Jon Pertwee's Doctor is sent by the Time Lords to deliver a mysterious sealed container to an unknown recipient. So begins The Mutants
, the penultimate adventure in the ninth series of Doctor Who (1972), a run that also included The Sea Devils
and The Day of the Daleks
. The Doctor and Jo (Katy Manning), find themselves on a space station belonging to Earth's crumbling 30th-century empire, while below the planet Solos is on the verge of independence, a situation the corrupt Marshal (Paul Whitsun-Jones) is at pains to avert. What follows is a tale of opposing factions, assassination, genetic mutations and running around in caves. The story concerns the aftermath of empire, a topic very relevant in the Britain of 1972, and the devastating environmental effects of industrial development (though with the ecology movement then gathering force, the following year's The Green Death
addressed similar topics far more effectively).
There are plenty of elements packed into The Mutants, yet the story feels padded and, the mutant costumes apart, is not helped by weak production values. Though far from a classic, this is still an entertaining Doctor Who adventure with Geoffrey Palmer in a small supporting role and a startling homage to the Monty Python "It's" man. The video quality is variable, not because of a tape fault but due to the source material. --Gary S Dalkin
When a strange message pod turns up at UNIT HQ, the Doctor and his assistant Jo suddenly find themselves involved in another dangerous mission for the Time Lords. The TARDIS takes them to Skybase One above the inhospitable Solos. It is the 30th century and the planet is about to gain independence from Earth’s glorious empire. But someone on Solos has other plans and, alarmingly, the natives are slowly mutating into fierce-looking creatures. It’s time for the Doctor and Jo to find out why...
• Commentary by Katy Manning (Jo Grant) and Garrick Hagon (Ky), Christopher Barry (director), Terrance Dicks (script editor), Bob Baker (co-writer), Brian Hodgson (special sounds supervisor) and Jeremy Bear (designer), Moderated by Nicholas Pegg.
• Mutt Mad Cast and crew look back at the making of the story
• Race Against - Time Noel Clarke narrates a documentary looking at the representation of non-white actors in Doctor Who and on British TV as a whole
• Blue Peter Peter Purves looks at a collection of Doctor Who monsters
• Dressing Doctor Who
• Radio Times Billings (PDF DVD-ROM –PC/Mac)
• Programme Subtitles
• Production Information Subtitles
• Photo Gallery
• Coming Soon Trailer
• Digitally remastered picture and sound quality