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Doctor Who - The E-Space Trilogy (Warriors' Gate / Full Circle / State of Decay) [VHS] [1963]

Tom Baker , Lalla Ward    Parental Guidance   VHS Tape
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
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Product details

  • Actors: Tom Baker, Lalla Ward, John Leeson, Matthew Waterhouse
  • Producers: John-Nathan-Turner
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: BBC
  • VHS Release Date: 3 Nov 1997
  • Run Time: 279 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CVA6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 30,877 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Three stories from Tom Baker's final season as the Doctor, which see Gallifrey's favourite son, plus companions Romana and K9, sucked through a Charged Vacuum Emboitment into E-Space. In 'Full Circle', the TARDIS lands on Alzarius, and the Doctor encounters the descendants of a crashed starliner's crew. 'State of Decay' sees the Alzarian Adric stow away on board the TARDIS when it arrives on a medieval planet ruled by three vampires. Finally, in 'Warriors' Gate', the Doctor and his companions are hijacked by the time-sensitive Tharil, Biroc, and stranded in a white void which could contain the gateway back to N-Space. This was the last story to feature Romana and K9 Mark II (although Mark III featured later the same year in 'K9 and Company').


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Marooned 3 Sep 2003
Format:VHS Tape
This trilogy covers the Doctor's adventures in E-space, a smaller universe accessed by the TARDIS after it accidentally slipped through a CVE. In the first story "Full Circle", Romana has to be taken back to Gallifrey. But following the mishap with the CVE, they end up on Alzarius instead, just as the legendary Mistfall is setting in. This is where we first see the mathematical whiz Adric, who a lot of fans found annoying. I actually liked Adric.
My favourite story out of the trilogy is the middle one, "State of Decay". I found this story quite scary when I first saw it as an impressionable child back in the 1980s. "State of Decay" takes place after "Full Circle" but it was actually filmed before "Full Circle", so strictly speaking this is the first time Adric appears in the show. The setting is quasi-medieval, a backwater planet where peasants toil for the sinister Lords - "The Three Who Rule". For over a thousand years things have been the same. A primitive society where learning is forbidden. The vampire Lords rule from a rocket-shaped Tower which looms over the village. Young people are periodically selected from the village to "serve" the Lords. A band of rebels survives in the wastelands. If you look at this story too closely however, you will find plot holes. For example, Lord Aukon could detect the presence of strong alien minds (the Doctor, Romana and Adric), yet he failed to notice the rebellious streak in Ivo's mind. This is especially disturbing when Aukon said "We have bred dullness, conformity, obedience into those clods for twenty generations." Aukon couldn't locate the rebels' hideout either. Nevertheless, the Doctor is up against a formidable enemy in this adventure. Isn't he always?
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
In the first video "Full Circle" the Doctor and his companions Romana an K9 arrive on the planet Alzarius not there intended destination as the Tardis was knocked off course and is now in Exo-Space a completely different universe, there is plenty of intrigue in this appealing story which also marks the beginning of the companion Adric (Mathew Waterhouse).
In video 2 "State of Decay" the Doctor meets the Timelords greatest foe the vampires who were banished into exo-space by Rassilon himself. This story is one of my favourites as there is such a great dark secret laying underneath the tower ruled by the three.
In the last story "Warriors Gate" the Tardis is brought to a place by the Tharils who are a being hunted down and enslaved. Can the Doctor help? You'll just have to watch and see.
This story also marks the end of the much loved companions K9 who first appeared in "The Invisible Enemy" and the female timelord Romana who first appeared in the episode "The Ribos Operation" in the "Key To Time Season" it is a very momentus episode and so I would urge anyone to watch it, as well as the two episodes leading up to it.
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32 of 36 people found the following review helpful
By John
Format:DVD
Chris Bidmead (who wrote Tom Baker's swan-song Logopolis) as script-editor, & John Nathan-Turner, as producer of Doctor Who, favoured a return to 'hard' sci-fi (that is, the foregrounding in the narrative of quite elaborate & difficult scientific concepts such as Charged Vacuum Emboitments) for Tom Baker's final season. Hence this 'trilogy' - very loosely framed by the Doctor & Romana becoming trapped in E-Space, a smaller universe somehow external to our own, & having to escape from it back into our N-(normal)-Space. I'm ambivalent about the merits of this approach. The final story in the trilogy, Warriors' Gate, has, to my mind, a near-incomprehensible denoument, and throughout lacks proper attention to the basic story-telling. Script-editor, writer and director all laugh on the commentary-track about how now it's on dvd you can watch it over & over & perhaps finally understand it, but the fact is that it barely makes sense, & less chat about CVEs and the like, and more attentio to dramatic & psychological density and depth, would have produced a more gripping result.

