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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoughtful but sometimes overly dogmatic
Sandifer's analysis of this key period of Doctor Who is smart and challenging, treating the stories as serious texts and subjecting them to appropriately rigorous analysis. However, he clearly has a number of bugbears that recur through the book, most obviously his allegations of racism with regard to The Talons of Weng Chiang. Now, I agree that some aspects of Talons...
Published 6 months ago by Alan Hansen

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Infuriating and challenging
Sandifer provides some interesting and thought provoking observations on the first part of Tom Baker's time as the Doctor, showing a commendable independence of thought. This is spoilt however by some ugly prose, which makes reading the book jarring and tiresome. Additionally he is prone to tedious hyperbole, especially when dealing with views that differ from his own...
Published 6 months ago by M. J. Stead


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoughtful but sometimes overly dogmatic, 5 Feb 2014
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Sandifer's analysis of this key period of Doctor Who is smart and challenging, treating the stories as serious texts and subjecting them to appropriately rigorous analysis. However, he clearly has a number of bugbears that recur through the book, most obviously his allegations of racism with regard to The Talons of Weng Chiang. Now, I agree that some aspects of Talons make for uncomfortable viewing today and this should not be glossed over. But those parts are surely forgiveable in the context of the time in which the story was made, not least the yellowface performance of John Bennett as Li H'sen Chang. Sure, discuss these issues, point fingers where it matters, but Sandifer pretty much dismisses this hugely popular story entirely because it doesn't fit with his 21st-century sensitivities. And immediately afterwards he dismisses Mary Whitehouse as "a sanctimonious prude of the worst sort". Which is probably a pretty accurate summary of the ghastly woman but it could also fairly be directed at him.

It's a pity because, as I said, I'd recommend this book highly for any serious fan of the original series (or Proper Who as it's known in my house). I know Sandifer's intentions are good – yes, racism is A Bad Thing – but a more nuanced response might have helped his cause better.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Infuriating and challenging, 4 Feb 2014
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M. J. Stead "Michael Stead" (Bournemouth, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: TARDIS Eruditorum: An Unofficial Critical History of Doctor Who Volume 4: Tom Baker and the Hinchcliffe Years (Paperback)
Sandifer provides some interesting and thought provoking observations on the first part of Tom Baker's time as the Doctor, showing a commendable independence of thought. This is spoilt however by some ugly prose, which makes reading the book jarring and tiresome. Additionally he is prone to tedious hyperbole, especially when dealing with views that differ from his own. The tone is closer to bullying diatribe than objective analysis. Useful, but not enjoyable.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sandifer hits it out of the park again, 20 April 2014
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Martin L. Meenagh (London) - See all my reviews
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Superb stuff, written in with considerable style, summing up the glory years of Doctor Who and placing them in a uniquely persuasive cultural context. This or any slice of the eruditorum are perfect for a wet weekend or those moments on the bus or tube...just be prepared to miss a stop or forget a meal.
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