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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Planet of Classic TV
1975's classic Tom Baker story, Planet of Evil, is yet another Hinchcliffe / Holmes / Baker masterpiece that I absolutely adore. This is a very straightforward tale, no great depth to the plot so it's not taxing on the brain and makes for essential late night viewing. I, like others, have found that this story's incredible design work stands out as just possibly the best...
Published on 1 Jan. 2013 by The Real M.B.E. Of Tooting

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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent story, good extras
This story when first transmitted was watched by one in five people in Britain - pretty impressive. What they saw was the Doc and Sarah landing on a lurid planet (on the commentary Baker says it reminded him of the inside of his mind!) where they're immediately suspected of having something to do with the murders that are going on there. And this blaming takes up too much...
Published on 14 Nov. 2007 by Charles


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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the pit of peril, 17 Oct. 2007
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
A strong doctor who story from 1975 comes to dvd. in this four part tale, the fourth doctor and sarah jane smith land on a planet called zeta minor, far in the future and at the edge of the known universe. An expedition from a nearby human world has come here looking for a new energy source. after being attacked in the jungle of the planet by a monster, they escape on their spaceship, but the monster may not have gone away...

The show was drawing heavily on the influence of classic horror movies at the time, and this is very jekyll and hyde. The planet has a dark side. And so does one of the crew, as they slowly become a monster. scary stuff follows as the crew of the ship are imperilled, and there's a great scene when the doctor reminds one scientist character of the responsibility he has to face up to. a great feature of this story is the jungle set used for the planet surface. It's incredibly convincing and well detailed.

Dvd extras:

a commentary from tom baker and elisabeth sladen - the doctor and sarah - the producer philip hinchcliffe, and actor prentis hancock, who played the captain of the ship.

A twenty five minute long documentary about the making of the story. fascinating stuff although it does concentrate more on the production than the acting.

But there's also a fifteen minute long documentary which does talk about the actor's experiences, both in this story and in doctor who in general.

There's a short bit of film of the story being recorded.

The usual continuity trailers, audio options and information text and photo gallery.

And a trailer for the forthcoming dvd destiny of the daleks. which is very well edited and possibly makes the tale look better than it actually is. But we'll come to that one when that dvd comes out

to find the only easter egg on the dvd, go the first page of special features, move the pointer down to the bottom, and then click left on the dvd remote control, and you will find film of the producer going through old bbc files [a little of this is seen in the main documentary] showing the documentation about the making of the story, and talking about the memories it brings back. This is probably the longest running one of these they've ever done, and it's worth watching.

A good little package for a good little story
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Tom Baker classic, 11 Sept. 2007
This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
Planet of Evil borrows quite freely from the 1950's classic sci-fi movie "The Forbidden Planet", even down to the crew members of the spaceship having virtually identical uniforms, but is a damn fine Doctor Who story anyway. Some of the opening shots of a water-logged jungle world, all on film, would not look out of place on the new better funded modern series.
The story is relatively simple - a geological expedition from the faltering Morestran empire has travelled to the remote planet of Zeta Minor to try and find new sources of energy to restore their empire to it's former glories. One of the members of the expedition is attacked by an invisible entity and just manages to send a distress signal before succumbing. The TARDIS intercepts the distress call and arrives on Zeta Minor at about the same time as a military probe ship from Morestra. The Doctor and Sarah immediately become prime suspects, but the Doctor is sure something else is afoot...
A creature from another universe, a universe of anti-matter, preciously guards the planet of Zeta Minor and will not allow any part of it's removal, even down to the minerals the Morestrans desire.
The scripts for the story are uniformly tight and quick moving, and David Maloney's direction is slick and creative. The vast majority of the cast put in stirling performances, particularly Frederick Jaeger as the deluded Professor Sorenson, and the redoubtable Ewen Solon as grizzled veteran officer Vishinsky. Tom Baker and Lis Sladen are also on top form. As the previous reviewer noted, the idea of portraying the anti-matter creature as just a menacing red outline rather than a man in a suit is inspired and helps maintain the underlying feeling of alien menace. This is Doctor Who from it's classic era at it's very best.
As ever with a Classic Doctor Who release from the BBC, it is packed with excellent extras. Tom Baker's commentaries are always worth listening to as are the featurettes.
This will be another fine addition to any Doctor Who collection.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Anti-Matter Of Life And Death, 11 Nov. 2010
By 
Mr. Jonathon T. Beckett "vampire lover" (Dracula's Crypt) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
When The Doctor and Sarah Jane respond to a distress signal, the TARDIS materialises on the planet Zeta Minor at the very edge of the Universe. They find a couple of mummified bodies and no sign of life. Meanwhile a Morestran ship sends a rescue party down to the surface of Zeta Minor to find out what has happened to Professor Sorenson's expedition party. Sorenson is alive and he believes he has found the solution to Morestra's problem. Their sun is dying and Sorenson has discovered an alternative crystalline energy source. The Doctor and Sarah immediately come under suspicion for the deaths, but there is a deadly force on Zeta Minor, one that is determined to stop anybody leaving the planet alive....
This little gem is often the forgotten story in the terrific Season Thirteen. It is in fact a rather excellent, with a great storyline involving the perils of messing with the balance of nature. It is helped no end by the wonderful jungle sets, a very evocative realisation of an alien planet, one of the 'classic' series' finest. Both Prentis Hancock and Ewen Solon excel as members of the Morestran crew, and Fredrick Jaeger is great as the mentally tortured Sorenson, a man of science who has been blinded to the dangers of his discoveries. Tom Baker and Liz Sladen were in their second season together and it shows as they are so comfortable with eachother. Companion Harry Sullivan had been left on Earth at the end of the last story, 'Terror Of The Zygons'. Finally, the scenes where the Anti-Matter creature attacks various crew members are very tense and the wizened corpses look great.
In a season full of stories with big horror influences, this one which owes a debt to 'Forbidden Planet' is a very fine tale indeed. Nice extras too. 5 out of 5
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "This planet's alive" - on DVD, 21 Aug. 2007
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This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
The reviewers above me have more or less got the concept of this dark classic sci-fi chiller down to a fine art. So I thought I'd concentrate on the DVD extras instead. Here goes:-

* The commentary features Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen, Prentis Hancock and Philip Hinchcliffe (Producer).

