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4.7 out of 5 stars75
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 14 July 2003
Restoration as ever is quite exceptional. Acting is a little stilted but WHO cares. worthwhile addition to the collection complete with wobbly daleks as well as dialog. The latest trend with BBC Who DVD is two disks with mounds of extras that makes the purchase price well worth it! The Movie version is glossier, but this TV version is rounder and more detailed. CGI effects available to view are good (you can't see the strings on the spaceships!) is an excellant feature. A big plus in this disk, we say goodbye to Susan! (why does that girl always twist her ankle (she did it many years later in the Five Doctors)
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The second Dalek outage was a fantastic one! Even better than the first!

This is Doctor Who at its best. The beginning episode sets a dark tone (check out the posters on the wall about dumping bodies).

The flying saucers are the worse I've ever seen - and this I think adds to the charm of the series. It shows how a low budget production can be great if the scripts, plot, and acting is just right.

This actually feels quite epic and is great watched in one go as well as being watched over a period of time.

The special features are top notch (if the flying saucers REALLY bug you then you can watch CGI smooth ones instead!) interviews are fab and the commentary is worth listening to.

The end of this story maybe explains why the Doctor seems rather obessed planet Earth and its people. It gets people who think Hartnell's doctor is self obsessed and heartless to re-assess their views on him.

The Dalek coming out of the Thames is one of the all time great Doctor Who moments.
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VINE VOICEon 8 December 2006
As all the other reviewers cover well, this is great acting, good dialogue and strong plot. Yes is sags slightly when the unnecessary extra monster appears, but most of the real monsters are humans - the ones that help the daleks and the ones that profiteer from the situation.

Not only does the strength of the cast / script shine brightly 40 years later, but for me the passage of time has helped make the 60's East London Docks seem more strange then they could ever have seen at the time and I find myself moved by the discontinuity of the unreachable past posing as the future yet to be.

Oh and it's a lot better than the film!
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on 28 July 2007
When the daleks first appeared in the second Doctor Who serial, at the end of 1963, they were an instant success. And so the first Doctor Who sequel was commissioned, and this - screened one year later - was the result. Again written by dalek creator Terry Nation, this story transports the metal baddies to the familiar setting of a future England.

Despite the very low budget, the whole 6 episodes have an epic feel, making good use of location filming and a huge number of sets (mostly crammed into one small studio), in a way that was almost unheard of in the days of early sixties television. Most of the London exterior scenes were shot in a single morning, enabling wide shots of daleks roaming a deserted capital.

As well as a credible departure for the doctor's grand-daughter, Susan (with a romance built up over the 6 episodes), there are also several iconic moments (daleks over westminster bridge, dalek emerging from the Thames, Barbara crashing through daleks in a dustcart, etc).

In places it gets over ambitious and there is an unnecessary extra monster, the slyther, which looks laughable today (but was quite popular in 1964). Also the dalek saucers don't really work - but there is an option to watch a new cgi version of those, which slips seamlessly into the existing footage.

As well as a great commentary with two of the shows stars, plus producer and director crammed into the studio, plus the usual information text running along the bottom of all episodes, giving insights and trivia about the making of each scene. Disc one also includes the original trailers from 1964 and those new cgi clips as a separate show.

Disc two features over two hours of additional features. There is a 20 minute interview with designer Spencer Chapman, a 10 minute featurette on the dalek voices and 45 minutesof memories from the supporting cast. These are a bit talking headish, but there is more to come:

Other gems include a radio play from the 90s, in which Jane Asher plays the grown up Susan looking back, and a Blue Peter clip from the height of dalekmania, with Valerie Singleton showing us how to make some distinctly unstable dalek cakes. A great little feature is a 6 minute extract from episode 6, superimposed over a plan of the studio showing the accompanying camera moves and the accompanying shooting script.

All in all, a superb release with extras to match. Impossible to fault.
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on 30 November 2011
The Dalek Invasion of Earth is a masterpiece of British television in the 1960's, I would only rate a couple of Dalek serials above this and they are true classics {Power + Genesis}. However you look at it, The Dalek Invasion of Earth is a true classic and deserves its mantle as one of the greats of Who, everything about this story exudes expense and craftsmanship, the location filming alone is the best the show has ever filmed, the deserted streets of abandoned London providing an eerie backdrop to events.

The DVD release is highly respectable and considering it is over 8 years old now, looks as if it was printed last month, the early releases {especially the B&W era} have very little in the way of bonus content, this release is packed full of documentaries and tit-bits catering to a wide variety of tastes and preferences. This DVD comes highly recommended and I dont think it could have been released any better, which is why the Beeb have no plans to re-release it in the future.

Highly recommended by this viewer,

Story 10/10
DVD release 12/10
Overall, you need to see this, so order now.

