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Doctor Who - The Trial Of A Time Lord [VHS] [1986]

Colin Baker , Nicola Bryant    Parental Guidance   VHS Tape
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Colin Baker, Nicola Bryant, Brian Blessed, Bonnie Langford, Lynda Bellingham
  • Format: PAL, Colour, Full Screen, HiFi Sound
  • Language: English
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: BBC Worldwide
  • VHS Release Date: 1 Oct 1993
  • Run Time: 350 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008T4UT
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 81,670 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

The longest 'Doctor Who' story ever. The Doctor (Colin Baker) is put on trial by his people the Time Lords for interference in the affairs of others; three segments of his past and future are presented as evidence. 'The Mysterious Planet' shows the Doctor and Peri (Nicola Bryant) in a battle with a megalomaniac machine on the planet Ravalox, but what are the mysterious 'secrets' it protects? 'Mindwarp' shows the Doctor apparently betraying Peri to the vile Sil (Nabil Shaban) and the Mentors - can the Matrix be falsifying the evidence against the Doctor? In his defence he presents 'Terror of the Vervoids', a future story where the Earth is threatened by evil plant life forms. In the final two episodes, 'The Ultimate Foe', the Doctor learns the truth about his prosecuting counsel, the Valeyard (Michael Jayston), and has to enter the Matrix to battle for his remaining lives. This was Colin Baker's last story as the Doctor.


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Let the defence rest 18 April 2011
Format:DVD
As a thirteen year old I had no concept of the behind-the-scenes struggle to keep Doctor Who on air; I had no more knowledge of the programme's dwindling audiences or fan and press criticisms of its producer - John Nathan-Turner. What I did know was that after 18 tortuous months my favourite programme was back; with a promised fourteen week long epic story which would see my hero on trial for his very existence!

This long-awaited box set from 2entertain separates the trial into four individual stories; the first, written by fan-favourite Robert Holmes, is entitled `The Mysterious Planet', and sees The TARDIS hijacked and brought onto a space station on which an inquisition has been set up to investigate The Doctor's interference in the affairs of other worlds and races. As the camera pans across the side of the giant spaceship it is clear that an effort is being made to improve production values and this is immediately successful with such an impressive start to the story.
We are subsequently introduced to the mercenary Sabalom Glitz, played with relish by the excellent Tony Selby, and his faithful assistant `Dibber'. The pair are classic Holmesian creations and add weight to a somewhat unoriginal storyline. Switching between the inquisition and the events on the planet Ravalox, where Glitz and Dibber are attempting to knock-out a mysterious transmitter, The Doctor watches from the court as he and his assistant, Peri, become involved with a rebellion which seeks to overthrow the planet's despotic ruler `The Immortal'.
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59 of 67 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Straying from the straight and narrow 30 Sep 2008
By Hector Lerbioz VINE VOICE
Format:DVD
With flagging ratings, a script editor in bitter creative conflict with the producer, a final episode that had to be re-written from scratch at the last minute, the behind-the-scenes dramas faced by the production team of 1986's THE TRIAL OF A TIME LORD mirrored the fictional pressures upon Colin Baker's Doctor, here put on trial by his own people.

Although the story is presented as 1 ongoing narrative, the episodes have traditionally been divided up into 4 separate sections of the trial (with the non-canonical titles: THE MYSTERIOUS PLANET, MINDWARP, TERROR OF THE VERVOIDS and THE ULTIMATE FOE). The 4 discs in the set reflect this division.

Overall, the concept of the trial itself is not a success, although the actors involved work hard (Michael Jayston is particularly good). Part of the problem is that we're never quite sure how the Time Lord's legal system works. Inexplicable absurdities of plotting mean that as a perceptive viewer following episode by episode, one cannot really take the legal proceedings seriously. Furthermore as the first 3 sections of the trial mainly involve Colin Baker's Doctor and Michael Jayston's Valeyard arguing about the events that they're watching on the Matrix screen, even as early as episode 3 the trial scenes have become repetitive and intrusive. It really should not have taken until episode 13 for things to get exciting in the court room.

