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3.8 out of 5 stars45
3.8 out of 5 stars
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Showing 1-10 of 10 reviews(4 star). Show all reviews
on 13 July 2010
With so much of Patrick Troughton's iconic performance as the second DOCTOR WHO seemingly lost forever, it would be churlish to suggest that it's rather a shame that THE DOMINATORS, which was the opening story of his final year in the role, survived when classics like THE POWER OF THE DALEKS or THE ABOMINABLE SNOWMEN were wiped, although maybe if it had been a "lost story" its mythical status would have improved. As it is this really isn't a high point of the Troughton era but it's a solid enough five episodes that lead directly into the next story THE MIND ROBBER which has been available on DVD for years and is regarded rather more fondly by fans of black and white DOCTOR WHO.

Nonetheless even run of the mill episodes of DOCTOR WHO starring Patrick Troughton are well worth seeing and there's quite a lot to enjoy in this troubled (and very 1960s) reflection on the nature of pacifism against brute strength. The Dominators themselves are a surly pair who bicker rather too much and have rather intrusive command hierarchy which tends to prevent them from managing to live up to their name, but despite this, their malevolent contrast with the peace-loving Dulcians is quite effective. Less effective is Cully the thirtysomething eternal teenager, not because of any lack of conviction in his performance it's just he seems to come across as being as much of a teenager as Steve McQueen does in "The Blob". The Dominators use robotic Quarks to do much of their dirty work and they make an impressive enough threat who are particularly sinister in episode one but the quirky eccentricity of their design did not do enough to ensure their iconic status and they would only appear once more in a tiny cameo at the end of Mr. Troughton's swansong THE WAR GAMES. The costume design is very odd. The Dominators themselves are quite nicely realised, but the Dulcians are dressed in outfits which look quite fetching on the young girls and yet manage to look slightly ridiculous on their male compatriots. Thankfully the older "wiser" characters get longer robes otherwise it could have got kind of scary (and not in a good way). Still any story that's got "national treasure" Brian Cant in it can't be all bad, so there's a fair amount of enjoyment to be had along the way.

However, it is the restoration job that has been done on these episodes really lifts them and they have never looked better and so the rather muddy print that made up its previous VHS release can now be well and truly forgotten. Some scenes trimmed for their "violence" have been restored too, so this is a much more complete version than was previously available and the cleaned up prints restore much of the subtle magic and sparkle of Patrick Troughton's characterisation of the Doctor. Patrick Troughton is on electrifying form and the magical alchemy of the three leads is magnificent throughout, with both Zoe (Wendy Padbury) and Jamie (Frazer Hines) making up an excellent TARDIS crew that is very fondly remembered.

When it comes to the extras package there are the now usual text commentaries, PDF materials and so forth alongside a couple of short documentaries. Troubles with the script are the main thrust of the 22 minute "behind the scenes" feature and another feature recording the press reaction to the programme over the course of the Patrick Troughton years is effective enough if a little disappointingly executed. The rather lively commentary is once more moderated by Toby Hadoke who deftly uses his wide knowledge of the programme to keep the many contributors - including Frazer Hines and Wendy Padbury - on topic and manages to tease out one or two enlightening insights into the everyday stresses behind the scenes on the show.
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on 31 July 2011
As other reviewers have said, this is not a 'classic' adventure but any survival from the Troughton days is a gem by definition....and this one is fun in its own humble little way. The Quarks are cute and they blow to bits very nicely. Troughton is in fine 'dotty uncle' mode.

The Dulcians live up to the first half of their name - unfortunately. The Dominators are more entertaining since they spend most of their time shouting at each other. Poor old Probationer Toba seems to be right most of the time. He wanted to shoot everyone on the planet as soon as they landed (which would have been a mercy, at least, for intergalactic fashion sense). But he was always getting told off by his boss. As each Quark gets knocked off, poor old Toba has to grit his teeth and pretend it hasn't happened. Am I the only one who felt a bit sorry for him? Probably.

