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5th Doctor First,
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This review is from: Doctor Who: Castrovalva - Episode 117 [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
For those who are not so familiar with Doctor Who, or at least the earlier Doctors, this is the episode where the 4th Doctor regenerates into the 5th. Taking up the role of the Doctor after Tom Baker had been playing the part for some years could not have been an easy task for Peter Davison and to give him a chance to create the new Doctor's image and character, Castrovalva was filmed after two or three episodes which would appear later in the series.
The new Doctor is very vulnerable because the regeneration has not gone well, but the faithful companions work together and help him through this difficult time. Quite a contrast to "Four to Doomsday", which was actually filmed before Castrovalva, where the same companions behave like squabbling siblings.
His costume, that of an Edwardian cricketer, is perfect and suits Peter Davison very nicely, although it may have been better without the hat. If anything it was distracting as he spent a lot of time putting it on and taking it off rather than actually wearing it.
The 5th Doctor is the youngest of all the Doctors and as such he acts with a lot of energy and enthusiasm as he runs and jumps as if he feels that he finally has a body that matches his mercurial mind. Also he appears to be nearer to the age of his companions and thus is more of a friend to them although he is still the aged Time Lord. In fact Peter Davison does an excellent job of portraying the old man in a young body which makes his Doctor one of the best.
Castrovalva is the name of a lithograph by Abruzzi of a mysterious mountain city. In this story it is a small town on an unnamed planet in the Andromeda Galaxy. The mystery is there as in the lithograph, and as the Doctor endeavours to recover from his regeneration sickness he must also unravel the incongruity of the history of the town. Can the character known as the Port reeve help save the day or is he not who he says he is! Only one way to find out.
These episodes were made about 1980 so don't expect great visual effects or sets as you would see in today's Doctor Who. This was the low budget period for Doctor Who so if you don't expect too much you will find the DVD very enjoyable and certainly entertaining.
The extras are plenty, with Peter Davison and others commenting on the making of the episode and even having a laugh at themselves. There are also interviews and a photo gallery.