Yes, the acting is hammy & not taken seriously in the slightest, but what do you expect from a Tom Baker Story!
I know.. Not all of Tom's are like that. But this one certainly is! In fact, It's like watching something more like Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy or Monty Python!
If like me, you are interested in Politics, you'll love this story for it's satirical humour & blatant disregard for Bureaucracy! All aimed at mocking the system! Bob Holmes never ceases to amaze me with lines like "These Taxes.. They are like Sacrifices?" Asks Leela. "Sort of, only paying Taxes is more painful!"
There are lots of little things in there that make this a very entertaining story. Of course, the children wouldn't have ever cottoned on, but this isn't meant just for children. (You hear me me Moffat?!)
Contrast is met with confined studio shots, & capacious film & location material. As well as a balance of tongue in cheek humour, pugnacious violence & horror. Who ever thought of being "Steamed" to prolong the pain of death to satisfy the villain's nefarious thirst for torture of his victims, has a sick mind. But an innovative one! (Ever heard of that word Moffat!)
The word for today's story is "Avarice", & everyone is obsessed with monies! This worryingly bares resemblance to today's predicament, what with the constant fear of recession & the collapse of the euro.
This story isn't one of the more memorable ones sure, but that's not to say that it can't entertain you from start to finish. There are many good moments in here like the hilarious initial meeting of the Doctor & the Gather; all that talk of raspberry leaves & earth's departure or what ever. The point is they play off each other just perfectly! It's K9's first proper outing. Leela shows her propensity for violence & has some great lines like "Touch me again, & I'll fillet you" & "Before I die, I'll see this rat hole ankle-deep in blood... That is a promised thing". Leela really saves the day in this one, & is such a joy to watch. (Unlike companions now)
A Good Doctor Who story doesn't need to be epic, action packed, sexed up, frenetic, romantic, historic, & what ever else you can throw in there to attract as many viewers as possible. And this little number proves it. It's a charming, cosy, well written, even paced, entertaining little trouble maker of a story! One that I have frequented on many occasions. And due to its re-watch value, it's a story I shall be visiting again. (Thank goodness its lastability isn't cut short due to the entire story relying on a twist at the end or something! Especially one that doesn't make sense.. Ever..)
"Perhaps everyone runs from the Taxman!" - Leela