There's an endearing touch of 'Play School' about the costumes, acting and plot in this story. This is underlined by the presence of the great Brian Cant, who gives a rather tactless speech about universal love and harmony until the poor Dominators can't take it anymore and throw him through......the round window.
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on 19 December 2014
Another fun romp from Troughton's last season as the Doctor. The story is engaging if sometimes less than dramatic, but the costume choices are fun and the robots, whilst not exactly terrifying from a modern perspective, are dramatic enough. It has aged, but not too badly, and is well worth a watch
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Patrick Troughton has long been one of my favourite Doctors, second only to Jon Pertwee. It is therefore with great anticipation that I look forward to a release of one of his all too rare surviving serials. Therefore I must admit to being a bit biased before reviewing this release.

It's a pretty good story. A planet of peace loving people is invaded by the ruthless Dominators, and their henchmen, the Quarks. The Doctor must help stop the invasion, but is hampered by the unwillingness of the natives to either believe his story of imminent invasion, and later, their inability to act and deny all their principles.

This is a story that works on several levels. It is an entertaining adventure, with lots of scrapes, cliff hangers, dastardly aliens with evil schemes. Doctor Who is always at its best when there is a juicy moral dilemma, and there is a great big one here. Just how do you save a people that do not want to be saved? Along with a decent performance from Troughton, Frasier Hines as Jamie and Wendy Padbury as Zoe this is a story with a lot to offer.

It's not all rosy and good. This was a troubled production, where the original script was butchered and changed so much that the writers took their names off it. This shows, especially in the final episode where the interesting original set up falls into a rather rushed ending. There were some very silly looking costume for the male Dulcians, though the female costumes were pretty good, especially on Wendy Padbury! The whole thing was done on the cheap, even by Doctor Who's standards, and this does show up in some of the sets. Finally there are the Quarks. Designed as a replacement for the Daleks, they are quite laughable boxes on legs with funny arms. Although the special effects the first time they kill someone are genuinely good and very disturbing.

This release from 2 Entertain is up to the usual standards. The picture and sound have been nicely restored and it looks pretty good. There is an interesting information text, with many fascinating notes, including the fact that it was cheaper to hire two people to play motionless mannequins than it was to hire two real mannequins! There is an interesting short film where Caroline John discusses the remarks made by TV critics in the newspapers about the Second Doctor. There are the usual stills, commentary and advert for the next release.

In summary, a good basic story, with some flaws toward the end and some dodgy production values, in a decent DVD release. Four stars.
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on 30 July 2010
In many aspects, i am a great fan of Hartnell and Troughton as Dr Who. AFter all, without them, would the series have become the instituation that it has.
A lot of people seem to recall them boht as they 'FAVE' doctor.
This story i would say is a total must for a doctor who fan, regardless of how much you rate the story.
It is a typical 1960's run of doctor who, and the newly formed team with Wendy Padbury replacing the 'Screaming' Deborah Watlin, although ZOE eventually became a bit of screamer herself, it is a shame for two strong characters like these two talented actresses to waste their vocal talents on the scream.
In this story, Zoe i think was quite strong.
Very indifferent towards those around her, and Wendy's wide eyed intelligence shines through marvellously.
Fraser Hines offering himself as a hero for once, without being the butt end of quick one liners from the doctor, which added to their great friendliness that they had toward each other.
Patrick Troughton was at his best, and i have previosuly read, however, that he became very impatient during this season of doctor who, which is a shame, because he was such a talented man.
The story itself i felt lacked not so much pace but 'pow'
the story was good in essence, and served perhaps on a political level a reason for being a pacifist or the need to defend ones borders, but nonetheless, the doctor saves the day with troughton's usual 'now then jamie...' approach.
i did like this story, but i feel that Troughton has had stronger ones, The War Games, Invasion and so on.
But as already said, if your a doctor who fan, and would forgive a lot, the story telling is great
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on 12 April 2016
My son loves this.
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on 2 September 2013
Although this is not a classic from Patrick Troughtons reign as the timelord it's certainly far better than some. Nice gift for a die hard whovian.
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on 23 December 2010
The Dominators is a interesting start to the final season of the 2nd Doctor, as well as the end of the B&W era. It shows the on going dispute between the different cultures of the time. Its not a bad story, but not a great onbe either. The behind the scenes material works out much better than the story itself does.
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on 7 January 2015
A classic
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on 17 December 2010
Some great Troughton moments are scattered in this rather padded out 5 parter from 1968. Look out for Brian Cant in a role [Playaway].
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