Customer Review

18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Tom Baker classic, 11 Sep 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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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 3 Jun 2008 09:43:22 BDT
You might warn us if you're going to put a spoiler in?

In reply to an earlier post on 6 Aug 2008 17:05:28 BDT
The programme was first broadcast over thirty years ago. I think "spoilers" might be a bit too srong a word. And anyway, I didn't give the ending away - did I?
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