Customer Review

131 of 134 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vintage T.V., 8 April 2006
By A Customer
This review is from: Doctor Who - The Beginning (An Unearthly Child [1963] / The Daleks [1963] / The Edge of Destruction [1964]) [DVD] (DVD)
'Doctor Who - The Beginning Boxset' comprises of the first three William Hartnell adventures and contains some interesting special features, along the way.

There's something for everyone on this boxset, which up to now is probably the best Doctor Who release for fans of the original series.

I myself, didn't get the chance to watch these episodes on their original run (1963-64) but one of my friends, kindly lent me VHS copies of some Hartnell stories and I can tell you for sure that the Restoration Team (the people who improve the picture quality of these episodes) have clearly made a difference to the way we watch them, which makes them look as if they'd just been shown recently.

As for the features themselves, they have got to be among some of the best First Doctor outings ever.

'An Unearthly Child' (the first story) is a very entertaining T.V. gem to watch, even though its been over 40 years since it was aired on 23rd November 1963-14th December 1963. We are introduced to two schoolteachers, Ian Chesterton and Babara Wright who are suspicious about a strange pupil who they teach, Susan Foreman. A series of events follows, leading them to a mysterious stranger who calls himself the Doctor, and a police box standing in a junkyard, which is believed to travel through time and space. After an argument breaks out between the Doctor and the two teachers, the time-machine accidently transports them to the year one million B.C.

The second story (The Daleks), introduces us to Doctor Who's most popular villain, which Terry Nation created. Even though these episodes are must-sees, admittedly it does towards the end drag on, partly because 'The Daleks' runs one or two episodes too long.

Finally, 'The Edge of Destruction' is definitely the weakest of the three, but at the time a two-parter had to be written with only the Tardis and the main actors in it, within a very low budget.

Coming on to the extras, the stand-outs include 'Doctor Who: Origins' a great documentary looking back at nearly everything that lead to this phenomenal Saturday tea-time show and there's also a reproduction of the missing historical seven-parter 'Marco Polo' which followed after 'The Edge of Destruction'.

Overall, a great set which every Whovian should buy, to relive the birth of Doctor Who or discover how it all began in the early 60s.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 5 Aug 2009 08:50:55 BDT
Last edited by the author on 5 Aug 2009 09:00:03 BDT
I'm very far indeed from knowing a great deal about Dr.Who, but, for information purposes only, An Unearthly Child was broadcast again after 1963, before this release, as , I think, part of C4's T.V. Heaven series, in the very early '90's; though possibly from another compilation. I still have a copy of this on video from the time, and often wondered if anyone else had kept it. From what I see of this release, however, my copy's a lot less significant now.
Best.
Heath St John. London. hthstjhn@yahoo.co.uk ( I've just read a review of this show in the VHS section, from a Mathew J. Carter, from the 3rd of October, '06, who says it was also repeated on BBC2 in 1980).

Posted on 15 Nov 2013 18:43:11 GMT
I saw the very first episode live so look forward to seeing it again.

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Nov 2013 17:28:28 GMT
happy andrew says:
i saw the very 1st episode in 1963. the following week episode 2 was shown - preceded by a repeat of episode 1. the first appearance of the Daleks was at the very end of an episode where Barbara was pinned to the wall by the neck, a Dalek's 'pincer' arm, being the only part of the Dalek we saw. it was gripping stuff - i was 11 at the time. something totally different for Saturday night tv.
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