Interesting, in State of Decay, the vampire story, Bidmead rewrote Terrance Dicks' script massively (to Dicks' chagrin) in line with his more science-fictional vision and the director, who'd originally agreed to direct the story because of its Hammer-Horror gothicism, refused to do the job unless they went back to Dicks' original script, which they did - a singularly rare occurrence in television or film. Dicks does concede that Bidmead contributed the entertaining rocket denoument.

Everyone is quite candid about Tom Baker & Lalla Ward's tempestuous off-screen relationship, pointing out that on a bad day Tom refuses to look at Lalla in their scenes together.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real science, great fiction 30 Nov 2011
Format:DVD
A very good value way of getting three stories that at worse are above average, and at best are quite brilliant at times. Production values are elevated from the three prior seasons. Tom Baker is still strong as the Doctor, although appropriately jovial, depending on the script writer.

The set is made up of three stories, which were only "linked" as the "E-Space Trilogy" many years after transmission. There is a connection - in the first story they fall into an alternative universe, and by the end of Warriors' Gate have returned to the original universe. There are consequences all round to the falling into and coming out of the E-Space (as opposed to N-Space) universe.

Full Circle may be written by an 18 year old, but wow, what a piece of insightful writing for someone so young; whilst script editor Chris Bidmead may have helped somewhat there is still a huge amount of clever writing by the original author both in terms of concepts and in characterisation. State of Decay is by Terrance Dicks, who wrote several stories, but is perhaps best remembered as either the script editor for the Pertwee era, or as the writer of so many Doctor Who novels in the 1970s and 1980s. Warriors's Gate is written by Stephen Gallagher a famous name perhaps more synonymous with horror/fantasy writing. All three scripts are very well written and fresh. All feature some guest actors who are well known from other programmes, such as George Baker in Full Circle, and Clifford Rose and Kenneth Cope in Warriors' Gate.

Three very good Doctor Who stories at a very good price is worthy of 5 stars, however, not all fans like 1980s Doctor Who, believing, for example, Adric to be the worst companion, which is very hard to see in these stories as he is still very amiable.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Adric forever!
Always my favourite Dr Who assistant, love seeing these stories all over again, I had forgotten most of it. Delighted I now have this group of stories in my collection. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Fintan15
3.0 out of 5 stars A curiosity of stories...
Full Circle, State of Decay & Warrior's Gate.

Tearing my hair out with ambivalence.
The Tom Baker era is the most frustrating; the change in producers and the... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Geoffrey Cole
5.0 out of 5 stars Marshmen, Vampires and Tharils - Adventures in E-Space!
Early in January 2009, and the `Doctor Who' DVD range begins with a brand new box-set release. This is `The E-Space Trilogy'! Read more
Published 3 months ago by Tim Bradley
4.0 out of 5 stars Two out of Three Ain't Bad
I remember watching these when I was a tiny little kid and was just starting to watch Dr. Who. I then relived them on UK Gold some years later. Read more
Published 5 months ago by M. McGowan
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
Another favourite. Especially the State of Decay - Goodness that is wonderful Costumes, acting, music. Definitely recommended for one of the best stories and companions. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Dawn Harvey
5.0 out of 5 stars Represents the Best of 1980s Who
Cards on the table, I'm not a massive fan of 1980s Who. From poor scripts to poor production values and (yes, let's say it) poor choices of Doctors and a tendency under producer... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Craig
4.0 out of 5 stars E space trilogy
Fast, safe transaction. It was well described, reasonably priced and as a DR Who fan another set to add to my DVD collection.
Published 6 months ago by Paul R. Whittaker
5.0 out of 5 stars Great set
This was bought as a Christmas gift for my son who requested it. He said it was a great set and enjoyed it very much. It arrived on time and was well packaged.
Published 8 months ago by galadrial
5.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Who - The E-Space Trilogy (1980-1981) - When the 4th Doctor...
Tom Baker's last series of Doctor Who was the beginning of changes starting with `Full Circle', the third story of the eighteen series when the 4th Doctor (Tom Baker), Romana II... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Mr G Turner
5.0 out of 5 stars More of Doctor Who's best stories.
50 years of Doctor Who. What stories do you recommend to new viewers? The first story "An Unearthly Child"? Read more
Published 14 months ago by Bjørn Melbøe
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