy it as much as I do. All Sci-fi television starts heres. Watch and enjoy.
Published 8 months ago by EA Clewes
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely Buy This!
Not only is it well priced for three amazing stories (in an arc) with two new companions and a regeneration, but it also has interviews and other cool stuff to look at including... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Alex Hodgkinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant entrance to the classic series
So this was the first set of classic series stories that I bought on DVD and I don't regret it! It follows the story of the 4th Doctor (Tom Baker's) final days and the story... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Jamie
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