Put simply TOATL was not what the public wanted and was deemed a failure. Certainly its interminable length put off the casual viewer, and perhaps it was just a bit too left field for its own good. Poor Colin Baker, as the leading man, got the blame for the perceived shortcomings of the series and was asked to leave the role of the Doctor not long after the end of the original transmission.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Trial & Error 21 Nov 2013
By Timelord007 TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Positive.
1)Colin Baker star's as the underrated Sixth Doctor whom gives an excellent performance in this linking 14 part Trial season.
2)This story has many twists throughout it's 4 linking story's.
3)A exellent array of extras come with this boxset.

Negative.
1)There were many behind the scenes dramas during this production that affects the tone of the stories.
2)The Trial plot runs throughout the season & may not be to every viewer's taste who would prefer the stand alone type story's.

Trivia.
1)Colin Baker was fired not long after episode 14 aired.
2)This season saw the departure of script writer Eric Saward who after several disagreements with JNT quit during the most troubled times in the show.

Review.
This season comprises four story's Three 4 part storys & one 2 part story.

The Doctor is taken out of time to stand trial for breaking the first law of time of interfering in time & history under the law's of Gallifrey & faces prosecution from the mysterious Valeyard.

The Doctor has his suspicions that the trial is a farce & senses a conspiracy against him as evidence presented seems to be altered or edited.

So the trial begins...

The storys make up season 23 of The Trial Of A Timelord & the working titles for the storys were.

The Mysterious Planet ***Stars.
Robert Holmes writes the opening adventure set on the planet Ravalox 2 million years in the future were the Doctor tells Peri that there are similarities between Ravalox & Earth after finding several earthbound artefacts & what looks like an old abandoned London Subway.

But can this really be earth as it's position is in a different point in the galaxy.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars The amazing Sixth Doctor!
The best Classic Doctor! Colin Baker is always an amazing actor and he plays the Sixth Doctor very well. The DVD's are full of extras and the quality of image is very good.
Published 2 months ago by Barbara
5.0 out of 5 stars colin baker dr no 6
Thanks for the DVDs it arrived today it is one I always wanted I always have a very prompt service would like to buy more DVDs online bob
Published 3 months ago by BobHellier
4.0 out of 5 stars Review
This story was maybe too ambitious for Doctor Who - a seemingly good idea on paper, putting the Doctor on trial, mirroring the real situation that the program was under scrutiny by... Read more
Published 4 months ago by WMiller
5.0 out of 5 stars Ok story based on past viewing
Storys Ok typical of the time but i bought this for the extras really theres a huge amount of them!!
Published 4 months ago by marc hopwood
1.0 out of 5 stars A Real Trial To Watch
Guilty of wasting my time, I sentence the master tapes of this steaming pile of do do to the furnace, no appeal, take it down. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Cliff Hanger
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Acting
More than likely buy again in the very near future if I see some more great Series that I like
Published 4 months ago by GWJ Painter
4.0 out of 5 stars Gets better as you go along
Perhaps the first story is not the best but I particular like the story staged on the space station. Keep with it . It gets
much better as it goes on. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Dawn Harvey
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb box set
This box set consists of all four linked stories that comprised the 23rd series of Doctor Who alongside a generous helping of extra features. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Benjamin Coupland
4.0 out of 5 stars The verdict is...
The mid-1980s were a very turbulent time for "Doctor Who." After the 22nd season ended in 1985, the show was cancelled. Read more
Published 9 months ago by The Valeyard
5.0 out of 5 stars Season long Doctor Who story arc.
Produced during the most difficult time in the serial's history, with BBC executives literally putting the Time Lord on trial, and with a chronic shortage of both scripts and... Read more
Published 10 months ago by mr nicholas stokes
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