* A Darker Side - A featurette with Producer Philip Hinchcliffe, Louise Marks (Writer), Roger Murray-Leach (Set Designer), David Maloney (Director), plus Tom Baker and Elisabeth Sladen.

* Planetary Performance - The making of this story from the actor's perspective. Featuring Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen, Prentis Hancock, Tony McEwan and Graham Weston.

* Studio Scene - The only surviving behind the-scene footage from the story.

The above are the main features, but obviously there's the usual extras as well, and hopefully this will be nicely scrubbed up with a sharper picture and clearer sound. This is very highly recommended - so order a copy now!
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4.0 out of 5 stars The beginning of The 4th Doctor/Sara Jane Adventures, 14 Dec. 2014
This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
Following Doctor Who's 12th season opening serial Terror of the Zygons, companion Harry Sullivan departed the show, leaving Sara Jane Smith and The Doctor and thankfully the two of them have such great chemistry that the result is one of the best Doctor/Companion duos in the history of the show. While Planet of the Evil may not be one of the strongest stories in the history of the show, it's still a very entertaining serial with great pefromances all around including from Elisabethn Sladen as Sara Jane and Tim Baker as The Doctor.
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4.0 out of 5 stars It don't anti-matter anymore, 22 April 2009
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One of Tom Baker's early outings as the wandering Time Lord, The Face of Evil suffers somewhat from feeling like one of those dull late-period Jon Pertwee stories with a group of humanoids stranded on an alien planet and being beseiged by an invisible enemy. What makes this story a cut above those is its performances; Baker and Elisabeth Sladen are clearly enjoying themselves and the former takes centre stage easily, providing a blueprint for the kind of manic performance he that would become a hallmark of his tenure as The Doctor.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story,great cast,brilliant atmosphere., 31 May 2009
By 
Gregory Shanley (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
This is a real gem,the iconic partnership of Tom Baker's fourth Doctor and Elisabeth Sladen's Sarah-Jane Smith is in full flow as they get invloved in the sinister going ons on in Zeta Minor.
The late David Maloney was one of the best Who directors,he has been responsible for "The War Games","Genesis of the Daleks" and "The Deadly Assassin",to name a few as well as "Planet Of Evil".
Roger Murray's-Leach's jungle set is great and contributes much to the menacing atmosphere of the story,the decision to shot the jungle scenes,on film,a great idea.
Frederick Jaeger is superb as the tortured,obssessed Professor Sorenson,the scenes as he transforms to the Anti-Matter Creature a hoomage to "Dr Jekyll and My Hyde",indeed other parts of the story very similar to "The Forbidden Planet" movie.
Ewen Solon is a friendly reassuring face as Vishinsky,Space 1999 actor,Prentis Hancock's Salamander is very similar to Vaber,the part he played in "Planet of the Daleks",its a relief when he gets killed.
A great classic from the gothic period of Phillip Hinchliffe's tenure as the producer of Dr Who.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Return to the forbidden planet, 1 May 2011
This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
Not the strongest Tom Baker story - he was still finding his feet - but it marked the cusp of the programme's golden era, which would see an unbroken run of classic stories ensue over the next four years.
The Doctor and his companion, journalist Sarah-Jane Smith, arrive on creepy jungle planet, where a rescue party of humanoids has landed in search of the crew of a crashed spaceship. The time travellers quickly find themselves accused of murder, in true Doctor Who style. However, The Doctor soon discovers that there is anti-matter on the planet (Zeta Minor) and that one of the crew has become infected by it, resulting in a Jekyll and Hyde mutation which has led him to murder his compatriots.
The performances from Baker and Sladen, plus the story's effects (dated now but impressive then given the paltry budget) are what lifts this fairly ordinary story, which borrowed heavily from early cult sci-fi movie 'The Forbidden Planet'.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best!, 12 July 2012
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This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
According to many critics, the Tom Baker years of Doctor Who were THE BEST, and I must say that as far as my three viewings (hitherto) are concerned, they are simply superb. This particular movie has a very strong story, and the acting (esp. the tension aboard the ship) is superb for every major & minor character. I would not try to summarise the story, since that had been attempted by many. Highly RECOMMENDED for family viewing, even for those who are somewhat averse towards science-fiction.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still Scaaary!, 5 Dec. 2007
By 
JA Fairhurst "johnfair" (Edgeley, Stockport) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] (DVD)
I was about ten when this was first broadcast and it terrified me then. So I was a bit wary of the effect it would have now but the story itself was still scary. There were ropey effects - the dessicated remains of the dead crewmen were clearly plastic mannequins. But... the basic set dressing was excellent, with a truly creepy jungle managing to up the tension factor by a immeasurable degree and with the new CGI effects for Sorenson's eyes (I assume - I don't recall them being that impressive :) ) and the Morestran weapons.

The antimatter creatures were excellent, recalling one of my favourite science fiction films, 'The Forbidden Planet', and its equally impressive id-beast.

Plenty of additional extras add to the value including one piece on how the jungle was created, and for how much - you hear how Dr Who was made on a shoe-string but to actually be shown the evidence is sort of humbling...
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Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975]
Doctor Who - Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975] by David Maloney (DVD - 2007)
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