The Doctor is behaving very oddly. After signing a treaty with enemy aliens, he returns to his home planet, Gallifrey, and demands the Presidency of the High Council of Time Lords. His first act of rule is to banish Leela to the wastelands on pain of death. His second is to sabotage the planet's defence barriers, enabling full scale invasion.
Why has the Doctor joined forces with the militaristic Vardans? Is he out for revenge against the Time Lords? Or does he have a hidden agenda? But his allies are also hiding a dark secret, for behind them is a familiar enemy waiting for the right moment to attack...
This story was originally broadcast on BBC1 between 4th February 11th March 1978. It stars Tom Baker. Produced by Graham Williams. Directed by Gerald Blake Liner.
Commentary by Louise Jameson (Leela), John Leeson (K-9), Anthony Read (Writer) and Mat Irvine (Visual Effects Designer)
Out of Time: The cast and crew look back at the making of this story, featuring Chris Tranchell (Andred), Milton Johns (Castellan Kelner) and Colin Mapson (Visual Effects Designer)
The Rise and Fall of Gallifrey: A look at how the portrayal of the Time Lords and their home planet has changed over the years
The Elusive David Agnew Script editors Terrance Dicks and Anthony Read try to find out who really wrote The Invasion of Time
Deleted Scenes From the film sequences for Parts Five and Six
Optional CGI Effects Continuity BBC1 continuity announcements from 1978
Radio Times Billings Listings from Radio Times (PDF DVD-ROM)
Coming Soon Trailer
Production Information Subtitles
Digitally remastered picture and sound quality
Its fair to say that The Invasion Of Time has its problems, and even the more devoted of Doctor Who fans rarely ranks it in their top 20. The cheaper-than-usual looking Vardan monsters dont help, and when the Sontarans arrive theyre arguably in the weakest shape they were ever seen in on the show.
But thats not to say that The Invasion Of Time is without a good few merits. Baker is on terrific form here, and any episode that explores the Tardis and Gallifrey in a little more depth always has worth to it.
The Invasion Of Time has also been given the two-disc special edition treatment, and the copious extra features dont disappoint. Classic Doctor Who double DVDs have a strong reputation for being superb special editions, and the same is again true here.
So while The Invasion Of Time is no classic (and, in fact, is far from it), it's still an interesting entry into the heritage of the good Doctor, and a feast for fans of the show. Perhaps a better story for the next DVD releases though, please --Jon Foster