Many thanks for your time,

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VINE VOICEon 27 November 2004
This wonderful classic deserves to be seen because of BBC production values which existed during the early 1960s which made Doctor Who such a success. I recall watching this tea time serial during its first transmission, and admittedly dont remember a great deal about it apart from the scenes showing the Dalek emerging from the Thames, and the final scene with Susan staying behind as her grandfather and friends travelled to pastures new. Overall its an excellent buy because of the numerous extras which are worth the purchase price alone. Some of the surviving cast are interviewed and share their memories of working on the serial after 40 years. Picture and sound is very good, with numerous extras making it a good buy indeed.
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on 14 May 2008
This 2-Disc DVD set takes us back to the days of black and white and the first Doctor's era of Doctor Who. Set in the twenty-second century, the Daleks have subjugated the Earth's population with brainwashed Robomen. This was the second Dalek story that was made and is one of the best stories of the Hartnell era. If you can overlook the well-dated effects, there is much to admire in the tale. There is a moody build up in episode 1, culminating with one of the series most famous scenes - a Dalek rising up out of the River Thames. We also see the Daleks portrayed as ruthless fascists, conquering and enslaving. This, made in 1964, must have made quite an impression on the viewing public, with memories of the Second World War still fresh in the minds of many. The only real problem with this story is the Daleks plan to mine the core of the earth in order to be able to pilot it throughout the galaxy. This seems to be stretching things just a little too far. Nevertheless, a fine story, and watch out for an emotional farewell scene at the end of episode 6.
The disc set contains the usual array of DVD extras, including commentaries, trailers and interviews with members of the cast, including those who performed the voices of the Daleks. With the passage of time and the arrival of modern special effects, William Hartnell and his era tend to be overlooked by fans of the programme today. A pity! It may look a bit dated now, but if you want a taste of early Doctor Who stories and want to get some idea why the show became the national institution that it was (and still is) then here's a very good starting point.
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on 14 August 2005
It is no wonder that Dalek Invasion of Earth, together with the first Dalek story promoted mass Dalekmania in England. It is a great production.
Most people who have heard of this story are much more familiar with the Peter Cushing colour movie than the original TV version. The plots are virtually the same, although the original is in black and white with a much smaller budget.
There are times when the cheapness of the sets and limited techical effects (especially sound) really show, but as a piece of early 1960s TV production, it is excellent.
The Doctor Who main cast know they are acting in something special and really put their hearts into it. The additional cast also play it deadly serious and bring class to the production. It is a powerful piece as not only do the daleks appear genuinely terrifying but Susan leaves the cast and the character dynamics make their first big change.
It is not high-tech but it is a compelling watch.
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on 19 June 2003
This is one of THE masterpieces of Doctor Who.
The Doctor, Susan, Ian and Barbara finally reach London, but it's not London of the swinging sixties, but London 2164 where the Daleks have taken over and Mankind is a hunted species.
The party getting split up, the Doctor and Ian find themselves aboard a Dalek saucer while Barbara and Susan end up with the Resistance forces as they attack it. The Doctor is rescued while Ian gets a free ride to Bedfordshire, which has been transformed into a massive mining camp. Finally all the parties meet up to confound the daleks' plot to destroy the Earth.
This has a lot to live up to - the film made from this story line was excellent (for the time), however, it was far better in its way. Though some of the effects were a bit dodgy, the sight of daleks patrolling through a deserted London complete with the psychadelic sound track was truly creepy.
There are a load of extras as well, with the radio 'interview' with a grown up Susan being the piece-de-resistance IMO, especially as it explains why the Eurocrats seem so Otherworldly!!
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on 1 March 2011
The Dalek Invasion of Earth is an example of when the Daleks were new and exciting. In recent years, I've grown rather bored of the Doctor's enemies but in the 1960's they were cultural icons.

The six-part story is exciting and well acted (apart from some of the robo-men scenes) and the storyline is fantastic. The Daleks conquer Earth by dropping germ bombs and are digging to the Earth's core. The Doctor and Ian are seperated from Susan and Barbara and are taken to the Dalek ship to be turned into robo-men whilst the girls befriend rebels who plan to thwart the Daleks' plans.

The location shooting looks particuarly effective and the black and white really lends itself well to this story as I have always found science fiction a great deal more suspenceful in black and white. The four lead characters get a lot to do and when they are seperated they team up with other good supporting characters such as Tyler, Jenny and David. The action moves at a fast pace and there are some iconic images of the Daleks amidst the backdrop of famous landmarks in London. The story is that of survival and determination and is portrayed very well. It is also time to say goodbye to Susan and her departure is certainly a sad one. The Doctor's farewell to her is bound to bring a tear to the eye.

The DVD release has many special features too; such as commentary, interviews, photo gallery and many more for classic Doctor Who fans.
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